Phonar- Task 3: The Process

Task  3, written by KayLynn Deveney titled ‘A Guide to the Neighbourhood.

  1. Summaries the task and tweet it in no more than three tweets, using the relevant hashtags.

I found reading the task and understanding what I needed to do simple, this made this part of the task quick and easy. By summarising the task it allows people that aren’t on our course to have an idea what each assignment is about.

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2.  Investigation into artist (KayLynn Deveney) and creation of portrait, to be posted on Instagram with relevant hashtags.

To create a visual portrait it is important to not only know facts about my author but also how she creates her work. This could influence what I create. KayLynn Deveney has a really good website which made it quite easy to find out the main facts about her. I also looked at other websites, interviews with Deveney and the work and publications that she has made. Here is some of the information that I found.

  • Born in Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • The first of 2 children, came home from hospital in a desert wind storm
  • BA in journalism (University of New Mexico)
  • Staff photographer for Albuquerque Tribune (afternoon newspaper founded in 1922)
  • Masters degree in documentary photography (University of Wales, Newport)
  • PhD in photography: focused her studies on the ways contemporary and historical photographic diaries and self-books address myths of domesticity.
  • Day-to-day life of Albert Hastings- first photobook (August 2007)
  • Now lives in Northern Ireland, full time lecturer at Belfast School of Art at the University of Ulster. She returns to New Mexico in the summer (to see family and friends)
  • Originally interested in photography that addressed social trends, issues and problems- potential powerful tool what has my person have to say about the world in a light I don’t see?
  • ‘I believed photographs of our possessions and domestic patterns can be portraits, just like photographs of our faces’- KayLnn Deveney
  • Photography and the diary- key theme
  • Lived in new mexico, wales and Belfast- something for visual portrait?
  • She always keeps a diary while making work, this may or may not be used in the final piece- captions, albert hastings, or may just be used as a reference point, a way to help order/ take images. Entries edited and reduced to tell a story

Day-to-day life of albert hastings:

  • Images draw out moments of repose and oddness from the humdrum, hastings captions undermine the normal mode of play subject- personal take on the photographed life
  • His captions are a chance for deeper explanation and rebuttal

I found this part of the task hard to complete in task one, purely because I find it hard to visualise a portrait without the person actually being in it or some way or another. It still took me some time to figure out what to do for this, however I think that I was able to come up with an idea quicker than I previously did. I decided to depict the author with how she works, with diary and the images that she takes. In the background of this there is also a newspaper, this depicts the job that she had as a staff photographer for a newspaper. Other options that I considered for this portrait were: a newspaper article style (I decided that this may be more suitable for the letter rather than the portrait) or a map style image which would depict where she has lived: USA New Mexico, Ireland Belfast and Wales Newport. I decided against this because I didn’t feel like this was a good representation of the photographer, more just where she has lived, which would influence her work but this didn’t seem suitable.

Below is the Instagram post of my visual portrait.

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3.  Create an image in the style of the photographer with a summary of this.

This step also needs to be posted onto Instagram. I linked this into the portrait, I have chosen one of the images that is included in the portrait. I have taken all of these- and within the portrait I have also written a diary entry of my day. The hand written caption is key to Deveney’s work so this is something that I wanted to capture when producing an image in the style of her work.

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4. Complete the task assigned to you from the playbook.

For my task I had to meet someone new, this could of been through a number of ways: bumping into someone on the street or through a referral from someone else. From meeting this person I needed to interview them and create a body of work in their eyes. The person that I met was a referral from a friend (her boyfriends house mate). Below are my initial ideas for the task.

  • Does anyone catch my eye? Someone that I often see but I don’t actually know? Approach them and start talking to them
  • Someone that interests me before I even know them
  • Referral from a church? Mormon? Contact through lily? Buddhist? Contact through Emma m? Religious people could have a very different outlook on life to what I have
  • Questions to ask, don’t just ask what is suggested but stuff relating to my practice too… Is there anything in your local area that you don’t really notice? Lets go for a walk and see if there is something that stands out? Where do you go to relax? Is there somewhere you relate to tension? Or sadness? Happiness? Where locally is the most beautiful place? What do you love most about where you live? What is the area like a night? Is it very different to what it is in the daytime? Are there many stars? Which is your favourite season? Who is your closest friend in the area? Are they close by? What do you consider to be the most beautiful part of the day? Why? What do you see out of your window? How long have you lived here and how long do you think you will stay? What’s the first thing you see in the morning?
  • Hand written notes- more personal
  • Include their shadow as their presence?
  • Don’t photograph the person I have interviewed but photograph through their eyes- do they wear glasses? Consider blurriness maybe first thing they see when they wake up is blurred…
  • Deveney was originally interested in photography that addressed social trends, issues and problems- potential powerful tool what has my person have to say about the world in a light I don’t see?
  • ‘I believed photographs of our possessions and domestic patterns can be portraits, just like photographs of our faces’- KayLnn Deveney
  • colours- what colours are around them and why?
  • Light- how much exposure, shadows, highlights
  • Memories surrounding them, physical places, images or collections
  • Write the captions in diary entries? Memories of these places? Could just be in years doesn’t have to have an exact date
  • Use parts of the interview to break up the images?
  • Record the interview and consider video as well as stills or a slideshow including sound of their voice/ the area/ music they like? Get to know them
  • Video and take pictures of the area

Here are the questions and answers from the interview:

  • Where do you go to relax? In your house and outside? Why?

Myself: room and lock the door and chill and do whatever I want, the one place no one else can go, in the lounge, In the garden nicer

  • Is there somewhere you relate to tension, sadness and happiness?

T: desk- exam stress s:bed hungover just sleep then happy also happy there h: outside on a walk, productive but doing nothing- good company

  • What do you like most about where you live? Why?

People and social aspect, same lifestyle

  • Where locally is the place you like the most? Why?

Park near the house, empty pond

  • Who is your closest friend in the area? And are they close by?

George sean gareth, in same house

  • What’s your favourite part of the day? Why?

Evening before it gets dark, point of change

  • What do you see out of your window?

The garden and another guy looking out the window, my friends

  • How long have you lived here and do you think you will stay?

7 months ish from sept he’ll be back

  • What the first thing you see in the morning?

Nothing- eye mask then room

  • Do you know much about the history of cov?

Once the capital of England, know quite a lot, got bombed, the rebuild, architecture

  • Do certain colours stand out to you when you are walking down the street?

Red brick houses

From this we went out and took pictures and then captioned then together. I decided to make a video for the final piece. I have included clips from the interview and the song playing in the background is his favourite song. I think this only links more to Rob and gives the audience more of an insight to him. The captions below the images are written by Rob and he decided what to write. Below is the video:

Work published online:

Work published online

5.  Write a 250 word critical rationale focused on the choices that have been made for step 4.

 I am happy with my final piece for task 3, I like how the images have a personal feel from using a handwritten caption, both thought of and written by the participant. KayLynn Deveney inspired this element, although the task did state that the images needed to be captioned together it didn’t state how to present this.

By making a video for my final piece I was able to play parts of the interview, which could also be seen as captioning and linking further to the person. I wanted my audience to get a feel for Rob and his personality. To strengthen this I chose to play a song in the background of the video, his favourite song. All of these elements hint to his different personality traits and overall will give the audience a better understanding.

The task is published on my website. By doing this the work can reach a larger audience. When asking Rob what he thought the most effective way to share work would be this was his response, and the way that he would look for art projects.

If I was to do this task again I think I would concentrate more on whom I picked to complete the task with, more on location. Rob was a recommendation from a friend and lives very close to me so I knew a lot of what he was saying about the area. If I picked someone a bit further a field I think that I could of learnt more and challenged myself by photographing a new area. Having said that I am very happy with the video and how it turned out.

6.Write a letter to the author of your task telling them that you have completed it.

Attached is a PDF of my letter:

letter task 3


Anon. (2009) ~ My Creative Life: Kaylynn Deveney ~ | Susannahconway.Com [online] available from <; [29 April 2016]

Anon. (2009) Nymphoto: A Conversation With Kaylynn Deveney [online] available from <; [1 May 2016]

Anon. (2016) Kaylynn Deveney | Photoparley [online] available from <; [4 May 2016]

Anon. (2016) Kaylynn Deveney Photographer, Fine Artist And Lecturer [online] available from <; [24 April 2016]

Anon. (2016) Presenting The Day-To-Day Life Of Albert Hastings By Kaylynn Deveney [online] available from <; [26 April 2016]

Anon. (2007) 5B4: The Day-To-Day Life Of Albert Hastings By Kaylynn Deveney [online] available from <; [1 May 2016]

LensCulture, K. (2016) Kaylynn Deveney | Lensculture [online] available from <; [26 April 2016], T. (2007) A Day In The Life – The Morning News [online] available from <; [30 April 2016]