This summer, South Bronx United held a photography club as a part of its Summer Soccer Scholars curriculum. Every Tuesday and Wednesday, students learned the foundations of photography and applied the lessons. For the first assignment, students created a pinhole camera using the classroom and opaque, black boards. They turned the classroom into a camera obscura to project an outside image onto a blank wall. In their next class, students learned how to adjust their shutter speed to create light paintings. The students waved bike lights and glow sticks in front of the camera, and the slow shutter speed allowed the camera to pick up the lights’ motion.
During their second week, students took window portraits using natural lighting to highlight their features. Students took a trip to a neighborhood garden, New Roots, where they took pictures of the garden’s flowers and vegetables, adjusting the aperture to affect the focus. Students were also assigned individual assignments that directed what they had to shoot: different perspectives, their everyday routine, the Bronx through their point of view, friday fields trips, and sports photography.
Photography student Meredith Cazales shared her perspective during this summer’s photography class. “My favorite photography project was when we got to do sports photography. I liked sports photography because I was able to take pictures of my fellow teammates in motion.”
Capturing photos in urban environments makes up a large portion of contemporary photography. When the students set out of the streets of the South Bronx, they came across a Halal market selling live stock. Walking through the neighborhood also provided opportunities to capture photos of people (with their permission), architecture, and objects in repetition.
The impetus behind the Photography Club was to allow students to think about their surroundings and use photography as a means to express those perspectives.
All photos were taken by students in the SBU Summer Soccer Scholars Program. Rotceh Maldonado, who co-directed the Club, is a senior at City College. She interned with SBU through the college success program.