The Commercial Photography program is not currently admitting students for Fall, 2016. Contact the Seattle Central Creative Academy to learn more about the status of this program and other program offerings.

Commercial Photography Program Curriculum

AAS scope and sequence

First Quarter

Course Abbreviation Course Title Credits
NME 110 New Media 1 6

Use authentic tasks and projects to prepare for real–world work demands encountered in respective fields. Work collaboratively in projects, exploring the role of communications in the context of New Media and society.

PHO 111 Camera Techniques 1 4

Learn the functions and operation of the DSLR camera, lenses, and light meter. Study manual camera controls: shutter, aperture, and depth of field. Learn file formats and digital image capture, lens and flash functions, light meter and techniques to determine optimum exposures.

PHO 121 Lighting Techniques 1 4

Covers laws, principles and practices of lighting of inanimate objects, including lighting ratios; tungsten light sources; positioning; contrast control; and composition. Analyze photos to understand lighting and demonstrate safety procedures with studio grips and lighting equipment.

PHO 131 Darkroom Techniques 1 3

Intro to digital darkroom procedures and file processing, including white point, tone curves, hue, saturation and luminance. Create a file management system using Adobe Lightroom. Experiment with printing papers, finishing and presentation techniques. Learn folder hierarchy, metadata, copyright and database file management.

PHO 141 Survey of Photography 3

Examines the multiple opportunities and challenges of professional photography as a career. Covers technical history from Daguerreotypes to HDSLR storytellers, and master photographers of many styles. Additional emphasis on business practices: working conditions; time management; organizational strategies; and professional ethics.

Second Quarter

Course Abbreviation Course Title Credits
NME 120 New Media 2 6

Use authentic tasks and projects to prepare for real–world work demands encountered in respective fields. Work collaboratively in projects, exploring the role of communications in the context of New Media and society.

PHO 112 Camera Techniques 2 3

Learn more about the dSLR camera, large format electronic flash and specialty light modifiers. Emphasis on studio product photography including food, apparel, liquids and catalog. Learn to assist a photographer and collaborate with a team.

PHO 122 Lightning Techniques 2 4

Explore posing and lighting people through tungsten lighting techniques, light controls and basic subject lighting setups such as Broad, Short, Butterfly, Low–Key and Hi–Key. Learn 3–dimensional contrast in a studio setting, explore theme–based lighting and demonstrate set construction skills.

PHO 132 Darkroom Techniques 2 3

Explore digital darkroom procedures and digital file processing using advanced techniques in Lightroom. Learn redundant data protection systems, global and selective image manipulation, and integration solutions with assorted image manipulation software. Learn to see color and produce accurate color output.

PHO 142 Digital Imaging 4

Intro to Photoshop software for creating and manipulating bitmapped graphics. Develop non–destructive, image–editing workflows for digital image processing and enhancement, color management, image selection, compositing, burning, dodging, retouching, tonal or color correction and modification. Adapt print resolution, size and format for print, video and web.

Third Quarter

Course Abbreviation Course Title Credits
NME 130 New Media 3 6

Use authentic tasks and projects to prepare for real–world work demands encountered in respective fields. Work collaboratively in projects, exploring the role of communications in the context of New Media and society.

PHO 113 Studio Techniques 1 3

Learn more about large format electronic flash, specialty light modifiers and strobe lighting systems in a studio environment. Emphasis on studio product photography including stop motion, hi key and fill flash. Learn presentation skills including web presence. Assist senior students.

PHO 123 Location Stock Techniques 3

Learn logistical planning, technical and creative skills to successfully shoot on location, including strategies and equipment for set construction on location. Practice using skills of a location photographer, assistant, and location scout. Serve as assistant to second–year students.

PHO 133 Retail Photography 3

Learn advanced retail portrait and wedding photography techniques: seeing and using available light; using on–camera strobe units; choosing pleasing poses and flattering lighting; sequencing photos to tell a wedding story; and adding words and music to increase emotional and saleable impact. Includes retail sales materials, presentations and pricing strategies.

PHO 143 Digital Media Production 3

Learn multimedia storytelling, narrative forms and techniques. Develop a better understanding of using images and audio to advocate, communicate or address a specific subject or Issue.

Fourth Quarter

Course Abbreviation Course Title Credits
PHO 214 Catalogue Production 4

Create professional quality images for a multiple–page catalog layout, by producing a mini–catalog using traditional and digital photographic techniques. Explore personal photographic style. Collaborate on advertising assignments.

PHO 224 Communication Production 4

Intro to shooting motion/video with a DSLR camera. Research, plan, direct and produce a completed video project. Learn techniques for writing treatments, scripts and storyboards. Covers video shooting techniques and use of video production equipment.

PHO 234 Professional Business Practices 1 3

Intro to small business development and management for the professional photographer. Learn to write a business plan for commercial or retail markets. Covers retirement planning, insurance, taxes, copywriting, budgeting, accounting, estimating, pricing and negotiating. Follow an assignment from first phone call to invoice. Acquire business licenses and join professional organization(s).

PHO 244 Visual Narrative 3

Learn to use industry standard video editing software for post–production, non–linear editing of digital video. Covers basic digital video and audio editing workflows. Learn to support a narrative by incorporating continuity and logical sequencing of both video and audio clips.

PHO 254 Portfolio 1 4

Intro to the processes of creating a professional–level portfolio as a marketing and job search tool. Includes various presentation methods, including electronic portfolios. Create marketing materials: business card, stationery and self–promotion pieces.

Fifth Quarter

Course Abbreviation Course Title Credits
PHO 215 Advertising Production 4

Working with a local, community–based non–profit organization, develop and produce an advertising campaign. Learn all aspects of advertising production, including business components such as negotiating fees and expenses. Present completed campaigns to a panel of industry professionals.

PHO 225 Conceptual Development 3

Intro to visual conceptualization skills, elements and principles of 2–D design. Study techniques and processes that support creativity and aesthetic development. Explore the critique process. Focus on developing individual creativity and photographic style.

PHO 235 Professional Business Practies 2 3

Focuses on marketing practices. Write and implement a marketing plan, create self–promotion materials for mail, web, social media and in-person presentations. Present final marketing plan to industry professionals for critique.

PHO 245 New Media 3

Broaden understanding of image editing techniques including advanced retouching, layering, masking and color adjustments for basic web design. Learn to use templates to build sites. Create and publish online a basic website using image editing and design software.

PHO 255 Portfolio 2 4

Continuation of PHO 254. Produce portfolio–quality images and computer–generated portfolio pages. Investigate traditional and electronic alternatives for portfolios. Create a résumé and an information page for a website. Meet with industry professionals to discuss tools needed after graduation.

Sixth Quarter

Course Abbreviation Course Title Credits
PHO 256 Portfolio 3 4

Assemble a final portfolio of images that represents the student?s creative voice and professional direction, for presentation to multiple clients, representatives and agencies. Continue learning about production stages of multiple, complex location shoots.

PHO 266 New Media Workshop 3

Edit, sequence and prepare images for the website project from previous quarter. Finalize the website and all promotional materials. Complete a printed portfolio. Create a shot list and shot plan for the week–long Pt. Townsend Portfolio Shoot–out.

PHO 276 Portfolio Workshop 3

Prepare materials for the annual Portfolio Show. Design individual show stations and work with committees to plan the two–day event. Work with faculty to edit and select images. Meet with industry professionals in one–on–one interviews and portfolio reviews.

PHO 286 Special Projects 3

Focus on career entry and development by studying various projects such as employment strategies, technological innovations and global marketplace opportunities. Seek critical feedback on portfolios from professionals and develop professional relationships.

Total Credits for AAS Degree = 121

Contact Information

Commercial Photography Program
Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences Division
Seattle Central College
1701 Broadway, Room BE4128
Seattle, WA 98122
206.934.4164 206.934.4164

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