IAP Assignment 4: Reflections After Tutor Feedback


Once again the feedback is purely in written form. My tutor will have taken a great deal of time to produce such a detailed response. Thank you. My reflections on his comments are set out below. They are in the order appearing on the feedback.

Feedback on Assignment

Tutor: You say that you are uncertain about the inclusion of the empty sofa as a type of punctuation so I’m curious how you might resolve this question.

My tutor suggests that I could perhaps have asked my family whether the inclusion of the sofa, as the type of punctuation, was appropriate. This is another good example of my failure to record my critical thought processes. In fact, I did speak to a friend regarding this and he certainly felt that they should not be included.

However, my story was about the lockdown. When it began I was living alone. When it ended I was also living alone. Therefore despite the adverse effect on the aesthetics, I decided that to provide a better account of the situation I should indicate how it all began and ended. I would say that that was a fundamental part of the story and therefore overrides aesthetic considerations.

Tutor: I think that this would be a good moment to take stock of what you’ve made so far and to show the assessors that you are not just analysing each project but also the ways they have built towards something larger than the parts. You need to reflect a little on how they might be organised to communicate with each other across all five assignments. Once you have this it might help to shape the approach and the content of the final assignment.

When lockdown started (for me) on 15 March 2020 I decided that my studies were an opportunity for me to record this unique moment in my life and the life of my family. What could be more fitting than whilst completing a Unit called Identity and Place?

The various Assignments work together to tell the story of my journey through this strange period. Assignment 1 represents the initial withdrawal from society. Assignment 3 shows the early stages of lockdown when everybody was trying their best to maintain normality. Assignment 2 shows some difficulties emerging. And Assignment 4 plots the story of developing relationships. I have already completed assignment five. But I will bring together the overall story when I write up my final thoughts for the assessment.

Feedback on Coursework

Tutor: One or two areas of coursework have become thinner at this stage in the course so do keep your foot on the pedal and demonstrate a rigourous and persistent enquiry to the challenges posed in the coursework. These do come into play once you assemble evidence for assessment of meeting the learning objectives for the course.

This reminds me of my school reports which invariably would say ‘could have tried harder’… I do acknowledge and agree with my tutor’s point. I will endeavour to ensure that the exercises are finished with the required effort.

Feedback on Research

Tutor: I can see why you connect this project with the objective observations made by the Bechers over many years. I do think that their output is much more concerned with the hardware in our environments whereas your piece, although using a very controlled repeated method, is more driven by love, home and into relationships.

I don’t fully understand my tutor’s comments. The assignment objective was to tell a story using a typological methodology. As Hilla Becher said:

By placing several … side by side, something happened, something like tonal music; you don’t see what makes the objects different until you bring them together, so subtle are their differences (1)

What is being placed side-by-side surely is irrelevant? It could be numbers, water towers or human beings. The objective is to tell a story.

Feedback on Learning Log

Tutor: Very positive improvement in the variety of ways that you documented your thinking aligned to the shooting. There might be another level of documentation where are you tried to reveal where your ideas stem from and how you first began to get them out of your head and down into some form of playful experimentation.

I’m obviously pleased that my tutor recognises the work I put in to explaining the creative process. But I obviously have a problem now, in a contemporaneous sense, explaining where the ideas came from for Assignment 5. I will do my best when writing up the Notes for the Assignment and Assessment.


(1) Collins, M. (2015). Hilla Becher obituary. [online] The Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2015/oct/15/hilla-becher [Accessed 19 Jan. 2020].

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