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Art Scholars' Project 2023

Recreating Queen Margaret

Published 26th July 2023

Art Scholars’ Project with President of the Royal Photographic Society, Simon Hill HonFRPS.

Being a Scholar at Queen Margaret’s brings our girls some extraordinary opportunities. This year, our Art Scholars had the privilege of being tutored by Simon Hill, the President of the Royal Photographic Society.

Over the past year, Simon has been visiting QM to give a series of masterclasses and one-to-one sessions to our UVI Photography students about the technique and artistry of lighting, portraiture, and fine art photography - both in the studio and natural light environments. These classes have proved invaluable to developing our students' photography skills and portfolio work, with Simon's years of experience and expert eye giving real insight and inspiration to our students.

The culmination of Simon's involvement with QM this year was a series of four sessions with our Art Scholars. They embarked on a project to create two exceptional pieces of fine art photography, which the girls titled 'Recreating Queen Margaret.'

Recreating Queen Margaret | Art Scholars' Project 2023
Recreating Queen Margaret | Art Scholars' Project 2023

Inspiration for the project

The project began with the Scholars gathering ideas and seeking inspiration. They delved into researching the historical figure of Queen Margaret, learning about her time period and sketching potential concepts. They also explored various artistic influences, with a particular focus on Annie Leibovitz’s Disney series and Damiano Errico’s response to Vermeer paintings.

Recreating Queen Margaret | Art Scholars' Project 2023

Next, the Scholars identified suitable locations in and around the school for their photo shoot. They conducted practice setups, experimenting with different models, compositions, and angles. Ultimately, the final images were captured in the enchanting Lady Chapel and picturesque Temple.

After the shoot, the project entered the post-production phase. The Scholars learned the art of image editing, applying various techniques to enhance the final results. This involved making subtle adjustments, such as decreasing colour saturation in the Lady Chapel shot, as well as more significant alterations like replacing the sky in the Temple shot.

Recreating Queen Margaret | Art Scholars' Project 2023

The entire process of the Recreating Queen Margaret project allowed the Art Scholars to explore their creativity, expand their technical skills in photography, and collaborate closely with the distinguished mentor Simon Hill. The resulting artwork stands as a testament to their dedication, talent, and the remarkable opportunities offered at Queen Margaret’s.

The final pieces were displayed at the 2023 QM Art Exhibition, as well as a collection of photography from our students' work with Simon.

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