Photography at GSA

The Photography department was a major centre of photographic excellence under Ifor Thomas, the Head of Photography. His wife Joy, was also a lecturer there and together they formed a highly acclaimed team. Among his students were Jane Bown, John Hedgecoe, John Cleare, and Ray Dean. Staff included Thurston Hopkins. One of the part-time staff, always critical to and of the intellectual and creative health of the school was Alfred Lammer, a photographer noted for his pictures of flowers and of stained glass windows. He set up the first school of colour photography in Britain at Guildford in 1952.

The aim of the course was deemed “to train the student to become an imaginative photographer who will be capable of producing work of the highest quality in any branch of the profession”. Entry to the three year course was arranged by interview with the Head of Department. Prospective students were required to hold passes in at least five G.C.E. ‘O’ levels, including English Language.

Syllabus for first year students:


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