Critical Thinking: ‘The Progression interview’


October 8th, 2020

I had my progression interview with Dan Robinson today. He had clearly examined at my previous work in some detail. We were talked about my ideas for the future and what I might want or need from a tutor. He was assessing my suitability to progress with my degree, but the informal discussion was more around about my degree experience and clinical work. 


  • We talked about not trying to do too much. My instinct is to aim high and do a lot of work, which can be both exciting and very stressful, but often the experimentation and industry leads to good outcomes. Perhaps reigning me in or suggesting ways to progress in my final year with be an important function for my tutors.
  • Dan reflected on my practice and work which he saw as personal, experimental and perhaps innovative in the health care setting. I like to do new things and that has always been a feature of my GP and research career. 
  • He liked my books. I like the materiality of image making and production and will be disappointed if I don’t produce another hand-made book at L3. 
  • We talked about “reaching a broader audience” and competitions. He suggested approaching the ‘Wellcome Trust’ as an outlet for my work in the future – that is a good idea. I enter competitions and have approached ‘The Guardian’ with my ‘Whistleblowers’ work – but perhaps it was not the hopeful images that they wanted to show on their pages. Maybe some of the work that I may do on ‘lockdown’ will have more traction with media and art outlets.
  • He offered help if I wanted to “reach a broader audience” or needed to expose my work in the future: I want to put my work ‘out there’ as I think I have a voice about the NHS which needs to be heard and seen.
  • We talked about networking – I will develop my FB page ‘GP-Land’ and Twitter feed to show what I am doing and solicit contributions and Feedback. He suggested that there may be other people out there to connect with in “an interdisciplinary space.” I like this suggestion. I will think about this. Networking on the OCA forums will continue to be important.
  • Perhaps the most interesting idea today was about there being an alternative to the essay format for the critical thinking element. The output could be a video or performative piece and not textual. My instinct is to stick with the essay as I enjoy all the processes of research writing particularly writing and displaying work.
  • Tutor selection: I have no preference. I have learnt that (most) tutor’s know what they are doing. I don’t need to have someone who shares my area of interest or research experiences as someone from a different ‘world’ can bring something new to my work, and perhaps it is more about how they function in the tutor role.

PROGRAMME LEADER DISCUSSION – PROGRESSION FROM LEVEL 2 (HE5) TO 3 (HE6)page1image21580608page1image21588480page1image21579648

Student Name: Student Number: Tutor Name: Dan Robinson

Morris Gallagher 513748

Degree Programme: Photography Course Unit:
Date of Discussion: 
8 Oct 2020

Summary of key points from the discussion:

Please include details of praise, concern, suggestions for Level 3 tutors etc.

Excellent statement of intent

Really successful use of video presentation to showcase physical tactile work at assessment – especially books

Great to be making meaningful academic and personal connections to medical knowledge and experience, and gives the practice direction a unique perspective

“Each element connects both theory, personal experience and reflection about the nature of virtuality, mortality and how notions of shared virtual reality are shaping and redefining wider society and visual culture.” assessment feedback

I really enjoyed looking at your book works:

Japan journey – and sense of narrative / use of text

Truth tellers / whistle blowing – powerful potential impact / litigation

Its not alright book – very powerful about loss and grief, subtle and sensitive use of text

Narrative through stills in book format is working very well – keep exploring crossovers between moving image and book making narrative structure / ideas.

Genesis film – interesting juxtapositions and narrative sense

We discussed peer groups, and potential peer group of doctor – artists, and your unique and complex interdisciplinary position between/across different domains of practice and professional and therapeutic interaction with others in capacity as doctor / researcher / student – nhs, private and public space, OCA.

Seems there is good potential to reach a wide audience with ongoing work. Consider using OCA / UCA platform as a student to tell / promote your story. Keep applying to competitions / awards /etc.

Welcome Trust – Art / Science opportunities, awards, funding? Recommend tutors:

Les Monaghan
(Documentary, text and image, representation, activism, advocacy, public art, social engaged practices, photojournalism, press and media, cultural studies, conflict photography, participatory photography, politics)

Garry Clarkson
(Documentary and storytelling, family photography/vernacular, memory and Commemoration,

post-memory, counter-memory, visual anthropology; auto-ethnography; structuralism; post-structuralism, Walter Benjamin/Brechtian strategies, representation (Stuart Hall), Post-Conflict, trauma, war photography, post-photography. ‘aesthetic’ documentary. )

Ariadne Xenou
History of photography (particularly 19th c.); 19th c. alternative photographic processes; visual culture; visual anthropology; auto-ethnography; structuralism; post-structuralism; loss, death, commemoration and the photographic image; photography, memory, post-memory, counter-memory; liminality and stigma.

Ruth Macelennan
Art and the Anthropocene particularly in relation to landscape in film and photography; and Arctic/Polar studies. Artistic fieldwork and interdisciplinary research (with geographers, scientists, anthropologists) using film, writing, photography. Political ecology and ethics, and what art can do in the context of climate change. Histories of Soviet avant-garde art, Soviet and post-Soviet sphere, and critiques of capitalism. Curatorial, participatory, collaborative art practices, in public spaces (and private), with an emphasis on time-based media and performance, and writing. Archives and the archival in art practices; feminism and decolonisation of the art curriculum, and other aspects of art education (and after).page2image21575552

Please indicate which of the following is your recommendation for this student:

Progress to Level 3 (HE6) when ready ✔