Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2023
Units: 4
Hours: 3 lecture, 3 laboratory per week (72 total per quarter)
Advisory: PHOT 4A or equivalent experience; this course is included in the Digital Photography family of activity courses; not open to students with credit in PHOT 65B.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: CSU/UC
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • A successful student will define digital photography terminology and identify intermediate level image editing software features and their proper use.
  • A successful student will create photo-based artwork that demonstrates proficiency in the intermediate level digital photography techniques covered in course materials.


Intermediate-level exploration with the tools for expressive communication in digital photography using Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Photoshop Lightroom. Development of skills in image capture, enhancement, printing, and web publishing, for both fine art and commercial applications.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:
A. demonstrate an in-depth ability to use electronic imaging software.
B. demonstrate an in-depth ability to use current computer hardware.
C. create complex hard copy photographic images for portfolio presentation and web appropriate images for electronic publishing.
D. discuss and describe expanding visual awareness.
E. demonstrate an in-depth awareness of basic photographic principles underlying the new technologies and the ability to apply these interdisciplinary principles in the sciences and fine arts.
F. demonstrate an understanding of ethics of the new technologies, including the principles of truthfulness in images, copyright and appropriation.
G. recognize contributors from diverse cultures and backgrounds to contemporary electronic imaging.

Course Content

A. Digital imaging hardware
1. In-depth look at input devices (scanners, digital cameras and their features)
a. Advanced features
b. New innovations
2. In-depth look at output devices (printers, film recorders and their features)
a. Advanced features
b. New innovations
B. Digital imaging software
1. Advanced workspace
a. Tool presets, panel options, the preset manager
b. Customizable keyboard shortcuts, context sensitive menus, views and screen modes
c. Automating the digital workflow (advanced features of automate menu and actions)
2. Color management overview
a. Calibration
b. Photoshop color settings
c. Printing (inkjet, chromogenic and other printing methods)
3. Advanced layers and blending
4. Advanced masking and selection (pen tool, extract)
5. Advanced color correction and tonal adjustments (levels and curves)
6. File Formats and their uses
a. RAW
b. Non-compression formats (psd, tiff, etc.)
c. Compression formats (jpg, gif, etc.)
7. Working with B&W images
a. Converting color to grayscale
b. Quadtone printing
8. Special effects and alternative imagery
9. HDR imagery
C. Organizing and archiving images
1. Rating systems and methods
2. Keywords and other metadata
3. File management
D. Using digital imagery to make artwork of meaning and intention
1. Complex and effective communication through digital imaging
2. Implications of image appropriation and copyright issues
3. Developing and presenting a body of work
a. Image creation, postproduction editing, sequencing
b. Presentation (traditional and alternative methods, PDF presentation, web photo gallery)

Lab Content

A. Assignments and exercises that practice digital imaging techniques.
B. Assignments and exercises that practice the use of digital imaging vocabulary.
C. Assignments and exercises that practice the use of printing and other output methods.
D. Preparation of professionally presented photographs using both matting framing and digital presentation techniques.
E. Visit and review photography exhibitions in museums and galleries.
F. Exercises that have students make revisions or corrections and edit their photographs.
G. Critiques and evaluation of assignments and exercises.

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

A. A lecture room equipped with color LCD overhead projector for displaying projected computer monitor displays; an instructional computer with high resolution monitor, scanner, color printer and software; lighting and wall space suitable for displaying and critiquing hard-copy output. An integrated or separate facility for student computer time.
B. When taught via Foothill Global Access: on-going access to computer with JavaScript-enabled internet browsing software, media plug-ins, and relevant computer graphics applications and email software; email address.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

A. Critiques of computer-generated images as hard copy and/or on disk.
B. Instructor's review of student's on-going work.
C. Review of student's participation in discussion and critiques, laboratory performance.
D. Written paper(s) on current issues in digital imaging.
E. Quizzes/tests.
F. Portfolio of images suitable for display.

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

A. Lectures on the techniques of digital imaging software and digital photography.
B. Discussion and electronic discussions/chat using the language of digital imaging and photographic/artistic critiques.
C. Demonstrations of digital imaging software and digital photography.
D. Field trips to visit photographic, artistic and technical locations.

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Laskevitch, Stephen. Photoshop CC and Lightroom 5: A Photographer's Handbook. Santa Barbara: Rocky Nook, 2014. Print. (This book has not been updated but remains a seminal text for instruction of this software.)
Evening, Martin. Adobe Photoshop CC for Photographers: A professional image editor's guide to the creative use of Photoshop for the Macintosh or PC. 1st ed. New York City: Focal Press, 2018. Print.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

A. Reading of textbook
B. Review of handouts and relevant reading material
C. Review of tutorial videos
D. Research and planning of individual creative projects
E. Written assignment statement
F. Written portfolio statement
G. Written critiques of student work
H. Written report of attending a photography exhibition or event