Masters Art & Design, SESSION 2018/19
AAM202 | Project Proposal & Learning Plan (PGDip)
This document is intended to assist Masters students in mapping / preparing their Masters studies. This proposal forms a key part of your submission for AAM202. This proposal is a plan of action; it sets out the aims and objectives of your intended project and how you intend to achieve these goals. Therefore, a good proposal will clearly set out your research question[s]: aims and objectives and provide a focus for your developing Masters practice. Whilst, providing you with a benchmark, against which you can reference your development and/or make adjustments as necessary. In this sense the proposal is a live working document, that you will adjust and revise as your project progresses.
The following headings are intended to assist you in writing a structured and realistic proposal which supports you up to the award stage for Postgraduate Diploma PGDip (the end of semester 2 for Full-time & Semester 4 for Part-time students). At this Masters Project stage you will be required to make a formal visual presentation to staff / peers, specifically identifying the exact nature of this Masters stage. You may find that in writing your proposal, you want to use different headings, and order your account differently. This is perfectly in order, as long as the basic issues set out here are covered.
Communication Design (Photography)
Working Title: Wild Land Area 16
PROPOSED FIELD OF STUDY/RESEARCH AREA
Your aim here is to state the area of your master research including reference to artistic precedents, or practices, and clearly indicate your key concerns in relation to the project. Write a short synopsis that should be properly referenced* include a selected bibliography where appropriate. Keep in mind that a Masters should be a tightly focused and coherent body of work that examines an issue in some depth. Do not therefore, be too broad in establishing your visual, design or curatorial context or research area. (200/300 words max) *The Harvard system of bibliographical conventions should be applied.
I am aiming to study land use and how we react and relate to nature/landscape.
The Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority, in partnership with the Cairngorms National Park Authority and Scottish Natural Heritage commissioned a survey to further develop their understanding of public perception of wildness in Scotland and to further support wildness mapping.
This led to the SNH’s 2013 map of Wild Land Areas in Scotland, and this was further refined in 2014.
With this map they identified a series of criteria in which they deemed an area ‘wild’. I am looking to explore these areas to document visually the locations, and the land, to further understand and assess whether I see these spaces to be ‘wild’.
This will require not only visiting the land within these designated areas, but also those on the borders to build up a comparison. I will be looking to see if there is a visual change to these boundaries.
This fits into a larger interest I have in humanities relationship with nature and land use. In particular, boundaries and mapping practices imposed upon the landscape.
Having identified the core area of study, you need to say something about the how/why this question has arisen or why the project is relevant to you personally. For some students, the research project emerges out of a long standing interest, for others it emerges out of issues within your practice or specific subject area for example. Whatever the case, you should try to briefly set out why you have chosen the project that you have, and what contribution you think the completed research/practice might make to your our understanding. (100/200 words)
This resulted as an amalgamation of multiple threads of interest to me. I started by looking at the idea of what a photographer's relationship with the landscape. This in turn pushed me back into a historical view of the artist and the landscape, which raised questions of the landscape artist as a ‘tourist’.
I began looking at the impact that firstly I had myself upon the environment that I was photographing, and why I was drawn to photograph these areas, and then wider with the impact that humanity in general had upon the landscape.
The second thread I had been investigating, was who imposed the message upon a photograph, the photographer or the viewer. With this I came to the conclusion that there had to be a shared influence upon the image, as the photographer needed to take the image, which would be heavily biased with the techniques and the location upon which they took the image, and then it was left to the viewer to accept or reject the narrative the photographer had applied, and impart their own experiences to the final message.
This partly was due to look at more politically focused images, however in turn also exposed me to further political and environmentally focused photographs. I am looking to either build a more activist element into my own imagery, or alternatively attempt to separate my own beliefs from them.
Although, these two threads were looking predominantly at the artist, and artists practice, and how this is translated into images of the landscape, I will be reversing this to look at the areas of the landscape from a mapping approach and then attempting to translate this into a visual medium.
CONCEPTUAL OR THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
For many students, their project emerges from theoretical debates in their discipline or more personal contexts, these need to be discussed and explored here, towards defining what are the key critical ideas and context. For the purposes of this proposal, it is necessary to discuss very briefly theoretical ideas or key concepts that inform your thinking (this may be something your will come back to revisit as the project develops). Not all projects however foreground an explicit theoretical basis in these terms. Some focus on a broader empirical engagement, often the case in Fine Arts. But, there still remains the need for an analytic framework to be developed or communicated, which defines the key concepts and demonstrates how your ideas link to or broaden these debates. (100-150 words)
I have had two talks by Nuno Sacramento on Deep Mapping, which have had a big influence on my practice to date. The first, in 2017, I feel was key in trying to move from a more technically driven approach to projects, into a conceptual approach.
Although I have attempted to apply this concept into my previous projects, I have been working in shorter timescales, which have not necessarily allowed me to work in depth enough, in my mind, to fully realise the concept.
I feel that over the part time masters, this would be a perfect opportunity to explore this concept further.
It is something that I will have to explore how to relate the concept in a photographic sense, as I can see the use of photographs for a written deep mapping approach, however from a photographic centric approach I will need to explore possible options. This may be work more in a documentary style, breaking away from the individual aesthetically driven approach, I have applied in the past.
LEARNING AIMS AND OBJECTIVES
What are the aims and objectives of your project? Aim:- general statement on your desired outcome and accomplishment[s] for your project and/or proposed work/collaboration, emphasis here is on what you want to achieve (not how). Objectives:- more specific activities, tasks or actions needed to develop your project. In terms of: Knowledge and Understanding, Intellectual Skills, Practical Skills, Transferable Skills & Personal Attributes Gained through this work.
To produce an in depth photographic exploration into 'Wild Land Areas’ within Scotland.
To find a method to apply a concept of Deep Mapping within a photographic approach.
To investigate how ‘Wildness’ is measured within the landscape.
To assess the impact that this has upon people visiting the areas.
To further expand my photographic techniques and approaches for Landscape Photography.
To develop digital editing techniques.
To apply a more contextual focus to my projects.
To further skills in video capture and editing.
What resources, workshop access needs, technical support, new skills and/or specialist assistance will you need to achieve these Proposed Aims and Objective:
RESOURCES & WORKSHOP ACCESS:
Darkroom facilities, if I opt to utilise film within my projects.
Video editing software, through the MAC labs.
Video editing workshops/tutorials.
Digital Photo editing workshops/tutorials.
In some Fine Art and Design Masters projects, for example Photography or user testing in Product Design for example, there is an element of public engagement. So if your project anticipates working with the public, or presents ethical concerns however minor you should refer to University Ethic Policy (copy available on moodle page)
DO YOU ANTICIPATE ANY POTENTIAL ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS:
I will need to be conscious of Rights of Access, in terms of the locations that I may be visiting. Although the areas are often accessible, the land is managed by various estates, and there are sporting activities such as Grouse and Deer Shooting and Fishing, which take place in these locations and may limit access and raise safety issues at certain times of year.
There are often visible signs with the information at key access points. I will take some photos of these signs to have as a guide, in case I am accessing the areas via alternative routes.
This will be something I can check along with other pre-excursion planning, i.e. weather.
Try and develop a plan of work for the completion of your studies up to PGDip exhibition (end of semester 2 Full-time & end of semester 4 Part-time). This will assist you in pacing your progress through the work, and also managing your project. Try to indicate targets within this timescale to complete key tasks (suggest use Course Timetable as a template which is available on Moodle )
STUDENT CONTACT DETAILS: