Assignment Ideas

This is the results of a brainstorm session with Anne Massoni, Betsy Schneider and John Freyer on 3/15/2020.  It is an evolving document and will be updated as we move forward on this.  This resource site is built on the Photography is Magic Course template used by John Freyer and Tom Woodward the Associate Director, Learning Innovation VCU ALT Lab.  There are active  online photo assignment examples HERE.

Some Ideas

1. Cyanotypes: Sun print kits can be ordered. Study Anna Atkins. Have them take pictures, make scans, Submit as jpegs, pdfs or video. (see assignment 7 handmade books)

2. Visiting Artists via Zoom/Skype: Ask your colleagues, peers, friends, exchange with people here. Impromptu visiting artist series. Thanks specifically to John Freyer for this suggestion.

3. Presentations: Have your students watch or listen to Podcasts, books, films about photography. They can make a powerpoint or just a simple slide show using Preview—record it or just make a PDF. This can be synchronous or asynchronous.

4. Work on Artists Statements: This is a great text that talks philosophically about writing about ones work. It has just recently been made available for free download. Its an excellent, engaging, conceptually based musings on writing about ones art.

5. Interview: Artists again can do a PDF or a powerpoint. Again maybe people can volunteer for this.

6. Create work about the pandemic using whatever cameras materials they have: About their experience or about the coverage.If they have to let them use their phones. Use this moment to teach about making art about intense, unknowable, sudden experiences. Have them reflect on the imagery about the pandemic—how are the images being used to convey the crisis. (appropriation/theory/journalism)

7. Handmade books: Have them create handmade books—or book dummies if you prefer, if they can they can use home printers or computers, or just images they may already have attached to pieces of paper. Use this to get them to make things by hand. They can make a video of their creation and present it to you/the class.

8. Really delve into Black and White Digital: Use as a foil as a way to make them more aware when they go back to the darkroom. Have them convert to black and white and really try to teach them about tones and why so many black and white digital prints look so bad. (Of course this is limited on the screen but still maybe a possible option for darkroom teachers).

9. Appropriation: Have them study Richard Prince, Penelope Umbricio, Sherri Levine, John Heartzfelt, Sultan and Mandel, Elijah Gowin… Have them create from images they find. Or have them make collages.

10. Have Students propose their own path for the rest of the term. (The Hampshire solution).

Rebekah Modrak - Reframing Photography

This book and companion website is a great resource for new assignments that can be adapted from the darkroom, to the digital, and or the online space.  She is also AWESOME and has offered to join us on FotoFika this week or next.

The Reframing Photography book redefines photographic practice as actions — of vision, light and shadow, and reproduction — that can be understood through media-centric practices as well as through other fields, disciplines, and exploits. Rather than isolating photography from other practices, we can understand — for example — mechanical reproduction as a relative of genetic cloning in order to shed light on the complexities of duplication and reveal larger cultural concerns about authenticity and originality.

Satpreet Kahlon - Deep Space Gallery

Satpreet Kahlon – Posted a call for exhibition on her virtual gallery platform that she created a few years ago – Due to COVID  Deep Space Gallery has been relaunched:

Satpreet Kahlon is a Punjabi-born artist, curator, and educator based in Seattle, WA. Through her work, which has been featured in Hyperallergic and Artforum, she is interested in creating visual language and immersive encounters that express and explore intersectional cultural experiences as well as the manufactured systems of inequity that dictate their boundaries.

Society for Photographic Education

We are longtime members of SPE and are grateful for their logistical support this week with getting all this together.  Especially after just hosting the national conference in Houston at the start of all this COVID 19 disruption Thanks so much to our SPE Peeps!