Skip to main content


The concentration in photography will give you technical and conceptual skills to help build an understanding of a highly technical, multi-functional medium that can be used as a strong visual communication tool.  Coursework emphasis is on individual artistic expression and inquiry, and the development of a professional, practice-based toolkit of knowledge. Students become well versed in the technical and creative processes of traditional film, digital and experimental photography. 

While a thorough understanding of traditional processes is at the core of learning, digital processes are firmly incorporated into the curriculum. This curriculum helps students develop a historical, conceptual, and technical foundation necessary to use the medium with the control needed for creative expression. Photography as a Fine Art is emphasized. Evaluations are made on an individual basis in one-on-one and group critiques. 

From beginning courses through advanced, the students are exposed to basic photographic techniques, darkroom procedures, digital processes, chemistry and materials of black and white and color, view camera and large format photography, and studio lighting. 


What You Will Learn:

Students taking photography classes at Delta State University gain skills to develop, edit, and sequence a self-directed body of work and articulate their ideas within both a historical and contemporary context. Students bridge lessons learned in foundation-level classes and apply how they can be used with any camera frame. From 3D design, they harvest the knowledge of how light, surface, and form create spatial relations. The culmination of these processes fosters a solid photographic proficiency and literacy that enables students to have many options available to problem solve formal and conceptual concerns, to express their ideas, emotions, and beliefs. 

Students in our Photography program learn a range of skills, but specialize in these key areas: 

  • Traditional Darkroom Printing and Film Processing 
  • Digital Capture (DSLR Cameras) 
  • Digital Editing (Adobe Photoshop) 
  • Digital Printing (Epson 4900) 
  • Studio and Environmental Lighting 
  • Medium Format & Large Format Cameras 

Where Could This Take You?

Professional Studio Art Practice 

An artist is a person engaged in an activity related to creating art, practicing the arts, or demonstrating art. The common usage in both everyday speech and academic discourse refers to a practitioner in the visual arts only. However, the term is also often used in the entertainment business, especially in a business context, for musicians and other performers (although less often for actors). “Artiste” (French for artist) is a variant used in English in this context, but this use has become rare. The use of the term “artist” to describe writers is valid but less common and mostly restricted to contexts like used in criticism. 

Commercial Photography Practice 

Commercial photography or advertising photography is used to promote and market products or services.  Commercial photographers take pictures of products or subjects for a variety of commercial purposes.  For commercial shoots, the photographer works within brand guidelines and an approved shot list. 

Photographic Assistant 

A photographic assistant, also known as a photo assistant, photographer’s assistant, or also second shooter, is “an individual with both photographic and related skills who assists a professional photographer”.  The work of an assistant photographer is often referred to simply as “assisting”. The photo assistant is most often employed on a freelance basis, but in some instances, photo assistants are full-time employees primarily in major markets and with big-name photographers. Second shooters participate in actively documenting an event by capturing more angles and covering more of the event than just one person can. 

Digital Retoucher 

Photo retouchers work with photographers to alter digital photos for a variety of uses. As a photo retoucher, you enhance photos with computer software, such as Adobe Photoshop. Enhancements may include removing blemishes, adjusting colors or brightness, and changing backgrounds in the images. You may work on photos for a variety of reasons, from individuals’ personal use to company marketing materials. 

Production Assistant  

A production assistant works on television, movie, or theater sets to support the producer or director. They get the cast, crew, and set ready for each day’s shoot. They help clearly communicate instructions from the director to the cast and crew. Other job responsibilities include: 

  • Preparing and delivering daily call sheets that describe the scenes being filmed and the actors and items needed 
  • Make sure actors/models get their makeup and costumes 
  • Announcing when each shoot starts and ends 
  • Identifying issues that occur during filming and communicating those to the director or producer 
  • Running errands and gathering supplies 

Undergraduate Course Fees

$25 per credit hour fee will be applied to all studio art courses to provide essential technology resources, class materials, equipment upkeep, and support for visiting artists and lecturers across all concentrations.


General Education38
University Requirement Seminar1
Art Core42
Art Studio Elective12

Students entering the Art Department will be required to pass a portfolio review before advancing into upper level courses.


Jesse Brown, Assistant Professor of Art