What we look for from student contributors.
We want to encourage our students to create innovative, deeply subjective images that present a vision beyond documentation. Anybody can be taught to shoot a sunset just as anyone can do a basic flower watercolor painting. What is more challenging is to present a sunset that has not been seen before and one that stirs an emotional response beyond documenting an image. We do this by teaching active visualization.
Considering visualization as seeing in the mind’s eye, as opposed to seeing using the actual, physical eye is essential to grasp—it means that the visualized image is, by definition, not the same as what we might passively perceive in the ordinary course of seeing. Instead, visualization brings into being a novel creation, using physical elements and transforming them, and overlaying them with subjective meaning. As Ansel Adams described, “When I’m ready to make a photograph, I think I quite obviously see in my mind’s eye something that is not there.”
We teach that the nature of the photographic process is that some tasks are done in the field, where we experience whatever inspiration prompts us to capture an image, and other tasks are done in post and separated from the initial experience. Having a visualized image in mind gives us a reference point—both visual and emotional—for what we felt and what we wish for our viewers to feel, as well as a means of ensuring that we stay true to our expressive goal. Thus the processing tools and techniques we teach can be described as the process of shaping the image captured by the camera into the visualized image in our mind.
Selecting Images for the Website
Carousel images— These images scroll across the top of the screen. These should not be documentary images. That should be narrative or navigational, which are images that may be impressionistic or abstract from a given park. The reason for this panel is to clearly state that we are teaching landscape art photography and not how to make good snapshots or postcard images.
Images must be tack sharp with respect to resolution and appear so when a student clicks and enlarges. Images must not be oversaturated. The composition must be strong with a unique point of view. We are currently using full-size jpegs at PPI. Each student image must be examined for noise, and if need be, we can correct that issue and minor sharpening.
Sales Window Images— This image sells the workshop, and in each case, it has to be one of the best that we can find. If either of us shot it great, but if we have a better student image, then we can use that in this window or a stock image if it is best. Both of us should be involved in selecting the photos for this window.
In Copy Images— These images are roughly thumbnail size. Nonetheless, they should be inspirational and appropriate for the given park.
Contributor Image Policy — From time-to-time NPPE solicits and displays images created by students whose work merits public exposure via the NPPE website. NPPE uses these images for website illustration, social media display, and electronic and print promotions. NPPE does not sell, lend, or otherwise engage in for-profit or not for profit use of these images to others. If your image is selected for these purposes, your image will receive photo credit for the student, including the creator’s name, image title, and student copyright notice. Your image will remain in our library for one year.
Unless otherwise agreed, NPPE does not pay for student image use.
Student Workshop Images— NPPE may capture images of students in a class taking part in workshop activities. These images may be used on the website, in social media, and for electronic and promotions without attribution or remuneration.