A flexible program that offers courses leading to a wide variety of careers in photography including fine art, advertising, commercial, and documentary work. In the program, traditional and digital photography are treated as equal and relevant tools. The emphasis is on the image, not the technique by which it is obtained. After Introduction to Photography and Intermediate Photography, either digital or traditional cameras may be used except for specified assignments.
In the Photography program, you’ll be exposed to a blend of fine art and applied photography approaches in a dynamic learning environment that will challenge and inspire you to pursue expressive possibilities through a thoughtful balance of concept and technique. The program emphasizes the image itself, not the technique by which it is created, so you’ll study traditional, digital, and hybrid processes and learn how to use a wide variety of analog and digital cameras as well as lighting and image processing tools.
You’ll also round your education out with foundational courses in areas like drawing, design, and video production, as well as a wide range of general education and art history courses that will stimulate your curiosity, broaden your perspective, and inspire new creative expressions. KCAD’s flexible General Education Pathways model empowers you to direct your learning by exploring subjects you find most engaging and relevant.
As you progress through the Photography program, you will develop a comprehensive understanding of how analog and digital cameras function, gaining the ability to manipulate parameters and settings to translate your vision to a captured image. You’ll dive deep into core elements of the medium such as line, space, color value, emphasis, balance, and directional force, gaining the ability to unite them together in harmony. Essential tools such as lenses and lighting equipment will be emphasized to create the ideal conditions for image capture, and you’ll heighten your intuition to further recognize amazing photographic opportunities wherever and whenever they arise.
As you learn to effectively capture images, you’ll also become adept at translating them to a variety of display formats. You will learn your way around black and white and color darkrooms, discovering how to use age-old techniques to bring your images to life. The latest cutting-edge digital post-production techniques and digital large format printing technology will be taught concurrently, allowing you to emerge as a highly versatile and knowledgeable photographer who’s able to incorporate any combination of traditional and digital techniques to shoot in a broad range of styles. These approaches include, but are not limited to, conceptual/fine art, portraiture, action, candid, documentary, fashion, and product photography.
You’ll be able to not only capture and refine images, but critically analyze them as well. Through focused critical study of key contemporary and historic photographers and their work, you’ll understand how viewers interact with the different elements of a photograph, and be able to use that knowledge to be more intentional in your own practice.
Many photography programs place students in separate fine art and commercial tracks, but in KCAD’s Photography program, the two merge and inspire one another. You’ll receive a comprehensive education that will make you a more well-rounded, versatile photographer who approaches every image-making opportunity with an expanded sense of creative possibility.
You’ll graduate from the Photography program positioned to succeed in a wide variety of photography careers including fine art, commercial, advertising, fashion, photojournalism, product photography, and architectural photography, to name a few.
You’ll also be well prepared to market yourself as a wedding and portrait photographer, commercial photographer, freelance photographer, or gallery/studio owner. Or, if you’re interested in continuing your education, you’ll be a prime candidate for pursuing a Master of Fine Arts degree.
As a student in the Photography program, you’ll have access to fully equipped darkrooms, one for processing black and white film/prints and another for processing color film/prints; a digital photography lab housing a wealth of small and large format scanners and printers and well as high powered desktop computers; and an expansive lighting studio with large backdrops, an infinity shooting table, lens kits, lens filters, light-control grids and snoots, light meters, softboxes, tripods, stands, and much more. You’ll also get your hands on digital SLR cameras, medium format digital capture devices, and film cameras ranging from 35mm up to the 8x10 view camera.
Elsewhere on campus, you’ll have access to The Fed Galleries @ KCAD, an exhibition space featuring the work of nationally and internationally-recognized artists; KCAD’s Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts (UICA), an innovative cultural institution hosting exhibitions of such contemporary artists and designers as Nick Cave, Kehinde Wiley, Kara Walker, Nari Ward, Carrie Mae Weems, and Judi Werthein; The Dow Center FlexLab, KCAD’s state-of-the-art digital fabrication facility featuring 3D printers and scanners, laser cutting and vinyl cutting machines, wide format printers, and more; KCAD’s Material ConneXion Satellite Library, which offers direct access to more than 1,000 physical samples of advanced, innovative, and sustainable materials as well as online access to over 7,000 more; the KCAD Library, which provides access to millions of books through the MeLCat shared library catalog as well as access to specialized research databases and subscriptions to scholarly journals; and much more.
KCAD also offers a number of summer travel/study experiences as well as internships during the academic year and the summer. Many photography majors undertake internships with commercial photographers, but you’ll have the opportunity to pursue work in a variety of other settings as well, including professional fine art studios, museums, and community arts organizations, to name a few.
Ready to get started? Apply now!
A problem-solving course covering the principles of composition and modular design systems. Uses predominately abstract shapes and black, white, and achromatic gray ranges.(Students who have earned credit for VISC 110, Design I, may not use credit earned in KCPA 110 to meet graduation requirements.)
A problem-solving course which studies the properties and interactions of color and its resulting perceptual effects in pictorial space.
To explore the elements, principles and aesthetic concepts integral to three-dimensional design and to consider relationships between concept, process, materials, tools and technical skills. (Students who have earned credit for ARTS 120, 3-D Design, may not use credit earned in KCSF 11 to meet graduation requirements.)
The process of drawing as observation and conceptualization through eye-hand coordination. Emphasizes linear construction with concern for accurate proportion and simple positive-negative/figure-ground relationships. Includes an in-depth study of linear perspective. (Students who have earned FSU credit for VISC 112 Drawing I, may not use credit earned in KCDR 131 to meet graduation requirements.
Emphasis on development of convincing illusion of three-dimensional objects, through the combined use of line, value, proportion, and composition. This course focuses on the further refinement of the concepts, processes, and techniques introduced in Drawing I. Expanded exploration of perspective, composition, color investigation, media exploration, and idea development within traditional subject matter will be emphasized.
An introductory course which explores some of the following media: monotype, relief, intaglio, lithography. Students gain proficiency in printing, proofing, and editioning.
Students will learn the design and technical process of shooting video and digital editing and apply these techniques to their major area of study.
An introduction to the computer as a design tool using the industry standards in page layout and digital illustration, and photo manipulation software, the Adobe Creative Suite. File transport (PDF) and font management software will also be introduced.
An introduction to the fundamentals of photography and 35mm adjustable camera operation. This course includes beginning black and white film development and darkroom printing, as well as an introduction to digital capture and basic image manipulation controls. The aesthetics of photography will be discussed in terms of its history, and artistic and technical advancements. (Students who have earned credit for VISC 212, Photography, may ot use credit earned in KCPH 120 to meet graduation requirements.)
The refinement of black and white film exposure and darkroom techniques using the zone system. An introduction to studio and artificial lighting techniques as well as extensive work with manipulation of the photographic image. Subject matter and imagery will be emphasized, along with a continuation of the study of photographic history and aesthetics.
This course is an overview of advanced digital capture and image workflow with emphasis placed on editing camera RAW and DNG files, color management (including monitor calibration and the creation of custom paper profiles) and inkjet printing. Film scanning ranging from 35 mm to large format, DSLR camera control, and the use of streamlined applications such as Aperture and Adobe Lightroom will be discussed.
An extensive exploration of color photography with an emphasis placed on color negative printing. A study of color theory as it applies to light and film and the contemporary use of color by photographers. Content issues, as well as history, theory, and aesthetic approaches will be emphasized.
An introduction to the fundamentals of using and modifying both ambient and studio lighting. This course includes the use of both hot and cold studio lighting for digital and analog photography, including color balancing the light source to specific films. Lighting theory and the history of studio photography will also be discussed.
Rotating topics in photography utilizing the specific skills and interests of the faculty, community professionals, and visiting artists. Topics may be subject oriented (such as landscape, portrait, documentary, or photojournalism), technique oriented (manipulated image, directorial mode, or alternative process), or issue oriented (visual semiotics, new topographics, etc.)
Reading, lecture, and discussion of classic and contemporary essays that outline the important areas of critical discourse in photography including philosophical and psychological theory.
Using medium and large format cameras in the photo studio, especially for perspective control. Exposure control using the zone system. Lighting, posing and staging techniques that are used in classic studio photography including still life, models, food, and fashion. An examination of these classic techniques as applied to fine art photography.
A range of practical, legal and ethical issues for the professional photographer including writing an artist's statement, resumes, business promotional materials, marketing, small business practices, financial practices, and portfolio presentation. Emphasis will be placed on applying to juried shows and the production of a gallery exhibition.
Emphasizes the production of a unified body of work emphasizing conceptual development and creative decision making. Includes individual and group critiques.
Emphasizes responsibility for the creation of a cohesive body of work that displays conceptual continuity and technical integrity. Includes individual and group critiques. The student is required to install a thesis exhibition to complete the BFA in Photography.
This course is an introduction to the techniques and aesthetics of medium and large format image making. View camera movements for perspective and image control, incident light metering techniques including the Zone System, sheet film processing, large format film scanning and traditional/digital output including advanced printing techniques will be emphasized. Medium format capture devices (including alternative equipment such as the Holga and pinhole cameras) will be covered.
An overview of the Western Art tradition from prehistory through the Renaissance using a socio-cultural methodology in a chronological framework. (Students who have earned credit for ARTH 110, Prehistoric through Middle Ages, may not use credit earned in KCAH 111 to meet graduation requirements.)
A survey of Western art from the Baroque to the present, this course will continue building upon the foundation of Western Art I; Prehistoric through the Renaissance, using a socio-cultural methodology in a chronological framework. (Students who have earned credit for ARTH 111, Renaissance through 20th Century, may not use credit earned in KCAH 112 to meet graduation requirements.)
A study of photography as both a fine art and as documentary; at issue will be photography’s relationship to other arts, its impact on modern culture, and the impact of modern culture upon it.
This course focuses on using writing to develop ideas, hone critical thinking skills, and express ideas clearly and appropriately according to audience and purpose. Students write in a variety of modes and spend a portion of the semester engaging in scholarly research. Students also develop their public speaking skills.
This course provides a core understanding of effective storytelling. It examines the ways in which storytellers-both past and present-craft, organize, and convey ideas to successfully impact audiences, doing so through both inquiry into established narratives, as well as students' own experiments with narrative forms.
This course examines what it means to be a member of a particular society and how individuals both form and are formed by society. It will provide students with a better understanding of the social and cultural worlds they inhabit.
This course is an inquiry into the nature and power of philosophy to transform the way we experience the world around us and understand our place within it. Through a selection of readings representing various philosophical traditions and perspectives, critical discussion, and writing, students will examine some of the great questions that have intrigues philosophers from antiquity to present.
Download the catalog for the most recent course listings and prerequisites.
As a graduate of the Photography program, you’ll be prepared to work in a variety of fields including professional fine-arts and commercial, scientific, and image editing services.
You’ll also be primed to promote yourself as an artist, a wedding and portrait photographer, commercial photographer, product photographer, or gallery owner. If you’re looking to continue your education, you’ll be well-suited to go on to pursue a Master of Fine Arts degree.