Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Assignment #9: How to use a green screen (or how travel around the globe without leaving room 114)

We all love to travel, even if it's just around the corner from where we live.  This assignment will have you traveling without even leaving your computer (well, you have to capture an image of yourself first, then you can sit...).

1.  Select an image from anywhere in the world making sure the size is a high enough resolution and the area big enough to place yourself in it (landscape with broad horizon, the Eiffel Tower with enough background).

2.  Take a good, long look at the LIGHTING in the photograph you selected, the PERSPECTIVE in the photograph, and the COMPOSITION.  You will be placing the photograph you take of yourself in it and all those concepts will be important in order to make the final image look convincing.

3.  Capture the image of yourself in the photo studio against the green screen, or anywhere you can place green screen fabric.  Again, lighting and angel you shoot at will be critical.

4.  Once you have the two images, follow the instructions from the video on the right of this blog.

Remember, the lighting is very important when illuminating the green screen itself but equally when it comes to lighting your subject (that would be YOU). You need to make the lighting of the subject match the background when you actually shoot the image. 

Now it's your turn.  You can work with a friend, go to the Photo Studio and photograph each other, whatever you need against a green screen.  

Have fun...think of the places you can be without even traveling out of NDB!

...yes, I'd like to be in Greece again...

Due Date:  October 26

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Assignment #6 - What can Photoshop do for me?


You know those very cool photographs that have the focused image in the front and the blurred background?  What can a person do if their camera won't allow them to actually FOCUS like that?

Photoshop to the rescue.

Your next in class assignment will include this technique and I promise you won't ever go back to "everything in focus" again.  Follow the steps below and post your final image along with the original photo.

1.  Open a photograph you've captured in Photoshop.
2.  Change the size to not larger than 10" x 8".
3.  Command J to make a new layer.
4.  Hold down on the Lasso button to see the underlying buttons and click on Magnetic Lasso.
5.  Trace CLOSELY around the object you do NOT want blurred, then double click to release lasso.
6.  To make the edges of your image softer (so it doesn't look cut out) look at the top tool bar and
     choose refine edge or feather and add a percentage to make your selection blend.
6.  Command Shift I (inverse) to select the whole photo.
7.  Select Filter > Blur > ___________ (select your choice of blur to create the affect you want).
8.  Adjust the percentage (make sure you select "preview" so you can see what you like).
9.  Select the Lasso Tool and draw a round the image you originally selected.
10.  Command Shift I again to select the entire background.
11.  Command M (curves) will allow you to alter the value of the background.

Due Date:  September 27, end of class

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Assignment 23: Graduation 2016

What would you like your graduation program to look like?

Your assignment:

Design the 2016 Graduation Cover for NDB.

You must include the new logo, the date - June 2, 2016 , the time - 2:30, and the location - 
St. Pius Catholic Church,  1100 Woodside Road, Redwood City, California

Anything else you want to add to make this the important event that it is...

Due date:  May 5th, end of class

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Assignment #19: The Exploration of Self

Who are you, really?

Since the fifteenth century and the advent of the mirror artists have modeled for themselves in their own works of art.  Whether an in-depth exploration of the artist’s own psyche or simply because as a model, the artist is clearly the cheapest and most available, artists in every medium have attempted this “exploration of self”.  Look at the many different kinds of self-portraits and attempt to understand why people create these works and how both they and the viewer benefit from them.

Will the real Cindy Sherman please stand up?

Start by watching the Cindy Sherman piece (link is to the right...).  Sherman is an American photographer and film director best known for her conceptual portraits.  Through different series of works Sherman has sought to raise challenging and important questions about the role and representation of women in society, the media, and the nature of the creation of art.

For this project, you will need to complete the following.

 Brainstorm (25 pts)
1.     Create two self-portrait concepts: one that will be a portrait showing yourself, and one that invents a new character. Summarize them. Create and write 10 “visual” phrases (descriptive – a phrase we can “see”) for each idea that will help you to create your portraits.
Create one “Contact Sheets” (50 pts)
2.     (An older term in photography referring to 20 images or “out takes” on a single 8.5 x 11” sheet of photographic paper.)  Make a contact sheets with 20 images, 10 images that describe yourself and 10 images that are the “story” of your created character. Be prepared to discuss the character.
Final (500 pts)
3. Select the best image for each - one that is you and one that is the character. Create a layout in Photoshop placing both images are on a single page and save in the appropriate size.  Label your images with your initials, the block and the name of the assignment (ex: MAK5Explorationofself.jpg)

Things to consider when working on your captures:

Is the image in focus, thoughtfully lit, and finished looking?
Does the work show pride in execution?
Is there an understanding of the camera used (or are these simply “snap shots”)?
Is it treated as an art piece?

Is the image well composed, balanced, all aspects in the image intended to be there?
Does it invite the viewer to “linger”?
Is it cluttered, bare, and composed with the purpose of the concept in mind??

Did you follow instructions?
Was it turned in on time?
Did you meet the proper expectations of shots?

Due Dates:  Brainstorm due March 11
                    Contact Sheet due March 17
                    Final Images due March 21