Photography I

Course Description

Grade: 10-12

In Photography I students will study the history of photography, learn proper use and handling of a DSLR camera and image processing (digital darkroom). Students will be evaluated on presentation of technical skill, photography composition and creativity. This class will be the first introduction to media arts, which involves web-based graphics. Students are responsible for a $15.00 lab fee.


Class Objectives                                                                                                                                                    

This class is an introduction to digital photography.  By the end of this term students should have met the following objectives:

  1. Gain an understanding of camera mechanics.
  2. Use the Rule of Thirds to create well composed images.
  3. Learn and apply the elements and principles of design to photography.
  4. Develop an in-depth knowledge of Adobe Photoshop.
  5. Know the development and general history of photography.
  6. Gain a proper vocabulary of photography terms.

Students are expected to go on at least one photo shoot per week taking a minimum of twenty photographs and will turn in two photographs each Friday.


Credit for Photography I is dependent on the students’ final grade.  Final grades are broken down as follows:

Photo Check-In  –  20%

Students will be assigned each photography assignment one week prior to the due date. The following Monday students will bring assigned photographs to class. 2 points will be deducted per late day.

Daily Points  –  20%

Students are awarded 2 points for each day they come to class on time and prepared, and use their work time appropriately as deemed by the teacher.  5 weekly points are deducted for playing computer games.

Projects  –  50%

Projects are expected to be worked on both in and out of the classroom.  Students are required to critique each of their works in Photography I.

Formal Assessments  –  10%

Students are required to take five tests/quizzes throughout the duration of the term:  two Photoshop tests, one vocabulary test, one test covering the Elements and Principles of Design, and a cumulative Final Test.


Class Projects / Tests

  1. Different Objects – Composition
  2. Shadow Emphasis – Principles
  3. Elements – Emphasis
  4. Macro Photography – Depth of Field
  5. 360 Panorama
  6. Action Photography- Shutter Speed
  7. Portraits
  8. Double Exposure
  9. Emphasis by Color
  10. Social Change
  11. Artist Emulation and Presentations
  12. Personal Voice

Photo I Learning Targets

Composition/Design: Students can create an area of emphasis in their photograph while creating an original balanced composition using the rule of thirds. Students know and understand the Elements and Principles of Design.


Creativity/Originality: Students can demonstrate thoughtful choices by actively creating images rather than just taking pictures. Students can create artwork that expresses an idea and demonstrates learning.

Craftsmanship/Light: Students can capture photos that are perfectly in focus and sharp. Students can execute proper exposure and incorporate a range of values. Students can actively use light to the best effect in their photographs.                                   

Completion/Effort: Students know how to use and respect materials in art. Students know and understand what a critique is and the process of critiquing art work. Students can revise their artwork based on feedback and reflect on their artwork.


Camera, Technology & Photoshop

Students will understand camera controls.

Students will know the history of photography and will know how to use Flickr, the textbook, and other resources to gain inspiration for their artwork.

Students will know how to upload and organize images in their personal folder according to each project.

Students will know how to use Photoshop to edit and enhance their images.

Students will know how to save and organize their work.

Students will know how to create a personal Blog to share their photography with students, staff, friends and family members.

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