Water and earth – feedback for Ernst Haas assignment

Especially for those of you who helped me with my decisions on my last assignment, here’s the final line-up – in the order in which it went in. Feedback from tutor coming up in a moment…….



Red and green

Blue and gold



Rock landscape






I was pretty pleased with this in the end, although I had one or two doubts that were confirmed by the tutor feedback.  The image third from the end was put in as a filler – I didn’t have an alternative and so it had to go in.  I felt it was a bit similar to the one after it, and not as interesting, and that’s exactly what I got back in terms of tutor comments.  The other one I wasn’t sure about was the blurred leaves (second from top); I like it a lot, but I think maybe a slightly quicker shutter speed would have held a little more sharpness and made it better.  My tutor admitted that it fitted well in the sequence, but he thought it was too blurred.  Before I put these in for assessment I can make changes if I want to, and I’ll almost certainly change number ten for something that gives more variety.  However, I’m going to keep number two, because despite its faults I like it, it fits in well, and I think the blurriness is compensated for to some extent by the light and the colour.

I spent a lot of time on the sequencing, spreading the prints out all over my study floor and moving them about till the order made sense.  In the end, I decided to start with an earth/water combination, move onto the water shots, then to the earth shots, and finish with another earth/water combo to bring it full circle.  I also did my best to make some colour link between them, although it wasn’t always possible.  My tutor thought the sequencing worked well.

In some ways this was an easy assignment for me. Anyone who’s been reading this for any length of time will know that I’m an ardent fan of Ernst Haas, and some of that’s because my own style of photography is quite similar (if not quite up to the same standard!).  This made it easy for me to put myself into an Ernst Haas kind of mindset and produce something in that vein, although it was a lot more difficult to find the raw material for the images.  I think it would have been much more of a challenge for me to take on someone whose style was very, very different to my own, and in some ways I regret not doing that because I would have learned a lot.  But the last year has been hard enough without deliberately making things difficult for myself, and I think I have plenty of excuse for taking the easier option.  I also wouldn’t have enjoyed it nearly as much, and it’s been a pleasure to go round pretending I’m channeling Ernst.  I’m quite proud of the results and might go on adding to these over time, particularly if I take the exploration into fire and air as well.