Ask the experts: Offspring Photo Meet returns to east London in late October

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More than 40 of the country’s leading photography experts are being assembled over two days late next month in east London to give tailor-made feedback and advice to professional and aspiring image-makers looking to take their careers to the next level and find new markets for their work.

Among them are curators, picture editors, ad agency creatives and publishers, from companies and institutions such as Tate Modern, The Guardian, Bartle Bogle Hegarty and Thames & Hudson, tasked with giving attendees an honest assessment of their work through one-to-one portfolio reviews.

Participants will also learn about the dynamics of the contemporary photography market, coming  away with ideas about how to get their work in front of key decision makers, and what impresses them, gaining insights from professionals working at places such as Magnum Photos, The Photographers’ Gallery and FT Weekend Magazine.

Returning to The Proud Archivist in Haggerston on the last Friday and Saturday of October, Offspring Photo Meet includes two days of portfolio reviews along with talks by multi-award-winning photographers Zed Nelson and Hélène Binet, both leaders in their respective fields, documentary and architecture. The canalside venue in the heart of London’s new creative centre will also host organised networking opportunities in what is promised to be a “fun, highly energised and unintimidating workshop environment”.

“Most photographers begin their professional life working in a vacuum, spending months and years trying to get meetings with key people in the industry, and getting very little feedback along the way,” says a spokesman for the event. “Offspring Photo Meet was set up to help fast-track their careers, providing them invaluable real-world advice from key people in one of the most competitive arenas in the creative industries.”

Supported by BJP (alongside Association for Photography in Higher Education, FilmPlus, Loft Studios, Metro Imaging and Thames & Hudson), the event is aimed at photographers who have developed a portfolio of work that they are ready to pitch (or simply get help and feedback on) to experts drawn from the fine art, editorial, photobook publishing and advertising markets.
Art world experts include Shoair Mavlian (Tate), Karen McQuaid (The Photographers’ Gallery), Marisa Bellani (Roman Road), Brandei Estes (Sotheby’s) and Chris Littlewood (Flowers Gallery). Of the many experts who commission photographers daily, reviewers include Emma Bowkett and Josh Lustig (FT Weekend Magazine), Kate Edwards (Guardian Weekend), Mike Trow (British Vogue), Tony Bell (The Observer) and Lauren Winfield (Bloomberg Businessweek). And from the advertising industry, Kirstie Johnstone (AMV BBDO), Daniel Moorey (adamandeveDDB), Aine Donovan (BBH/They Made This) and Katerina Gharraph (Bartle Bogle Hegarty) and others will be present, giving their advice.

Offspring Photo Meet takes place 30-31 October, from 10am to 10pm. Tickets are priced £250 for two days fully inclusive of four portfolio reviews per day, all talks and events. A one-day ticket is priced £160. Tickets for Zed Nelson’s Friday evening talk on his approach to visual storytelling through film and photography are priced £7.50 (attendees who pre-book go free).