Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Composition and Seeing Shapes

photo by Carol Luallin

Each week the photography class finds one or two important controls on the camera we already own and use.  We learn something about the basic concepts of photography like aperture and depth of field.  We also concentrate on one of the visual elements.  For week two students looked around them for shapes and tried to use the rule of thirds.  

We have seen and accepted the unique shapes of things all of our lives, but have probably not thought a lot about it.  It's one of the things you start to notice when you're trying to learn to take better pictures.  Looking at the world through a viewfinder gives you some edges to contain your vision.  It gives you some boundaries to compare things to.  It makes you look at things in a different way. 

I encourage my students to change their pictures to black and white so that we're not distracted by all the shiny colors.  Lines and shapes and textures are often easier to emphasize without the color.  Save your original color file, change it to black and white and rename it, and you have both.  

Even if you don't have image editing software like PhotoShop, you can do basic cropping and editing in Picassa, which is free.  It's made by Google and is easy to find on the web.  Look at your world with new eyes, and share your vision with someone else.  You are an artist.

 photos by Jessica  Beethe

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Littleton Photography Class 2011

I love teaching photography!  When I moved to Denver, and couldn't find a job teaching high school photography, one of the things I started doing was teaching a free photography class at my church.  This is the third year that I've offered the class, and even though our group is small, it has been fun.

Since I posted the basics of each lesson last year, this year I'm going to post student pictures and a few additional notes.

Jo Leasure took this photo as a homework assignment.  She was looking for lines.  She has reminded me that there are many people who are not necessarily new to taking pictures, but they are very new to digital photography.

 My children live and breathe digital technology.  They've never known life without it. I am always learning, and I feel a little behind, but to my parents, I seem like an expert.  One thing I love about photography is that you have to keep learning.  So now I learn new things about the art and soul of photography, but also about the technology.  I hope I can communicate some of that to my students.

So this year we have also talked about terms like pixel, resolution, byte, megabit and gigabyte.  We have also talked about all the online resources for learning about photography.  Have you seen how many tutorials there are on YouTube?  Amazing.  Check them out, and learn something new today.

photo by Amy Wiley

photo by Carol Luallin

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Photographing Your Own Children

I've heard several photographers say that the most difficult assignment is to photograph your own children. I think that may be true when the kids are small.  They get tired of being test subjects, and they aren't in awe of the photographer.  It gets better.  When your children are adults, they make great models!

Elyssa has a new haircut, and we did these portraits so she could have some new facebook pictures with her short hair.  I love her new look, and I really like these pictures, too.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Karen Stork Photography: Artful Blogging

Karen Stork Photography: Artful Blogging

Artful Blogging

I've been reading Somerset Publications Artful Blogging.  There seem to be lots of people who know they are creative, but don't know how to express that creativity in a way that other people can appreciate.  Creative people also need to make a living, and would love to be able to use their creativity to make some money.  I've felt those things, too.  I'm blessed that I don't have to put food on the table with my income, but I still want to be useful and to help people with what I do.

How have you resolved the need to create and the need to make money?

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


This was one of my favorite senior shoots from last summer.  Nikki is an awesome model!  She brought accessories and a great attitude, and we had a blast.  Her personality sparkles, which makes photographing her a lot of fun.  She also brought her sister and a friend, so we were able to take some shots of her with other people, which is always a good idea.  These were taken at Daniel's Park, which overlooks a beautiful golf course and has mountains in the distance.  It must be a good location, because every time I've been there, there are other photographers doing portraits.

Friday, January 28, 2011



       I'm embarrassed that I haven't posted all the senior sessions from this summer and fall.  I promise to do better from now on!

These were taken at the Littleton Historical Museum, which has a nice variety of backgrounds.

Evan adjusting his tie is his Zoolander picture.