Course Title: Before Capture: Photographic Problem Solving

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Before Capture: Photographic Problem Solving

Credit Points: 12

Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


345H Media and Communication


Sem 2 2006

Course Coordinator: Samantha Bell

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 5266

Course Coordinator

Course Coordinator Location: Building 9, level 3

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

I first degree and relevant expertise in the chosen discipline.

Course Description

This course concentrates on addressing issues around the creation of the photographic image prior to the actual capture. This very necessary protocol separates the amateur or hobbyist from the trained image-maker (aesthetic and practical due diligence). Experienced professional photographers place as much emphasis on preparation, pre-imaging and practical considerations as they do on the actual act of capture. To address these issues, this module serves to develop the skills of improvisation, adaptability and pre-visualisation by discussing and exploring multiple aspects of the photographic process and its methodologies ( a cornerstone to successful practice).

This course will teach a repertoire of aesthetic and practical skills that allows the students to successfully deal with the often unpredictable nature of professional imaging. In addition, it will address issues of cultural sensitivity, ethical and professional considerations that will help alert students to the evolutionary nature of cultural standards and ethics, pertinent to the photographic industry. Together with consideration of the underlying notions of image concept andd cultural placement, this course will prepare the student by informing their experience for later production of their photographic project.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

Upon successful completion of this course students should be able to:

Express conceptual outcomes using appropriate understandings of the nature of image creation.

Be conversant with major cultural expressions of image and text in the worlds of commerce and art.

Be aware of specific case studies of non-famous or lesser-known practitioners whose work has not always been appreciated due to its prescient nature.

Be able to mirror the corporate or professional worlds in which there is a combination  of team and solo practice.

Be able to evaluate the transitional and the fully embedded digital world of digital image creation.

Be able to negotiate the constantly changing ethical considerations of cultural practice.

Be able to confidently and effectively convey the outcomes of their work in a group situation or to an individual client in both written and oral form.

As highlighted in the section ’capability development’.

Overview of Learning Activities

Master classes will be delivered by leading practitioners and will be the primary source of course content. Essential to this will be the accompanying tutorials where students will be able to discuss issues relevant to these master classes.
Learning activities will revolve around observing and interacting with prominent industry practitioners in real work situations.

Group work will encourage students from a range of photographic backgrounds to solve problems together in teams and make contextually sensitive judgements, thus promotng collaboration and leadeship. Interaction, debate and discussions will enable each student to contribute and share his/her experiences and resources.

Overview of Learning Resources

Access to support material including on-line lecture notes, World Wide Web links to relevant resources and RMIT Library video recordings of key feature films and television programs will be provided.

A range of recommended texts and magazines will be supplied to the student.

The Library also has an extensive collection of material available for student research.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment tasks:

Written reports to be submitted concerning the content and processes within each Master class (25%)

Reflective self-evaluation of Masters project and one other project within the peer group (25%)

Formal presentation of work in progress, project material and research undertaken to this stage (50%)