Summer: Contemporary Photography Practice

Black photographs on the floor
Work by Parr Geng. Photograph by Lewis Bush

This summer course is practice-based and emphasises the research and development of a personal project. There will be workshops in different aspects of photography production as well as a critical consideration of themes in contemporary photography practice...

Taught by: Edward Dimsdale with a range of guest tutors and expert practitioners.


This summer course is practice-based and emphasises the research and development of a personal project. There will be workshops in different aspects of photography production as well as a critical consideration of themes in contemporary photography practice. These include colour and black & white darkroom development, flashguns, large format digital printing and retouching with Wacom tablets. LCC Photography has an international reputation for exciting and innovative photography ranging from fine art to photojournalism to commercial practice, with numerous successful and high profile alumni across the arts and media sectors.

You will be shown how to research and develop a project conceptually as well as practically, and how to present and promote to an outside audience. The course will be taught through a mix of workshops, seminars, tutorials and critiques. You will have the opportunity to work in one of our industry standard studios or out on location. 

You will take advantage of the wonderful array of exhibitions in London in a programme of gallery visits followed by discussion of exhibitions and of where your own work fits into the contemporary panorama of photography practice.

You will be assessed on the selection and installation of your work in one of the galleries at LCC. On the final day of the course we will host a private view and you will be encouraged to invite friends and family. 

Course Outline 

Week one:

  • Introduction to the college, course, and facilities.
  • Production workshops: exploring analogue photography; digital workflow; studio introduction
  • Current themes in contemporary photography practice
  • Developing a personal project
  • Collaborative working
  • Gallery visits
  • Research project and presentation

Week two:

  • Production workshops: presentation options; colour printing introduction
  • The market for contemporary photography practice
  • Contextualising your own work
  • Gallery visits
  • Personal project
  • Critique

Week three:

  • Personal Project
  • Developing an audience through publications and exhibitions
  • Developing a personal statement
  • Exhibition and critique
  • Exhibition opening party

Who Should Attend

This summer school is suitable for students who have some experience in photography and wish to strengthen their practice and conceptual thinking. 


"Quality tutors, wide scope of courses, great facilities."

"I enjoyed the course. Especially colour darkroom. I wanted to know how many papers we can use." 

"I enjoyed the various artist talks and lots of workshops." 


This course is led by Edward Dimsdale. Edward is a Senior Lecturer on BA (Hons) Photography and MA Photography at London College of Communication where he teaches the history and theory of photography as well as photography practice. Having studied social sciences at the University of Bristol, he spent time assisting photographers and in darkrooms as a photographic printer before working as a freelance photographer. He also spent ten years working at The Photographers’ Gallery in London, in the bookshop, research library and technical departments. He holds an MA in Printmaking from The Cambridge School of Art, developing contemporary applications for photogravure. His work has been represented by HackelBury in London since 1998 and Gallery 339 in Philadelphia since 2004. He has exhibited widely, and his work is held in numerous collections, both public and private. His research interests include: critical histories of the medium; the photo book; photogravure; and the relationship between photography and live performance.

You will also be taught by a range of guest tutors and expert practitioners. Previous visiting tutors on the course include:

Wendy EnnisHaving graduated in Photography from Medway College, Wendy went on to work at Atlas Photography Lab in London, part of the Quarto Publishing Group, specializing in billboard size prints using a 10x8 horizontal enlarger - this was before the advent of digital! Wendy was then asked to join a specialist lab called Visions, working alongside award winning printers, providing bespoke colour C-type printing for photographers such as Juergen Teller, with whom she worked on both commercial and personal projects, such as his seminal book Go-Sees.Wendy then worked in a lab called Goldenshot in Hoxton, London, which was started by Nick Waplington. It was there that she had the opportunity to print with photographers and artists including Wolfgang Tillmans, Tim Walker, Damian Hirst and Sam Taylor-Wood. Wendy joined LCC ten years ago, and is now the Technical Manager of the Photography department.

Sophy Rickett -  Sophy is a visual artist working with photography, video installation and text. Much of her recent work has explored moments where the encounter between people and nature evokes a profound sense of loss.  Her latest body of work Objects in the Field examines the legacy of some astrophysical research conducted in the 1980s, and constructs or re-imagines a set of different narrative voices that are at times contradictory, or at odds with each other. Her work has been exhibited widely.  

Esther Teichmann Esther received an MFA and PhD from the Royal College of Art. She is Senior Lecturer at London College of Communication, Visiting Lecturer at the Royal College of Art, and spent the past year as Guest Professor at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco. She has participated in group exhibitions at the Houston Centre of Photography and the Dong Gang Museum of Photography in South Korea. Esther has been included in museum and gallery group shows in London, New York, Los Angeles, Berlin, Mannheim and Modena and has had solo exhibitions in the UK, Australia, Germany, Ireland and Switzerland. Reviews, interviews and portfolio features have appeared in ArtReview, Bedeutung, Camera Austria, Capricious, Dazed & Confused, The Guardian, Foam Magazine, Piktogram, Qvest Editions, Source, Time Out, Wallpaper*, 032C amongst many others. See Esther's work on her website.

Debby Lauder -  Debby is an artist, curator and teacher. Working across a range of artistic media, her practice often arises as a response to the immediate contexts that she finds herself in. By means of identifying the often unspoken narratives and assumptions that condition our experience of the everyday, and gently prompting new awareness in the viewer by means of her research-based artistic interventions, her work fuses a conceptual approach with an attuned maker’s sensibility. Her most recent work explores inter-medial relationships between photography and sculpture, and concerns with the materiality of the photograph.

Katya Mayer -  After graduating from a BA course in Visual Communication in 2002, Katja established a freelance practice as a fashion photographer as well as retoucher and producer in the commercial sector. With a background in post-production management, working for a number of high-end photographers, Katja coordinated high profile campaigns for clients such as French Connection, Chanel, Derek Lam, Karen Millen, Aveda and Puma.  Katja recently had her first solo exhibition in London, and her work has been shown as part of the group show ‘The Wonders of the Visible World’ at the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art in Sunderland. Her commercial clients include: Burberry, COS, Fred Perry, HOBBS, MTV and Procter & Gamble. Her work has appeared in editorials for Dazed & Confused, Harper’s Bazaar Russia, InStyle, Intersection, L’Officiel, USED Magazine, and she has been a regular contributor to Sunday Times Style magazine since 2008.

Adrian WoodAdrian Wood completed his Photography MA at London College of Communication in 2009. He has exhibited internationally, including Victoria & Albert Museum, (London) Aperture Gallery (NYC, USA,) and Musee de Elysee (Switzerland). He has recently completed a project for the Photographers Gallery working with performance artists French Mottershead and is included in the recently published reGeneration 2 – Tomorrows Photographers Today (Thames and Hudson). He divides his practice between creating and exhibiting personal work, commissions and participatory projects in collaboration with galleries, schools and community organizations. Adrian currently works as a Senior Photographic Technician (Teaching and Learning) at London College of Communication. 

Gregory Barker - is a London based editor, writer and consultant. Having studied at London College of Communication and the Fachhochschule Bielefeld, Germany, he is the co-founder of STANLEY/BARKER books, beautifully produced photo books. In 2011, he curated For Japan, a fundraising exhibition for Architecture for Humanity. Gregory is currently Commissioning Editor for HotShoe, the UK's leading contemporary photography magazine. 


Please bring the following materials with you on the first day of the coures:

  • You must have a good quality camera that you normally work with, either digital or analogue.
  • Please bring with you examples of your own photographic work, either in the form of prints in a portfolio, or stored in digital form (on a memory stick, for example), ready for presentation.
  • You may wish to bring your own laptop, or tablet, but these are not essential.

Whilst you are here you will have the opportunity to work with new and advanced materials and processes. Most of these will be supplied but there will be a small fee for some.  

Course Handbook

Course Handbook: Download an example Handbook - Contemporary Photography Practice PDF [468kb]. Each year the content, dates and tutors vary slightly.

Entry Requirements

Summer Study Abroad Entry Requirements:

Academic - You should have some prior experience of photography and know how to operate a camera. When you make an application you will be asked to send some examples of your work. If you have questions about your academic background, please make an enquiry to the UAL Study Abroad team.

English - You should be proficient in written and spoken English and be able to participate in group discussions and make presentations. As a guideline we would expect you to have an IELTS score of 6.0. The Language Centre at University of the Arts London offers English courses for overseas students.

Course Credits

On completion of this course you will recive a short course certificate of attendance. 

If you need any additional supporting documentation to convert this into credit for your home university we can provide that for you. This summer school is based on classes from BA Hons Phototography courses at London College of Communication.


If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form to contact the UAL Study Abroad team.


DateDayTimeDurationCostStatusLocation Apply
03/07/2017 - 21/07/2017Monday - Friday10.00 - 16.003 Weeks£1795AvailableLCCAPPLY NOW

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