Education photography can be a lot of fun, and it was quite liberating to be given a “access all areas” pass to photograph a ‘day in the life’ at Trinity Catholic School in Nottingham.
There are not many schools that would allow a photographer to wander around and photograph the pupils in a photojournalism style like this, and I have had the privilege of doing so a couple of times. Both times I have been impressed with the pupils, staff and the achievements of this top rated inner city comprehensive.
The whole idea is to simply document school life and show pupils doing what they would normally do in a school day. This involves the morning arrivals of pupils and follows through various lessons and break times to after school sporting activities. Obviously the more practical subjects such as art or P.E. are good for pictures as the children are interacting with each other or they are using some sort of props to help create a picture.
The idea is to be as unobtrusive as possible and all of the teachers were very good in accommodating me into their lesson for however long I needed. With this in mind most of the classroom shots were taken with available light with 35mm F1.4 and 85mm F1.8 lenses. With the outdoor pictures a longer lens is often called for due to the requirements of a sports picture or a candid opportunity at break time, so I also use the 80-200 2.8.
Often at break times when the kids got together with their friends they became a whole lot braver. Suddenly the pupil who was hiding behind a text book in class was now demonstrating his ‘Ronaldo’ like football skills for me to photograph.
The big spectacle of this project is to witness the whole school get together for Mass in the school’s sports hall. With almost military precision over 1000 smartly dressed pupils are ushered in by their teachers whilst the school orchestra plays along. I’m told there isn’t a Nottinghamshire church big enough to accommodate the whole school so they are lucky to be able to have the facilities onsite.
I have been in and worked at many schools over the years as a photographer but Trinity School will always stand out. Not only for its unique approach to photography but the attitude and behaviour of everyone within it and the outstanding achievements that the school produce time and time again.
What’s great about the Trinity approach is that again they are producing an asset from their photography.
By commissioning us like this they end up with a big library of excellent education photography images, which can be used throughout the schools marketing and communications. The school now has an extensive library that records both a moment in time for history, but is also a valuable resource to communicate the excellence that they teach.
To see more great education photography check out our Education Gallery .
Please remember that all of the photography on this blog is fully copyright and only for use on this blog.