Daniel Pockett Photographs Australian Open for Getty Images

Daniel Pockett, part time student of the Advanced Diploma course, was given an opportunity of a lifetime with the prestigious Getty Images. He was assigned to cover The Australian Open of 2016, getting full access to every corner of selected venues. Previously with Getty (earlier in 2015), Daniel was given the chance to cover various other events such as ICC Soccer in June, MotoGP (in October), Big Bash Cricket (in December).

By Daniel Pocket

By Daniel Pockett

Capturing world class athletes (such as Federer) on court, Daniel was selected because of his impressive portfolio that was further enriched by the industry exposure he received while pursuing his photojournalism course at PSC. As he completed his last semester of studies in December last year, Daniel had the chance to be selected for an internship with The Age.

D Pockett

Daniel Pockett for The Age

The Age

This opportunity comes about every year under PSC’s career -building initiative with Australia’s no. 1 news publication. During Daniel’s internship, his work was published several times in the past 8 weeks, giving him recognition like never before. Daniel has photojournalism teacher Bill Bachman to thank, as he believes that the opportunities at the turn of the year came about as a result of Bill’s encouragement and guidance.

By Daniel Pocket for Getty Images

By Daniel Pockett for Getty Images

As Daniel takes on more assignments with big names in the photography industry, he reflects on his time at PSC as being an awe-inspiring journey of 4 years that has allowed him to achieve the things he never thought he could. Daniel looks forward to the PSC Graduation Ceremony in May 2016, feeling proud of the fact that he was able to change his career from architectural drafting to professional photography, successfully.

Find out more about enrolling part time or full time at PSC here.

 

Visiting PSC After 30 Years

Helen Wilms
Helen Wilms recently visited PSC after graduating from the college thirty years ago, during “the age of film, chemicals and dark rooms.” Being a prolific student at the time, Helen remembers having more photographs on the walls of PSC than anyone else. “It was a big deal,” she tells us while looking at newly displayed digital prints of our current graduates.

Helen returned to the campus last week to attend the information evening about part time courses, after spending years working as a tour guide who kept her passion for photography alive. Taking an interest in street photography and being an ardent fan of Diane Arbus, Helen has clicked millions of people all around the world. She aspires to learn more about photography, describing it as “the one medium (she) has always loved.”

We hope to see Helen soon as we open our doors to graduates who wish to remain connected to the PSC family.

From PSC to Thailand and Back: Professional Street Photographer Nick McGrath

Nick McGrath

Completing his Advanced Diploma from PSC with a major in Photojournalism, Nick McGrath tells us about his life as a full-time street photographer. 

Before I decided to start a new career in photography I had been working in the surf industry for many years as a brand manager for a global company. I had been working long long hours and I began to feel a sense that this wasn’t for me anymore. I started to see where I was in the game and I didn’t like the role I was playing so I left.  It took me sometime to figure out what I was going to do but I made a choice to follow a path guided by three simple values or principles. 1. I needed to be happy in what I was going to do. 2. I needed to be passionate about what I was going to do and lastly I need inspiration not just from what I was doing, but also from the people and the environment around me.  These 3 promises that I made to myself eventually led me to a path in photography and it has been ever since that these values continue to propel me into future unknown possibilities.

Why photography? Well in the beginning, I had no idea what I was doing, but what I could tell was that this journey that photography was taking me on was the right path even if the destination was completely unknown. It fulfilled my value criteria and the many discoveries I learnt about myself and the world around me was propelling me into a positive forward direction in life. The act of photography was very important to me in the beginning because (this was kind of embarrassing to me) I was very afraid to take a photo of a stranger in the street, Whatever the reason why I was like that, I knew that photography was challenging me in areas that I needed to be challenged and so I continually pushed my own boundaries and fear through the act of photographing. Looking back today, and it has only been relatively a short space in time, but the journey that photography has led me through has been one of complete amazement, one that I could never have imagined.

By Nick McGrath, taken at Chinatown (Bangkok)

By Nick McGrath, taken at Chinatown (Bangkok)

 

Going to Thailand, like most of my decisions was very instinctual and spontaneous. Because I surfed for most of my life, Thailand had never come up on my radar as it never had any surf. It began when I found out through a friend that an Australian photographer Philip Blenkinsop was holding a workshop in Bangkok 3 days before it was about to begin, so I called Philip and asked him if there was any places left, he gave me the affirmative and so I put the money in the bank the next day, booked a flight and watched hangover 2 the night before I left. The next day I landed in Bangkok and headed straight to Chinatown.  I knew absolutely nothing about this place yet the energy was palpable. It was the perfect place for my next set of awaiting challenges. The workshop with Philip really changed my photography and also me as a person, I started to see differently and act differently, the assault of a myriad of new experiences overwhelmed me so much that the impact on me was huge, I didn’t want to leave. I eventually extended my 2 week stay to 6 weeks. I came back to Australia but was very unsettled; I needed to go back to Thailand. I eventually did three trips back and forth to Thailand before un-expectantly being offered a job as an editorial photographer for a new magazine which was launching in Bangkok. This was the beginning of my permanency here in Thailand.

'Circle Work' from Nick McGrath's Series 'Deni Ute Muster'

‘Circle Work’ from Nick McGrath’s Series ‘Deni Ute Muster’

 

By Nick McGrath, taken at a funeral in Bangkok

By Nick McGrath, taken at a funeral in Bangkok

The beginning of my working life in Thailand was very difficult, but that was of my own doing. The work with the magazine was great but I found it very difficult to find a good place to live, I was very pedantic about this. After living in a guesthouse for the first 2 months which was costing me a fortune and not very good for my health and not wanting to live in a box high above the street, I eventually found a little room overlooking a large park out the front of my window. It was super important to me that the place where I lived had plenty of light and fresh air, I was amazed at how difficult it was to find this on a small budget. I slowly settled in to my new life while at the same time being thrown into the epicentre of Bangkok’s cultural elite. The magazine gave me plenty of opportunity to experience every level of Thai culture, from working with the super famous all the way down to the ordinary person on the street.  One day I was shooting food and then portrait work, the next day shooting fashion/culture. It was a good mix but unfortunately the magazine couldn’t compete in the local market and didn’t last. I left after 5 months later.

By Nick McGrath

By Nick McGrath

At the same time as I was working on the magazine, I was also shooting a lot on the street, trying to find interesting ideas and trying new experiences everywhere. About the same time, the political situation was beginning to re-energise with new street protests. Anti-government supporters were protesting against the former Yingluck government and it was another chance to hone some of my photojournalism skills. One of my friends who had been working for an agency in Cairo had mentioned to me that a new picture editor had begun work in Singapore and was looking to procure a fresh network of photographers in SEA. I got the address of the person in charge and sent an email with an edit of work that I had been shooting throughout the early stages of the protest and an in depth analysis of the situation. Eventually the agency took me on as a stringer. I followed the protests for months, I walked the streets for what seemed like for ever, I got sent to the south of Thailand to follow the rural protests, I was in the middle of a street gunfight that lasted an hour with men shooting 45s above my head, I witnessed a man get shot by a sniper and another man having his leg obliterated by a hand grenade in what seemed like surreal chaos. It was my first experience witnessing these kinds of things and a paradox of thoughts streaming in my head couldn’t connect with the reality of the situation. It seemed pointless to try and understand it.  I continued to work sporadically with the agency until I left to go work completely independent. Not something that I would recommend for the faint hearted.

Taken by Nick McGrath in Rajasthan, India

Taken by Nick McGrath in Rajasthan, India

Working as a freelancer, you discover a resilience and determination that comes from being self-reliant, especially when you are in a foreign country. Everything you do will determine your success or failure. For me, the most important risk factors for consideration is simply time versus money. Do I have enough money to do the project, do I have time or not enough time to fulfill the project. The other most important factor is, will I get paid for the work and will the payment cover the time and money I have made in my investment. It takes many years to develop a network of editors and contacts that are willing to listen to your project. I would say that I am 95% unsuccessful in my project ideas. Yet I am successful in other areas which do reciprocate back to other photography work. These days, the diversification of a freelance photographers skill is paramount to their success. How I do this is by creating the opportunities myself, from co-founding an arts space, getting involved with the local arts community, by curating photography screening and talks, by hosting and curating exhibitions, by teaching workshops. These are the rewarding factors of this profession and the serendipitous nature to it is the thing that excites me the most.

Currently, I am still working on the monthly curations for the photography screenings and also working on a number of photography exhibitions for later in the year. Between this and several other jobs I’m juggling, I am also editing several years of black and white film which I have shot on my travels between Thailand and Burma. I’m also hoping to cover the Burma elections in November. You can never look to far ahead in the future though.

PSC Photojournalism Student Peter Williams Accompanies Michael Coyne to Vietnam

On the Road with Peter Williams

On the Road with Peter Williams

In the month of November (2015) PSC Senior Fellow Michael Coyne was set to go on a trip to Vietnam for his project on Villagers. As part of the photojournalism class that Michael mentors, he offered students a chance to accompany him to see what it’s like to be on location as a photojournalist, for one week.

While this was brewing, Fujifilm was in the process of selecting 100 photographers around the world to test their latest X – Series camera, known as the ‘X-Pro2‘ which was just launched on the 15th of January 2016. Michael was chosen as one of the 100 photographers, who would then have his work exhibited around the world as part of Fujifilm’s campaign.

By Michael Coyne

By Michael Coyne

Peter Williams, a photojournalism student in the Advanced Diploma course, was the first to contact Michael about the trip to Vietnam and was consequently selected. He readied himself for an experience of a lifetime, shortly after travelling to Bali where he documented people in the non-profit organisation, ‘Solemen‘.

By Peter Williams

By Peter Williams

Accompanying Michael Coyne was a remarkable experience for Peter, who received one-on-one mentoring  throughout the week. He felt that the trip went by quickly, as he was always on the go, heading to the north-western mountain ranges of Sapa, from the bustling city of Hanoi. During his trip, Peter sought the opportunity of capturing his experience by creating his own photography series, as well as a documentary about Michael Coyne’s journey in Sapa.

Here’s a teaser of the video which will be released soon.

Peter Williams was thrilled to have such an opportunity with Michael. At PSC we regard international exposure as an important facet for enriching the vision of our students. With events like the Obscura Festival and a photography trip to Iran coming up this year, we are excited to hear about the various experiences our students will have.

On the other hand, Michael’s images are being showcased in the Fujifilm X World Photo Gallery – a travelling exhibition which is currently in Tokyo. Fujifilm celebrates the 5th Anniversary of Fujifilm’s X-Series Camera this year and we’re proud that Michael Coyne has the honour of representing PSC at such an important worldwide event.

2016 Part Time Courses Begin!

Today we welcomed new part time students in the 20 week Creative Photography and 40 week Pro Photography Certificate course. These passionate individuals have taken the first step towards securing a fulfilling life in photography, with new career prospects opening up for them down the line.

We’ll be charting their progress as they familiarise themselves with concepts such as lighting, exposure camera craft, establishing a professional workflow, composition, framing, shooting with natural light on location, capturing people around Melbourne and finalising folio projects as they learn how to manage digital files for editing. This is going to be a big ride indeed!

Let’s hear from some students on their first day:

Maddy (Instagram: @travel_with_mc)

Maddy (Instagram: @travel_with_mc)

“I’ve always been passionate about photography but I never had the chance to be proactive about it. Working as a tax consultant for the past two years, I realised the need to get back into developing my photography skills. I joined PSC with the hopes of starting a new career as a professional photographer”.
– Maddy (40 week Pro Photography course)

 

Peter (Instagram: @peter_merrick)

Peter (Instagram: @peter_merrick)

“I first became interested in photography when I was a child. I’ve finally got the opportunity to invest in what I’ve always wanted to do. I came to PSC because it has the best reputation in the field. I currently work in the Healthy and Safety industry and I’m looking forward to being more creative at PSC and learning the theory behind photography. I’m excited about seeing things from a new perspective”.
– Peter (20 week Creative Photography Certificate Course)

Arun Kumar

Arun Kumar

“I’ve been doing photography as a hobby and now I’m ready to take it to the next level. I work as an I.T professional and wanted to join PSC because it’s the only place that’s 100% dedicated to photography – it’s not just a side option”.
– Arun Kumar

We’re excited about meeting other students in the course and seeing their progress. We can already tell that this group will bring much joy to the PSC family in 2016, with their potential to create fascinating work!

Weekend Feature : Eric Jong

Eric Jong

This weekend we’re presenting Eric Jong, who’s undertaking the Bachelor Pathway Program which he started late last year. Eric graduated from PSC with an Advanced Diploma in photojournalism in 2010 and has returned to the creative campus after thinking about his photographic practice and missing the experience of being around other individuals who are passionate about photography.

The projects he completed while in his final year at PSC in 2010 are:
Behind the scenes at the melbourne museum: http://www.ericjong.com.au/#/melbmuseum/ and a project about a young social worker http://www.ericjong.com.au/#/the-way-community/
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Street stall by night. Taipei, Taiwan. Image by Eric Jong

Upon graduating from PSC in photojournalism he worked with a local NGO that sends patients from East Timor to Melbourne for life saving surgery: http://www.ericjong.com.au/#/east-timor-hearts-fund-lucas/

Eric is currently working on his Bachelor Pathway program  folio which covers the lives of the sailors who work on shipping containers: http://www.ericjong.com.au/blog/2015/11/25/8-x-8-x-20-work-in-progress

You can follow Eric’s journey here.

Anthony Basheer Gets Published Within Months of Graduating From PSC

Anthony Basheer for Belle Magazine

Anthony Basheer for Belle Magazine

Resembling a glamorous set of a classic Italian film, Anthony Basheer creates a timeless look with surreal lighting that showcases the decadent quality of the objects in the frame. His photographs clearly show us the power of layered storytelling; something that is rare and extremely important in commercial and creative industries today. Published in the most recent issue of Belle Magazine (the no.1 magazine in Australia for interior design), it is the first time that Anthony’s work has been featured in a periodical journal. Graduating from PSC with an Advanced Diploma in photography just in May 2015, this is a mammoth achievement.

Anthony received a significant amount of training from PSC, majoring in commercial photography as a part time student. According to him, this education allowed him to complete his shoot for Belle magazine with utmost ease and confidence.

 

Belle Magazine publishes Anthony Basher

Belle Magazine publishes Anthony Basheer

As magnificent as his images are, it is worthy to note that Anthony’s passion for photography emerged only recently. Working as a database analyst for twenty years, he found himself confronting the unhappiness he felt with his day-to-day routine. In search for a career change to do something more fulfilling, Anthony signed up for a graduate diploma in horticulture and almost went onto study landscape architecture, when he came across PSC. He had reached a crossroad in his life at this point. Spurred by the curiosity of photography, he took the leap and enrolled himself in something he had no prior experience with.

 

It was very exciting for me to join the college. I wanted to immerse myself with new knowledge. I started learning about basic art concepts and principles of design, before going on to experiment with light and colour… and the placement of objects. We were taught concepts that brought out our vision, purpose and style. It was remarkable to grow my understanding of this field along with a group of really supportive students.

 

Within the first few weeks of his first semester, Anthony learnt that photography was a rare mix of technical and artistic elements, something that truly complemented his personality. It was the perfect fit. Hailing from a family of business-minded people, this new direction was a surprise to him and to those who were close to him.

Anthony Basheer Shoots for Establishment Sudios, 2014

Anthony Basheer Shoots for Establishment Sudios, 2014

 

Anthony’s perspective transformed everyday while he was gaining an education in photography. Contrary to focusing on the ‘end result’, he realised that the process and journey of life was far more important to keep in mind, in order to be happy. His new outlook was a slight adjustment for the people in Anthony’s life, but they began to support his way of thinking when he proved that he could make a successful career out of simply doing what he loved.

 

I always wanted to do something different in life. I knew that changing my career to become a photographer was going to be a little difficult… Growing up in a family where no one was artistically inclined, I focused on conforming to the expectations of others and ended up working in a field that I had no passion for, just to please people. Now as a photographer, I’m glad to be on a journey that is meaningful and fulfilling.

Rippon Lea shoot. Anthony's assignment for National Trust of Victoria

Rippon Lea shoot. Anthony’s assignment for National Trust of Victoria

 

Being curious and inquisitive from childhood, Anthony continues to seek new stories with his photography. He is currently working with three different architects, recently completing an assignment for the National Trust of Victoria. Covering buildings of national importance and unearthing the heritage of Melbourne in his wonderful portfolio for the organisation, Anthony’s stunning work that captures the grandeur of Rippon Lea house and Gardens will be placed in brochures and promotional material for years to come. This is a grand honour for an emerging photographer whose work was also printed in The Age not too long ago.

 

Julie Wajs was a very influential teacher while I was at PSC. She helped me to define and create my portfolio in a way that caught the attention of people from the industry. She taught me the technique of crafting a story that could be woven into my photographs, giving my work substance. This allowed me to communicate my intent in a unique and clear manner to clients.

 

Working with the award winning architecture firm in Melbourne, MRTN Architects, Anthony was able to build his niche in architectural photography with his shoot for Trentham House. This allowed him to get noticed by the architecture and design circuit, winning him contacts who booked him for various projects such as: Mariner Lounge (for Melbourne City Council) and Beaumaris House (for Diana Scully) – just to name a few. Anthony is now on a path filled with countless assignments, enriching his career as a professional photographer. You can keep updated with his journey to see upcoming projects.

Anthony's Shoot for Trentham House (MRTN Architects) was published in The Age, 2015

Anthony’s Shoot for Trentham House (MRTN Architects) was published in The Age, 2015

I love to shoot interiors, gardens and architecture. The structure involved in the principles of design really intrigues me. In my photography, I aim to bring out the details of the spaces I shoot and layer it with my own style, with lighting techniques I learnt to finesse at PSC.

Anthony Basheer's earlier work.

An example of Anthony Basheer’s Early Photography Work

 

His advice for those who are breaking into the competitive industry of landscape and architectural photography is:

 

  • Find people whose work you love and approach them.
  • Immerse yourself in the area of photography that interests you. Be a part of these communities and get to know other people in the field.
  • Build and email your contact list in the last few months of your degree or diploma so you have assignments by the time you graduate.
  • Be persistent and regular with the people you contact; they often have opportunities for you after 3 to 6 months.
  • Know what you want to photograph before setting out your shoot.
  • Be prepared to put in a lot of work towards building your career as a professional photographer.
  • Be prepared to enjoy the life of adventure and freedom as a photographer.
Click to read more about Anthony Basher from Southbank Local News

Click to read more about Anthony Basheer

Antonia Hempel Inspires Artists at St. Kilda Town Hall

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Antonia Hempel graduated with a Bachelor of Photography at PSC in June 2015. Barely a year later, she has been given the opportunity to have her work showcased at the very prestigious exhibition space for national artists; The Gallery (St. Kilda Town Hall).
Antonia Hempel spent three years hiking and kayaking her way to remote bodies of water, in Australia and overseas, for her exhibition “Renewal”. The series was developed while Antonia was at PSC, allowing her to receive guidance from her tutors who helped finesse her vision with this particular piece of work . The stunning video and photographic images she captured of these little- visited locations are accompanied by the recorded sounds of running water and pristine tones of a crystal Tibetan singing bowl.
Antonia on location

Antonia Hempel

Antonia uses water as a symbol of the connectivity of all living things as well as a tool for exploring a meditative calming response.
“Water is the connector of life, the common denominator that weaves all living things together. As it is a powerful symbol of connectivity, water is a perfect tool for exploring a meditative, calming response. My inspiration comes directly from nature and my love for the land. I hope my work will encourage people to celebrate and bond with nature and feel peaceful, even if just for a short time.”
– Antonia Hempel

Antonia worked closely with sound healer Ami Hasson, who used a singing bowl and Native American medicine drum to produce the distinctive soundtrack. Her husband, Gaston Freddi, accompanied her on location to record the sound of water and contributed original compositions to the soundtrack.

‘Renewal’ can be viewed at The Gallery, St Kilda Town Hall, from 6 January – 3 February, with an official opening at 6pm on Thursday, 14 January.

Antonia on location_2

Antonia Hempel on Location while shooting ‘Renewal’.

 

Antonia lives and works as a practicing photographer in Melbourne, she works in a variety of other mediums including video and painting. Her works are a response to capturing the beauty of the natural environment. Shooting entirely in remote and sometimes inaccessible locations that are largely untouched by human intervention. She shot Renewal over a period of three years filming and photographing bodies of water around Australia and Overseas. All of her photographs were printed by Peter Hatzipavlis at ThePrintShop @ PSC.

Raquel Betiz Presents ‘Spot’ at Testing Grounds

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Raquel Betiz, our 3rd year Bachelor of Photography student, who just finished her studies at PSC a few weeks ago is showcasing her portfolio series ‘Spot’ at Testing Grounds on January 15, 2016 (1-23 City road, Southbank). This opportunity came about after Raquel responded to an open-call for artists to exhibit their work in this relatively new art space, known for giving creative professionals a platform to test their ideas. Raquel has decided to experiment with the size of her photographs, testing the themes of space with audiences who are attending this innovative event.

From Raquel's series, 'Spot'.

From Raquel’s series, ‘Spot’.

We had featured Raquel last year when she was chosen as a finalist by the Ballarat International Foto Biennale . Her work was featured in their 2016 calendar for October, which you can order online. Look back into Raquel’s journey here.

The interesting thing to note is that Raquel has booked her exhibition at Testing Grounds before she has even graduated. This highlights the fact that PSC students are given real-world industry exposure and an in-depth career focus to help them secure professional projects on the go.

Raquel emphasises the importance of being prudent with your work as a photography student who’s about to graduate:

‘Keep creating work for your portfolio. Exhibit your photography whenever and wherever you get the chance – even if it’s at a non-commercial space or through an artists’ residency. This will keep your motivation going. If you’re complacent about your work  your drive to create will disappear.’

Taking this advice from Raquel will serve you well, as she’s on her way to building a strong network with esteemed photographers in the field.  Thanks to the mentor program at PSC, she has a great starting point and will keep her schedule extremely busy in the coming weeks.

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You can see more of Raquel’s work on her website. Find out more about studying at PSC and feel free to contact us.