Emma Brown Art 200: Web Portfolio

Learning Experience

Before this spring, I had only taken a few courses in black and white photography as well as Adobe Photoshop, which limited my effectiveness as a graphic designer. At work, I had to retrieve the skills I learned years before in order to apply them when I was making infographics or other creations. Fortunately, this class was a refresher and allowed me to learn so many new skills with my camera and in Adobe Photoshop. Although I was lucky enough to own my own Canon Rebel XS SLR, I did not know anything beyond the basics. Now I know how to take photos manually and utilize the different skills to manipulate images. While I learned new skills, there were also many challenges. This semester revealed how indecisive I am when making different judgement calls, even minor decisions in terms of editing a photo. Sometimes it was difficult for me to decide if my photo met all the requirements and I often asked my professor for help. Luckily, this course brought this challenge to my attention, which will allow me to work on it and grow in the future.


Lighting Exercise
Pattern Exercise
Rule of Thirds
Rule of Thirds
Rule of Thirds
Shutter Speed Exercise
Shutter Speed Exercise
Depth of Field Exercise

Project 1: One Object

Project 2: Surrealism

Project 3: Documentary Scavenger Hunt

Project 4: Digital Collage

Project 5: Narrative

Skills Learned

Throughout this semester, I have developed both my photography and photo editing skills. While in the past I would always leave my camera on automatic settings, I am now more experienced and have more confidence taking photos manually. Now, I am able to control every aspect of the image such as the shutter speed, depth of field, aperture, ISO, and focus ring. I am also more aware of the techniques that can be used to manipulate the light source and expose the image in the best way by using tools that help produce bounced or indirect light. While shooting photographs, I am more mindful of the rule of thirds, which has taken my photography to the next level and made my photos more interesting. Similarly, I have expanded my knowledge of Photoshop significantly. I now know how to utilize many tools such as the lasso tools, magic wand, layer masks, paint brush, paint bucket, clone stamp, patch tool, gradient map, and crop tool. I am also aware of different ways to combine photographs to make them more visually interesting. In addition, I have learned how to use many different adjustment layers and various editing techniques. This semester has taught me how to navigate Photoshop more productively and has given me a glimpse of the many creative possibilities one can achieve using Adobe programs.

Self-Designed Final Project

As a psychology major, I wanted to combine my passion for psychology with my final project for my digital photography course. This semester I am taking Cognitive Psychology, which examines how people perceive, learn, remember, and think about information. In the class, we examined different topics such as attention, memory, problem solving, and how people perceive the world. Using my Cognitive Psychology class as inspiration, I chose to examine life through the eyes of someone with a disability. This project allowed me to apply many of the different techniques I learned in this class such as layering images, using layer masks, clone tool, magic wand, dodging, transforming objects, and various adjustment layers in order to express subjects' difficulties. My goal was to allow viewers to get a glimpse into the mind of someone with a disability, which may influence how they view others in the future. In each photo, I focused on a different disability including physical disabilities, mental illnesses, eating disorders, learning disabilities, autism spectrum disorders, and visual impairments. For all my photos, I focused on the struggles a disabled person experiences constantly and chose to represent the person's inner conflict as black and white in the photograph. The black and white allowed me to highlight the difference between the individual and the rest of society. While others may not think twice about going upstairs, looking into the distance, reading, or deciding what to eat, people with disabilities face daily tasks as obstacles to overcome. Hopefully, this project allows viewers to take another look at their life and how fortunate they are in many ways as well as encourages them to be more empathetic and understanding of people around them. This project allowed me to apply many of the different techniques I learned in this class such as layering images, using layer masks, clone tool, magic wand, dodging, transforming objects, and various adjustment layers.

Created By
Emma Brown

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