Subject/Curriculum Leader: Helen Marshall/Gemma MacDonald
Visual communication underpins all creative learning within the subject of Photography. At Norton College, we recognise that all students have an individual experience, of the photographic world and this is nurtured throughout their education. As a subject, we encourage students to develop their own creativity as well as understanding the work of other designers to help enhance and broaden their knowledge and experience of Photography. We strive so that our photography students can achieve, promoting a knowledge and passion for the subject which can develop and flourish in a supportive and creative atmosphere.
The Photography teaching team is dedicated and ambitious, with high aspirations for all students. We have a dedicated team of 2 teachers, who share a wealth of teaching experience and professional experience. We are well resourced within our studios with a wide range of DSLR cameras, lighting and ICT equipment.
The Photography curriculum is delivered so that students have the opportunity to develop skills, techniques and knowledge which is firmly embedded into their creative practise. The curriculum has wider links to other subjects such as art, media, music, and product design. Students are encouraged to attend extra-curricular activities such as KS4 club to develop their skills and passion for the subject.
Key Stage 4
At Key Stage 4, students are entered for Art and Design: Photography GCSE.
We follow the AQA specification for this qualification.
The course is divided into 2 units: Unit 1, Portfolio, and Unit 2, the Externally Set Task. The portfolio consists of 2 coursework projects and is worth 60% of the GCSE qualification. The Externally Set Task is 40% of the GCSE qualification. Both units are internally marked, and then moderated by an external examiner. Coursework is developed throughout Year 10 and also in the Autumn term of Year 11. The Externally Set Task begins in January of Y11 and concludes at the end of April with a formal 10-hour practical exam, undertaken in the art rooms.
During the coursework period, students are encouraged to work more independently. They are able to take ambitious creative risks which help develop a strong work ethic and personal motivation. Their final project in Year 11 focuses on developing an independent theme based on a universal starting point. They can investigate and research photographers, artists, craftspeople and designers of their own choice and take autonomy of how to develop their project whilst fulfilling the Portfolio assessment criteria.
The Formal Elements of Photography
‘I Love Lego’ project
Final Major Project – students can choose to develop any project from Y10
Externally Set Assignment, including 10 hour final practical exam
Key Stage 5
At Key Stage 5, students are entered for A Level Art and Design: Photography.
We follow the AQA specification for these qualifications.
In Year 12 students rigorously undertake a variety of small projects which introduces them to more complex and technical aspects of photography. They are expected to be able to select appropriate photographers and contextual references independently to study to support their creative thinking and idea development. As students gain confidence in their techniques and processes as they commence with their Personal Investigation.
The Personal Investigation is a sustained area of creative study where students choose their own starting point and develop a creative investigation which includes a 3000 word written element. The Portfolio covers 4 Assessment Objectives and is worth 60% of the A Level qualification. The Externally Set Assignment is 40% of the A Level qualification. Both units are internally marked, and then moderated by an external examiner. The Personal Investigation is developed at the end of Year 12 and into Year 13. The Externally Set Assignment begins in February of Y13, within which a formal 15-hour practical exam is undertaken in the art rooms. Both the Personal Investigation and the Externally Set Assignment follow the same assessment criteria as GCSE Art and Design: Photography.
Trips to Whitby and York are used to allow students a wider access to visual stimuli. These excursions help students to develop independent skills and allow them to bring the ‘wider world’ back to the studio. It allows them to experience how a professional artist would work on an assignment or commission.
Product photography/still life: photographer research, idea development and experimentation with media, process and techniques, including ICT and adobe photoshop.
Colour blocking: understanding colour theory, light colour theory, audience viewpoint and purpose.
Location Photography: idea development and experimentation with media, process and techniques, including ICT and adobe photoshop.
Personal Investigation: Developing a starting point, initial artist research and contextual studies.
Personal Investigation: Developing ideas through experimentation with a selected range of media.
Personal Investigation: Completion of personal final response.
February: Externally set assignment & Final exam – 15 hour practical delivered within the externally set assignment.
The A Level Art and Design: Fine Art course is completed by May 1st
Mounting and presentation of work for the annual Exhibition.