Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Lesson idea: Photocubism inspired by David Hockney

This project is one that I found originally featured on Princetonol. The lesson idea suggests using film and prints but I worked out the details so that the same type of idea could be rendered digitally using layers, layer effects, and image adjustments on individual layers (hue, contrast, texture, etc.) The students were instructed to take their photographs in the same way that the original lesson suggested but we simply pulled all of the image files together to create the photocubist effect in a large digital image a la David Hockney.

The students had a great time with this (it's always a big winner with them so I keep it around year after year) because it's another one of those digital projects that really allows them to independently explore the functions of photoshop but doesn't really require a whole lot of advanced knowledge (that of which they don't have yet) of the program itself. It also draws in fundamentals from their foundational experience in the way of asking them to consider visual texture, balance, color, value, and contrast. I always instruct them to do subject matter that is oriented more around a place than a person but I'm sure a person could be used as a way to do a contemporary spin on Picasso's cubist portrait work.

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