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Wednesday 24 June 2015

Photography students showcase final year projects

BA (Hons) Photography students have been showcasing their work to the public during their final-year degree show at Southampton Solent University.

A culmination of three years of creative inspiration, the degree show included photography and video screenings by more than 40 students.

Course Leader, Mandy Lee Jandrell, says: “Each project has been developed with care, originality and refined to a highly professional standard, with experimentation taking place and new ways of working developed.”

Student Emma Savage, 21, created Tormenti Amor. The Italian title translates as ‘torments of love’ and Emma’s handmade book pictures five female characters from five different operas; the Queen of the Night (Mozart’s The Magic Flute), Madame Butterfly (Puccini), Alcina (Handel), Turandot (Puccini) and Rusalka (Dvorjak).

Tormenti Amor by Emma Savage

From geisha to princess, water nymph to enchantress, as women in opera they all share one thing, a demise through tragedy, despair and loss. Emma says: “I wanted to capture this vulnerability and beauty by theatrically styling my models and constructing my own sets by hand. Each heroine is portrayed in a studio setting with themes including fashion, fantasy and the facade.”

Inspired by her opera-singer mother, Emma recalls: “I always remember this photo taken during her biggest performance in 1980s London, which shows her wearing an ornately decorated, twinkling black velvet gown and fearsome yet beautiful crown of silver spires atop her head. I wanted to introduce people to opera and the fantasy that comes with it.”

Student Tom Parker, 21, UK winner of the Sony World Photo Organisation ‘student focus’ award, focused on the extraction of natural resources along the Dorset coast. Inspired by the work of Edward Burtynsky and Dan Holdsworth, Tom’s idea stemmed from his previous work on metal exportation at Southampton Docks.

Tom Parker

He says: “I set out to uncover areas that the public don’t usually see and confront the issue of sustainable quarrying. I like to pose questions in the viewers’ minds, usually I get asked ‘Where is this? It can’t be England’ and that is what inspires me, to create images that confront the viewers, making them question what it is they’re looking at and its wider implications.”

Ella Stanley, 21, moved away from traditional photography. Influenced by painters and the Cubist and Suprematists movements, her final project, Dynamic Inversions, explores geometry using camera-less photography.

Ella Stanley’s work

Ella explains: “I used plastic gels in the dark room and projected them onto photographic paper. I chose to print the images 18×18 inch with no border and then painted MDF white and mounted the prints on them.

“I always had a desire to attend university but making the decision to move away from home was a hard decision but one that with hindsight, I am delighted I made. The three years at Solent have been the best of my life and the course has helped widen my knowledge and develop my skills within the arts.”

Watch a snapshot of the BA (Hons) Photography degree show 2015>>

A selection of work by Southampton Solent University students, Beauty Right There, is on display from 3 July to 21 August at Solent’s Showcase Gallery, Sir James Matthews building, Above Bar, Southampton, SO14 7NN. Opening hours are Monday to Friday, 11am to 6pm, and Saturday, 11am to 5pm. Admission is free.

For more information about Solent’s BA (Hons) Photography course, visit