“At Work” – “The Rock ‘n’ Roll Key Cutting Ice Cream Van Man”

No 2. “The Rock ‘n’ Roll, Key Cutting, Ice Cream Van Man” Tony is a big man!, he works in a little ice cream van with a stuffed tiger on top. He cuts keys and grinds knives, he fixes batteries into watches and plays his guitar to attract customers.

This gallery shows work made in repsonse to my first assignment on my Masters course. The brief was to find two situations involving people or a person engaged in work and to thoroughly explore the moments to be found. This was a ‘restricted brief’ and as such I was instructed to shoot handheld, no flash, on iso 400, using manual focus and with the camera on manual setting. Furthermore a fixed focal length of 35mm or 5omm was to be used and the images to be shot in black and white. The deadline was for within one week when they would be critiqued in a group tutorial. Ultimately the assignment was to look for and shoot the patterns and dynamics of events as they unfolded; attempting to find a single image that would sum up the persons’ work and their experience of it. I present here the 12 images that are the final edit from the second part of this assignment (part one is “Four Haircuts”) Any feedback or comments appreciated especially if you have an opinion on what is the single image from the set that tells the story?

Thoughts on the process: I enjoyed the restrictive brief and although fairly used to shooting in manual as I enjoy shooting film, I liked the particular combination of restrictions described above, the thing that slowed me down was calculating what focal length of lens to use on an APS-C sensor so that it was equivalent to a full frame film SLR. (This got me quite confused for a while but I was given a link to a handy calculation chart for future reference (thanks Anders) Here it is if you have the same bad head for numbers as I do. http://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/112980-full-frame-aps-c-conversion-chart-dummies.html It was a pleasure to get cracking with our first assignment on the course and this shoot was arranged as soon as I heard about it. Tony is a mate of mine and this obviously helped the process as he was relaxed and enjoying the session as much as I was. If I were to tackle this again I would make more of his physicality in relation to his tiny van. I feel that I should have got right in there with him and the shots taken where I am sitting in the drivers seat and shooting back into the van have a tight composed feeling and get close to the sort of thing I was looking to achieve. The crit I had with John and my tutorial group was very helpful and it was easy to gauge which shots worked by hearing peoples’ instinctive reactions to them. Comments on cropping, clipping and focus were all taken on board and  everyones comments were constructive. All in all I am happy with some of the shots I managed to take, especially where they show a sense of humour and fun.



2 Replies to ““At Work” – “The Rock ‘n’ Roll Key Cutting Ice Cream Van Man””

  1. Tony is not a ‘big’ man, he is a lovely ‘tall’ man. I agree that maybe u should have made more of his physicality (I would use stature), within your photo project. Although what u have captured is great. He is a tall man in a small very tidy van. Now he has a black dog I feel likle taking up photography myself, tall Tony with Billy strolling along great photo opportunity!

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