|Students in The World of Digital Photography use a special technique to photograph a popping balloon.|
The back room of the Knight Fine Arts Center studio was quiet except for the clack of keyboards. The students in Alan Doe’s Summer Enrichment Program class, The World of Digital Photography, were busy at work editing their photos.
The class focuses on being a fun environment for students to learn the basics of digital photography and photo editing. Students learn to shoot photos outdoors and in a studio setting, how to upload and manage digital files, as well as how to correct and manipulate their images.
The middle school students enrolled in this program are “getting a taste of what they can really do,” said Doe, a photography and art teacher at WRA. So far, they have been working on basic lighting, creative camera controls and special effects.
One of the favorite skills that the class learned was “light painting,” a process in which the exposure and flash of the camera are controlled so that it appears like someone painted in the photo with a flashlight.
During the lesson, students rotated through the various roles – photographer, “painter” and model – to help them learn the technique.
Even with all of the special techniques that are available through the use of technology, students also enjoyed just “getting out and taking the pictures,” said Liam Mooney, while Taylor Krueger added that she preferred taking pictures of the variety of flowers that bloom across the WRA campus.
Ellie Salasbury, a student in the high school session of the class, enjoyed the lesson where students used balloons to learn about using a noise sensitive flash.
“We held a water balloon over a trash can, and then we turned off the lights. When Mr. Doe opened the camera, we popped the balloon,” Salasbury said. “(Because we were) using a noise sensitive flash, when the flash went off the balloon popped, so we have pictures of the water coming out of the balloon.”
Anna Knauf said the high school class ended the week by making a poster collage of their favorite pictures.
For the poster project, students started the week by taking 50 pictures, using Nikon DSLR cameras and a variety of lenses, so that Doe could “see their view of the world.” Once they selected their photos for the poster, the class used Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4.0 to edit the photos.
The students particularly enjoy manipulating the images – making the picture somehow distorted seemed to be one of the most popular techniques. The students also collaborated on editing the photos, helping each other with techniques or offering advice on editing.
“There’s a whole new world explored through the lens in this class,” said Allyson Foutty.
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