Graduates 2023: Reece Coyle: MA Photography

“Having access to the studios and a wide range of photographic equipment and the complete freedom to experiment have been crucial in developing my practice.”

Please tell us a bit about your work and your influences

I am a digital photographer who actively engages in the exploration of still-life and documentary processes. My work revolves around utilising photography as a medium for constructing narratives or conveying impactful messages. My practice may also incorporate recurring themes such as symbolism, interpretation, mystery, and the unnatural.

Within this latest project, entitled “Puppets of Society,” I have constructed these studio-based images that symbolically capture the perception of control and manipulation prevailing within a democratic society. These visual compositions serve as powerful symbols that represent the various struggles experienced by individuals and underscore the complex power dynamics inherent in such a system.

Drawing inspiration from my personal tribulations and people from all walks of life. I interlink my own life experiences into my photography. The ongoing nature of this current project further emphasisers that role as a personal journal, archiving my present state of mind and my current position in life.

Can you tell us a bit about your journey to your course and what made you choose it?

I came to Brighton in 2018 to undergo my bachelors in media production and graduated in 2021. It was during this time that my passion for photography really began to develop. I noticed I was experimenting more with photography each time I was filming. With my BA being affected by covid and the country going into lockdown, my university experience was quite different, as everything had moved to remote online learning. I felt unfulfilled even though I had graduated, so I began to research the photography courses Brighton had to offer. The MA course stood out, it looked exciting and challenging. After visiting the facilities and speaking with some lectures, I knew this was the course for me. This is the place where I will truly challenge myself and discover who I am as an artist.

What were the highlights of the course for you?

I would have to say the facilities, tutors and especially the technicians, as none of my work would have been possible without them. Having access to the studios and a wide range of photographic equipment and the complete freedom to experiment have been crucial in developing my practice. Being around like-minded individuals and seeing a large variety of different works has been inspirational. I especially enjoyed hearing from those with more photographic knowledge and experience, it was always interesting and felt like I was receiving guidance without being judged. 

Was the location of your course in Brighton important?

Yes, absolutely. I lived in Brighton during my BA, so I was familiar with the area. I moved near-by after the lockdowns, over to Eastbourne. I never felt too distant, as having access to buses that stopped near the facilities or getting a short train ride was always available.

 What are your plans after graduation? What’s next for you?

I believe the first thing I will do is relax! Having been in constant education for the past five years, I need some down time. The pressure of meeting deadlines, specific learning objectives and most of all being marked on my work. It’s exhausting after a while. But I am looking forward to continuing with this project and seeing where it takes me in the future. My photography journey has just begun and I’m excited to see where this path takes me. In the meantime, I will be taking on some photography related positions to build up some field experience.

What advice would you give to someone considering doing postgraduate study?

I would have to say, be confident in yourself and your work! You’re joining this course for a reason, right? Commit to those reasons. I will however recommend part-time if you are returning to education or have other priorities in life. This is a very demanding course and will require your full attention. But the end results are very rewarding and satisfying.


Instagram: @ItsRustyPhotography


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