We thought it might be nice to talk to some alumni as universities across the planet open their doors so that the student populace might stumble in, adjust to the down lighting and settle themselves into studious half-slump for three terms. First up is photographer Dan Wilton whose people heavy portfolio includes the likes of James Blake, Dizee Rascal and S.C.U.M, shot in the raw with an impossible sangfroid. Dan didn’t go to art school, he studied environmental biology at the Royal Holloway and graduated in 2001…
The images start with a photo of Frank (more about him in a sec) taken while Dan was still at university, the rest of the photos are a nice little cross-section of where his work is at now.
What advice, based on your own experience, would you offer those still studying?
I think it was during my second year that I really started to realise my interest in photography. Unfortunately I wasn’t studying photography – I was in my second year of studying environmental biology. Basically I chose the wrong course, so it’s a slightly tricky question for me to answer!
What other university experiences helped you on your way to what you’re doing now?
Without a doubt, it was having access to a darkroom. I remember my housemate Frank (pictured) coming home from a darkroom course he’d just started with a set of black and white negatives and prints.
Up until then I’d been playing around with photography but I’d been processing everything in a local lab. I’d never actually thought how you go from a film to a final print. I was intrigued so the following week I went along with him and that was it – I was instantly hooked. A year later I was running the darkroom and teaching darkroom tutorials.
What are the inspirations and resources that you would share with your student self?
- "Where’s my community?": Skin Deep and POC on the need for diversity in the film industry
- Jee-ook Choi conveys complex ideas using fine linework and muted colours
- Photographer Mehdi Lacoste on working with Actress
- French designer Victoire Coyon’s understated portfolio
- Unit Editions’ upcoming book on the unparalleled work of Paula Scher
- A creative composite of illustration: ten years of Christoph Ruckhäberle’s Lubok
- A new national identity: Smörgåsbord Studio rebrands Wales
- Graphic design gems: Chicago gang business cards from the 1970s and 80s
- Photographer Dougie Wallace captures the super rich spenders of “Harrodsburg”
- “Romance in a sort-of fantasy world”: photographer Molly Matalon's new work (some NSFW)
- Studio Michael Satter’s sophisticatedly simple graphic design portfolio
- Harry Pearce and Pentagram create a new identity for Pink Floyd’s record label