Georgia Smedley took a chance on studying for a career in something she enjoyed, and really clicked with RMIT’s Bachelor of Arts (Photography).
Photography has progressed so much in recent years, with the rise of the digital era making it accessible to people of all ages from all around the world. Voices which were not given time and space before are now becoming commonplace, and through photography we are able to visually share these voices to create conversations and make people question and ponder certain aspects of society.
Because of this, photographers have such an important role in society. We give people the opportunity to understand concepts and ideas through visual and physical representations. It can sometimes be challenging to find your voice in this profession, but when you do, it is such an empowering thing.
Photography is the ability to select, compose and reproduce your own opinions and ideas without boundary. It has given me the ability to say, "I was here and I have been, and will continue to be, a witness to this".
When I begin a project, I follow every instinct and every lead, which allows me to figure out what I do and don’t want to photograph. I can whittle a body of work down into what makes sense and what feels authentic to me, to the story or to the idea. As a result, my personal style of work is focused on intimacy in several capacities: the intimate self, the personal narrative and our ability to find intimacy in the mundane.
I incorporated this idea of intimacy into my final year project at RMIT. Titled ‘Flood Daughters’, this series looks at how the intricacies of familial grief and landscape intersect. It has been the most rewarding body of work that I’ve had the pleasure of creating and has been so well received that I will be exhibiting the full series in a solo show.
The future is an exciting place for me as a photographer. I have plans to visit Arles, France, in 2018 for the annual photo festival and then hope to spend a month in Amman, Jordan, working on my own project, exploring the surrounding areas and focusing on the declining state of the Dead Sea.
No matter what project I end up working on, studying photography has given me the ability to apply a visual language to my everyday life. I’ve learnt the value of finishing a project, and the realisation of an idea from beginning to end. These qualities have given me the motivation to continue learning and creating in whatever way I can.