Digital Photography for Educators Jorge santiago

Week 1 - Hidden Faces

​Revisiting digital photography.

I wasn't sure how much I was gonna learn from taking another digital photography course, but this has been a lot of fun. I took all the photos through the Adobe Lightroom Android app. Attempted a few edits on the app, but felt more comfortable editing on the desktop. Once I found my first face then I couldn't stop spotting them everywhere. It is addicting. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed using Lightroom. It's change a lot. Still feel the urge to run to Photoshop to work on layers, but I've spent a significant amount of time exploring the different light, color, effects and details.

Here is the final image:

final image
The Digital Scream

And here are the other contenders:


Week 2 - Portrait (self-portrait)

​Incredibly fun and somewhat disturbing?

Self Portrait

This week videos really helped me focus on the portrait assignment. My original plan was to do portraits of my friends, but I ended up braving the self-portrait, as I've never truly felt comfortable with this challenge.

For this week's assignment, I took 20 pictures, flagged 10 as picked and finally selected 1 as a final.

10 Self Portrait Contact Sheet

I did all my effects in Lightroom Android. I tested multiple options, from auto to professional to timer and multiple effects.

I've been really enjoying overexposed and over saturated pictures lately. I went with an incredibly overexposed picture that highlighted the brown in my eyes. In essence, not a very flattering picture but one that is certainly evoking an emotion.

Already got some feedback from friends and the consensus is the same "disturbing"

Week 3 - Still Photography

The struggle is unreal. This assignment was a little bit tougher than I thought. It has opened my eyes to everything around me. There were many times I didn't even have to stage a scene. I opted to edit all my photos in Adobe Lightroom Classic. Definitely felt more in control of each edit. Found that working with the histogram was a little bit intimidating. I'm now feeling really comfortable with the brush effects and healing brush tool.

Still life 10 grid.
Still Life selection

This picture spoke to me as the final one. I applied very few effects. I placed the robot on a glass table and lit it from underneath for dramatic effect.

Week 4 - Landscape

​Adobe Lightroom CC

Back to the editing room. For this week's assignment I chose to focus on Oregon. All my pictures were taken with my Pixel 2 mobile phone. Some of the pictures were taken with Adobe Lightroom CC Mobile in HDR mode. All edits were made with Adobe Lightroom CC on the desktop app. I still feel more comfortable editing in Classic mode.

Final Landscape Photo

I chose the fog bridge picture because it reminds me of an old timey photo. I worked in it in Monochrome profile with high contrast, strong whites, low blacks, some vignette and sharpening.

Before and after

I was surprised that I wasn't able to merge photos in Lightroom CC. It's a little frustrating to have different features in both apps, as well as the mobile app.

5 Landscape pics

Week 5 - Motion Photography

​Playing with light.

This was a little bit harder than I anticipated, mostly because I'm still working from my Pixel 2 camera.

Luckily, the Adobe Lightroom CC mobile app has a great manual feature for my mobile. I took a lot of pictures I wasn't happy with, but I managed to get a few that I had fun playing with.

Final picture

The image I selected has my subject holding his mobile flashlight up to his face while his wife moves her mobile flashlight behind him. I did very few adjustments in Lightroom CC. Basically the traditional S curve and darkened everything around him except for the light source.

Before and after

The other images were edited in Lightroom Classic and Photoshop.

Motion Graphics runner up

Final Reflections

This course has been a lot of fun. It was a good refresher for me. I took black and white photography 20 years ago along with 2 digital photography courses.

I have to say that I was a little hesitant to work with Adobe Lightroom. I recall it being an average app. Lightroom has certainly evolved and is definitely one of my favorite Adobe apps. I'm still a little confused about all the different features across the multiple versions. I wish it was more uniformed. Adobe Lightroom Classic is definitely my favorite version, specially it having the Before and After feature.

If I managed to do this course with my Google Pixel 2 camera, then I can definitely teach this course with students.

I think this might just be the most comprehensive EdEx course. 5 week courses work better than 2 for sure. Looking forward to other photography courses in the future.


Jorge Santiago

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