O’NEALS — At a school that focuses largely on technology and media related projects, Minarets High’s Digital Photography class is one of the most popular electives on campus.
The instructor is new teacher Juan Ortiz, who has a passion for media and photography and is currently taking a course in digital photography at a local college to come up with new ideas for his students.
In earlier years, the curriculum was Photoshop-based, with students learning how to digitally manipulate images and shooting photo sets both on and off campus.
Now, Mr. Ortiz wants to explore manual mode with his students, using the numerous DSLR and point and shoot cameras that the school owns for student use.
He is starting from the ground up, covering all the basics: shutter speed, aperture, and ISO. That is what the second semester will be focused on, and Mr. Ortiz hopes to separate the two topics into two different classes next year, so that those interested in either digital manipulation or actual shooting can pursue their specific interest while receiving class credits.
The Digital Photography class collaborates with other areas around campus, and there are classes such as School Media, covering sports and school events, and Yearbook, which is primarily student run.
Photography also pairs up with the art classes every year for the Art Hop, where student artwork and photography is put on display and sold, with all the profits going to the art and media programs.
I have wanted to pursue a career in photography for a few years now, and having access to classes like this in high school is amazing.
Mr. Ortiz makes photography engaging, and even freshmen who join the class because they weren’t sure which elective to pick find themselves loving photography. Overall it is a great program.
Lluvia Moreno is a Minarets student enrolled in Digital Writing
Spiderweb photo by Allyson Walsh (Used in 2015 Art Hop)