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Thread: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

  1. #21

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by contaxable View Post
    tell principal dont be so stingy lah.

    want to use free photographers for events, dun want to assign teacher for cca, and expect newbies to capture shots with existing gears.

    for flash lights, easy to justify. During group shots, you need to set up a rig and blast off 3 flash lights at a goal. so you need tripod, umbrellas, radio remotes, etc etc.
    Haha they probably see it as 'service to the school'. Hmm, for group shots, that one maybe have to practice more first. And need external flash.
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  2. #22
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    I admire you bringing this out to discuss. I was in touch with some students from Jurong Junior College. Their Student leader, Felix, was like you but he took every thing one step further. They had a website that compiled information. They had discussion groups.

    Perhaps you need to gather more size because with that, you can obtain more votes from the principal.

    Anyway gd work so far. Dont worry about making leadership or other mistakes cause it makes you even better.
    Don't brag about your accomplishments; Show us your future works.

  3. #23
    Senior Member sinned79's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    interests is very important... and i know some students is just joining for the sake of a simple easy way to get cca points.

  4. #24
    Senior Member +evenstar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by Repty View Post
    Hi all! Would like some suggestions on how to improve my cca
    Hmm. Okay, photography in my school is considered under infocomm.

    Summary of my cca:
    Most people see my cca as a slacky cca.
    When i first joined the cca in sec one, everyone was using auto mode -.-
    During sec two, had a senior who self taught so began learning about shutter speed, aperture, iso etc.
    Now i'm sec three (as the head of my cca not because im pro but because there's so many slackers and im the 'best' choice) and have taught the juniors about manual mode etc.
    Things like rule of the thirds and white balance etc have been gone through.
    We have not won any competitions (beginning to join some this year).
    Finally got a cca tshirt (i believe this is the first time in school that my cca has a tshirt).
    Also, our notice board has been collecting dust and i am planning to design it.
    Our school has (We are Nikon users) one D50, two D60s and two 55-200mm lens.
    No tripods/external flash.
    Neither do we have any instructors to teach us about the dslr.

    I am just wondering if anyone has been in this kind of situation and has any good ideas on how to improve my cca.
    How i got into photography was due to me choosing photography as my cca and my senior teaching me in sec two. That was when i bought myself a Nikon D60 with the 18-55mm lens which i have been using till date.
    This would be my final year in the cca as i am taking O levels next year and have to step down.
    However, before i step down, i wish to do as much as i can for my cca.
    Like, i don't want my cca to go back down to the standards of using auto.

    One of the lab techs who work in my school has been trying to promote my cca by talking to the principal about it (The principal used the photos we shot during school events for a project).
    We have also been trying to take part in more competitions (hoping to win) to show the school that we are not slacking during cca time.
    Recently, have been letting the juniors play around with light painting and planning to let them try things like panning etc.

    Any suggestions at all are welcome. Thanks in advance all
    hmm is your school's photography club a standalone CCA or a part of the infocomm CCA?

    from personal experience, if it's a part of another CCA, very likely it's just because the main CCA wants help for taking photographs for their own uses (websites/blogs/etc). if it's a standalone CCA, there'll be higher chance to instil the passion for photography in the students as the focus of the club is different.
    eat. drink. shoot

  5. #25
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Learn from Saint Andrew's Sec (my previous sch).

    Started with 3 main members who own their own cameras without sharable lenses. 1 Nikon 1 sony 1 pentax. They were in sec2. Now they're in sec4 with 20+ members, another 5 or so bought their own cameras, school bought 2 x 30D, another 400D, kit normal / zoom lenses, flashes, 1 macro lens. This isn't counting the 3 other passionate freelancers with their own Canon gear like 450D and 50D.

    How did they do it?

    Challenges by the school to excel in competitions. Fun school events that are worth shooting. New gear. Good teacher who was a professional before taking up teaching Math.

    That's how.
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

  6. #26

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by JacePhoto View Post
    I admire you bringing this out to discuss. I was in touch with some students from Jurong Junior College. Their Student leader, Felix, was like you but he took every thing one step further. They had a website that compiled information. They had discussion groups.

    Perhaps you need to gather more size because with that, you can obtain more votes from the principal.

    Anyway gd work so far. Dont worry about making leadership or other mistakes cause it makes you even better.
    I had asked around about having a website, but the members seem to be those who do not use the computer often. I'll ask around again at the next meeting, see if we can keep a website running. Thanks for the advice

    Quote Originally Posted by sinned79 View Post
    interests is very important... and i know some students is just joining for the sake of a simple easy way to get cca points.
    Yeah.... If i count those slackers in, i think my cca got over thiry or fourty people liao.

    Quote Originally Posted by +evenstar View Post
    hmm is your school's photography club a standalone CCA or a part of the infocomm CCA?

    from personal experience, if it's a part of another CCA, very likely it's just because the main CCA wants help for taking photographs for their own uses (websites/blogs/etc). if it's a standalone CCA, there'll be higher chance to instil the passion for photography in the students as the focus of the club is different.
    It's part of infocomm. We have thought of trying to come out as a cca for photography only, but i doubt it will really happen until we are 'good enough' for the school.

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Learn from Saint Andrew's Sec (my previous sch).

    Started with 3 main members who own their own cameras without sharable lenses. 1 Nikon 1 sony 1 pentax. They were in sec2. Now they're in sec4 with 20+ members, another 5 or so bought their own cameras, school bought 2 x 30D, another 400D, kit normal / zoom lenses, flashes, 1 macro lens. This isn't counting the 3 other passionate freelancers with their own Canon gear like 450D and 50D.

    How did they do it?

    Challenges by the school to excel in competitions. Fun school events that are worth shooting. New gear. Good teacher who was a professional before taking up teaching Math.

    That's how.
    Thanks I will keep in mind that others have succeeded before. How many years did you guys take to bring up the cca?
    Inline Culture (:

  7. #27
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by Repty View Post
    Thanks I will keep in mind that others have succeeded before. How many years did you guys take to bring up the cca?
    Start of 2008 they were still bad. Super super bad. The teacher took over, and when I graduated that year, it was a little better. So really, it only took a year to improve standards a little. And another six months above that to get more people to buy dslrs on their own.

    EDIT: Other than a little advice while I was shooting with them as a freelancer, I played no significant part in bringing up their standards. Perhaps ppl were comparing freelancers with members, but I highly doubt so. It was completely self driven by the members and teacher. No outside mentor or whatever.
    Last edited by Headshotzx; 16th August 2009 at 11:03 PM.
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

  8. #28

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    I've dealt with various CCAs. What I noticed is a few issues in creating a good photography club in a secondary school.

    1. Hierachy & Members

    For example, juniors don't get to use the D-SLR until the seniors leave etc. All the important events are covered by seniors. Juniors get fed-up and leave the CCA.

    My solution of this is to reduce the number of members in the club. 30-40 is ridiculous. Most students will just end up playing card games/slack-off/pontang since there is nothing to do.

    Maybe you can discuss with your teacher to dispatch slackers to other groups, sabotage their performance, and pray for more funds. I know thats evil.

    2. Money.

    School refuses to provide enough funds or has placed funds to larger or more important CCAs.

    For Hai Sing Catholic, the military band would already have absorbed most of the funds. 1 trumpet can buy you 2 50Ds. (Thats why I encourage schools to invest on chinese orchestra, choir & basketball. You pay minimum cost for equipment and instructors/conductors.)

    Photography is arguably gear dependant. Assume you have 10 members. You will need...

    5 D-SLRs.
    5 standard Lens. (Tamron 17-50 f2.8 is the preferred choice. But since it's a 3rd party, the school may not consider it.)
    3 flashes.
    2 decent telephoto zooms (80-200/70-200 of most brands are very affordable).

    Assume this sums up to $12k. Laughable that I can only buy 2.5 tubas or hire a conductor/instructor for maybe 30-40 sessions.

    3. Lack of Instruction/Self-Motivation.

    This is a vicious cycle. No proper photography education -> lousy shots from students -> school not impressed -> lack of funds -> unable to hire trainer.
    In this case, students have no choice to rely on themselves. I have work part-time as a school robotics trainer and chinese orchestra tutor, I actually find no reason why certain CCAs like robotics need a trainer. In our days, i learnt all we know by self-discovery. Unless students in recent years have become more dependant on spoon-feeding.

    For a school, investing in photography does not increase the school's fame. Thats why most schools rather pump money into performing arts CCAs, sports or robotics...
    Last edited by surrephoto; 16th August 2009 at 11:39 PM.

  9. #29
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by surrephoto View Post
    I've dealt with various CCAs. What I noticed is a few issues in creating a good photography club in a secondary school.
    for your reply
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

  10. #30
    Member Cartman2000's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Lol, talking about AHS when you referred to choir and basketball? The privileges that the choir ensemble receive are quite ridiculous, and I heard that the basketball team have priority when using the newly-built stadium.

    Concert band... not really anymore

  11. #31

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    Start of 2008 they were still bad. Super super bad. The teacher took over, and when I graduated that year, it was a little better. So really, it only took a year to improve standards a little. And another six months above that to get more people to buy dslrs on their own.

    EDIT: Other than a little advice while I was shooting with them as a freelancer, I played no significant part in bringing up their standards. Perhaps ppl were comparing freelancers with members, but I highly doubt so. It was completely self driven by the members and teacher. No outside mentor or whatever.
    Hmm, i guess this shows how the members are improve themselves. I know it may sound like im asking for all the answershere but I've been trying to teach the juniors all that i know, but i realised that that is not enough to improve the cca and im kinda stuck, not knowing what to do for the next session, but not wanting to waste everyone's time. Thanks everyone so far for all the comments

    Quote Originally Posted by surrephoto View Post
    I've dealt with various CCAs. What I noticed is a few issues in creating a good photography club in a secondary school.

    1. Hierachy & Members

    For example, juniors don't get to use the D-SLR until the seniors leave etc. All the important events are covered by seniors. Juniors get fed-up and leave the CCA.

    My solution of this is to reduce the number of members in the club. 30-40 is ridiculous. Most students will just end up playing card games/slack-off/pontang since there is nothing to do.

    Maybe you can discuss with your teacher to dispatch slackers to other groups, sabotage their performance, and pray for more funds. I know thats evil.
    Hmm yeah. Right now i would say we have nine proper interested members (but we keep getting more and more slackers from other ccas. Like people from UG quit already, duno what cca to join, get thrown in infocomm and then photography)

    Quote Originally Posted by surrephoto View Post
    2. Money.

    School refuses to provide enough funds or has placed funds to larger or more important CCAs.

    For Hai Sing Catholic, the military band would already have absorbed most of the funds. 1 trumpet can buy you 2 50Ds. (Thats why I encourage schools to invest on chinese orchestra, choir & basketball. You pay minimum cost for equipment and instructors/conductors.)

    Photography is arguably gear dependant. Assume you have 10 members. You will need...

    5 D-SLRs.
    5 standard Lens. (Tamron 17-50 f2.8 is the preferred choice. But since it's a 3rd party, the school may not consider it.)
    3 flashes.
    2 decent telephoto zooms (80-200/70-200 of most brands are very affordable).

    Assume this sums up to $12k. Laughable that I can only buy 2.5 tubas or hire a conductor/instructor for maybe 30-40 sessions.
    Thanks for summing what we need up. Will try talking to teacher in charge about the equipment on tuesday.

    Quote Originally Posted by surrephoto View Post
    3. Lack of Instruction/Self-Motivation.

    This is a vicious cycle. No proper photography education -> lousy shots from students -> school not impressed -> lack of funds -> unable to hire trainer.
    In this case, students have no choice to rely on themselves. I have work part-time as a school robotics trainer and chinese orchestra tutor, I actually find no reason why certain CCAs like robotics need a trainer. In our days, i learnt all we know by self-discovery. Unless students in recent years have become more dependant on spoon-feeding.

    For a school, investing in photography does not increase the school's fame. Thats why most schools rather pump money into performing arts CCAs, sports or robotics...
    Argh yeah, that's the vicious cycle i've realised. Currently trying to break out of that cycle.

    Quote Originally Posted by houyin View Post
    post deleted
    talking about shooting, if say i manage to convince the school to hire trainers, what kind of trainers? Like what should we be trained on to be able to perform better (break out of the vicious cycle mentioned above).
    Also, have been trying to find those free workshops (some of the juniors are cash tight) to go.


    Once again, a big THANK YOU to all suggestions given
    I will be going to talk to the teacher in charge on tuesday (cca day) and will discuss with all the members of the cca too.
    Go photography!
    Last edited by ortega; 17th August 2009 at 01:12 AM.
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  12. #32
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by Repty View Post
    Hmm, i guess this shows how the members are improve themselves. I know it may sound like im asking for all the answershere but I've been trying to teach the juniors all that i know, but i realised that that is not enough to improve the cca and im kinda stuck, not knowing what to do for the next session, but not wanting to waste everyone's time. Thanks everyone so far for all the comments
    Have you tried showing them photos you think are really good? Like, browse flickr explore and ask the interested members for their opinions on some photos and stuff. or browse Joe McNally's and other ppl's websites.
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

  13. #33

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Try organising activities that will break the sterotype of students thinking that photog is for slackers/boring/nothing to do/rich people. For example, you can teach the members in your cca on how to make a simple pinhole camera with only a matchbox http://www.matchboxpinhole.com/ and perhaps organise a simple workshop for the rest of the student population. Or if you have the budget, try out underwater photography (pns with casing) where you can rope in the help of various scuba-diving clubs or nature conservation organisations to give an introduction or even joining them for their activites. I know it's not easy cose I had experience with starting up new ccas before. You need to have a clear idea of your objectives for your cca, get contacts and go from there. Having a supportive teacher-in-charge helps too. Good luck!

  14. #34
    Senior Member zac08's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Go back to film...

    make the students practise on the concepts of visualising the picture, and getting the end result from it. Each one shoots one roll and see what they have gotten out of it in the end. Just need to develope and scan the roll, then you can edit, view and compile the pics on digital format.

    But before all these, they have to understand better on the technical points, etc.
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  15. #35
    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    you don't need a dslr to learn photography or take good pictures
    work with what you have, file p&s also can

    org outings and shoot good pictures
    inspire the members by visiting web sites and discuss composition and techniques
    produce the good images
    and show the school just what you can do...

  16. #36
    Moderator ortega's Avatar
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    the key word is passion

    once you have the passion, nothing is impossible

  17. #37

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Quote Originally Posted by zingnaphone View Post
    Try organising activities that will break the sterotype of students thinking that photog is for slackers/boring/nothing to do/rich people. For example, you can teach the members in your cca on how to make a simple pinhole camera with only a matchbox http://www.matchboxpinhole.com/ and perhaps organise a simple workshop for the rest of the student population. Or if you have the budget, try out underwater photography (pns with casing) where you can rope in the help of various scuba-diving clubs or nature conservation organisations to give an introduction or even joining them for their activites. I know it's not easy cose I had experience with starting up new ccas before. You need to have a clear idea of your objectives for your cca, get contacts and go from there. Having a supportive teacher-in-charge helps too. Good luck!
    Quote Originally Posted by zac08 View Post
    Go back to film...

    make the students practise on the concepts of visualising the picture, and getting the end result from it. Each one shoots one roll and see what they have gotten out of it in the end. Just need to develope and scan the roll, then you can edit, view and compile the pics on digital format.

    But before all these, they have to understand better on the technical points, etc.
    I would agree with all of you if only today's student had a good attitude and would start from scratch.

    We must also rmb if such activities do not benefit the school, the school will not support. The best way to impress the school is by using good equipment to produce good shots during events. I stand to be corrected.

  18. #38

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    My own advice - don't depend on the schools or teachers

    go out shoot on your own, if it's an idiot proof cam. Keep shooting, the more you shoot
    the better you will understand and develop the eye for photography. Don't be limited
    by your sch's lack of equipment or lack of enthus from friends or teachers.

    Go look at exhibitions, go library flip through copies of photography magazines. Go
    browse at bookshops. Go out and take photos alone, less herd mentality. Go do/shoot
    different genre, events, weddings, still life, reportage...everything. Learn on your own
    and you will thank yourself for the determination.

    It's easy to buy a cam, not easy to be a good photographer with a heart.


    Quote Originally Posted by surrephoto View Post
    We must also rmb if such activities do not benefit the school, the school will not support.
    this i super agree.. not many sch leaders understand what it takes or needs for photography to succeed in their school.
    Some feel buying some low level grade equipment is enough to produce award winning photographers at sch level.
    Most see it as extra manpower to help provide free photography for sch events. Very disappointing mentality.
    Last edited by sbs99; 17th August 2009 at 11:34 AM.
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  19. #39

    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    how to improve?

    spread the passion, instead of just sitting around settling for what is routine, what is normal.

    if you have the passion, it will rub onto others as well. you don't need to achieve big things, like invite steve mccurry to give talks to your school.. every small thing even counts.

  20. #40
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    Default Re: Suggestions on how to improve photography cca

    Hehe, that's probably because they subscribe to the camp that goes with the "Its the man, not the cam" kind of philosophy :P

    Quote Originally Posted by sbs99 View Post
    this i super agree.. not many sch leaders understand what it takes or needs for photography to succeed in their school.
    Some feel buying some low level grade equipment is enough to produce award winning photographers at sch level.
    Most see it as extra manpower to help provide free photography for sch events. Very disappointing mentality.

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