ARTS 2356 

Western Texas College

  1. Basic Course Information
    1. Course Description:Introduction to the basics of pixel-based photography. Includes camera operation, techniques, knowledge of chemistry, and presentation skills. Emphasis on design, history, and contemporary trends as a means of developing an understanding of photographic aesthetics.
    2. Any required prerequisites:no
  2. Student Learning Outcomes
    1. The student will demonstrate a working knowledge of basic techniques specific to working with a lens system and exposure.
    2. The student will demonstrate a working knowledge of basic techniques specific to working with a lens system and exposure in order to generate a dynamic body of work that incorporate the visual principals of design.
    3. The student will utilize Adobe Photoshop to digitally manipulate their digital negatives.
    4. The student will create a professional, digital portfolio of their work (20 images) and have it published as a requirement of the Final.
  3. Major Course Requirements
    1. Major Requirement 1:Complete all assignments staying within specific parameters and submit within the deadlines (75% of final grade).
    2. Major Requirement 2:Participate in class discussions and critiques, complete quizzes, and submit a photo book (25% of final grade).
  4.  Information on Books and Other Course Materials
    1.  Required Book:Hirsh, Robert. Light and Lens; Photography in the Digital Age. Focal Press, 2008 ISBN:978-0-240-80855-0
    2. Required Art Supplies:
      1. Digital camera with 3.0 mega-pixels or higher (preferably, and in order to get the most of this course, a digital SLR camera)
      2. Standard sized tripod
  5. Policies & Procedures
    1. Attendance Policy:All students are expected and required to attend all lecture sessions.Only 3 absences are permitted and they must be excused absences (see handbook for more information).
    2. How to Submit Work: All work will be uploaded onto according to directions provided by the instructor. 
      1. Improving your Grade:You can earn an A on any finished set submitted on time. No previously incomplete work may be resubmitted.You may repeat this process until the end of the semester. No points will be taken off should the work be resubmitted.
    3. Cell Phone & Electronic Device Policy:Use of electronics is not allowed. Students who even allow their devices to make an appearance will be asked to leave the classroom and will receive an unexcused absence. This includes the following -
      1. Cell phones
      2. iPods, iPhones, or any other MP3 device
      3. laptops
      4. PDAs
    4. Studio Use Policy: Students are responsible for cleaning up after themselves in the studio lab every time they use the lab. If you do not clean up after yourself, you will earn the privilege of cleaning the entire classroom one Friday, or receive an unexcused absence.
  6. Classroom Safety: Students enrolled in this course will be informed of potential health hazards or bodily injury connected with the use of any materials and/or processes, and they will be instructed how to proceed safely.Some basic rules:
    1. No eating in the lab.
    2. Drinks must have a lid or a cap - no open coffee mugs or cans of pop.
    4. Students must wear shoes in the lab.
    5. No children or pets allowed in the lab.
  7. Ethics & Art Making:In this class you may be asked to do “art research.” Just as in your other courses, you are required to cite your source for information - even images.
    1. Academic Integrity:Conduct of students which may cast unfavorable reflection upon the college will result in the student receiving disciplinary action for misconduct. The following are examples of possible student misconduct in this class:
      1. Submitting work that is identical or similar to work you submitted for credit in another class
      2. Allowing another student to do your work for you
      3. Submitting work as your own that was created with the assistance of others.
      4. Completing a quiz with the assistance of another person.
  8. ADA Statement:Western Texas College does not discriminate on the basis of disability in the admission or access to, or treatment or employment in, its programs or activities.The college counselors have been designated to coordinate compliance with the nondiscrimination requirements contained in section 35.107 of the Department of Justice regulations Information concerning the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the rights provided there under, are available from the college counselors.
    1. Special Assistance:If, as a result of a disability, a student needs special assistance to participate in a class, the counselor is to be notified immediately so that the prescribed process can be initiated.
    2. Affirmative Action:Western Texas College is an equal opportunity institution and is in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Students with disabilities, including learning disabilities, requesting accommodations in this class should notify the Counseling Department as soon as possible. In accordance with federal law, a student requesting accommodations must provide documentation of his/her disability to the Counseling Department.
  9. Drop/Withdrawal:Last day to drop and/or withdraw at student discretion can be found in the Course Catalog. For more information call 325-574-7621, visit the Counseling Center located in the LRC room 101, or email
  10. Exam Schedule: can be found in the Course Catalog.


    • Notebook
    • WTC student email account
    • Flickr account
    • Digital camera
    • tripod
    • 5 megapixels or higher
    • minimum of 3 scene modes (indoor mode, outdoor mode, beach mode, fireworks mode, etc.)
    • at least a 2 GB storage disk (see camera to make sure you use the correct one)
    • mini versions of the standard DSLR (pocket-size)
    • manual modes allow for more flexibility & artistry
    • Better lenses than the point-and-shoots but not as good as the standard DSLR (although some rival them pretty well).
    • Sometimes lenses can be swapped but not always.
    • Plus, extra lenses are often times made specifically for that camera by the manufacturer.
    • usually come with better software and more options for data format (file types)
  • DSLR CAMERA (Digital Single Lens Reflex Camera)
    • more expensive
    • manual modes allow for greater flexibility & artistry
    • better lens = better photos
    • lenses can be swapped for telephoto or macro work
    • you can use special lens filters to change the appearance of your images
    • you have more options for data format (file types)



Last Modified: July 18, 2016