Visual Arts - external exemplars Level 3 2017 - Photography

Show: External Exemplars

The resources below contain examples of candidate work submitted in 2017 for assessment for the Visual Arts Achievement Standard 91457 Produce a systematic body of work that integrates conventions and regenerates ideas within photography practice. The purpose of this resource is to assist art teachers prepare their teaching programmes and their students for assessment.


(click icon images to see a large version)
Panel 1 (JPG, 1.1MB) Panel 2 (JPG, 1.4MB) Panel 3 (JPG, 1.1MB)
Entire Folio (JPG, 3MB)

The candidate presents a high entry point with plenty of confidence where one would consider whether the candidate has made more work before they began their portfolio. The introduction of subject matter is in-depth offering variety not only with conventions, but also with selection of subject matter and materials. The premise is retained throughout this highly systematic and technical fluent submission.

The portfolio clearly defines the proposition undertaken and establishes connections between traditional, contemporary, and biological aspects of life using vanitas still life. Drawing in is expansive and informative. Through in-depth research the candidate has been able to operate on a more conceptual level; providing a biological and environmental thread within their proposition. There is a comprehensive engagement of study and ownership in the selection of ideas.

There is a high degree of fluency in the employment of photographic conventions. Light is diffused, reflection is formed through mirroring and a range of typologies and associations are presented. Selected colour, forms an opposite to match the duality of life and death that is expressed throughout each panel. Formal pictorial devices such as composition, formatting and viewpoint are used with facility and support the regeneration of ideas. Panel 3 offers the extension and synthesis of ideas where the candidate conveys the micro versus macro to suggests symbols of the universe. The photographs on panel 3 that are organic and abstract create spermatozoa like forms that float throughout frames within the universe and the skull moves from an object into a figurative abstract form.

The selection and prioritizing of photographs has been well considered to form many hierarchical stages over the three panels. A variety of artistic references such as Joachim Froese, Juan Sanchez Cotan and Fiona Pardington have been influential.  Through this appropriate selection, the candidate has demonstrated a depth and range of ideas complimented by a meaningful use of established practice.


(click icon images to see a large version)
Panel 1 (JPG, 1.1MB) Panel 2 (JPG, 1.1MB) Panel 3 (JPG, 1.1MB)
Entire Folio (JPG, 2.8MB)

The photographs generated in this submission draw on a variety of still life objects. They have been purposefully sequenced and ideas have been generated through the physicality of objects and material (paint) to explore the concept of colour. An engaging proposition that investigates object, material and colour to make connections between presence and absence including a sense of time passing. The concept of time is explored in a range of ways from a half-eaten biscuit, to rotting fruit and the arranging of the real and deteriorated.

A systematic approach is evident within the development of ideas and relationships that are formed between various dualities such as the real versus the aesthetic of artificiality and beauty versus repulsive. These dualities are investigated using scale, forming mould, deterioration and colour selection and application. The variety within sequences comes from a modern versus traditional approach which has provided the candidate with many pictorial options.

The candidate demonstrates a proficiency with the processes and procedures that they have used. The use of colour has been pivotal to the re-visiting and refining of previous ideas. Objects have been coloured, surface has been treated with colour and objects become forms of colour. Use of overlapping and various viewpoints has provided the objects a position within each composition. The camera has been close to the subject matter, viewpoints such as birds eye view and varying angles through to the scale of mould and fruit being exaggerated have been presented.

An aesthetic and mood has been created including research from selective forms of established practice. Editing, planning, layout and consideration of sizing to inform hierarchy within photographs is purposeful. Greater control of light to achieve better technical consistency and more variety in framing compositions would have been required to have gained Achievement with Excellence.


(click icon images to see a large version)
Panel 1 (JPG, 1.1MB) Panel 2 (JPG, 1.1MB) Panel 3 (JPG, 1MB)
Entire Folio (JPG, 2.8MB)

Traditional still-life objects in the context of a studio setting form the range of subject matter for this candidate. The same objects are used throughout the portfolio. Ideas based upon the duality of life and death are investigated appropriately with a cage symbolising entrapment and work on panel 3 addresses the concept of mortality.

The candidate’s technical skills are used to record subject matter adequately on each panel to explore vanitas still life objects. Panel 2 begins to explore ideas about being trapped and imprisoned which is reinforced visually through the white cage and use of string. Variations in scale and through the suspension of objects, the idea of entrapment is explored using soft focus and movement. The candidate demonstrates technical confidence with techniques such as collage and overlaying of two images, however there are some inconsistencies on panel 3 with uneven exposures.

Despite panels 2 and 3 having small shifts between each sequence, there is evidence of zooming in and out allowing for the figure in panel 3 to be taken into the space and eventually placed into the cage. The candidate has managed to produce a systematic body of work and ideas have been successfully regenerated through the figure effectively becoming part of the vanitas still life and inherently trapped in the cycle of life.

Referencing various forms of established practice such as artists Annette Messager and Francis Bacon has assisted the candidate to make informed decisions to with compositional arrangements and specific technical effects. The limited range of approaches within each sequence is what holds this submission in the upper end of Achievement.

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