A newbie photographer from Birmingham is full of praise for his college experience which helped him get there.
Jack Pallet was sixteen when he enrolled at South and City College Birmingham, with no qualifications and no clear plans for his future. As a pupil at a special school for autism and ADHD from the age of 14 to 16, he only knew that he didn’t want to, in his own words, “go to a special college or feel like he was back at school”.
He initially enrolled on a Public Services course at the College’s Bordesley Green campus. He progressed from Level 1 to Level 3, but he couldn’t follow his dream of joining the fire or armed services, because he was still on ADHD medication. “I really enjoyed my public services courses – all tutors had real-world experience, whether it be in the army, police, fire or prison service and even bomb disposal. They really ‘walked the walk’ as well as talked the talk. When I realised I couldn’t pursue a career in this field, I decided to try a different path. As I had always enjoyed photography, I applied to study Level 3 Extended Diploma Photography at the College’s Digbeth campus.
“The Photography tutors were superb. The course was always made interesting. I really enjoyed learning how to use Photoshop, though the tutors challenged and encouraged me to take photos and reduce the post-editing. So this really taught me how to get the most out of a camera and its settings.”
Whilst at College, Jack got to go on several trips abroad. He went to Macedonia for ten days as part of an Erasmus cultural exchange programme and to Spain for two weeks of work experience, taking photos. In Spain, it was Jack’s job to take photos of the other students on their work experience, as well as shots of the country.
Jack said, “In Spain we stayed in a hostel on a mountain. Never before have I been so excited to get up at 4am, but on this trip I regularly got up to shoot the sun rise. It was an amazing sight.”
On his last day of college, Jack had mixed feelings. He describes himself as scared, as he didn’t want to go to university but he did feel inspired to start his own business as a photographer, after attending a college talk with a local entrepreneur.
He applied to the Prince’s Trust for a loan for the essential equipment he needed and has recently set up his business Immortalem Photography.
Jack’s plan is to stay as a sole-trader for a while, building his portfolio. His interests are in fashion and portraiture photography. Follow Jack on Instagram: Immortalem_Photography.
To study photography visit: sccb.ac.uk/photography
To study public services visit: sccb.ac.uk/public-services