Digital Photography 1, Week 3

LESSON TITLE: Digital Photography Class #3
TEACHER NAME: Jennifer November
GRADE LEVEL: 7th & 8th
CLASS TIME: _1.5_Minutes _1_Days/week _1_# Session(s)
SUBJECTS COVERED – Photo Shoot Field Trip

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Students will learn and work with a digital SLR camera in a studio.

Students will take portrait photos of each other.

Students will experience and practice drawing with light and a long shutter speed.

Students will whiteness the use of Lightroom and its various uses.


  • SLR Digital cameras
  • Lightroom
  • Photography Studio (we went to a local academy which has a fantastic art department)



Shutter speed – refers to the amount of time the mechanical door in a camera or lens opens and closes to allow light to hit the film or digital imaging sensor. Shutter speed is expressed a a fraction of a second or as a number of seconds

Drawing with light-a method used with long open shutters and light drawn behind the subject also burning color into the image.

Portrait- an image of a subject usually from the shoulders and up with the main focus on the face

Reflective light – Reflective light is the light that bounces back from the surface of an object to the underside of a second object (receiver).

Silhouettes – the dark shape and outline of someone or something visible against a lighter background, especially in dim light.

Back Lighting – light radiating from the back

Side Lighting – light radiating from one or both sides of the image

Broad light source – The broader the light source, the softer the light. The narrower the source, the harder the light. A broad light source lessens shadows, reduces contrast, suppresses texture. A narrow light source does the opposite. This is because, with a broad source, light rays hit your subject from more directions, which tends to fill in shadows and give more even illumination to the scene.

Diffusion- Diffusion scatters light, essentially making the light source broader and therefore softer. When clouds drift in front of the sun, shadows get less distinct. Add fog, and the shadows disappear. Clouds, overcast skies, and fog act as diffusion—something that scatters the light in many directions. On overcast or foggy days, the entire sky, in effect, becomes a single very broad light source—nature’s soft box.

Bouncing light – Bouncing light acts as diffusion. Aim a narrow light source at a broad, matte surface—such as a wall, ceiling, or matte refiector—and it not only refiects the light but also diffuses it by scattering it over a wider area.
Use a shiny refiector, though, and the light will stay fairly narrow on the bounce. The most extreme type of shiny refiector—a mirror—will keep the light focused pretty much as narrowly in the refection.

Light source distance – The farther the light source, the more it falls off— gets dimmer on your subject. The rule says that light falls off as the square of the distance. That sounds complicated, but isn’t really. If you move a light twice as far from your subject, you end up with only one-quarter of the light on the subject. In other words, light gets dim fast when you move it away— something to keep in mind if you’re moving your lights or your subject to change the quality of the light. Also remember that bouncing light—even into a shiny reflector that keeps light directional— adds to the distance it travels.

Light falloff – Light falloff can be used to vary the relationship between the light on your subject and your background. If you place a light close to your subject, the falloff from the subject to the background will be more pronounced. Move the light farther from your subject, and the background will be relatively brighter.
The same holds true for sidelighting: With a light close to the side of your subject, the falloff of light across the frame will be more pronounced than if the light is farther away.
Tip: If your subject is frontlit by windowlight, keep the person close to the window to make the room’s back wall fall off in darkness. If you want some illumination on the wall, though, move the person back closer to it and away from the window.

Frontlighting – Frontlighting de-emphasizes texture; lighting from the side, above, or below emphasizes it. A portraitist may want to keep the light source close to the axis of the lens to suppress skin wrinkles, while a landscapist may want sidelighting to emphasize the texture of rocks, sand, and foliage. Generally, the greater the angle at which the light is positioned to the subject, the more texture is revealed.

Backlight – Backlight can be used as highly diffused lighting. Very few subjects are totally backlit, that is, in pure silhouette, with no light at all falling from the front. A person with his back to a bright window will have light reflected from an opposite wall falling on him. Someone standing outside with her back to bright sunlight will have light falling on her from the open sky in front of her. In either case, you’ll need to increase exposure to record the light falling on the subject—and this light will deemphasize facial texture and dimensionality.
Tip: For spark in a backlit portrait or silhouette, try compositions that include the light source. This can drive your meter crazy, though, so bracket your exposures.


10 Lighting Facts

Western Reserve Academy



We took a field trip to Western Reserve Academy where photography teacher Alan Doe met myself and my six students. Today we are working in his photography studio taking photo shoots with different intentions for the pictures. Mr. Doe showed us the cameras that he uses with his students. He then set up the studio working with the lighting, the location of the camera and then gave us instructions of how the next few steps would go.

We set up each student one by one for a portrait. They choose their own pose, and a friend took the picture. We had a task for each student. The portraits were a great warm up and opportunity for the students to get the hang of the sequence.

After the portraits Mr. Doe had us practice drawing with light. We had one student who would shut off the lights in the room. One student who would depress the shutter button and hold it down while the next student would release a quick flash on the subject, and directly after another student would use a small light to draw around the subject. Then the student holding the shutter button would release the button and then the lights would come back on.

It took a few times to get the hang of it, but we had a great rhythm going and the students had a blast with it. They really got to learn hands on the different tasks that go into taking an image, and the effects that can be created.

The images in the end came out awesome and we were so happy to receive them printed out, and on a disk. Below are the final images from the day.



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