School of Photographic Arts and Sciences 
Imaging and Photographic Technology Department

Special Effects Photography Course Outline

I. Special Effects Photography JPHT 487
1.1 4 quarter credits

1.2 2 hours per week lecture and at least 4 open hours additional per week of studio or field photography plus appropriate laboratory time. This time must be scheduled independently by the student as facilities and/or equipment are available.

1.3 the prerequisite is upper level status in SPAS

1.4 one quarter in duration

II. Course catalog description

A course designed for practicing photographers and students in which photographic effects beyond those encountered in everyday situations in illustrative, commercial and advertising photography are discussed and practiced. The course is devoted to strictly traditional photographic applications with one exception. Among the topics to be covered are stroboscopic, high speed flash, matte box, front and rear projection, strip photography, slit-scan photography, combination flash/tungsten photographic techniques and others.

III. Objectives

At the conclusion of the course the student will be able to:

3.1 demonstrate knowledge in the principles and practices of strip photography, peripheral photography, matte box photography, and applications of focal plane shutter effects.

3.2 understand the principles of stroboscopy and how to set up for moving film stroboscopy, tailflash synchronizers, and basic high speed flash photography.

3.3 produce personal photographs which reveal unusual dimensions of time and space.

3.4 exhibit photographs that will provide the viewer with novel insights in terms of special effects photography.

IV. Course outline of content 4.1 Matte box photography and masking

4.2 Focal plane shutter distortion

4.3 High speed flash photography

4.4 Headflash and tailflash synchronization effects

4.5 Introduction to linear strip photography

4.6 Introduction to peripheral strip photography

4.7 Polarized light and polarization effects

4.8 Stationary film and moving film stroboscopy

4.9 Extended exposure effects

4.10 Other effects.

V. Instructional techniques

Lectures, demonstrations, audiovisual presentations and studio/laboratory experiences.

VI. Evaluation

Assigned projects, written examination and class participation.

VII. Bibliography and suggested readings:

6.1 Edgerton, H. _Moments in time_ The MIT Press, 1979.

6.2 _Photography as a Tool_ Time-Life, Inc. 1970

6.3 Stroebel, L., Todd, H., and Zakia, R., _Visual Concepts for Photographers_. Stoneham, MA: Focal press, 1980.

6.4 Instructor prepared material

filed under des-specfecs.html
revised 12-02-02


GRADES - how to earn them

Grades will be earned according to the following criteria:

In order to pass the course, it is expected that everyone will make one example (print) of each of the following 5 special effects. NO EXEPTIONS. If ANY of these submissions are not professionally executed and presented based on the instructor's subjective opinion, and you only submit these 5 effects, that will constitute a grade of C. If any of these works is judged of unacceptable quality, and you do not have additional work turned in, the grade will be a D or F. Only ONE example of each effect will be accepted. You alone will decide what to submit.

01. In-camera masking
02. Linear Strip Photography
03. Tailflash synchronization
04. Sabattier or Phoenix print
05. Splash photograph

These (and possibly additional ones) must be turned in before the last day of exam week. Note: Brief, written, technical details and personal experiences must be included with each project and attached to the back of each finished piece. The ONLY format that these images will be accepted in is as reflection prints that measure at least 10 inches in size in height or width. NOT ANYTHING LESS. Every print must be mounted in or on a mat measuring 11x14 inches in size so that a uniform evaluation of all work submitted can be conducted. The prints may be non-conventional (such as ink-jet or Iris, etc.) but there must be NO digital "manipulation" of the images. Retouching is OK. Original negatives or slides MUST be attached to the back of every matted print.

Lectures will end on the sixth or seventh week. Starting with the second week you are encouraged to participate in weekly critique sessions if there is work brought in to be discussed in class.  If you do not participate in the critique/discussion aspects of the course, there will not be a critique or critiques will be curtailed. If this should happen you may work in the studios during the remaining time.
Remember that studio time is scheduled for you but you may choose to do your photographyic work at other than scheduled times and in locations more conducive to your project. What you photograph is up to you - it is the special effect that is important to meet the obejctives of this course. Periodically there will be group projects and demonstrations that you can choose to participate in or not. These will typically be held on Monday evenings. Participation is not required.

To qualify for a grade of B, you must submit _two more_ different examples of special effects from the following list. These may or may not be accepted by the instructor towards a higher grade, again based on his judgement on image impact, quality of execution, completeness and presentation. You may also earn a grade of B by starting with a C and passing the final exam with a grade of 85% or higher.

To earn a grade of A you must first earn a grade of B through submission of at least 7 acceptable examples of special effects and then participate in a final exam and earn a grade above 85% in it. The final exam is one consisting of questions in multiple format, from T and F thorugh essay answers. It is a comprehensive exam covering every effect discussed in class. The exam is only given at the scheduled time. Only medical emergency will be accepted as a valid excuse for rescheduilng the exam.

05. Matte-box photography
06. Combination Printing
07. Slit-scan photography
08. Combination Printing
09. Multiple reflections as in kaleidoscopes, distortion as in Mylar
10. Projection Crystallography
11. Bas-Relief Printing
12. B&W Infrared Photography
13. Iso-Density Printing
14. Posterization Printing
15. Multi-color light source flash photography
16. Zooming while shooting/printing photography
17. Front Projection
18. Long Time Exposure Architectural Photography
19. Flash Photography at Dusk
20. Combinations, Assemblies and Montages (such as Panoramic and Multipattern)
21. Reticulation
22. Melting Emulsions
23. Tilting Easel/Bending Paper Printing Distortion
24. The Harris Shutter
25. Peripheral Strip Photograph
26. Swinging Colored Light Photographs
27. Exploiting Wide-angle distortion
28. Printing by reflecting light from Mylar mirror
29. Rotating Camera while Shooting
30. Stroboscopic Pictures of Motion
31. Moving Film Stroboscopy
32. Sound synchronization


(selected work will also be posted on a class related website at low resolution)