Course Goals

The objective of this studio art course is to provide the student working knowledge of, and experience with, the fundamental creative tools used in fine art photographic practice. For this particular class, we will use digital cameras, optimize with Photoshop, and make archival pigment prints in the Center for New Media.

In addition to producing photographs, participants learn to analyze and discuss their work in critiques. When regarding the images produced in this course, discussion will be centered on technical, formal, and conceptual characteristics. We will also discuss subject matter and content—and the difference between the two. In this critical “reading” of images, like that of a text, we will explore the basics of visual literacy.

To inspire and contextualize we will view historical examples from the Daguerreotype to contemporary practice, with an emphasis on recent digital work. Through this study and the production of a small body of work, each student should finish this course with an introductory understanding of contemporary photographic practice.

Course Goals

Having completed varying amounts of photography course work prior to this class, you will expand your knowledge and skills in Intermediate Photography by working on an individual project for the duration of the term. To help you focus on conceptual concerns for your work, you will write a proposal at the beginning of the term, a midterm reflection, and an artist statement at the conclusion. Your completed project will be due at the end of the term—presented during our official final exam time slot during finals week. Look closely at the schedule and make certain you want to be in this course—you will have to be productive with limited structure (four working critiques and a final critique). If this will not work for you, please drop the class prior to the end of the week.

Course Description and Goals

The objective of this advanced (and specialized) studio art course is to provide the student working knowledge of, and experience with alternative photographic printing processes. Courses such as this have variously been called “historical” or “non-silver” processes—but I feel “alternative” is the correct one. While the choice of equipment and “printing-out” processes are admittedly obsolete, much can be learned from the procedures and processes with which we will be engaged (akin to how the processes of printmaking can help a painter).

The course will be centered on the production of photographs via certain 19th century processes—which will include cyanotype, van dyke brown, and platinum/palladium. While participants will be introduced to the idiosyncratic view camera at the beginning of this quarter, we will primarily produce our negatives digitally using contemporary cameras and ink-jet printer.

As with any studio course, we will discuss and analyze our work in critiques. This discussion will be centered on technical, formal, and conceptual characteristics—but we will be particularly interested in how these alternative, hand-crafted, forms sync up with the content and concept of the work produced.

We will look at a bit of photographic history (through readings and discussion) to see how these processes moved the development of photography forward originally—but also to study the recurring impulse to return to historical, or non-commercial materials, several times in the last fifty years or so.

Through this study, as well as the production of a small body of work, each student should finish this course with a deeper understanding of photographic practices in general, and alternative processes in particular.