The work I am presenting for the grad show is called ‘Sit Like a Lady’ and is a protest piece against the patriarchy and the ways in which men are more dominant in our society.
I use manspreading as a visual metaphor for women taking back their rightful space. My influences range from Betty Friedan to Florence Given, but my main source of inspiration was Laila Laurel who is a graduate of Brighton University. Her work ‘A Solution for Man-spreading’ encouraged me to make work that I feel passionately about and to not worry about what people will think. Throughout my university life, I have wanted to make feminist work but haven’t for fear that it might be too controversial or audacious. Laurel’s work sparked the beginning of what I hope to be a long and dedicated practice to feminism and fighting for women’s rights and equity.
How have you found your course/time at Brighton?
University is a big decision, and I found it very difficult to know whether it was right for me or not. I’m not an academic person at all so the idea of a dissertation, essays, speaking in front of people etc terrified me. Not to mention moving away from home on my own. Brighton University was the best decision I’ve ever made. I knew that it was the right uni for me when I came for my interview. While I was nervously waiting to show my portfolio there were two student ambassadors there to answer any questions I had. They spoke about accommodation, lectures, workload, nightlife, budgeting, anything! It really calmed me down before my interview and helped me to work out whether Brighton was the place for me.
My course was extremely well planned from the start, there was the right amount of lectures, seminars and tutorials, and I always felt that I was supported. My tutors are so experienced and are practising photographers/writers alongside their jobs. They have your best interests at heart and will genuinely help you with anything you need. The technicians are some of the best people I’ve met while at uni, they are so good at what they do, but they also provide outstanding support for students who have technical, personal or work-related problems. The techs run workshops that are so useful and I learned how to use editing software and cameras confidently, which has then helped my work grow to a professional level.
Socially, Brighton is great! I lived in halls in my first year which helped me to make friends. But I have found friends for life in my course mates. Having the same passion for photography and working together has created friendships that are so valuable.
What are your plans after Graduation?
I am hoping to work in the creative industry as soon as possible. I’d ideally like to continue my documentary photography practice in my future career, perhaps going freelance or working for a company. The Covid-19 pandemic has affected my future plans, however, I’m remaining optimistic and hoping I can get some work experience/ a job soon. In the meantime, I am going to continue my creative practice from home to build up my portfolio.