The July 21st Feature Friday is a quick insight of second year bachelor student Noah Thompson. Earlier this year Noah was a finalist in the National portrait prize, he was involved in an exhibition at the Melbourne Immigration Museum titled “They Cannot Take The Sky” which was made into a book. Noah was also successful in receiving the Maribyrnong City Council art grant that allowed him to have a solo exhibition at the Trocadero Art Space in Footscray and put his work”Footscray Hair” into a book.
We had a chat with the busy artist and learned about where he is now and where he wants to be as he prepares for his fourth semester at PSC.
I had always really liked photography over other artistic mediums, but I didn’t get started photographing until I was 18 and got given my cousin’s old camera for my 18th.
I had a pretty broad idea of what kind of photography I wanted to do: mostly commercial-based stuff, like working for magazines. But after having many guest speakers in our first year, documentary photography, more specifically war journalism or political protests documentation has sparked an interest in me too.
Honestly, learning how to actually use my camera properly. Since my third week back in first year at PSC, I’ve been using manual mode and have never touched the preset modes on my camera. The difference is astronomical. On a more serious note, I also learned that art is quite subjective and forgiving, as anything can be turned into an art project now if you can explain yourself eloquently and put in the effort.
Getting a grasp on the digital and editing aspect of photography and understanding what the different functions in Lightroom can do to an image, and pretty much everything I have learned in Photoshop.
This year having the freedom to do a folio on any topic I choose, and having that creative freedom now, as opposed to last year, when I have a much better understanding of the medium and the ways in which I can manipulate it to speak my language.
I now try to think of multiple ways to visually portray what I want to say, and attempt all of those ways instead of just picking the most obvious, or the easiest of the options. I also feel as though I am a lot more methodical in my shooting: I always have a brainstorm for each shoot I do, and a clear idea, and most of the time, the steps I need to take to get to the end product.
I’m really proud of my first proper attempt at studio shots, particularly my studio portraits. Getting to work in the studio this year has really solidified my passion to pursue a photographic career in studio.
I am currently working on my folio, which is a series of 15 significant moments in my life, beginning at my parent’s separation, documenting my battle with depression and suicidal tendencies, to now being well into recovery and actually enjoying my life.
Most of the time, I’m on YouTube watching a range of different videos: everything from gaming, to baking and cooking, to compilations of funny X Factor auditions. I think I would like to one day take a swing at making YouTube videos, but for now I’m sticking to photography.
YouTube, music, movies and television are probably the most broad source of inspiration for me, but also a lot of the new artists I get introduced to through my classes at PSC are also incredibly eye-opening.
This July 7th Friday Feature is the introduction to Project 17; a collective of part-time bachelor students.
Where did you come up with the name ‘Project 17’? Why did you decide to form this group?
The ‘Project 17’ collective was created in Summer 2016 by the Part-time Bachelor students from PSC for their first magazine release of the same name. It represents the amount of students in the class at the time, and also relates to the many and various projects we hope to complete together over time. These include exhibitions, publications and smaller collaborations within the group. We use the group as a way to reconnect despite our busy lives, and be a positive support network. The collective showcases and celebrates difference in a world where conformity is the norm. Project 17 aims to counter this view – to reveal, empower and inspire as one voice.
Project 17 Magazine (Still available)
What sort of individuals do you have in your collective?
Project 17 consists of men and women from various ages and cultural backgrounds providing varied views of the world. We have photojournalists, commercial photographers such as fashion and lifestyle, as well as artists, and photographers who choose to fuse some of those genres together. For example, there’s Lindi Forde, a well-travelled artist who documents details in artist spaces, and Taylor-Ferné Morris, a commercial photographer chasing the strength of the human body and mind within the ballet world.
Do you have a particular focus?
We decided for each project we would tackle a new theme exploring it’s challenges or advantages with our own brands of photography. Our graduate exhibition last year explored the theme ‘Pathways’ to celebrate the differences that make up who we are, and the idiosyncratic world we may want to chase or change in the future. This year for our second exhibition, a slightly smaller number of us will be participating in the Ballarat International Foto Biennale. We will be revealing our interpretations of the word ‘Silence’ for the general public, providing a range of works that we believe best suits our individual beliefs of the word.
What is the collective working on at the moment? What plans do you have for the future? Exhibitions? Projects? Publications?
Recently a joint Instagram was created for the group in order to cross promote our individual and joint projects. It will feature behind the scenes of our photographic work and the events we complete in the future. This includes being the main social media for our group exhibition for the BIFB in the Ballarat Trades Hall in a few weeks time. In between, we enjoy gathering at various Melbourne galleries for inspiration, entering the 2017 AIPP Awards (with Rebecca Conci winning three silvers for her raw portrayal of her daughter’s health), and even plan to visit Kevin O’Daly, another Project 17 member, in Tasmania later this year. A smaller group of us would also like to continue publishing our work in Photo Books together, collaborating on a smaller scale until another full group opportunity comes our way.