Students zoom in on the art of photography

THIRTY students from Lansdowne Crescent Primary School put their own spin on Australian contemporary life when they participated in a free photography workshop on Tuesday 23 February.

Offered by the Moran Arts Foundation to schools throughout Australia, the workshop provides students with the chance to learn the nuances of photography from a professional.

Lansdowne Crescent Primary School grade five teacher Trish Rees said she had been applying for the program for a number of years.

“We often try to get experts into the school to share their knowledge with students and the photography workshop was a wonderful opportunity for them to learn the finer arts of photography from an expert,” she said.

“Photography is a special way to view the world and children are often less inhibited – they see the word from different angles which results in wonderful photos.”

Supplied with their own cameras, the students – under the tutelage of professional photographer Nicki Jackson – learnt a variety of photography skills including composition, subject placement, macro-photography, using colour and taking action shots.

Ms Jackson said the program sought to foster creativity in school-aged children by teaching them the “art of visual storytelling.”

“A lot of children don’t fit the mould in terms of traditional learning and while this workshop suits everyone, it is particularly helpful for children who are visual learners,” she said.

“With its big grounds, Lansdowne Crescent Primary School had a large scope through which students could interpret the theme, ‘Contemporary Life in Australia’.”

“We had a skills development and brainstorming session in the morning and then the students were set free to tell their own stories of life at the school.”

At the end of the day, students chose their favourite photo, which was then framed and presented in a small exhibition.

Images from the school workshop were also entered, free of charge, into the Moran Contemporary Photographic Art Prize, a national competition that awards and promotes Australian contemporary photography.

Ms Jackson said photography was an important skill for children to learn, especially in today’s society.

“It is such a good skill to develop because with iPhones and new technology everyone is a photographer, but not everyone is a good photographer,” she said.

“This workshop really focuses on the fundamentals of good photography and the art of good visual storytelling, and gives students valuable skills that they can use for the rest of their lives.”

During her weeklong trip to Tasmania, Ms Jackson also visited schools in Bothwell, Bagdad and Nicholls Rivulet.

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