Falmouth’s BA(Hons) Photography course has been collaborating on projects with the National Trust since 2004. This year, students were invited to lead and manage a three-day project, teaching primary school children how to work with digital and pinhole cameras.
The project started with the students turning an industrial work space at the National Trust's East Pool Mine, in the heart of the Cornish Mining World Heritage Site, into a black and white darkroom. They then developed the project brief and planning materials required for the project, before leading the workshops with the school children.
Jessica Banks, a second year BA(Hons) Photography student involved in the project, told us: “Working with the National Trust really was an eye-opener. I was initially unsure of how to communicate with children. However now working with the National Trust, I feel I have learnt how to be engaging and understand how to engage with children.”
Andrew Hilling, BA(Hons) Photography lecturer, explained: “[The project] develops organisation and communication skills in the students. They require initiative and they gain insight into a teaching role. Local primary children [also benefit], working with digital and pinhole cameras, so gain insight into different image making processes, and also observational and imagination skills”.
Jessica told us that the experience helped her build important interpersonal skills saying, “ this experience really established my communication skills, helping me speak to models and assistants. It [also] made me more confident when in the darkroom, as teaching others helped me understand and recognise the skills within myself.”
Getting real, industry experience is a vital thread that runs through all of the courses at Falmouth University. By gaining live experience and knowledge, students are better equipped – with more confidence and assurance – to step into the industry, having already worked on professional projects and gained invaluable industry connections.