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					DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY                                                Sect. 301
PHO 131 F                                                                                  Summer 2008 - JULY

Credit hours: 3
Course hours: 48
Additional Costs: approx. 120 Euro (details at #10)

Teacher contact/availability: available to see students individually by appointment

NOTE on section: students are required to regularly attend the section of this course that they are enrolled in.
                 Switching sections during the course is not allowed.

This course will introduce you to the basic skills needed to shoot and print digital photographs. Basic classic
photography skills including an understanding of focal length, aperture, shutter speed, composition, and quality of
light will be integrated with techniques specific to digital capture and the manipulation of images in Photoshop. You
will gain a broad knowledge of the history of photography and an appreciation of aesthetic concerns that will better
enable you to express yourself in a more cohesive and creative manner. Photoshop software will be used for the
processing and printing of photographic imagery (LdM’s Digital Imaging Laboratory is equipped with Apple
Macintosh computers and a new print service “Tetriz”). Throughout the month specific shooting and printing
assignments will help you learn basic skills: composing, shooting, adjusting and printing your own images. You are
expected to have sufficient time outside of class to complete your photographic assignments. This class is open to
all students interested in basic photography and digital imaging.

This intro course has several basic goals:
    1. Acquiring a good basic knowledge of photography and how it can be used as an expressive art.
    2. Optimize the use of your digital camera understanding all the settings and possibility.
    3. Understanding how the way to take photos in Digital Photography is changed.
    4. Learning to store photos in right way and what I need to know when I decide to print them.
    5. Learning to use Photoshop to improve the quality of the photos.
    6. Developing a critical eye in photographic imagery.

No previous photographic knowledge is required. A sincere interest in making, viewing, and talking about
photographs is of primary importance.
Important Note: A digital SLR camera with full manual control is strongly recommended. You’ll have some
difficult with a compact camera because some settings are necessary to understand the basics in photography.
(see point 12).
Please consider that some classes consist in outdoor shooting.

The course is built around a basic digital capture and Photoshop class but is not a simple lab class; at every lesson
you will receive specific PDF files with readings and with specific shooting assignments that will require reflection
and creative problem solving. Class time will be allotted to a combination of lecture, discussion, demonstration and
digital lab each week. Due to the amount of material covered, in-class lab time probably will not be sufficient to
complete the course’s assignments. Students will need to make use of digital lab hours (outside of class) to
complete the weekly assignments and final project. In the early part of the course, assignments, class discussions
and lab time will center on basic principles. Later on technique will support content and intent, rather than serve as
an end in itself. Class critiques will be used as a way to support the creative processes and at the same time
facilitate interaction with fellow students. Group photographic trips in Florence will also be a part of the learning

The emphasis is on the making of photographs and the ability to think and speak critically about photographic work
During the course students will receive several assignments. Every assignment has the same importance and goes
to fill the valuation. Students will be asked to complete the given assignments outside of class time.
Students will get 7 assignments assigned by the professor. Each of them will consist in a series of 10 photos,
critically reviewed in class.
The final exam is consisting on:
• Presentation and critique of a final portfolio made with photos chosen from the assignments’ photos.
• An “open questions” final test regarding arguments learned during the course.
• Photoshop exercises regarding arguments learned during the course.

20% Class participation
20% Personal Artistic Effort
30% Technical Ability
30% Final Exam and Final Portfolio

A = 100 - 93%,      A- = 92 - 90%,     B+ =89 - 87%,       B = 86 - 83%,     B- = 82 - 80%,
C+ = 79 - 77%,      C = 76 - 73%,      C- = 72 - 70%,      D = 69 - 60%,     F = 59 - 0%

Mandatory attendance is a primary requirement for a responsible learning experience at LdM. Excessive absence
impacts the final letter grade according to the following school policy:

  • If a student misses three class sessions his or her final grade will be lowered by one full letter.
  • Four or more missed class sessions result in an automatic F and NO CREDIT for the course.
  • A class is considered missed if the student arrives late or leaves early (fifteen minute grace period).

If a class session should create a conflict with a session of another LdM course, the student is required to inform
both instructors in advance. The instructors will then determine which class is to be missed and jointly sign a
written excuse for that class. Students are required to behave properly on the school premises. Classrooms and
lab or studio spaces are to be left clean and in order. Students must take care of available equipment and materials
and promptly report any damage or loss. Students are required to read and respect the specific lab or studio rules
prior to starting work, especially during open-studio time. Irresponsible behavior can compromise lessons of other
courses. Should issues of academic dishonesty (e.g. plagiarism) arise, the instructor will refer to the LdM written
policy on such matters.

There is not a text book for this class; PDF hand-outs will be given throughout the course. The Internet will be used
for getting all the latest photo digital updates as well as for exploring photo history and photo science etc.

Suggested readings:
Students will receive a file with the links to the sites and the portals useful for the course

Books at the LdM library:
- “Diane Arbus” By Arbus, Diane, Location code: PHOTO 68
- “Elliott Erwitt snaps” by E. Erwitt. Location code: PHOTO 64
- “objetos 1990-1999 “ by Chema Madoz, Location code: PHOTO 74
- The real and the true: the digital photography of Pedro Meyer. Location code: PHOTO 77
Please note that all mentioned books are available for reading at the LdM school library (see specific location
code next to each title). Please check the library for new entries and other useful reading material.

Throughout the course students will spend approx. 120 Euro as follows:
• 30 Euro will be needed as lab fee, covering the basic materials available in class for shared use and the
    printer’s ink. This fee must be paid by the first week of class. Students must show proof of payment at the
    beginning of the second class or they cannot be accepted to class until lab fee has been cleared.
• Approx. 70 Euro will be spent for required materials for personal use (details at point #12)
• Approx 20 Euro for bus tickets and museum tickets such as for the Alinari National Museum of Photography.
    Students will be informed in advance.
• Temporary Exhibition in Florence will be visited if the argument would be close to the course.

During the course, if available, visits to museums, galleries and exhibitions fundamental for the course may be
inserted into the schedule, within regular class time. They are mandatory and count as regular attendance. They
usually take place during regular class time (unless specified differently, due to specific time schedules). These
visits require students to pay regular entry. The school tries to get reduced or free class entry whenever possible
(see list of visits below).
The following visits are planned during this month:
- Alinari National Museum of Photography (ticket 7,50 Euro)
- Some “shooting short trips” at the beginning or at the finish of the lesson.
Other field trips to any pertinent photo or art exhibits will be arranged during the month when available. Students
are required to pay for any bus tickets, entries etc.
For detailed dates, addresses, meeting points and entries see the daily schedule at point13a.
• Make sure you know the exact meeting point and how to get there; be aware that there might be changes in
    the visit schedule!
• Please don't be late at the meeting point as the class can not wait for you to enter.
• If you have been absent please find out what to do and where to meet for the next lesson.
• A late show will be treated as absence.

Each student must be equipped with a DIGITAL PHOTOCAMERA with at least one lens better if with a choice of
lenses and a flash unit, we strongly suggest a SLR reflex camera (Any brand*: Canon, Nikon, etc even if it is not
the brand new model). At least the camera MUST HAVE a “M” function** (time and aperture sets). Megapixels
are not important. Each student must provide the following materials for personal use (approx. cost: Euro 70):
    1. USB mass storage device (external magnetic hard drives, USB flash drives, iPod, USB pens)
    2. A card readers compatible with your camera
    3. 3/5 CD-R to burn all the digital files.
    4. Inkjet photo paper, Epson, HP, Ilford, Agfa or Kodak, 25 sheets, for approx. 30 Euro to be purchased
         directly at the store;

All materials are available at the photo stores in Florence.

   • Canon EOS – 300D, 350D, 400D, 10D, 20D, 30D, 40D, 5D, 1D or 1Ds
   • Nikon – D40, D70, D80, D100, D200, D300, D1, D2 or D3
   • Olympus – E-10, E-330, E-410, E-510 or E-3
   • Pentax – *ist D, *ist DS, *ist DL, K-10D, K-100D, K-110D, K-20D or K-200D
   • Fuji FinePix – S1, S2, S3, or S5

*SOME PROSUMER with M function (example):
   • Canon PowerShot SX100 IS
   • Canon PowerShot G10
   • Nikon Coolpix P5100
   • Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ18
   • And a lot of other models with:
         o Aperture Priority AE
         o Shutter Priority AE
         o Manual


Session 1:     Monday 29th of June
             • Presentation of the course and the class syllabus. Knowledge questionnaire. Introduction to the
               digital lab, open studio rules and schedules. Introduction to the materials to be used during the
             • A brief history of digital photography and digital cameras.
             • Slides from web: some interesting digital photographers.
             • Presentation by the students.

Session 2:     Tuesday 30th of June
             • Basic camera functions, lenses, depth of field, exposure, contrast etc.
             • Introduction to the digital systems (resolution, sensor, JPG vs RAW).
             • Lecture/slide show/movie “ELLIOTT ERWITT”.
             • First assignment “In Florence with Elliott Erwitt eyes”.
             • Discussion pertaining the first assignment.

Session 3:     Wednesday 1st of July
             • Basic computer functions.
             • Introducing to digital imaging (pixels, dpi, print size, files format).
             • Introduction to Photoshop (Graphic interface, tools, palettes, basic commands, layers).
             • First project individual critique. .

Session 4:     Thursday 2nd of July
             • DVD “Some contemporary photographers: Nan Goldin, Robert Mapplethorpe, Jeff Wall, Andreas
               Gursky, Massimo Vitali, Luigi Ghirri, Thomas Ruff, David LaChapelle, and others”.
             • Slide-show, photoshop video tutorial: “Portraits”.
             • Second assignment “Portraits of male and female: Intimacy and Emotion”.
             • Discussion pertaining the second assignment.
             • Lab work. Works review. Photo shooting review.


Session 5:     Monday 6th of July
             • Field trip #1: Visit at Alinari National Museum of Photography (ticket € 7,5) (meet at 4:15 p.m. in
               our class and then we will go together at MNAF in Piazza Santa Maria Novella n.14 Ar).

Session 6:     Tuesday 7th of July
             • Photoshop Tutorial: Unsharp Mask
             • Slide show, Internet co-browsing: “Digital Photographers & Selfportratis”
             • Third Assignment “Tell the truth about yourself in ten self-portraits”.
             • Second assignment individual critique.

Session 7:     Wednesday 8h of July
             • Photoshop essentials (Learning contrast controls, levels tools, shadows tools).
             • Photoshop essentials (introduction to grayscale, using the clone stamp, using layer for
               exposure/noise correction).
             • Third assignment individual critique.

Session 8:     Thursday 9h of July
             • Introducying the Street Photography
             • See the video “Joel Meyerowitz” from DVD
             • Fourth assignment “Street Photography”.
             • Short Field Trip “Central streets in Florence” to apply the Street Photography

Session 9:       Monday 13h of July
              • Photoshop Exercise: Pop it out.
              • Introducing in landscape photography.
              • Slideshow and Internet co-browsing: “Landscapes”.
              • Movie regarding Landscape photography.
              • Fifth assignment “Landscapes”.
              • Discussion pertaining the fifth assignment.

Session 10:     Tuesday 14h of July
              • Understand what is a Photo Reportage.
              • Field trip #2: Reportage of Giardino dell’Orticoltura
              • meet at 4.15 pm. at the main entrance on Via Vittorio Emanuele 4; buses #1-12-13-25 from
                Railway Station.

Session 11:     Wednesday 15h of July
              • Introducing to attenuate the rumor in digital photography (optimizing the night photography).
              • Photo shooting review regarding the fifth assignment.
              • Sixth assignment “Indoor and Night photo”.
              • Discussion pertaining the fifth assignment.
              • Fifth assignment individual critique.
              • Garden Reportage class critique

Session 12:    Thursday 16h of July
              • Introducing in abstract and macro photography.
              • Field Trip “San Lorenzo Market to find abstract and macro subjects”
              • Seventh assignment “Abstract and/or Macro”.


Session 13:     Monday 20h of July
              • Sixth assignment individual critique.
              • Seventh assignment individual critique.
              • Print technique essentials.
              • Slideshow: “A day in my life”
              • Eighth assignment “A day in my life”.

Session 14:     Tuesday 21h of July
              • Photoshop: refining the digital image optimizing for the print.
              • Eighth assignment individual critique.
              • Works review. Photo shooting review.

Session 15:     Wednesday 22h of July
              • Lab work: preparing the Final Exam (fixing, printing..).
              • All Assignments review.

Session 16:     Thursday 23h of July
              • Final exam:
                  • Presentation and critique of a final portfolio made with photos chosen from the
                      assignments’ photos.
                  • An “open questions” final test regarding arguments learned during the course.
                  • Photoshop exercises regarding arguments learned during the course.

Should the instructor be indisposed or otherwise unable to attend, a substitute teacher will conduct the scheduled
lesson or an alternative one, at the regular class time. Ongoing projects are to continue, and reading, shooting
and/or printing assignments for the subsequent class will be due as listed above and in the assignment handouts.

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