24 Hour Portrait Task

Make a portrait (sound recording/movie/image) of a local and active club or society member. The group to which they belong must be discernible from the image/piece. The individual cannot be a student, nor can they be in any way linked to the University. The portrait must be made with their consent and allow for web publication.

Teams members: Melissa Santos, Melissa Stapleton, Lauren Thatcher and Sophie Moet.

We began the task by researching local social clubs and organizations within Coventry. Once we collected contact numbers for all possible places of interest, we began making phone calls. We contacted numerous youth, dance and sport clubs as well as gaming societies. However, due to the urgency of the task given and in some cases issues surrounding CRB, we were unable to photograph members of all of the above societies. As a result, we began researching charities in Coventry and their organizers. We contacted Cat Protection and then as a group visited the Coventry branch charity shop situated on Gosford Street where we met with its leading manager, Kate.

The Cats Protection charity shop is run by a small group of volunteers working to rescue and re-home unwanted and stray cats and kittens. Kate has volunteered at the Coventry branch for Cats Protection for 7 years, doing 2-3 shifts a week. The shop is filled with a wide array of items meaning business is really thriving, whilst also attracting a high volume of customers. Kate believes this is due to the fact that Coventry has become a multi cultural and multi racial city and so the items they receive come in a wide variety and customer volume has increased.

Amid conversation, a lady entered the shop with carrier bags full of knitted items, handmade by herself. Kate, delighted by the visitor, spoke of how the lady knits ‘lovely’ accessories as well as beds and blankets for cats, which are in high command. We were unable to photograph the head organiser of the shop but we were able to have a conversation with her over the phone, which we recorded. Kate, was hesitant to have her photograph taken and didn’t want the photographs to be made public or available for everyone to view. However, she was more than happy for us to photograph the shop environment. As a result, we took a portrait of Kate amid her surroundings to reflect the cause and work she does. Photo was inspired by a portrait of Cory Doctorow by Jonathan Worth. We have also password protected these images and post to respect the wishes of our subject.

Cory by Jonathan Worth

Cory by Jonathan Worth

One comment

  1. Well done “A-Team” – I get the link between the Cory image and the cluttered space , it is image-rich. But – as far as a portrait goes, I don’t get a sense that you really managed to bring her in to the process. She looks far from at ease, though I doubt that is how she actually feels in that space (people generally do charity work as they’re driven to). You got the job done, you found a subject, you reached out, you got there and made images but you didn’t nail it. This might well turn into a strong 7 day project though as all you have to do go back and be draw them into the process….

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