Boost Your Photography Skills with Our New Classes!

The art world can be intimidating. For the first two years of high school, I refused to pick up a camera because I didn’t know any technical terms or own professional equipment (and I was convinced that I would drop any camera I came into contact with).

Finally, with the quote “Don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game” from Hillary Duff’s Cinderella Story ringing in my ears, I ignored my fear and enrolled in photography class. Man! am I glad I did that.

If you are looking for a way to branch out of your typical routine and gain some knowledge about photography, I highly suggest one of these four classes!

Meet the Flower City Arts Center
Thursday Sept. 19 & Monday Oct. 28, 4-5pm

If you have never taken a class at Flower City, this is the perfect place to start! This free tour will give you an insight into the facilities and history of Flower City Arts Center. Chat with our staff and find the right class for you!

Click here to learn more or register!

Flirting with Photography
Wednesdays 6:30-8:30pm, Sept. 18-Nov. 6

Get a taste of all things photography in this eight day class! Students will have projects in the Community Darkroom, Silver Den, Lighting Studio, and Digital Art Studio. The best part? No prior experience necessary! This is an ideal class for those looking to “get their feet wet” in the world of photography.

Click here to learn more or register!

Looking at Photographs
Thursdays 6:30-8:30pm, Sept. 19-Sept. 28 & one Saturday field-trip to the George Eastman Museum 

Want to know what makes a photo great? This class will cover both journalistic and art photos from daguerreotype to digital. You will learn to understand what elements make a photo work and how to apply that to your own photography. Students will share photographs they love and give and get feedback in a final peer-review session. This is a great class for collectors, photographers or those hoping to gain a better understanding of the thought that goes into photography.

Click here to learn more or to register!

Basic Studio Lighting
Mondays 6:30-8:30pm, Sept. 3-Oct. 28


If you are looking to improve your lighting skills this is the class for you! Instruction will include various techniques in the use of the studio’s White Lightning strobes in multiple lighting configurations, as well as other equipment such as an incident/flash meter, softboxes, umbrellas, and various other attachment and light modifiers.

Click here to learn more or to register!


I hope you found this post helpful in finding some new classes to experiment with! If these don’t strike your fancy, I encourage you to check our our full fall class list.

Kallitype Trial and Error

Greetings and Happy Monday to everyone!

I have been managing to get into the Darkroom to work on my kallitypes about once a week (I work a full time job out in Victor and am away on weekends a lot sailing during the summer months), and slowly I am troubleshooting my errors and building up my skills. For this post, I thought I would share a glimpse behind-the-scenes into my efforts and progress.

Over the past few Tuesday nights I have made a total of 18 prints; most of them are new images, though one or two are images I have printed before but am now printing with new negatives, thanks to the help of Jon Merritt.

One of the things this process requires, if you intend to  use digital images to make large plastic negatives for printing (which I am), is skill with Photoshop so you can create enough contrast and tonal range to make an interesting image with the kallitype process. I would say I am between a beginner and an intermediate Photoshop user, so I have been consulting with Jon, who teaches the Kallitype class at the Photo Dept, for assistance with some of my trickier images.

Here is an example of an image I printed earlier this year:

Kallitype where snow detail is good but bark and debris detail are too dark

In order to get the snow-drift detail, I had to make a longer exposure, but that resulted in the details of the bark and debris becoming too dark. So, we had to isolate areas of the image and adjust the curves for each separately. The new negative results in a better, more balanced image:

Kallitype of the same image after more editing in Photoshop to produce a better negative

Another challenge I am having is that the humidity in the room and the paper I am using are resulting in lots of streaky-ness in my prints. I am using watercolor paper I have used before with a beautiful result, and ‘think’ my coating technique is the same as before….but obviously there is some room for improvement here! Here are a couple prints that really show the challenges I am having with coating smoothly:

This one shows areas where I completely missed coating

And another:

And this one shows more brush strokes / streaks

I am looking forward to getting back in the Darkroom again soon and to hopefully resolving some of my issues, and I will share more of my progress as I go!

I have also set up a new instagram account for my residency. Check it out: kallitypegirl

It is called the American Flag

My work has focused to explore the different ideas about identity, what defines it… and how it is molded. These questions came back to my mind when I started to live in the US.  How people identify themselves as “Americans”. I’ve found it surprising how many people feel like they are from everywhere in the globe, less from the USA, but that doesn’t stop them from feeling less patriotic…

The project “It is called the American Flag” was arising to reflect about this idea of “be american”, to show the relevance of a symbol in our everyday environment and maybe with images show different ideas around them. I need to say, to me it is impressive how many flags are outside homes or public spaces, and I’m pretty sure I’m not the first foreign person who has noticed. When I asked about it, the first answer from my friends was something like it is common to see them outside conservative houses, but that doesn’t apply for everyone.

Definitely the creative process of each artist is different between them. To me working and continuing to post about an ongoing project is difficult because it is not complete. I need to organize my thoughts and clarify my ideas, about what I’m trying to communicate, to express… to show. Also how I want to do it, which are the best media, which are the best ways to work on it. In short I need to create a visual and mental map.

At the end I decided the best way to approach this subject would be through instant photos because they represent to me a unique piece of visual culture, but the snapshot themselves could be seen as common and valueless. I started by taking instant photos of every flag around me, starting with the ones around the places where I had been living since I arrived in Rochester, creating a set of maps…  To me these maps represents the nets that I’ve been creating around, showing them as a net that connects different areas and different periods of my life here.