Monday, January 19, 2015

Recapping the first week at Owens CC and Wayne State University

   One week down.  And what a great week it was!
   The first week is always my favorite because I meet new students, and it sets the tone for the rest of the semester.
   Here’s a quick recap:
·      The Digital Photography at Owens has 12 students, and they are already learning the nuts and bolts of their digital cameras. But they won’t get into the specifics of shutter speeds and apertures for another few weeks. But they will be learning how to meter this week.
·      The Owens CRT Digital Video class has 10 students. I’m co-teaching it with a young, bright and recent film graduate from the University of Toledo, Andrew Jex. He brings fresh shooting ideas into the course, which we are designing a bit.
-  They learned the basics of the Final Cut Pro X interface, and went through the first two chapters of the textbook.
-  Throughout the course they will be shooting assignments that include animation and classic storytelling. They will also be shooting an assignment or two for the Owens Outlook student newspaper.  It’s exciting to add video to the online student newspaper. The photo editor, commercial photography major Sean Ferry, will determine what videos will actually make the online newspaper. 
 - The course was also rewarded a $9,000 grant for equipment. We spent that pretty fast. Within a month we should be getting new DSLR camera kits with video capability, Sennheiser mics, tripods and a portable light source.
·      My largest class to teach ever is the Digital Photojournalism course at Wayne State University in Detroit. Nineteen students, mostly journalism majors, showed up Friday morning, eager to use their cameras as another storytelling tool.
Screen grab of Sandra Svoboda's profile on the WDET website.
-       We also had a guest speaker attend the class. WDET radio reporter Sandra Svoboda has given us an offer we can’t refuse. The students will be ‘unofficial’ photographers for the radio station’s website.
-    They will also be doing assignments for the South End student newspaper. Practical experience is the best way to learn, and there is no better way to give them real-world experience.
    Let Week Two begin.

WDET reporter Sandra Svoboda explains shooting opportunities for the digital photography students. (Cell photo by Lori King)

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