Emilia Cocking

University: Arts University Bournemouth

Graduation: 2014

Genre: ArchitecturalLandscape 


Artist Statement: Captured in Southern France and Italy over three separate trips, Rosé focuses on the angular and architectural aspects of the everyday. I am heavily influenced by my surroundings and try to capture small corners or fragments of my common environment. I aim to break down and simplify the familiar into composition, colour and form with the result being an alternative, unfamiliar view of our habitual routine. This series in particular shows an outsiders engagement with a foreign, undetermined landscape.

From the series  Rosé     

From the series Rosé    

From the series    Rosé      

From the series Rosé    

What are some standout moments from your time at university? It’s hard to pick a particular moment, but I really valued being around so many likeminded people that shared the same outlook and interests as me. That’s something that’s hard to replace once you’ve graduated.

Which photographic genre do you consider your work to fall into? I would say my personal work is mainly architectural and landscape photography, but I also really enjoy making still life images and working in the studio. 

What inspires you to photograph your everyday? I think my time at Bournemouth really influenced my interest in the everyday – it was my first time living in a suburban environment and certain things really perplexed me so I just started photographing them to get a sense of them.

My camera really helps me to interact with my immediate surroundings, and I really think that the most visually interesting things can happen in the most everyday of places.

From the series    Rosé      

From the series Rosé    

What do you think these unfamiliar views that you create through your work bring to your viewer? I guess only a viewer can answer that but my aim is that it opens up a new way of looking at your daily surroundings. I think it can be quite easy to grow so accustomed to routine that we no longer pick up on patterns and coincidences in the landscape around us. 

Do you have a favourite photo book and/or journal? If so what is it? I take so much inspiration from Sense of Place – European Landscape Photography and I also recently bought The Still Life published by Gestalten which is filled with so many beautiful product and advertising images. 

From the series    Rosé      

From the series Rosé    


Who or what visually and theoretically inspires your work? As soon as I saw Ed Ruscha’s work for the first time that really changed my approach to thinking about photography. I’m a real fan of William Eggleston for his use of colour and I’m constantly inspired both visually and theoretically by all of the photographers involved with The New Topographics, especially Lewis Baltz and Stephen Shore.

Is it a conscious decision of yours to exclude people from your images? At first, no, not at all! As my work has evolved, it’s become a conscious effort to leave people out of the frame, but the images are always about people and lived experience despite the lack of their physical presence.

Can you tell us about any lighting techniques you use? Do you have a particular time of the day that you like to make your work?A lot of my work is produced by chance – it really depends on where I happen to be at a particular moment in time so the lighting can often change. My latest work was created over two months in France and Italy so the images tended to be in bright sunlight for really sharp shadows and saturated colours. 

Do you have any influences that are a constant source of inspiration when making new work? I’m heavily influenced by place so it really depends on whereabouts I am. I’ve been working in Graphic Design since graduating so this has definitely filtered into my photographic work through colour combinations and composition.

Have you got any personal work you’re in the process of making? If so, can you tell us about it? I’m in the process of making a series based on my hometown near Camber Sands, East Sussex – I recently moved back home after nearly 5 years away and I suppose it’s a way for me to try and reconnect with a place that now seems quite abnormal to me. 

Do you find social media important to you as a photographer? For me, yes, it’s so important! Twitter is really useful for staying up to date with competitions, awards and exhibitions. I’m really into Instagram and find that since university, I miss feeling part of a creative community – Instagram allows me to follow other artists and share my new work with people too.

What would you like to achieve in 2016? I hope to dedicate more time to personal work and it’d be great to collaborate with other people on projects, exhibitions, zines etc.