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  • Writer's pictureAlexandra Benson

Photography

Updated: Nov 6, 2023

This exploration will be slightly different than my previous posts. I am interested in the photo's that students of all ages would take and because I do not have any dark room experience and very little camera technical skills, I am choosing to go with my point and shoot phone camera to create a series of photos. I also enlisted the help of my 13 year old son because I was interested to see his perspective on photography and what he deemed interesting enough to take a photo of.


The first series involves an action figure being posed. My son played with background, light, and even filters. I found some of the compositions so intriguing. When I asked if they were intentional outcomes, he often said no.

The next series of photos were edited with filters found the i-phone photo app.

And this final photo was so interesting to me by the mere fact that my son decided to change the background on the computer screen to add an element of depth to his photo.

Next, I was interested in the angles in which some photos were shot, what he chose to include or omit, and how he would edit photos to create an image in procreate.



The next photos are a series of photos I took, trying to be more playful and exploratory. I find that I am either photo documenting my work or documenting events in the life of my family, so this was a nice change. I tried to imagine I was a kid again, blurry photos, photos at eye level (that pick up all the missed dust spots, crumbs of food, and dog hair) photos of shoes, shadows, sky, and cracks in the ground. I wondered how are heavily edited photos interpreted. I wondered how taking color away changed the feeling of the photo. I wondered how up close pictures make viewers question what they are looking at.

While in class, we had an assignment to create a list of adjectives, nouns, verbs, and adverbs. We then swapped papers with our classmates, created a sentence from the words we were provided, and taking our found objects, we were instructed to recreate the sentence and take a photo of it. My sentence: The blue pencil reads quietly, my interpretation:

Another assignment, taking a found object and photographing it around the classroom


My conclusion is that photography is such a fun medium for students to explore. For younger students, allowing them the freedom to point and shoot whatever photo they want is a great way to discover what is interesting in their eyes, what they deem worthy of capturing in time. For older students, more structured formats might create more meaningful lessons: color composition, lighting, editing, etc. Creating boundaries will make the photo assignment seem more manageable: nature, people, objects, color, family, sports, pets, and animals. Encouraging journalling about experiences, what worked, and what didn't work, would be another means to create more meaningful lessons.

Safety/Behavior Expectiations:

Safety straps on borrowed cameras

permission from parents to use phones for photography

when outdoors be aware of surroundings and only shoot in safe spots

when outdoors, stay in pairs or groups

if camera drops and breaks, allow teacher to clean up broken pieces, move everyone away from shards of glass or sharp plastic, batteries, etc.


Age:

Any age where students are old enough to be able to handle a camera and it's functions appropriately and safely without risking harm to self or materials


Project Ideas:

  • photograph ordinary objects in a new perspective

  • portrait photographs- self or other

  • themed assignments, to be interpreted in photography: "fear" "Happiness" "quiet"

  • I-spy photography to share in the classrooms and with fellow students



Artist Inspirations:






















References:

Kind, S. (2013). Lively Engagements: The doings, movements and enactments of photography, Global Studies of Childhood, 3 (4) 427-441.

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