COVID-19 Case Study: Georgie Hugill

Image shows a large rocky stretch of beach. The image is removed slightly around the edge and middle of the frame, making it look as though it is on fire, or has been bleached.

Our COVID-19 Case Studies explore the different ways the photographic community is working and staying connected through the pandemic. If you would like to submit a Case Study get in touch via for more information.


I’m Georgie Hugill, a UK based image maker/photographer living in Northallerton, North Yorkshire. I’m a 2020 graduate from Birmingham City University with a Bachelor of Arts in Photography. 

I love experimental work and I’m always asking myself how I can make my work different and alter the images in some way. Within my work I like making the viewer question what they are looking at, either wondering what was happening within the scene, or question what I did to the images themselves. Since I first began photography I have always found myself drawn to the unknown and the desire to play with what people don’t understand.


How are you adapting your work during the pandemic?

At the start, when we first went into lockdown, I was in the middle of producing my final major project at university. With the new restrictions I was unable to complete my original idea. It forced me to think fast about how I could adapt the project. I had done test shoots and had loads of small test prints for the original idea, so I came up with the idea of using the test prints to test out different post-printing experimentations. Some of these include; splashing with bleach, soaking in salty water, berry tea, coffee, hair dye. Really anything I found around the house. After altering the prints I made some as individual prints and also produced a "recipe book”, so I could use it in the future for reference on how to get what effect. The project is called, “Experimental Recipes”.


Has the new context inspired you to try anything innovative that you haven’t tried before? If so, what?

I already knew that I wanted to experiment with the methods I’d adapted to using for my major project, I just never got round to it. It gave me the excuse to try them out. I had no idea if some of them would work out well but it pushed me to try them as there was nothing to lose. 


What are your current and future plans for making, showing, distributing work?

Currently I am working on the original idea I had for my major project. I am still in the stages of testing and working on the development of it. However I know the project will be based on a beach in Kettleness, Whitby. The images I have taken focus around the horizon line and play with the idea of where the sea meets the sky. The images will be chromogenic prints which will then be submerged in either the saltwater, seaweed or sand from the location. These elements will cause a reaction with the chromogenic prints allowing for some really interesting effects. I have done a couple of test prints using this method; they have both been successful and I am excited to see how it develops further. 

In terms of showing/distributing the work once it’s complete, I hope to show it wherever I can. As each print will be unique due to the different reactions, I suspect I will sell a few as individual prints. I am interested in how I could go on to present the work. Including the water, sand, and seaweed as a presentation aspect would fit well I think. 


How did you find graduating during the pandemic?

Graduating during the pandemic meant everything felt as though it was cut short. I was still working on my degree however it felt as though it was over. In a weird way I am glad I was working on my final project still - it gave me a goal to work towards, something to keep me motivated. Without it I would have found it much harder to cope. 


See more of Georgie's work at or on her Instagram @georgie.hugill

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