Project Narrative – Exercise

Two young footballers, Martin Shields

Shields, M. (no date) Two Young Footballers [Photograph]. Available at: (Accessed: 17 November 2016).
* Two young boys, about 11 years old
* Friends, comrades, both on their way to play football (they are still very clean)
* Walking through a poor, dilipitated area, I assume that they live here themselves, but the image doesn’t make that clear
* The flats are empty and deserted, in decay.The boys are walking on the grass, next to a road.
* It’s a cloudy summer day.
* Even though you live in poverty, sports bring people together and build friendships
* Together you are much stronger than alone
* Together you can face decay and be able to put your mind on other things
* Every child has the right and need to play, this is universal and makes the viewer connect with the boys, even if they are from a different socio-economical background
I looked at other students’ websites and found quite a lot of other readings:
  • Two young friends from rival football teams
  • Walking through a rundown area
  • Possibly on their way back from playing a match
  • They are in the very front of the image’s depth, with the path ahead stretching out in front of them
  • overcast sky, stony ground, lack of other signs of life, ages of the boys, cleanliness of the kit (and so likelihood that they are in fact in the way to a match), possibility that it was posed


  • That there are prospects for peace in a place divided by sectarian tension [my guess was Glasgow from the striped kit]
  • That the journey to peace starts with this generation
  • That the path ahead might be long and difficult
  • working class (football is a working class sport), gloomy outlook (sky), obstacles on the way ahead (uneven ground)

The article for which this photograph was used was about the sell off of council houses in Glasgow and the effects it would have for the inhabitants. The article calls the area, one Britain’s worst slums.  This does relate to my initial deconstruction of the image, but not entirely. The photograph has a very strong human element, which shows that dignity and humanity of the people living there and the contrast with the circumstances they live in.

The text changes my perception of the image in such a way that I look closer at the houses in the background. I think it is a very strong image, because it doesn’t  show any negative connotations with the people who live in that area, strengthening the idea that they have a right to better housing, they are human beings like anybody else and should be treated like that as well.


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