Sunday, November 16, 2008

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

There is an old cliche that says, "A picture is worth a thousand words." We will be examining photojournalism from various locations around the world. is a website that draws more than a million views a month. You will be responsible for visiting this website and examining a set of pictures. After taking the time to examine the amazing photography, please select a set of pictures to study. Your pictures should have an international theme. As you browse the pictures, select one that stands out to you. For that picture, please (1) describe any features or details that stand out to you, (2) describe the events that most likely led up to the picture and what events you imagine will follow  (3) brainstorm why the photographer took this picture - what "story" he was trying to capture, (4) how does the photograph help paint a strong picture about the culture that you are examining and do you think the picture is accurate or is it an attempt to tell a false story? Once you are done, please post your response. Then, comment on two responses that have been done by your classmates.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Picasso and O'Brien

**Pablo Picasso's work, Guernica, is one of the most famous depictions of war. Your task is to:

With a partner go to google images and find a picture of Guernica. Your job is to: (A) analyze and explain at least 12 different things you see in the painting, (B) explain what you see as Picasso's message (C) discuss how the color choice helps enhance his message, (D) explain at least 5 connections you can make between this painting and O'Brien's book. I recommend you do this on a separate sheet of paper. When you are done, post your response.

**After, visit Click on the link to Picasso's page and answer the following questions on a separate sheet of paper.

1. What is the real significance of the word Guernica that people tend to forget?
2. Why was the attack "well planned" from Franco's point of view?
3. What was the reported temperature of the group the day of the massacre?
4. What is unique about this particular "war painting"?

Thursday, April 17, 2008


To the right, you should see an image of people walking in the rain. This picture is from a previous Boston Marathon. Please select a person from the photograph and write 15-20 sentences from your perspective. Make sure to use the FIVE SENSES to describe you and your surroundings. Think about the temperature outside, the water in your sneakers, and the mix of water and sweat on your clothing. You want your reader to feel like he or she is a part of the picture. Please use at least five different types of sentence constructions that we reviewed last class. Please post your response below.

Thursday, April 10, 2008


Below you will find a link that will show you pictures of Vietnam. Spend some time looking at the images, and let me know what you think!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Narrative Preparation

Select an image for the basis of your 3rd narrative of the semester. We're doing a nice job of "showing vs. telling", but we can do more. Today, we'll strip down the process and prepare for our 3rd story. This time, I am asking you to focus on a specific task: developing characterization through imagery.

1. Study the image.

2. Characterization: Create your protagonist. List several qualities of this character. What drives him or her? What fears does he or she have?

3. Write a passage which describes the physicality and psychology of your character. Reveal these qualities through detail so that the reader is left to determine them. Here's an example: avoid: "Johnny was a roofer from the midwest who worked really hard. He was sick of his job." The problem? The reader is disengaged from the get-go. Everything is revealed; there is no puzzle, question, or curiosity to compel the reader to move forward.

Try something more like this: "His fingers, seasoned by the unmistakable breath of the Dakotan winter, clutched the dusted chrome of the handle. His red '76 Chevy, tinted a faded pink by the glow of twilight, groaned and coughed to a start. He sighed and plucked a cluster of bills from his mottled dungarees and tossed them into the passenger seat among the pile- rusty tools, foam coffee cups, faded receipts. He popped the truck into drive but his boot remained heavy on the break. An orange sliver of the fading sun pulled his gaze to the top of the roof, its shingles a crisp mosaic of sparkling grey. And on this night John sat for a moment, his flesh and bone drooping slowly into the torn fabric of his seat."

4. Post your brainstorming results and a draft of your passage here.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Outside Reading

What are you reading for outside reading? What books would you recommend?

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Tasteful Waste

Visit the link below to view the artwork of American artist Chris Jordan. Feel free to leave a comment and let me know what you think of it.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Art Critique: Brett X.

Please post your critique of Brett's "Two Paths." Thank you!!

Art Critique: Mr. Kefor

Please post your critique of Mr. Kefor's "Still Life." Thank you!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Power of Critiques

After reading the critiques of Benois Madonna and Virgin of the Rocks, examine the paintings. What aspects of the paintings do the critiques help you focus on? Would you have noticed these aspects without the critique? What is the purpose of this critique? Is anything missing from the critique that you would have liked addressed? How will reading these critiques help you when it is time to write your own critiques?

Sunday, February 3, 2008


Writing and Visual Imagination students- use this post to brainstorm and/or declare your concepts. Don't forget to read the comments from last semester's students below; some of them contain valuable information and suggestions.