Sex: My British Job

Well, not mine. It’s a documentary directed by Nick Broomfield starring Hsiao-Hung Pai looking at the hidden world of the prostitution of Chinese illegal immigrants.

Starring is probably the wrong term to use here as the documentary is predominantly filmed through her eyes by way of a secret camera hidden in her glasses. As such the footage is all fairly low quality but the topic is so absorbing that you soon forget about shaky, low quality image.

In the documentary Hsiao-Hung Pai works as a maid in a brothel in London and her duties include cleaning, cooking and answering the phone. This is about 14 hours a day every day all for about £100 a week. Those are meant to be her duties however as the film progresses there is increasing pressure put on her to work as a prostitute with the madam getting more and more aggressive and verbally abusive the more she resists. You can see Pai getting more depressed as time passes and in the end she agrees to prostitute herself, calls in Nick and gets out. The documentary finishes with Pai, accompanied by Nick, going to confront the madam about her behaviour and the way she victimises the vulnerable girls who through being undocumented cannot work in legal well paid jobs.

As I said above, this documentaries strength lies not in its visuals but rather in the immersive investigation that Pai undertook.

In my own work I’m trying hard to produce strong high end visuals but maybe I shouldn’t get too tied up with that.

Source Photographic Review

Yesterday I got an email from our tutor telling about Source Magazine and how positive an experience being involved in it had been for some of last years graduates. So naturally I jumped at the chance and contacted Source to see if we were not too late to be in this years submissions. After talking to Source on Twitter I arranged to be the lead student, and quickly got the details for all interested, their images and artist statements and the submission fee. I was very impressed with how quick my fellow students jumped at this opportunity and how organised they all are, especially with final hand in just days away!

Tomorrow I’ll be checking over their submissions and uploading them to Source.

You can see here a sneak preview of some of their work:

sourcephotoreview