Art at DU: real major for real students

My Issues Story focused on the life of art students at DU, from the stereotypes placed on art majors to the academic requirements of DU art students and why many students chose to major in art. Because the entirety of the article would have been difficult to represent in only 12 – 18 photographs, I chose to focus more on the art students themselves, briefly mentioning the stereotypes, the work load, DU’s art student community, and the decision to major in art. The photos, I think, allow the viewer to look at the story from a more up-close-and-personal perspective. Images of students at work and examples of their studios and finished products make them real, more than words and statistics. You can say people work hard, but it doesn’t become real until you see it. As an art major I already knew the hard work that goes into projects, so photographing my fellow students didn’t change my perspective really, but it did inspire me to document what goes on in the art school, and elsewhere on campus, more, because things do become so much more real when they can be seen.

Since I chose to focus even more on the students with my photographs, I went to the studios for my images. All my photos were shot in the Shwayder Art Building or Nagel Art Studios. I decided not to capture images of the art office or faculty working there because I felt they didn’t really exemplify the work of the art students. However, I still chose to quote them because I felt their words backed up the images I captured. Visiting various classes and studios, I sought to capture candid, real-life images of artists at work. Because art isn’t just painting or drawing, I decided to document a variety of classes to show the diversity of the major. I wish I could have gotten a wider variety of images. I would have liked pictures of students in the ceramics studio, the photo lab, drawing from a life-model and the like. I was limited in my documentary abilities due to a closure of many of the buildings due to the debate. I should have shot more images in the days prior to the closure in order to capture more variety. In the future I would get more action shots of students and faculty at work. Despite these setbacks, I feel the images I was able to capture overall do effectively tell the story of an art student, the hard work they put in and the fun they have while doing it.

3 Responses to Art at DU: real major for real students

  • Anna Gauldin
    Anna Gauldin says:

    I love this! Great job, Katy. Incorporating people into your photographs was probably challenging based on the topic, but you did a great job. I think your use of multiple images in several of the slides worked really well, and I liked the quotations as well. The art projects you captured look so interesting! The opening image is really unique and attention-grabbing, and it drew me right in.

  • Hannah Gilham
    Hannah Gilham says:

    This is great Katy. I really loved the photographs and the black background made the text and photos look very simple yet artistic (who knew? haha) I thought the slide show conveyed the hard work but also the creativity and passion involved with majoring in art. Great job!

  • Brenda Rohn
    Brenda Rohn says:

    I really love this slideshow Katy! To start with, your photography skills really shine in this slideshow through the creative angles and approaches you took to each photograph. While I like all the photos in your slideshow, I really like the cover photo of the art project and I like the photos where the image you are capturing is reflected such as the student’s face reflected in the laptop cover or the acting scene shown in real-life, but also through the video camera screen. In relation to content, I feel you did very well at making this slideshow come to life through all your personal quotes. These quotes allow the viewer to think about each art student on a personal level and appreciate them and their drive to pursue what they are passionate about in life. I also felt the ending was very compelling and a good way to send your message concisely.

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