Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2021
Units: 4
Hours: 3 lecture, 3 laboratory per week (72 total per quarter)
Advisory: PHOT 4A, 5, or equivalent experience; this course is included in the Photography-Professional Practices family of activity courses.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: CSU
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • A successful student will construct a book illustrating facility in integrating word processing, graphics and photography.
  • A successful student will demonstrate ability to use electronic imaging software and hardware to create a publication.


Exploration of the book for the display and sharing of photographic imagery, including the history of the photographic book and its uses in fine art, commercial and documentary photography. Use of appropriate technology for creation of photographic books, including digital image editing, color correction, graphic design and typography. Investigation of sequencing and presentation of photographs in book format for communication.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:
A. Demonstrate understanding of the history and traditions of reproducing images for the printed page.
B. Create books utilizing digital image editing and graphic design programs, as well as web-based services.
C. Assess sequences of own photographs and fellow students' photographs for clear communication and visual and conceptual flow.
C. Analyze the contributions of people of diverse cultures and backgrounds to the photographic book.
D. Design and create books that demonstrate awareness of basic photographic, design and typographic principles, and apply these principles to preparing work for publication.
E. Demonstrate ability to use digital imaging and publishing software and hardware as tools.
F. Create hard copy photographs and books for presentation.
G. Gain facility in integrating word processing, graphics and photography.

Course Content

A. Introduction history and traditions of reproducing images for the printed page
1. Terminology
2. History of technology
3. Uses in documentary/journalism
4. Commercial uses
5. Fine art applications
6. Signatures, bindings, inks and other book publishing conventions
B. Introduction to digital image editing and graphic design programs, as well as web based services
1. Use of Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom
a. Image scaling and resolution
b. Bit depth and image adjustment
c. RGB and CMYK color modes
d. Halftones and dithered patterns
e. Introduction to color management
2. Use of Adobe Indesign and Acrobat
3. Current state of print on demand services and other service bureaus
C. Computer imaging hardware and its capabilities
1. CPU requirements
2. Scanners
3. Printers
4. Printing services
D. Communication in the photographic book
1. Sequencing of images
2. Planning for blending of images and text
3. Role of typography
4. Use of dummies for planning
5. Layout of a page
6. Layout of a book
7. Design concerns
8. Cover options
E. Publishing the photographic book
1. Commercial printing
2. Small press printing
3. Letterpress printing and limited edition fine art books
4. Print on demand and other options
F. Marketing issues
1. The economics of photographic book publishing
2. Contemporary markets for photographic books
3. Self-publishing for photographers
4. Copyright issues

Lab Content

A. Use of photographic and digital laboratory and equipment.
B. Field trips to publishing, book design and book production locations.
C. Online discussions.
D. Use of ePortfolio and/or etudes to share work in progress.
E. Use of online book publisher.

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

A. A lecture room equipped with color LCD overhead projector; an instructional computer with high resolution monitor, scanner, and color printer; a desk or workstation for each student; Adobe InDesign, Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Photoshop Lightroom software; lighting and wall space suitable for displaying and critiquing hardcopy output.
B. An integrated or separate computer facility for student use.
C. 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. Participation in critiques with prints or transparencies, digital files on disk, and hard copy computer-generated images
B. Review of student's participation in discussion and critiques
C. Participation in laboratory activities
D. Final project demonstrating skills in sequencing, book design and photographic image making

Method(s) of Instruction

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

A. Lectures on the techniques of book design and book production related to photography.
B. Lectures and demonstrations on techniques, software and applications for photographic book design and production.
C. Creation of photographs, book prototypes and finished books, and discussions of the product in process and at final presentation.
D. Discussion and electronic discussions/chat using the book terminology and photographic/artistic critical feedback.
E. Field trips to visit photographic, artistic and technical locations.

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Himes, Darius D., and Mary Virginia Swanson. Publish Your Photography Book. 2nd ed. Princeton: Princeton Architectural, 2014.
Although this text is older than the suggested "5 years or newer" standard, it remains a seminal text in this area of study.

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

A. Gallery/museum reports.
B. Review of handouts and relevant reading material.
C. Research and planning of individual creative projects.
D. Reading and study of the textbook.
E. Exchange prototype books and book proposal with a fellow student and write a one-page critique considering their books and their proposal. Include both concerns for production and appropriateness of prototype to stated goals in proposal. Exchange critiques and discuss.
F. Paper/presentation on a important book artist or book technique.