During the photography course the young artists study Photographers such as Robert Capa while also studying the terminology, taking their own photos, and even building a life size camera! Check out four of the many projects from the Summer Institute!

Camera Obscura

The Camera Obscura is a basic mechanism for most cameras used today. Like a camera, a dark box, which in this case is a classroom, like the images presented, is light sealed. One small hole is made at one windows to allow the outside scene to project on the walls of the classroom. The simple optics of the camera obscura hopes to bring new light for the teens in photography.

The students also explored metaphors such as, “We are the light trapped inside the box” as a collective quote. This statement has become one of the guiding mottos for creating powerful and meaningful art over the course of Both Hands. In this image, the students pose in the camera obscura illuminating that they are the light trapped inside the box of Trenton Central High School’s classroom and the overall city. The metaphor suggests the student’s potential to do great things, as they will be the guiding light for the future generation of America.

Dismantling Stereotypes

The students hope to dismantle stereotypes by exaggerating a certain character to the point of foolishness. Tyler “Oakley” for example excessively wore an outfit and body piercings that suggest a stereotypical and outrageous looking hipster. The stereotype looses its rhetoric due to the amplified disposition of the character. A simple clean image of Tyler on a white background is presented next to the stereotype as a way to focus on the individual. The True self, unmasked by clothing, background, and other signifiers of a stereotype, becomes the most valuable and powerful part of the project.

Sense of Place: Trenton Central High School

Trenton Central High School was the muse for the sense of place as part of the Landscape photography lesson. The students were divided in two groups to document the space of the school. Group one focused on the indoors while group two photographed the outdoors. The students collectively captured the deteriorating nature of the institution.

Young Artist of Both Hands

The Initial plan was to photograph a group of young individuals in their specialized artistic talent. A fashion designer, a photographer, a dancer, and many others strike their pose to highlight their artistic talent of choice. However, the plan changed to document reenactments of the mundane of the youth in the program. The project celebrated the Young Artist of Both Hands.