Angela Hesch

Learning Experience

Overall I enjoyed the Advanced Digital Photography course in that along with learning new techniques and skills, I was also challenged to think more about the images I was capturing. I personally felt like the projects were a bit hard in that there were more aspects to consider than I was used to. Receiving critique while working on a project was also thoroughly beneficial and offered new perspectives that helped to elevate and fine tune what I was trying to achieve. I also believe that I definitely grew as an artist. In this class we did more than just shoot random photos and really attempted to emphasize the meaning behind what we were shooting. It was incredibly frustrating knowing what you wanted to capture, but not really knowing how to succeed in doing so. In the end, I am more than satisfied with my images, which is a rewarding experience.

Project 1 - Making Meaning Through Camera Settings

The goal of this project was to create meaning via the use of shutter speed and depth of field. For this project we worked with film, a first for me. I didn't have any clear ideas when starting this project, but I also did not want to waste any film. For this project I wanted to take inspiration from the daily aspects of everyday life that we may overlook.

To emphasize movement via the use of shutter speed I decided to focus on the soda streaming from the soda machine. I've always found that simple action mesmerizing so I thought it would be a good subject to shoot. I am glad that we got to work with film because I like the overall vintage feel that was achieved.
To create meaning through the use of depth of field I wanted to focus on the image of a young woman doing her makeup. I utilized a shallow depth of field to focus solely on the image in the mirror. This was done intentionally to represent that the woman is only focused on doing her makeup and not her current surroundings.

Skills Learned

The biggest skill gained was learning how to work with film photography. I like film photography in that it forces me to think about the image before I shoot, rather than just being able to see what is going to be captured and also being able to review the image right after shooting it. Working with film definitely required a lot of patience, and learning how to shoot on film cameras was also a bit frustrating. In working with film, attention to detail was also important because there could be minor errors (water damage, dust, scratches) that would have to be edited out. Speaking of editing, although we used Adobe Lightroom which is relatively easy to navigate, I definitely spent a lot more time editing my images than I have before. I became very familiar with the spot removal tool when editing my images shot on film, which was a very tedious process.

Project 2 - Intervention

The goal of this project was to make a statement about a space via a physical or digital intervention. I had a little trouble with this project because I wasn't too sure about what counts as a space and how my intervention could be impactful. I decided to shoot on film for this project and loved the outcome.

A shot taken during a weekend trip up to Santa Monica. Santa Monica is as picturesque as can be, and so to emphasize that I decided to edit the image to look like a gimmicky travel post card.
A representation of early Saturday mornings spent watching cartoons. I used stickers and placed them on an old bulky television to invoke a feeling of nostalgia. I also made use of the natural lighting to play up the imagery of an early morning.
A shot taken during a show at an amusement park. To emphasize the whimsical nature I attempted to manipulate it similarly to the way a young child would decorate their art project.

Analysis of Contemporary Photography

All photography tends to be documentary, and a photograph is never simply a photograph. Photography is always focused on what is being told through the lens and what the viewer is supposed to feel when looking at the image. In the photographs we looked at during class lectures there was always a story to be told, even though the images may have not looked like they were shot intentionally. A lot of the series focused on people, without people actually being featured in the images, which was one of my favorite themes/trends. There's so much to be said about humanity without having to say much at all. In many of my favorite images there were no humans present, but the presence of humanity still resounded in them.

Project #3 - Still Life

The goal of this project was to shoot a series of objects that play with the conventions of representation. I had the most trouble with this project because I did not know what to do to create an optical illusion. I opted not to shoot on film because it was vital that I could see what I shot to see if I was successful in arranging everything perfectly.

The first image of the series I shot and really liked, and thereupon based the other images on. I really wanted to focus on the idea of a smaller iPod in a bigger one, but it wasn't working as well as it could have in terms of being an optical illusion, until I added the finger cutout. With the cutouts I used them to portray the smaller iPod as an actual physical object rather than being flat.
I decided to experiment with the backdrop because I personally found it a bit distracting. I decided to use this pattern for the background because it reminded me of the optical illusion books I amused myself with as a kid. Since the composition is a bit flat, I hoped this background would be more visually appealing while also not distracting from the main object.
I was very hesitant about this image because the composition was off, but it was the best shot I got with this specific cutout. I also wanted to include the original backdrop in another of the images because I felt it was helpful in creating an optical illusion, however it was hard to emphasize the lines in editing.
For the digital manipulation, at first I wanted to have the image be similar to the silhouette iPod advertisements in the early 2000s. That idea didn't pan out too well, and then I remembered the source of my backdrop was images of 3D pong, so I edited the backdrop to emphasize the lines and make it look more akin to the source material.

Final Project

For my final project I decided to focus on light and shadow, a theme I have tackled previously but wanted to revisit. At first I wanted to focus on the different ambient light settings as the day transitions, but as I continued to shoot I was drawn to the patterns created from the windows. I shot on film for this project because in my opinion it was better suited for conveying the soft and airy feeling I was aiming for, which is then contrasted to the harsh shadows and lines.

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.