From Visual Memoirs to Capturing Character | Documentary & Pet Photography

For TICE Photography, students shared their artistic viewpoints inspired by pandemic ponderings and furry friends.

For the January 2022 cohort, photography mentor, Jennine Wilson was joined by students at Norham High School to explore the breadth of the photography industry. Two online photography projects were chosen, Pet Paw-trait and Onwards & Optimism – both involving explorations into wellbeing and personal growth. Ultimately, these projects were about the importance of slowing down, taking a breath and telling stories from the inside. Let’s take a look.


Project 1: Pet-Pawtrait

Mentored By: Jennine Wilson – Photography Mentor
Project Contributors: Rebecca Ashworth-Earle – Northeast Dog Photographer


The Brief:

Pet photography is a popular photographic niche these days, whether it be photos of a furry friend for the Instagram feed or professional pictures to hang on walls. Pets (although challenging at times) are the perfect subjects for photography. Their energy, unpredictability, and joyfulness can be turned into eye-catching photography. This is a project for photographers who love animals and would like to learn more about the fun world of pet photography.

The students gained knowledge and inspiration from professional pet photographers on how to capture characters with a camera. From there, students chose their subject and did research on the animal’s personality, which would shape the overall themes and style for their pet photoshoot. The final outcome would be a part of their pet photography business and should aim to interest a pet owner in purchasing a piece of art to feature in their home.


Project Results:

Please view the final results of the students’ work from Norham High School.


Project 2: Onwards & Optimism

Mentored By: Jennine Wilson – Photography Mentor
Project Contributors: Rhys Baker – Cultural and Social Documentary Photographer, Craig Proud – Photographer & Co-founder of Dizzy Ink, Trevor Read – Director of The Aviary Gallery, Alan Thoburn – Fine Art Documentary Photographer


The Brief:

As a counterbalance to the modern life phenomena of fast living, overconsumption, and the social media obsession with celebrating ‘overdoing it’, this project focuses on reflecting upon what we have experienced and learned about ourselves coming out of the period of mass isolation and social distancing. It’s all about looking forward to what’s next, answering the question…what made you smile?

This may be a photographic portrait of a possession, revealing a story about life after lock-down, an insight about something that grew familiar or sentimental, or you may have a strange and bizarre story to tell. Each photograph will be accompanied by a short autobiographical account offering a glimpse or fragment of the individual’s life during this time. Their final piece will be part of a series of photographs and short autobiographical accounts, curated as a meditative dialogue in a Zine reflecting on stories of optimism.


Project Results:

Please view the final results of Simran Khurana‘s work from Norham High School.


Thank you and well done, not only to the students but to the teachers at Norham High School. And a big thank you to North Tyneside Learning Trust, to the companies that have supported and contributed to this project, and to the TICE team that plugged away at the project week after week.

To the students – we hope you have enjoyed this project, we hope in years to come that you can proudly present an industry written project you did and quite frankly smashed. Well done and congratulations from everyone here at TICE.

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