1. How well did your group develop the idea for the project? Was it well thought through? Did you all play an active roll?
The idea we chose was one of the first ideas we had, everyone liked it so we didn’t continue brain-storming, which was a mistake as I think in hindsight we could have come up with something better. It wasn’t particularly well thought through, as we didn’t foresee the problems which we had with it later – at the time it felt fairly foolproof as it was quite simple. We were a small group of five, and the two first year students were shy, and when asked did not have any ideas to contribute, they both said they liked the idea Lucy had come up with, and didn’t try to develop it further. We didn’t push them to agree with us, but they seemed too shy to speak up or challenge the idea. In hindsight we should have been more encouraging and less conclusive that the idea we already had was good enough.
2. How well did you collaborate and work together?
As mentioned, the first year students were very reluctant to develop, or challenge the idea that a second year came up with. Following this, one of the first years didn’t turn up to the making of the project, and then didn’t turn up to the event. One of the second years also didn’t turn up on the night, which I think demonstrates how our group didn’t contribute equally to the project. Ideally it would have been a joint effort, but unfortunately this wasn’t the case.
3. What went well with the making and running of the stall?
Physically making the stall went quite well; we shared out the work load equally, and it was completed in good time to the standard we had hoped for. The running of the stall was slow and difficult to begin with, however after the first hour we developed a strategy, which gave us more confidence. The more people who took part in our photos, the more other people wanted to – it created a buzz which enticed others.
4. What did not go well?
We found it difficult, particularly at first, to entice people to take part in the photo stall. One reason it may not have been that popular, is because unlike other stalls, it wasn’t challenging – there was no ‘game’ to bring out the competitive side of people, which I think was attracting people to the other stalls. Something we never even worried about in the planning stage, but was so pivotal, was that some people (mostly older people) were just camera shy – they didn’t want to be photographed, and they certainly didn’t want the pictures to go on our tumblr website.
5. Use examples to describe how people engaged with your stall and how you managed different ages and abilities
When young children were interested in our stall it was important to communicate mainly with their parents, as they seemed to want to take the photos on their own phones, rather than have us take them on our camera. In some cases, we would take the photo on their phone for them, whilst they starred in the picture too. We found that adults needed much more encouragement to be ‘silly’, and tended to be a lot more camera shy. From this I found it was best to approach larger groups of people, as they would be more willing to fool around.
6. If you could do it again what would you do differently?
When we had no customers, our stall didn’t look inviting as it wasn’t that clear what we were doing, and we just had to hold it up on our own. We would have benefited from a clear, eye catching, and clever title for example ‘Put your face in the circus’ or ‘Runaway to the circus’. At the time of making the board we didn’t think it was that important to have a ‘title’ because we thought it would be obvious.
We had our blog address written on a poster on the wall, however we should really have had ‘hand-outs’ with the address on, to give to the people who took part, so that they would have a physical reminder to look at their photos. I’m sure a lot of people won’t have remembered the address, and may have even forgotten about it. I think overall our stall would have been more successful if it had a challenge – so I think I would completely change the nature of the stall if I were to do it again.
7. Is there anything else you’d like to add?
For the first half of our time slot, we were stood right back against the wall, like the other tables were, because we didn’t want to obstruct the room. It was suggested to us, that we actually brought our stall into the centre of the room, to attract more passers through. This worked so much better, and we instantly saw an improvement in the amount of interest we experienced.
To see the blog with all the images from our stall go to: http://circussideshowphoto.tumblr.com