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POINT-OF-VIEW:   HOW  WE SEE OUR WORLD

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LCI at The Computer School
CS 1, 100 west 77th Street

Visual Arts Facilitator John Toth
Fall 2002

Photography: Mathew Pokoik, Lewis Hines, Edward Curtis, Lewis Tabor
Lineof Inquiry:   How do artistic choices in photography contribute to the way we see our world?
Brainstorming: POINT-OF-VIEW: HOW WE SEE OUR WORLD

CS #1   Bob FeinstienAmando Torbio, Eresha Kissoon, Jessica Shalom

Immigration
Origins of the universe: the moon, stars, constellations, Hubbell telescope
Candid Vs staged photos
Looking beneath the surface.
Framing points-of-view.

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POINT-OF-VIEW Birds-eye, worms-eye, eye-level points-of-view as a scientific frame of reference.
FRAMING How does framing create a sense of focus?
MOOD / GESTURE What is the emotional mood of the subjects in the photograph?
What is the historic mood of the world, city, neighborhood, etc.?
What acts upon life and leaves a trace of process?
How does body language communication meaning?
How does background effect mood?
TIME What was it like at the time of conception? (today?, the future?)
What was the "state" it was in when I got there?
What precedes the original state?
What occurs in one place over time?
How is time revealed though fashion?
SCALE What do "lens" reveal through micro and macro adjustments?
How does the use of scale create meaning?
CULTURE How do cultural points-of-view reveal the system of beliefs of a country / peoples?
How can we present a similar idea expressed through artists of different cultures?
CONCEPTUAL How does a hypothesis or theory affect the way an artist photographs a subject?
centered vs. off-centered; candid Vs staged;
What is behind the curtain / veil, that leads to meaning?
UNKNOWNS What are the "unknown" conditions of our study?

Questions.....
            How can we look deeper at what is before us?
            How do we explore community interaction?
            How do artists represent choices?

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Goals...... Practice method of Visual Literacy.
            Describe... “WHAT” do you see?
            Analyze... “HOW” does the artist present visual information?
            Interpret... “WHY”?... What do you think your descriptions     mean?

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MOOD / GESTURE

What is the emotional mood of the subjects in the photograph?
What is the historic mood of the world, city, neighborhood, etc.?
What acts upon life and leaves a trace of process?
How does body language communication meaning?
How does background effect mood?

artwork ......
under study

Mathew Pokoik, "New York City",
Lewis Hines, "Herald Square"
Bernice Abbott, "Herald Square, Manhattan"
. ACTIVITY ...that promotes deeper looking 
....MOOD/GESTURE     
1a.
Toth lesson
Make a drawing of 3 people's faces, showing their mood, that you saw today on your way to school.  (eyes, mouth, eye-brows).
Use one background color to reflect the historical mood ..
1b CS lesson In small groups: act out scenes from photos using gestures, body language and facial expression.  Consider photos that reflect the historic mood of the country, world, neighborhood at the time of this event.
Have the rest of the class take digital photos of these "frozen poses" or draw silhouettes of the small groups and use one background color to reflect the historical mood .

Or find photos that reflect absurd moments in history. Draw something from the photo that catches your eye. Discuss what makes this absurd.

.2 POINT-OF-VIEW

Birds-eye, worms-eye, eye-level points-of-view as a scientific frame of reference.
Framing your point of reference.

Art work ......
under study
Mathew Pokoik, "Natasha",
Bernice Abbott, "Manhattan Bridge"
Power of 10
ACTIVITY
2a

  Toth lesson 

Use small windows (a blank slide mount, or cut out frames) to make a drawing that frames a point-of view. Draw something from 3 different points-of-view.
2b

CS   lesson               

 

Take 3 different digital photos of something you are studying using 3 different points-of-view. Explore CLOSE-UP, FAR-AWAY views.

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CULTURAL POINT-OF-VIEW
How do cultural points-of-view reveal the system of beliefs of a country / peoples?
How can we present a similar idea expressed through artists of different cultures?

Art work ......
under study

Mathew Pokoik, "New York City",
Edward Curtis, "North American Indian"
Lewis Hines,
. ACTIVITY
3 a

Toth lesson

Make drawings of  cloths you see in photos suggests cultural diversity.
Or go out side and draw scenes from the neighborhood that show cultural diversity. (restaurants, churches, people, clothing)
3 b

CS lesson

Go out side and take digital photos (or take photos using our disposable cameras) of scenes from the neighborhood that show cultural diversity. (restaurants, churches, people, clothing)

Or consider how different cultures view the world scientifically.   Compare the relationship of politics and religion on scientific   points-of-view.  Make a drawing that shows these differences.

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TIME
What was it like at the time of conception? (today?, the future?)
What was the "state" it was in when I got there?
What precedes the original state?
What occurs in one place over time?
How is time revealed though fashion?
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Art work ......
under study

Eadweard Muybridge, "Locomotion Studies"
Power of 10
. ACTIVITY
4 a

Toth lesson       

 

Go out side and take digital photos (or take photos using our disposable cameras) of scenes from the neighborhood that occur over a period of time.
4 b

CS lesson                   

Go out side and take digital photos (or take photos using our disposable cameras) of elements from the sky over over a period of time. Consider the reference of buildings, signs, etc. within these photos.

Or take photos that represent details that could be from the original environment.   Where are the details that show the original state of the land, peoples, etc.?

.5 CONCEPTUAL POINT-OF-VIEW
How does a hypothesis or theory affect the way an artist photographs a subject?
centered vs. off-centered; candid Vs staged;
What is behind the curtain / veil, that leads to meaning?
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artwork ......
under study

Dorthea Lang, "Migrant Workers"
Alfred Stieglitz, " Equivalents"
. ACTIVITY
5a

Toth lesson

Take photographs that uses centering/off-centering as a device to change the character of the subject of the photo.Does being too-close or far away change the nature of the subject?
OR use "posing" as a way to change the nature of your subject
5b CS lesson  Find a photograph from a magazine or book related to immigration or science.
Dissect the photograph like a jig saw puzzle into parts.
Create categories for separating the image. (clothing , faces, buildings, etc.)  How do these categories create a story or define meaning.
.6 HOW WE SEE AND ORGANIZE OUR WORLD
. ACTIVITY

6a

Toth lesson Create a group poster / bill board with the photos, drawings and discoveries that we made during our unit of study.
6b CS lesson                    Continue refining and developing our poster / billboards.
Contextual Material
Jacob Reese, How the Other Half Lives,
Lewis Hines, Kids at Work,
Rick Burns, New York City documentary
Powers of 10
Edward Curtis, Photographer,

 

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