Otto's Blog

Just another ISB Blogs site

Field Trip

Posted by Otto T on December 11, 2017

For one of our assignment we went to the Beijing hutongs to take pictures of the locals and their villages. On this trip we walked around old Chinese villages to take picture both of the people who lived there and of the villages themselves. On the trip we used the skills that we had already learned along with new techniques that we learned specifically for street photography. One of these new techniques that we learned was helpful in taking pictures of people when you want the subject or subjects to look natural, this natural look can be achieved by taking pictures whale holding the camera nearer to your chest instead of in front of your face. This technique can also help to get pictures from a lower perspective looking up at the subject or subjects instead of looking directly at the subject or subjects. We also used some of the techniques and skills that we had learned and used for earlier projects. One of these older techniques that was very useful was panning, the village streets had many people on bikes and scooters that where great subjects for panning shots and freezing action shots. When walking into a new area with different lighting adjust your settings before entering and be sure your settings will work in the new lighting. if your walking and you find an interesting background the best thing to do is to stop and wait there until someone walks past the background but if your settings are wrong you will probably miss the shot and need to wait even longer to get a good shot. When taking pictures of people make sure the person or people you are taking a picture of agree to letting you take their picture.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »


Posted by Otto T on December 7, 2017

A cameras ISO controls the cameras sensitivity meaning that a higher ISO exposes the picture more and makes the picture lighter and a lower ISO makes pictures darker when working in low light a high ISO can help to make the picture lighter but a higher ISO also means the camera is more likely to pick up more static or be over exposed. Because of the risk of adding static it is always best to work in the lowest ISO and to try changing brightness by adjusting shutter speed or aperture.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »


Posted by Otto T on December 5, 2017

A cameras aperture is the hole or opening that allows light to hit the camera sensor. A higher aperture or f-stop means the hole is smaller at lets less light in and a lower f-stop means the hole is bigger and lets more light in. the aperture also controls the cameras depth of field a higher f-stop has a lower depth of field meaning less of the picture is in focus while a lower f-stop has a higher depth of field and more of the picture is in focus. This means that if you change the aperture to a higher f-stop you can take pictures with the foreground blurred and the background clear or the background blurred and the foreground clear. If the aperture is too high or too low the picture can be ruined by being ether over or under exposed. When working in low light it is best to have a low f-stop and a high f-stop in high light. When working with low depth of field check that you are focused in the correct object or objects and don’t end up blurring what you want to focus on


Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »


Posted by Otto T on December 5, 2017

In the mid 19th centaury scientist sir john Herschel invented the cyanotype proses to help permanently fix photographs. The cyanotype proses was unique because it was one of the first non-silver processes. Cyanotype was initially used by students to make cheap photographs from their negatives. Before making the cyanotype solution we opened the picture that we wanted to make the cyanotype of in Photoshop where we converted it to a negative and raised the contrast we then printed the negative on a transparency. To make the cyanotypes we mixed the two chemicals together and then coated the paper in an even layer of the cyanotype solution. After letting the paper dry, we placed the transparency with the negative on the paper coated with the cyanotype and put it out in the sun to expose. We discovered that to get a clear picture the negative had to be flat on the paper coated in the cyanotype solution and we found the best way to do that was to place a glass pane on the negative this would also way down the paper so it didn’t blow away in the wind. After the paper had exposed for at least an hour we rinsed the paper with water to stop it from exposing more and to reveal the blue color. After rinsing the paper we added hydrogen peroxide to darken the blues and finaly rinced the paper one more time.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Found poem

Posted by Otto T on September 26, 2017

In the novel the absolutely true diary of a part time Indian, Sherman Alexie creates a complex character and a setting that shapes who the character is- a character who is growing up in an Indian reservation and transfers to a dominantly  white school. Once he’s going to the new school he feels less and less human. He’s laughed at for having a strange name and is a target for bullies because he is “the only Indian and a sad sack who needed charity”

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Principles of Design

Posted by Otto T on September 13, 2017

Every time you take a picture it has at least one of the seven elements of art. Most of the time pieces of art have more than one element of art and the elements can be organized using the principals of design. There are seven principals of design balance, contrast, emphasis, movement, pattern, rhythm and unity/variety. Balance is used to draw the viewers focus away from a fixed point and all around the art piece. Contrast is when objects in an art piece stand out as different. Emphasis is when the eye is drawn to an object or a group of objects that stand out against a blank or somewhat boring background. Movement is created in an art piece when lines or motion blur give the sense that an object is moving. Pattern in an art piece is a repeating color shape or object. Rhythm is when repeating art elements create movement or are visually interesting. The final two principals of design are unity and variety but these two are used together for maximum effect. Unity is when multiple objects look similar or join together to create a larger object and variety is when one one item stands out from the others. By understanding what the principals of design are we can use them to organize the elements of art and create a more visually appealing art piece.

My favorite picture from this project is one I took of a small plant that shows emphasis with the eye drawn to the organically shaped plant in the middle and away from all the geometric shapes surrounding it.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

1 Object 30 Times

Posted by Otto T on September 11, 2017

In this project we were tasked with taking multiple pictures all featuring one common subject. With this project we tried to learn how to make one subject interesting across multiple pictures by using a variety of techniques such as reflection and focal point. Using the different compositional guidelines, we can make multiple pictures on one subject all interesting. Doing this it is hard to find so many varying locations just in and around the school and to change the way I think in order to fide creative ways to take pictures. The main purpose of this project was to learn to find creative ways to take many pictures of a seemingly boring object.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Burning House Project

Posted by Otto T on August 27, 2017

Name: Otto T

Age: 14

Location: Beijing

Occupation: Student

Favorite comic book (birthday gift from brother)
School computer
Painting that I made in grade 8
Pocket knife (gift from boy scout leader when I was 12

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Elements of Art

Posted by Otto T on August 24, 2017

Every piece of art even if you don’t notice it you can see at least one of the seven elements of art. The seven elements of art are line, shape, form, value, color, texture and space. some of these elements are self-explanatory such as line or color but some elements are harder to understand from the name alone. The first element of art is line; line can be found in any piece of art that has any kind of line in it. Lines can be straight, curved, zig zag, long or short. The second element of art is shape; shapes are found in almost every piece of art and can be geometric or organic. Geometric shapes are shapes with defined and usually straight edges while organic shapes have less defined and usually curved sides. The next element is form; form is any three dentinal shape. Fourth is value; value also called value is the amount of light or dark in a picture. the fifth element of art is color the color of an object can be changed in three main ways you can change the shade, the tone and the tint. The shade of a color is changed by adding black to the color, the tone of a color is changed by adding grey to a color, and the tint of a color is changed by adding white to the color. The sixth element is texture a picture has a texture when the surface detail of a picture makes it look like the picture is three dimensional.   The last element of art is space. There are two main types of space in art positive/negative space and linear perspective. Positive/negative space is created when one object stands out usually in front of a blank or very basic background. Linear perspective is when a picture gives a sense of depth. When looking at art in critical ways knowing the elements of art can help to interpret what the artist was trying to show. In the photo below the creek creates one large curved line leading away from the bottom of the picture. This photo primarily shows line but also shows the organic shape of the creek and the contrasting shapes and colors of the creek and the surrounding ground


Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »

Pillars of Creation

Posted by Otto T on August 17, 2017

In 1990 the Hubble space telescope was launched into earth’s orbit however the telescope was not functional until 1993. After delays, maintenance problems, and budget issues NASA’s Hubble space telescope captured a picture of the distant eagle nebula. The picture has been titled the pillars of creation and is only one of many images taken by the Hubble. 6,500 lightyears away with etch pillar being about 30 trillion miles or 5 lightyears long the pillars are a humbling symbol of the Earths smallness in the larger universe. The pillars also show beauty that can never be found anywhere other than space. Apart from the shape of the pillars they get their color from because of the many different gasses forming the pillars and from the light of nearby stars. In late 2014 NASA took 2 more higher resolution photos of the pillars including one infrared image with a camera installed on the telescope in 2009 these images where unveiled in 2015 in celebration of the the 25th anniversary since the Hubble was launched.

Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »