Last week I asked students to use the following websites to edit one of their photos. It was fun to see how one image could be manipulated in so many different ways. The great feature of most of these sites is that students do not need to register for accounts and work can be saved directly to their computer.
PicMoneky is a great site with many features. You can crop, adjust colors, add filters, as well as many "fun" special effects that middle school students tend to love.
PsykoPaint is fun and very much outside the box. Students can upload a photo and then use various brushes inspired by different artists to smudge over the photo. Editied photos look more like paintings when they are finished. However, the site will not allow images to be saved to a computer without registering for an account which is frustrating.
BeFunky is a lot like PicMonkey. There are many different edits, effects and frames that can be added. I particularly like the artsy option of turning the photo into a cartoon or painting.
Hockneyizer takes a photo and turns it into a collaged version just like David Hockney’s work. Simply upload a photo and pick how many polaroids you want the collage to have.
Pixlr is another good site, but more basic than PicMonkey or BeFunky. Students simply upload a photo and then drag different filters through the camera lens to see the change. Fine tuning a photo cannot be done on this site, but it is still fun to explore!
My second group of 7th grade art enrichment students just started using digital cameras last month. On the first day with the cameras I ask them to take photos trying out varoius modes. Here are a few student photos taken in macro mode!
Photography in the middle school setting can be tough in terms of logistics. What can students take photos of around the school when all of the other students are in classes that can't be disturbed and we live in New England where the weather is not always conducive for going outside? One answer that has produced pretty interesting results is a photography scavenger hunt! The scavenger hunt list could revolve around any type of theme or be a random list of ideas. As a teacher I like that it promotes creativity as I don't see photos of the same things over and over again. Students also seem to like the challenge of checking each item off the lists.
My students recently did a scavenger hunt with photos that showed off their interests and personality. Here is the list we used: 1. Your name in a creative way.
2. Capture your reflection in an unusual way.
3. Spell a word that is meaningful to you with objects or people on the ground.
4. Something with your favorite color.
5. Something you are wearing or have on you.
6. An object that is interesting up close.
7. Something fun or funny to you.
8. Something you couldn’t live without.
9. You favorite thing about school/being at Coolidge.
10. Something that shows off one of your interests.
Students then used Animoto to produce a video showcasing their photos. We had a video day where we watched them all on the SMARTboard and had some food to go along with it! Overall it was a very fun project!
If anyone has any other scavenger hunt themes or ideas I'd love to hear about them
I'm very behind on posting to my blog, but wanted to share some photos that my 7th grade students took a few weeks back. For the first photography assignment I had students try to find hidden letters of the alphabet around the school. This was a project that I did in my Intro to Photography course at Syracuse University many years back. Since the assignment is still memorable to me all these years later, I thought my students might also enjoy it. You can also buy custom gifts using photo letters at sites like this.
To begin the project, I have them watch the commercial below. We discuss how the images are interesting because they make you look at everyday objects in a different way. This ties well into introducting students to be creative with both their subject matter and how they take their photography shots.
Students worked in groups of 2-3 with one camera. Their goal was to walk around the school looking for hidden letters in their everyday environment. While it was mostly an exercise in being creative with their photography, I did also encourage them think about their composition and perspective of each shot.
Here are some of their letters!