Week 6, Fall 2013 Semester

Introduction to Photography

This week, APP Introduction to Photography students began to learn about symbolism, including the difference between collective symbolism  (cultural icons like the American flag, religious icons, etc.) and personal symbolism, or the practice of representing oneself through significant objects, events, or relationships. The week’s activities included an in-class activity where students drew representations of their personality traits; a slideshow about religious symbolism; and a visit to “Things We Make,” an interactive art exhibit in front of the Dairy Barn.

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All images Copyright Lauren Pond

Week 6 Assignment: Symbolism
Everyone searches for and finds his or her own identity through a variety of experiences and expressions. Often a system of personal symbols can express that identity. Artists may construct a private symbolic language in order to talk about themselves or to grapple with the world’s injustices and challenges. In this activity you will create a piece of art that reflects your own personal symbolism.

Before you start photographing:
Make a list of your personality traits (thoughtful, smart, kind, competitive, etc.). Then think about everyday objects or favorite possessions that symbolize these traits.

Assignment:
Photograph several of the objects from your list. If you are working with a specific object, like a pillow, photograph it within its common surroundings and also experiment with photographing it in new locations. Is there a way that you can show the object in a new way and emphasize its qualities that are often overlooked? If you are working with a symbol that could be found in many places, like a fence, spend time looking at and photographing many different fences at many different times of day.

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