Digital Photography 2 - VLACS
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Estimated Completion Time

1 segment/ 18 weeks


In today’s world, photographs are all around us, including in advertisements, on websites, and hung on our walls as art. Many of the images that we see have been created by professional photographers. In this course, we will examine various aspects of professional photography, including the ethics of the profession, and examine some of the areas that professional photographers may choose to specialize in, such as wedding photography and product photography. We will also learn more about some of the most respected professional photographers in history and we will learn how to critique photographs in order to better understand what creates an eye catching photograph.

The course material may be completed with a point-and-shoot camera or a camera on a cell phone. A point-and-shoot camera is preferable, as some techniques discussed utilize features that require an additional app on the cell phone. Instructors will work with students to help find the appropriate app for the camera phone or modify the assignment as needed.

This course is one of our Career Exploration offerings.

Major Topics and Concepts

Unit 1: Photography as a Career

  • Discuss professional photography and what this career is like
  • Discuss the different types of professional photography
  • Examine some of the steps to becoming a professional photographer
  • Investigate the job outlook for professional photographers
  • Understand what professional photographers do as part of their jobs

Unit 2: Legal and Ethical Concerns

  • Discuss the rights that photographers have to take photographs, including how this is impacted by the First Amendment in the United States
  • Understand copyright and how it can affect professional photographers
  • Examine the differences between personal, editorial, and commercial uses of a photograph
  • Discuss several different types of photograph licenses for commercial use
  • Understand model releases and why they are used

Unit 3: Photographers and Critiques

  • Talk about some of the most well-known professional photographers
  • Discuss the influence of these photographers on the practice and field of photography
  • Discuss how to critique photographs
  • Realize the benefits of photograph critiques
  • Understand why photography critiques are subjective in nature

Unit 4: Photography Software

  • Discuss some of the common photo imaging software choices available today
  • Understand the basic guidelines for using photo imaging software
  • Talk about some of the advantages and disadvantages to using photography software
  • Discuss the common features and tools in image editing software
  • Show an understanding of the modern digital darkroom.

Unit 5: The Darkroom

  • Discuss the use of darkrooms and their advantages for photographers
  • Talk about the history of film and film development
  • Describe how film is developed into negatives
  • Understand how a negative is used to create an image print
  • Discuss darkroom safety and potential risks

Unit 6: Art, Product and Stock Photography

  • Discuss fine art photography and its connections to both fine art and other types of photography
  • Describe some of the techniques used to present and display photographs
  • Discuss the area of product photography
  • Understand more about the area of stock photography and microstock photography
  • Discuss the tips and techniques for stock and microstock photography.

Unit 7: Photojournalism

  • Describe photojournalism and how it relates to journalism
  • Discuss why individuals become photojournalists
  • Describe the common types of photographic shots that photojournalists use
  • Understand how to catch the perfect candid shot of news stories
  • Discuss the responsibilities of photojournalists.

Unit 8: Wedding Photography

  • Discuss the business aspect of wedding photography
  • Describe what it takes to be a good wedding photographer
  • Understand the two types of wedding photography
  • Talk about some of the actions needed to prepare to photograph a wedding
  • Discuss some aspects of photographing the wedding and reception



The Experiences Pathway allows students to demonstrate mastery of competencies and earn credit through experiences, such as internships, travel, service learning, entrepreneurship, or independent study. Students may elect to meet all competencies in a particular competency group (i.e., English 1 or Economics) or they can master  competencies in multiple discipline areas. Once a student enrolls, a VLACS instructor will work with the student to refine the Experience, identify the competencies that will be met, and determine products that will demonstrate mastery of each competency.

In Experiences students will:

  1. Use google drive.
  2. Meet weekly or every two weeks with their instructor.
  3. Secure an outside expert.
  4. Plan the experience prior to completing it. (Credit is not awarded for experiences completed prior to enrollment and completion of the planning process.)

Here is how to enroll in an Experience.

  1. Identify the course(s) that matches most closely with your Experience.
  2. Click “Enroll Now” from or from our learning catalog.
  3. From the enrollment page, navigate to the course that matches your Experience.
  4. Select all competencies that you hope to meet through your Experience. Do not worry if you are unsure of the exact competencies, they can be adjusted.
  5. Select the Experience bubble.
  6. If there are additional competencies from other discipline areas you hope to meet, enroll in these in the same manner.
  7. Your parent/guardian will receive an email asking for approval of your enrollment. This must be completed before we can assign you an instructor.
  8. You will receive a welcome email from your instructor within five days, given that space is available.

Independent Study

By signing up for an independent study, you will be able to direct your own learning, identifying what you want to learn and how you will demonstrate that you mastered your learning objectives.


Internships allow you to gain professional experience, make connections, and become familiar with a career, while working on site with mentors and professionals in a career of your interest.


While travel can be a great experience for learning life lessons, it is also an excellent way to acquire the knowledge and skills that allow you to demonstrate mastery in a variety of competencies.  The world is a classroom and travel experiences will connect your real world experiences to the learning that you seek.

Service Learning

In Service Learning, you collaborate with members of your community to address issues to improve your community. You will connect your service with discipline specific content so that learning can takes place through problem solving and collaboration.


Starting your own business is a great way to learn. This type of experience allows you to engage in an entrepreneurial experience and receive credit for competencies you master through this experience.

Credits .5

Competency Group Overview

Meets art or ICT graduation requirement


  • Art, Product and Stock Photography
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of art, product, and stock photography by analyzing the characteristics and critiquing images from various fields of photography.
  • Digital Photography Careers
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of careers that utilize digital photography by comparing and contrasting a variety of specialty photography careers.
  • Legal and Ethical Issues
    Students will develop and demonstrate an understanding of legal and ethical issues regarding the production and distribution of digital photography for public consumption by researching, creating and using materials that address legal and/or ethical issues related to photography.
  • Photography Tools and Techniques
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of a variety of technology tools and darkroom techniques by evaluating such tools for applications related to different types of photography.


Access to a camera is required. A point and shoot camera is preferred, but a camera phone is allowed. Digital Photo 1 recommended but not required

Attend an open house

We offer regular online open house webinars where VLACS staff members provide parents and students with an overview of our programs and answer questions about online learning.