Photography is both a unique art form, pushing the boundaries of representative media and a mass medium with vast popular appeal. Photography has established its place within our art galleries, within social media and on the web. It is both a solid profession with many different career paths and a means of re-examining our own individual experiences. The disciplines of fine art, commercial, documentary as well as time-lapse, virtual spaces and videography increasingly cross over and individual photographers frequently work with ideas as much as with lenses. This is an innovative and inspiring time for photographers and a great time to study photography.
To study photography means learning how to see in terms of images. Why does one image speak to us so much more than another? Which visual strategies will lead to which result? Images inspire the creation of further images and so, throughout the course, many examples of images from the history of art and photography will be discussed and analyzed as a compliment to contemporary practice.
Students will work in the darkroom to connect their practice to the historical images from the past and they will assist contemporary photographers to understand modern image making strategies. This approach provides the students with an understanding of the creative, intellectual and technical factors which lead to good visual results.
Projects from the different fields of the photography, such as fashion, portrait and documentary photography are taught as genre specific skill sets which once mastered are then questioned so leading to innovation and fresh photographic thinking. Professional workflows are established so the student can quickly articulate complex ideas with the strongest visual repertoire over any lens based medium including video. We all understand that photography does not stop with the snap of the shutter but few realize the broad human, artistic and technical skills required to use the powerful tools we now have within our grasp.
The computer has helped to bring together images with their audience, and we use photographs more prolifically today than at any other time in history, but images that last, whether they be accompanied by text, made more poignant by the addition of sound, or remembered as the pivotal frame from a favorite film are never easy to achieve. It is said that photography is the easiest medium to make an image with but the hardest to make an image that stands out. We will give you the skills, intellectual and physical, to bring out your unique vision.
Photographers who have recognized the power of images to speak directly to the viewer also see the medium, not isolated from, but part of a functioning system of knowledge whose influence is deeply meaningful. We will look at photography; in context, with words, in sequences, as narrative, with sound, over time, as fashion, as history, as art, and as part of a social consciousness. We don’t make a photograph with a camera, we make it with our mind. A single photograph can expose complex thematic relationships whilst at the same time speak directly to the viewer on an emotional level. Significant photographs, be they from the fields of photojournalism, commercial or fine art photography, remain imprinted in our collective visual memory and influence not only our emotions and imaginations, but also society as a whole.