Saturday, January 24, 2009

Ramiro, 7th Grade, RYSS

This is a very interesting image because I like how it shows my feelings. I like how there's a star burst. Also, you can see that the only source of light is the sun. It shows you that it can light up almost whatever it wants. But this is a very peculiar/strange image because it shows you a black background with the rays of the sun. What I also like about this image is that there's an acute angle, and in between that angle, the sun is located. And there's a cable that seems to be in the sun.

Ramiro, 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Samantha, 8th Grade, RYSS

I like this picture because one of the wizards is sticking out his tongue, and it looks funny. The other wizard looks mad. If you look at their shadows, they look like bunnies from the side. The shadows are dark, and as they get lighter, they get blue. There are a lot of different colors ... blue, red, purple, violet, and white. When I took this picture, I felt like laughing because of the funny looking wizards.

Samantha, 8th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Lucia, 7th Grade, RYSS

When you look at this picture, you might think I was upside down when I took it. This picture has a very abstract look. For me, the shadows and shapes are very interesting. You can even see someone's shoes pointing at a different angle. This picture makes me feel like the world is moving in an upward way, which is a pretty cool thing to happen. This picture is special because you don't see this every day. When you look at this picture, it makes you think about what it is. You may ask questions.

Lucia, 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Liliana, 8th Grade, RYSS

The reason why I took this picture is because I imagined little kids fighting over the swings and remembered when I was young, I used to swing. It was like flying because it felt so good when the air hit my face. I love swinging. When there are no little kids at the swings, it's very lonely. And it’s quiet. You don’t hear anything but birds. It’s that quiet love you can feel in the shadows and the air moving the swings. I love this image. For me, it’s really exciting.

Liliana, 8th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Leimy, 8th Grade, RYSS

I really like this picture. It makes me feel like I am in a little parking lot. The shapes of the shadows are interesting because I have never seen anything like this. In the middle shadow, one side looks like a triangle, and the other side looks like a diamond. I really like the way the diamond looks. On the left side of the picture, it looks like if there is a fence in the shadow. The background of the picture makes it interesting because there is grass, and it looks beautiful. When I look at this picture, it seems mysterious because you can't really see what it is. It makes people think. The dark side of the picture looks like it is raining and a sad day, and the light side looks like it is sunny and a happy day. What I also like about this image is that there are a lot of different shapes and a lot of different ideas of what this picture could be. Another reason I took this picture is because I like shadows. Some people may think that this is a boring picture but for me, it is really exciting.

Leimy, 8th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Maribel, 8th Grade, RYSS

I took this picture of the lock because it represents something. For me, it represents that you got locked up and lost your liberty or something that you will never have again. It brings you depression because you lost something. It is kind of rusty, which means that it hasn't been opened for a long time. The impression that I have from this picture is pretty depressing and cool at the same time. The thing that's cool is that it has the word, Master at the bottom and for me, it means like some master owns it, or a master can only open it. The shapes of the lock and latch are pretty interesting.

Maribel, 8th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Jonathan P., 7th Grade, RYSS

What I think about this picture is how you can see [click on picture for larger view] some ants scattering around trying to run away from people who are trying to step on them. The shadows are nice, and the sunlight is tilted to an angle where you can see half of the ants and their living place and also half of the shadow. If you look close, you can see an ant climbing onto a leaf. I also like their surroundings and how they are running for their lives. They are frightened to death because they are about to be stepped on. I also like how the sun shines on the ants. It's amazing you can see the ants coming out of every place they can. I also like how they are gathering everything they can. I decided to take this picture because I thought it would be interesting to see ants close up and how they react when someone destroys their home. I really like the way the sun is shining on the grass.

Jonathan P., 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Jonathan B., 7th Grade, RYSS

I hope this picture is amusing for you as it is for me. I like it because of the light and the water running down the hose. Can you see the shadow on the wall of the water hose and the branches? If you look from far away, the branches look like spider legs. And I like this picture because it has a cool and weird form.

Jonathan B., 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Jazlyn, 7th Grade, RYSS

I like this picture because there are two different types of shoes, and they are styles that I like. These shoes are mine and Daniel's. One pair ... Jordans and the other pair ... Converse. The picture shows the ground and the shadows. If you look closely, there is a tiny rock in the middle. I like that both pairs of shoes are black and have bright bursting colors like red and white. There are streaks on the concrete. I think this picture came out very well.

Jazlyn, 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Ivan, 7th Grade, RYSS

I like this picture because it's very inspiring to look at the American flag this way because you look at it and think about it and you remember what it means. I like how the picture looks because the shape of the flag and the shape of the flagpole and the rope all look really cool. The flag has an oval shape, and the pole looks like it's getting wider and wider, but it looks like that because of the way I took the picture. The rope looks the way it does because that day when I took the picture, it was windy. We look at the flag in many ways and in many places, but I wondered what it would be like if I took the picture of the flag in a very different way. So that's what inspired me to take this picture.

Ivan, 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Geneva, 7th Grade, RYSS

I like this picture because of the shadows. When you look at the picture, you can see a girl (Kelly, my friend) and two shadows. One of the shadows is me and the other (left) is my teacher, Mr. Chambers. My shadow goes over Kelly. At the very corner of the picture is a group of shadows. My friend is playing with the dirt on the ground. In my shadow, you can see the way I'm holding the camera. It looks like a happy, but boring day. I say this because it is really bright and to me, brightness is supposed to be happy. And I say it is boring because Kelly is squatting on the ground playing with the dirt because she has nothing else to do.

Geneva, 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Francisco, 7th Grade, RYSS

This is very interesting to me because the sign on the yellow bar says no parking, but it looks like a car is parked there. The only reason it looks like that is because of the shadow of the car. It also looks interesting because of the shadows of two things. One of them is the shadow of the car and the other is the shadow of the blue pole. Because of the angle at which the picture was taken, it is kind of slanted. This makes it special.

Francisco, 7th Grade, Junior Academy, Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [RYSS], Houston, Texas.

Instructors and LTP


Harold Olejarz is Art and Technology teacher at Eisenhower Middle School, Wyckoff, New Jersey, U.S.A. He began his career as a sculptor and exhibited in Soho, NYC, in the early 1980s. His work evolved into Performance Art and his living sculptures installed themselves in museums and public spaces in the US and Europe from 1985 to the early 1990s. He has been exploring digital media as both an artist and an educator since 1997. “Capturing the Moving Present,” an essay by Harold Olejarz, is included in Video Art for the Classroom, a National Art Education Association publication. Olejarz has made presentations on the use of digital media at state and national educational conferences.

Tom Chambers is Technology Applications teacher at Raul Yzaguirre School For Success [Junior Academy], Houston, Texas, U.S.A. He was Visiting Lecturer in Digital/New Media Art for the Fine Arts Department at Zhaoqing University, Zhaoqing, China, 2005-2007. He was Executive Committee Member and Juror (2003 - 2005) for the International Digital Art Awards (IDAA), and was instrumental in expanding the content of the IDAA to include New Media Art, and served as on-line New Media Director (2004 - 2005). Chambers has been a documentary photographer and visual artist for over thirty years, and he is currently working with the pixel as Minimal Art (Pixelscapes) which begins to approach a true, abstract, visual language in Digital Art.

Tanya Heard is Art/Photo teacher at T. H. Rogers School, Houston, Texas.

2007 - 2008 school year participant:

Dorian Gillespie is Art teacher at Southmore Intermediate School in Pasadena Texas. Prior to coming to Southmore, he taught at Bailey Elementary. He decided to teach and mentor students in the arts in order to give them an opportunity to learn and advise them of the many career choices an artist has. Although he did not teach art at Bailey, he was able to incorporate many art lessons into the curriculum. He has taught after school art classes for the University of Houston Clear Lake as well. Rather than become a professional artist, he decided to mentor as a teacher.

This blog was a part of the FotoFest LTP process:

2007 - 2008
2008 - 2009
2009 - 2010

Literacy Through Photography (LTP), the educational component of FotoFest International (Houston, Texas), is a writing program designed to help classroom students achieve better communication skills through the use of digital or film-based photography.

FotoFest has combined with the instructors and schools to pursue a pilot program ... blog approach ... for LTP.

Students increase visual and verbal literacy while building cognitive thinking skills, self-esteem, and awareness of each other. The LTP curriculum provides students with meaningful subject matter to help them write about their own photographs, their own lives, with confidence.

This blog, founded by Harold Olejarz and Tom R. Chambers continues to be a significant tool to help students with their written expression.