Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography

General

Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

The BFA degree builds on the core curriculum of fundamental principles by emphasizing the aesthetic and conceptual skills necessary for a professional portfolio. After completing the core curriculum, students choose to focus on commercial or editorial, fine art, or documentary courses. Upon graduation, students will be required to demonstrate an individual style and a unique approach to their chosen area of study.

Course Description

Semester 1

  • LA 108: Composition for the Artist
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • LA 147: History of Photography
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • PH 108: Photography Principles and Techniques
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 115: Visualization
    Core / 3 Units

Semester 2

  • LA 120: Art History Through the 15th Century
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • LA 121: Art History Through the 19th Century
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units / Recommended for summer
  • PH 107: Imaging Workflow & Process
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 112: Quality of Light
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 225: Photo Design and Concept
    Core / 3 Units
  • PRO 314: Social Media Content Development
    Major / 3 Units /Recommended for summer

Semester 3

  • LA 291: Designing Careers
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • PH 177: Imaging for Photographers
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 235: People Photography
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 256: Motion for Photographers
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 385: Advanced Photo Imagery
    Major / 3 Units

Semester 4

  • LA 280: Perspective Journalism
    Liberal Arts /3 Units
  • PH 197: Digital Printing
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 250: Location Lighting
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 275: Concept Project
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 300: Architectural Landscape Photography
    Major / 3 Units / Recommended for summer
  • PH 356: Motion Project
    Major / 3 Units
  • PH 493: Study Abroad Photo Intensive
    Major / 3 Units / Recommended for summer

Semester 5

  • LA 110: Writing the Short Story
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • LA 124: Physics for Artists: Light, Sound, and Motion
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • PH 260: Documentary
    Major / 3 Units
  • PH 310: Fine Art Photography
    Major / 3 Units
  • PH 365: Commercial Photography
    Major / 3 Units

Semester 6

  • FA 493: Study Abroad: Printmaking in Florence, Italy
    Elective / 3 Units / Recommended for summer
  • LA 274: Study Abroad: Art & Architecture of Renaissance Florence
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units / Recommended for summer
  • LA 315: Social Media Strategies
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • LA 462: Power of Myth and Symbol
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • PH 345: Still Life 1
    Major / 3 Units
  • PH 355: Portfolio Development 1
    Major / 3 Units
  • PH 372: Environmental Portraiture
    Major / 3 Units

Semester 7

  • LA 218: Blogging: Content Creation & Promotion
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • LA 359: Urban Sociology
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • PH 425: Advanced Digital Retouching
    Major / 3 Units
  • PH 475: The Business of Photography
    Major / 3 Units

Semester 8

  • LA 316: Social Media Data Analytics
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units
  • LA 317: Social Media Management
    Liberal Arts / 3 Units / Recommended for summer
  • PH 338: Fine Art Portraiture
    Elective / 3 Units
  • PH 464: Self-Promotion & Marketing
    Major / 3 Units
  • PH 495: Senior Portfolio
    Core / 3 Units
  • PH 500: Internship in Photography
    Elective / 3 Units / Recommended for summer

Unit Requirements

Degree Requirements

BFA Photography Degree Requirements:

  • Minimum grade of C- in all core courses, major courses, and LA 107 Writing for the Multilingual Artist or 108 Composition for the Artist
  • Minimum 2.0 GPA and the following general education requirements:
  • 1 Written Communication: Composition
  • 1 Written Communication: Critical Thinking
  • 1 Written Communication: Context & Style
  • 2 Art Historical Awareness: Western Art
  • 2 Art Historical Awareness: Surveys
  • 1 Historical Awareness
  • 1 Quantitative Literacy
  • 1 Cultural Ideas & Influences
  • 1 Employment Communications & Practices

After the above general education requirements are met, take Liberal Arts electives as needed to fulfill the Liberal Arts unit requirement.

Academy of Art University / Academy of Art University

Program Learning Outcomes

Undergraduate students will meet the following student performance criteria:

Conceptual and Problem-Solving Skills

  • Make creative decisions that optimize conceptual impact, cohesiveness, and memorability of created images
  • Integrate key conceptual elements (such as mood, narrative, introducing the unexpected) with technical elements (such as composition, lighting, point of view) to suggest a story or elicit an emotional response from the viewer
  • Solve creative and technical problems that include project parameters and modeled client expectations

Lighting Skills

  • Master indoor and outdoor lighting, studio lighting techniques, lighting with constant light sources, and mixed lighting situations
  • Work effectively with natural light and demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between time of day and variations related to the quality of light
  • Work effectively with a point source, flood, spot, diffused and reflected light

Camera Capture Skills

  • Demonstrate full knowledge of digital SLR components
  • Demonstrate a complete understanding of exposure controls
  • Effectively use a light meter for multiple lighting situations

Digital Imaging

  • Apply advanced Photoshop techniques using various tools, layers, curves and selections with digital images
  • Apply retouching skills and color correction knowledge consistent with industry standards

Digital Printing

  • Produce professional-quality prints
  • Create a high-quality print portfolio demonstrating printing skill and overall quality of images required for the petition to graduate
  • Demonstrate an understanding of archival qualities, including ink and paper stability

Professional Readiness

  • Produce and present a professional portfolio that meets department expectations and industry standards
  • Create promotional materials to support print portfolio and website
  • Demonstrate knowledge of industry trends and professional practices related to professional photography

Academy of Art University Learning Outcomes

Graduates of the Academy of Art University will demonstrate the ability to:

  1. Produce a body of work suitable for seeking professional opportunities in their chosen field of art and design.
  2. Solve creative problems within their field of art and design, including research and synthesis of technical, aesthetic, and conceptual knowledge.
  3. Communicate their ideas professionally and connect with their intended audience using visual, oral, and written presentation skills relevant to their field.
  4. Execute technical, aesthetic, and conceptual decisions based on an understanding of art and design principles.
  5. Evaluate work in their field, including their own work, using professional terminology.
  6. Recognize the influence of major cultural and aesthetic trends, both historical and contemporary, on art and design products.
  7. Learn the professional skills and behaviors necessary to compete in the global marketplace for art and design.
Last updated Mar 2020

About the School

For nearly 90 years, artists and designers have called Academy of Art University their home. Founded in San Francisco and family owned since 1929, it is the largest private art and design university i ... Read More

For nearly 90 years, artists and designers have called Academy of Art University their home. Founded in San Francisco and family owned since 1929, it is the largest private art and design university in the nation. Read less
San Francisco