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?
- Photographer Damien Maloney on working intuitively and playing with reality
- “Prayer paintings, manga and motivational images”: Gitte Maria Moller's cryptic artworks
- Jad Hussein's tropical catalogue design for Paris exhibition Jamaica, Jamaica
- From Lemon Twigs to Laura Marling: Hollie Fernando’s painterly photography folio
- Hey presto, it's Best of the Web!
- Paris-based Studio Jimbo creates "impact and power" with punchy poster designs
- Alex Norris’ hilarious three-panelled webcomics are universally appealing
- Southbank Centre visual identity redesigned by North, to be a “confident masthead” for the institution
- The Buzzfeed redesign: UK art director Tim Lane talks us through his seven-month overhaul
- Fresh Yale grad Franci Virgili applies an academic approach to graphic design
- Instagram co-founder Mike Krieger on how to stand out
- Leipzig graphic design studio Lamm & Kirch on their shared ethos