In partnership with LOOK/17 Festival, Redeye presents a daylong event on improving the commissioning process and building better relationships between commissioners and photographers. 


Who is it for?
This event is for anyone who would like to gain a better understanding of the commissioning process, the difficulties faced by both photographers and commissioners and for those who would like to contribute to creating a better commissioning landscape.


Introduction by Sarah Fisher and Paul Herrmann

This event will highlight the work of different organisations connecting with and commissioning artists and/or photographers. Speakers will share their experiences and in particular why they commission, and what makes a good collaboration with an artist or photographer. 

Part one
The Commissioners
Short presentations from commissioners explaining why and how they have successfully commissioned projects followed by a panel discussion. 

Anne Braybon  - National Portrait Gallery and Legacy of Olympics/Paralympics 2012 
Steve Connor – Creative Concern projects
Patrick Fox – Heart of Glass
Janet Dugdale – Museum of Liverpool  
Suzy Jones – Royal Institute of British Architects  
Polly Brannan – Liverpool Biennial  
Lesley Woodbridge – Local Council  
Sarah Butchard – NHS Merseycare  

*see below for biographies from each of the speakers.

Part two 
The Commissioned
Short presentations from photographers who have delivered successful briefs for commissioners.

About the photographers:

Tadhg Devlin

After initially studying art in Dublin, Tadhg left for the Uk in 1993 to study photography in Cornwall. After completing a HND, Tadhg started an internship at the internationally renowned Magnum photos office in London. Since leaving Magnum Photos worked as a freelance photographer based in London, working for a variety of publications throughout the UK, Europe and the US. Was also working in the social documentary area of photography for a number of groups throughout the UK who help to house the more vulnerable people in society providing accommodation for the young, disabled and people with addiction problems. Recently has been working on a collaborative project with the SURF dementia group in Merseyside as part of the Culture Shifts programme with Open Eye gallery and NHS Merseycare looking at what it means for an individual to live with dementia. Currently a photography lecturer as well as pursuing personal projects for exhibition.  

Liz Hingley

Liz Hingley is British photographer and anthropologist. She is currently working on major commissions with The University of Birmingham and FORMAT festival in Derby. Previously Liz held posts at Fudan University in Shanghai, The University of Texas and University College London. Liz also spent two years on a scholarship at FABRICA communication department in Italy and works on regular commissions for art institutions, magazines and charities. Her publications include Under Gods, stories from Soho Road (2010), Shanghai, Portraits De Villes (2013) and Home Made in Smethwick (2016). Shanghai Sacred, her most recent work, will be published in 2017. Liz has received numerous awards for her work including The Photophilanthropy Award, Prix Virginia and the Getty Editorial Grant. 

Part three 
Exploring different contexts for commissions.
Five break-out sessions to discuss themes brought up in part one and two, relating to differing commissioning contexts and worked between the commissioners, photographers and audience members. 

This year LOOK begins a new direction, working more closely with Open Eye Gallery to establish an international model for the festival based on international exchange.

LOOK/17 presents a unique opportunity for trans-global sharing of images and ideas. Working with Hong Kong-based curator Ying Kwok, the festival will focus on exchange with China, welcoming Chinese photographers and exploring images taken in Hong Kong and Liverpool – cities with a long history of exchange.

The festival will consider how we use the universal language of photography to experience and shape the city. It will encourage conversations with other disciplines such as architecture, education, planning and commerce.


This event starts at 10:00 on 13th May until 17:00. Doors open at 9:30.


This event takes place in the Leggate Lecture Theatre at Victoria Gallery & Museum, Ashton St, Liverpool L69 3DR. The Venue is fully accessible


Please book your ticket using the links below. You need to be signed in to do so. Standard tickets are £15.00. Redeye members £10.00, concession tickets £12.50. 

Please note our terms and conditions including our refund policy.


This event is part of the CONNECT strand in our new spring/summer programme:


Related CONNECT events:

Hothouse Sheffield

Redeye Member Meet Up


Between 2009 and 2012 the National Portrait Gallery, in partnership with BT developed a multifaceted project The Road to 2012 to record those who made the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games happen. Anne Braybon developed the creative direction for what was to become the largest photographic commission the Gallery has ever undertaken. Briefed to take a broad view of the event and include those working behind the scenes and well as those involved in sport, she researched sitters, shaped the structure and selected seven photographers. Braybon worked with them to produce 114 new portraits, three annual exhibitions and the Gallery's first outside touring exhibition.

Prior to this Braybon worked with the Gallery as a consultant, researching, commissioning and producing themed series of new photographic portraiture.

Steve co-founded Creative Concern in 2002 in the belief that inventive, high impact communications could help to make the world a better place. Fourteen years on and he works with a team of 30 people who prove the case. Whether it’s transforming the image of a place, combating climate change, fighting food waste or finding foster parents, strong campaign and branding solutions are key.

Steve started out as a writer and media spokesperson and before starting Creative Concern he worked as communications director for a sustainability think tank and before that, as head of campaigns for a national charity. Currently his key clients include the Homes and Communities Agency, Forestry Commission, Asda, Manchester City Council, the University of Manchester, Transport for Greater Manchester, Aberdeen Chamber of Commerce and the national transport charity, Sustrans.

When he’s not playing with words and images in the studio or rushing to a workshop on his Brompton, Steve gives pro bono support to a number of key causes. He sits on the North West’s Forestry and Woodlands Advisory Committee, is a Trustee of the Community Forests Trust and just finished a three-year stint chairing the climate change plan for Manchester.

Patrick Fox is Director of Heart of Glass, a national commissioning agency for collaborative and social practice based in St Helens, funded largely through Arts Council England's Creative People and Places programme. In this role he has commissioned leading collaborative artists to produce ambitious work in collaboration with communities of place / interest. He is former Director of Create, Ireland's national development agency for Collaborative Arts, supporting artists to work in a range of social and community contexts. Patrick is a producer, commissioner and senior arts leader who supports artists to engage with communities of place/interest to create contemporary work that reflects the politics of our times. He is founder, initiator and project partner in CAPP - the Collaborative Arts Partnership Programme, a nine organisation, four-year programme of transnational work funded through the Creative Europe programme focusing on models of social practice across Europe.
Patrick is interested in expanding critical discourse in this field and supporting the development of policy and infrastructure around collaborative arts, including the development of new models of arts education and explorations of a 'centre of socially engaged practice'. Patrick was also the former Head of Collaborations & Engagement at FACT Liverpool (Foundation for Creative Technology), leading the acclaimed Tenantspin project as part of his portfolio and is Vice-Chair of Axisweb, the UK's contemporary art radar.

Suzy Jones is Director of RIBA North, the Royal Institute of British Architect’s new national architecture centre which opens on the Liverpool Waterfront later this year. With a specific interest in the fine line between propositional design, architecture and contemporary visual art, Suzy brings a unique understanding of cross-disciplinary practice to RIBA North at a time when the Architectural profession is developing new ways of working.

Suzy’s vision is that RIBA North will become a place for everyone to discover more about architecture, a useful and inspirational resource for all of its public and professional audiences. RIBA North will bring together individuals with an interest in the wider build environment to enjoy, debate and influence the future of the architectural profession.

Polly Brannan is Education Curator at Liverpool Biennial. She is an artist and educator who has produced projects at Frieze Art Fair, Lisbon Experimental Festival and Nottingham Contemporary, amongst others. She was Collaborations Curator at Studio Voltaire from 2006-9, and Education Curator at Serpentine Gallery from 2011-13. She is co-founder of network Avant Gardening, and was a member of the collective public works from 2005-11

Sarah Butchard is a Clinical Psychologist working with older people and people living with dementia in Liverpool. She works clinically for Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust and is a Senior Clinical Teacher on the University of Liverpool Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Programme. She is vice chair of the British Psychological Society’s Faculty of Psychology of Older People. Her areas of clinical expertise are the psychology of older people, dementia and Human Rights Based approaches to health care. Specifically, she has developed services that focus on the impact receiving a diagnosis of dementia has on an individual’s wellbeing and relationships, and how people with dementia can live fulfilled lives with support. Her research focuses on models that promote independence and wellbeing and on Human Rights Based Approaches to care.

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