Photography, Basic Digital
  I: Administrative Information   II: Course Details   III: Topical Outline(s)  Printable Version
Section I: Administrative Information
  Total hours: 36.0
Credit Value: 2.5
Credit Value Notes: N/A
Effective: Spring/Summer 2018
Prerequisites: N/A
Corequisites: N/A
Equivalents: N/A
Pre/Co/Equiv Notes: N/A

Program(s): Digital Photography
Program Coordinator(s): N/A
Course Leader or Contact: N/A
Version: 20180507_00
Status: Approved (APPR)

Section I Notes: N/A

Section II: Course Details

Detailed Description
Whether you own a basic dSLR camera with manual controls, a more advanced dSLR or a mirror-less camera with manual mode, this class will give you a better grasp of your chosen tool and the skills to make successful images under natural and artificial light. Learn about the variety of camera features and functions to achieve optimal setting in camera for quality images. Core photographic concepts like shutter speed, aperture, ISO and their symbiotic relationship are explored in detail. Students also learn fundamentals of photographic composition. Students will practice with their cameras in the classroom and outside, when weather conditions permit. Students will also be introduced to the basics of image processing using Adobe Lightroom and/or Adobe Photoshop. In addition to instruction and coaching from the instructor, students will work and learn from one another in small groups. Note: Students are expected to have their own dSLR or mirrorless camera with manual controls and will be shooting during the entire duration of the course. Students should be prepared to spend at least one session outside the classroom environment. This session may not be held on the day of the regularly scheduled class. Note: The weekend course is scheduled over two week-ends. Note: If you own a Digital Single Lens Reflex (dSLR) or mirrorless camera with manual controls, bring it to the first class with the owner's manual.

Program Context

Digital Photography Program Coordinator(s): N/A

Course Critical Performance and Learning Outcomes

  Critical Performance:
By the end of this course, students will have demonstrated the ability to produce quality photos using natural and artificial light.
Learning Outcomes:

To achieve the critical performance, students will have demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Acknowledge the history of photography with interest to the development of the camera.
  2. Operate the different functions of DSLR or mirrorless camera.
  3. Recognize different qualities of light.
  4. Plan and perform photographic assignments.
  5. Identify the basic elements and creative aspects of composition.
  6. Distinguish between a mediocre photograph and a good photograph
  7. Appreciate and understand photography as a means of expression and communication
  8. Demonstrate how to use a variety of image file formats.
  9. Understand how to use Adobe Lightroom or Adobe Photoshop software.

Evaluation Plan
Students demonstrate their learning in the following ways:

 Evaluation Plan: IN-CLASS
 Practical Assignments75.0%
 Final Exam15.0%

Evaluation Notes and Academic Missed Work Procedure:

Provincial Context
The course meets the following Ministry of Colleges and Universities requirements:


Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition
PLAR Contact (if course is PLAR-eligible) - Office of the Registrar
Students may apply to receive credit by demonstrating achievement of the course learning outcomes through previous relevant work/life experience, service, self-study and training on the job. This course is eligible for challenge through the following method(s):

  • Portfolio
  • Interview

Section III: Topical Outline
Some details of this outline may change as a result of circumstances such as weather cancellations, College and student activities, and class timetabling.
Instruction Mode: In-Class
Professor: N/A
Resource(s): N/A
Applicable student group(s): N/A
Course Details:

NOTE: These modules will be accelerated in the weekend workshop version

Module 1: Camera Function

  • Welcome and Introduction
    • Outline of course materials, evaluations, and assignments 
    • Discussion of required equipment, expectations of SLATE, and email 
    • Demonstration and discussion of the camera, lens parts, and functions 
  • Camera Functions - Fundamentals of Exposure and Focus
    • Learning to control focus 
    • In-camera metering types and their behaviours 
    • Using the light meter and referencing the histogram for evaluating exposure 
    • Working with exposure compensation 
  • Aperture, Shutter Speed, ISO
    • Basic camera settings: shutter speed, aperture, ISO
    • Combining settings for desired results 
    • The fundamental relationship between aperture, shutter, and ISO 
    • Colour profiles in camera - sRGB vs. Adobe RGB 
    • Controlling depth of field and motion 

Module 2: Light and Composition 

  • Light
    • Properties of light:
      • Specular
      • Diffused 
      • Contrast 
      • Direction 
      • Colour / Colour Temperature 
      • Brightness 
  • Composition
    • Composition guidelines
    • Leading lines 
    • Symmetry / Balance
    • Shapes
    • Colours 
    • Rule of Thirds 
    • Learning to see as the camera does - introducing the composition card 
    • Framing, cropping in the camera 

Module 3: Editing

  • File formats 
  • RAW vs. JPEG
  • Digital Workflow 
  • Software for organizing and editing 
  • Overview of Adobe Lightroom
  • Overview of Adobe Bridge 
  • Overview of Adobe Photoshop 

Module 4: Portraiture 

  • Natural light for portraiture 
  • Demonstrations on window lighting 
  • Controlling natural light - outdoors 
  • Lighting styles for portraiture 
  • Composition - portrait photography 

Module 5: Landscape Photography

  • Discussion on landscape photography 
  • Composition - using natural light 
  • Additional tools to help capture and enhance landscape images 

Module 6: Exam and Review

  • Final exam and review of concepts learnt 

Sheridan Policies

All Sheridan policies can be viewed on the Sheridan policy website.

Academic Integrity: The principle of academic integrity requires that all work submitted for evaluation and course credit be the original, unassisted work of the student. Cheating or plagiarism including borrowing, copying, purchasing or collaborating on work, except for group projects arranged and approved by the professor, or otherwise submitting work that is not the student's own, violates this principle and will not be tolerated. Students who have any questions regarding whether or not specific circumstances involve a breach of academic integrity are advised to review the Academic Integrity Policy and procedure and/or discuss them with the professor.

Copyright: A majority of the course lectures and materials provided in class and posted in SLATE are protected by copyright. Use of these materials must comply with the Acceptable Use Policy, Use of Copyright Protected Work Policy and Student Code of Conduct. Students may use, copy and share these materials for learning and/or research purposes provided that the use complies with fair dealing or an exception in the Copyright Act. Permission from the rights holder would be necessary otherwise. Please note that it is prohibited to reproduce and/or post a work that is not your own on third-party commercial websites including but not limited to Course Hero or OneNote. It is also prohibited to reproduce and/or post a work that is not your own or your own work with the intent to assist others in cheating on third-party commercial websites including but not limited to Course Hero or OneNote.

Intellectual Property: Sheridan's Intellectual Property Policy generally applies such that students own their own work. Please be advised that students working with external research and/or industry collaborators may be asked to sign agreements that waive or modify their IP rights. Please refer to Sheridan's IP Policy and Procedure.

Respectful Behaviour: Sheridan is committed to provide a learning environment that supports academic achievement by respecting the dignity, self-esteem and fair treatment of every person engaged in the learning process. Behaviour which is inconsistent with this principle will not be tolerated. Details of Sheridan's policy on Harassment and Discrimination, Academic Integrity and other academic policies are available on the Sheridan policy website.

Accessible Learning: Accessible Learning coordinates academic accommodations for students with disabilities. For more information or to register, please see the Accessible Learning website (Statement added September 2016)

Course Outline Changes: The information contained in this Course Outline including but not limited to faculty and program information and course description is subject to change without notice. Any changes to course curriculum and/or assessment shall adhere to approved Sheridan protocol. Nothing in this Course Outline should be viewed as a representation, offer and/or warranty. Students are responsible for reading the Important Notice and Disclaimer which applies to Programs and Courses.

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