If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, by now you have probably seen a lot of talk about Camera Camp. I have been getting so many interested people asking questions. So, I decided I would explain what its all about!
Last Summer I decided to run my first ever Camera Camp for kids. I was inspired after watching my daughter on the beach in winter taking pictures like a true photographer trying to get the shot. I then had another teen asking me about cameras and photography. Camera Camp was born.
I created a curriculum geared toward youth students. We met each week for about 2 hours at my home office. I would start the camp day reviewing photos taken by students, then discussing new material, and viewing samples. I really urge students to share their work and learn to listen to critiques and take constructive criticism as well as positive feedback. We used Google Photo to share pictures within a private album. I think this is one of the best ways to learn.
Next, it was time to get the cameras out. We would practice what we learned that day, answer questions and problem solve. Each week we had a workshop or field time and a project for the week.
We walked to the lake to work on composition, practiced using shutter speed by photographing water balloons breaking, practiced our depth of field (nice blurry background) used an egg and antique pitcher to visualize light patterns, and went on field trips just to name a few things.
Our first trip was to the Cohanzick Zoo in Bridgeton. Students were challenged to use their new skills to capture moving subjects in varying light while creating a nice composition. We also discussed what makes a good portrait, shooting through glass and wires and respecting animals and nature while trying to get your shot.
Our last trip was to East Point Light House. The keeper was kind enough to open the house for us. Students were able to go up into the lantern room up top and even make the light turn on! She gave us some great stories and history. The light house is filled with beautiful items to photograph. We also had access to the beach, seagulls, horseshoe crabs, marsh grass, waves and lantern the light house cat.
We ended our summer camp with a scavenger hunt! I have to say this was one of my favorite parts. I was blown away by the images these kids turned in! They were using the composition rules, freezing action and getting creative. I was truly impressed and proud.
This Year, this principles and core curriculum will be the same. However, I plan to shorten the amount of "classroom" time and get the students using their cameras even more. There is no camera requirement, however students will learn about manual settings like shutter speed and aperture. I will have a camera available for students to use and try if the camera the have does not have those settings. We focus a lot on composition which is relevant for all camera types.
I am tentatively planning outings to the light house and zoo again this year. This time we may even get to meet some of the ambassador animals at the zoo! I would also like to add a bonus trip to The Palace of Depression! The admission cost is included in the student registration! This trip will be on an off camp day like Wednesday or Thursday. It is a really cool local place that has a ton of hidden items and unique structures and contraptions that I think the kids will really like. We can also discuss a trip to the Funny Farm and other nearby locations. (Transportation is not provided and will be discussed with parents/guardians)
I also want to add post processing and photo editing this year. Interest will determine how much time we spent on it.
Returning students will have the chance to build on the skills they learned last year and really work on technique. I will see where they are in the learning process and make sure to challenge those that need it! Students are also given access to all power points and class information! Let me know if you have to miss a class. I will make sure you are caught up and have all the missed work.
I am looking forward to camp this year. I hope your child can join us! It is a lot of fun, engaging, and educational. Not to mention, it get kids outside, moving around and critically thinking all while having fun. If you have any questions please contact me. There a a few spots available. Don't forget to register!
Click here to register:
Jamie A. Austin
Camp Dates: July 2nd - August 6th
Tuesdays - 10am-12pm
All camera types welcome
Ages 10-19 (Adults can register with their child for a discounted rate)