Mr David Bryson

Portrait of David Bryson in T127 the Forensic and Scientific Photography facility in T-Block.

Position: Senior Lecturer

College: College of Life & Natural Sciences

Department: Life Sciences, Natural Sciences

Subject area: Forensic Sciences

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I am based in Forensic Science Department of the College of Life and Natural Sciences though my teaching covers other specialist areas including Conservation Biology and Ecology and Biomedical and Public Health. My background is very much based around Anatomy/Science and Photography.

Teaching responsibilities

I teach across a range of subjects including BSc Forensic Science/Forensic Science with Criminology where I am module leader for Forensic Imaging and Forensic Anthropology and I support other modules including core Forensic modules, Medical Forensics, Human Biology, Rexsearch Methods in Human Biology and Advanced Methods in Zoology.

Professional interests

Professionally I cover cases requiring medicolegal or personal injury photography for solicitors primarily for plaintiffs but also for defence. Examples of recent work includes; photographs for a defence solicitor of a prisoner in HMP Winsome Green and medical negligence cases e.g. recording pressure sore scars.

I also design and develop learning materials and I have recently been developing online learning materials to encourage medical illustrators to write for the Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine and website for blogs

Professionally I cover photographically any aspect that combines Science and Photography, though often my work in the University as well as supportign teaching and learnig involves the prodeuction of materials for Press and Publicity, see

Research interests

Scientific, medico-legal and forensic photography, human identification, history of medicine including: 'History of acromegaly and gigantism' and 'Use of photography in medicine'. Education especially use of technology enhanced learning, learning objects and multimedia. Human osteology and osteopathology.

Membership of professional bodies

Professional Qualifications:

  • Felllow of Higher Education Academy
  • Member of the Institute of Medical Illustrators
  • Registered Medical Illustration Practitioner
  • Member of the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences


  • British Association for Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology
  • American Association of Physical Anthropology
  • Royal Photographic Society
  • British Association for Human Identification
  • British Association Forensic Anthropology

I am on the editorial board of the Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine responsible for the Professional section.


Undergraduate qualifications

  • BSc in Anatomy, University of Aberdeen

Postgraduate qualifications

  • Postgraduate Certificate in Education (including Visual Education), University of Aberystwyth

Recent publications

Textile-led design for the active ageing population

McCann, J. & Bryson, D. (eds) Textile-led design for the active ageing. Cambridge: Woodhead Publishing, Co Ltd. Published September 2014. Including my chapters:

  • Chapter 2: Technological culture and the active ageing: A lifetime of technological advances.
  • Chapter 11: The importance of anatomical and physiological changes with age.
  • Chapter 28: The adoption and non-adoption of new technologies by the active ageing
  • Patella maltracking: A clinical and osteological case study,Investigating Lifeways: Diets, Disease and Occupations, BABAO 2013. (Poster)
  • The identification of tattoo designs under cover-up tattoos using digital infrared photography. Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine 2013; Vol. 36(3-4): 104-110.
  • Referencing web pages and e-journals. Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine 2013; Vol. 36(3-4): 146-149.
  • Are you a researcher as well as a medical illustrator? Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine 2013; Vol. 36(3-4): 150-152.
  • Conflict of interest and privilege in clinical and medicolegal photography. Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine 2014; Vol. 37(1-2): 51-3.
  • Current Issues: Consent for clinical photography. Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine 2013; Vol. 36(1-2): 62-63.
  • Bryson, D. (2014) The developing professional. Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine 37 (3-4): 107-111.

Recent conferences

  • The role of photography as a research tool in Forensic Science, FORREST Conference, Anglia Ruskin University 25-26 June 2013.
  • Poster presentation "Patella maltracking: A clinical and osteological case study." Investigating Lifeways: Diets, Disease and Occupations, Annual Conference of the British Association for Biological Anthropology and Osteoarchaeology, York University, September 13-15.
  • Institue of Medical Illustrators Conference, Bristol, October 2/3 2014.

Additional interests and activities

I am regularly called on to support Press and Public relations by taking photographs for publicity purposes as well as being involved in outreach through events like Science, Light and Photography for StemPunk and making pinhole cameras and pinhole photography for DerwentWise Project and Family Fun Days at Kedleston Road.

 "As dead as a Dodo?"

Recent photographs include Graham Rowe and the Dodo.

Experience in industry

After training at the University Hospital of Wales as a medical photographer I worked at Ninewells Hospital, University of Dundee then ran my own business as a Medical and Personal Injury photographer in the Bromsgrove and Redditch area for over 12 years before teaching Medical and Technical Photography at Berkshire College of Art and Design then moving to the University of Derby to become Programme Leader for the BSc (Hons) Biolological Imaging. 

International experience

I have represented the University at International Careers Fairs in Taiwan, presented research findings about Smart Clothing and Wearable Technology at the International Sporting Goods Conferences in Shanghai, undertaken a recruitment visit to Bandung, Java and shown Leonardo Project developments at ISPO, Frankfurt.

In the media

December 2009 - The use of infrared photography to see through cover-up tattoos and its forensic applications was on Radio 5 Live and Radio Derby as well as BBC, Central and Sky Local TV.

September 2006 - Mr Punch and Acromegaly, short clips in daily newspapers and interviews on local radio stations countrywide.
Supported students with a small project for Nottingham University Student's Union. Ocean night club: Carpet square photography

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