On Friday, Aaron came in to work with the Blue Band and show them how strobe photography works. They had discussed the work of Harold E. Edgerton, who had experimented with high speed photography in the 60s (the bullet flying through an apple, splitting cards in half, etc) and then they tried some of their own. The results are pretty stunning:
The blog has been difficult to post in the last week because the internet has been faulty at the school, but we’re back! Here’s a photo-look at what we’ve been up to:
Dave came in to talk to us about neuroscience and the way the eye works to communicate with the brain to send signals about what we see and what we construct. Turns out, our eye only really gathers information from a point the size of our two thumbnails together; the rest our brain fills in with what it can assume about what’s around us. “We are creating our reality at a cellular level,” he said, and demonstrated the tricks our eyes play on us with some pretty amazing optical illusions. The kids were a spectacular audience!
The Yellow Band started constructing a huge camera obscura in the media room and research lab by covering all entrances to make it really dark.
Trips to the darkroom have continued and are resulting in some beautiful black and white photos of life in San Francisco, from the perspective of a Brightworks student.
The Orange Band visited the California Academy of Sciences and did a photo safari in the garden.
Community Friday was a blast, as always.
And Ellen made a thought-provoking, awesome Photograph art display in the art studio using the letters from a nearby photography store that (really unfortunately) recently closed.
As happens so often, the Exploratorium is one of the best resources for the arcs at Brightworks. This week, the Orange and Green bands visited the Optics Hall for a deeper exploration of lenses, optics, and eyes as they think about the mechanics of a camera.
The Orange Band went exploring with a focus on the eye, looking at the exhibits that experimented with dialating pupils, saw the white blood cells flowing through the eye, and over-saturated the cones in their foveae. They also observed a cow eye dissection in preparation for their own!
The Green Band went to the museum with a focus on light. Their explorations led them through the light exhibits as a follow-up to a discussion they had on Tuesday about the electromagnetic spectrum and the questions they asked, like: “What determines different colors?”, “Why don’t we feel color when we can feel other kids of light?”, “How is light made?” and “Why don’t I feel light entering my eye?”
Many of their questions were answered – which, of course, led to more questions. Endless curiosity.
The Brightworks students have been presented with an incredible opportunity to print their own photographs in a darkroom in Soma, assisted by expert photographer and teacher Victoria. For the next few weeks, each band will be venturing out into the world to take photos with film cameras, then heading to Rayko to see what they were able to capture.
On Monday afternoon, the Indigo Band went for a neighborhood photo safari, and on Tuesday they visited Rayko to do their prints.
Check back for their images and for more film adventures from other bands!
So many good things are humming along at Brightworks! On Monday, the Green Band explored the evolution and development of the camera, beginning with George Eastman and his Kodak camera and continuing to the development of DSLRs. Amanda writes,
“What originally began as a quick timeline and discovery activity quickly evolved into in-depth understanding, research, and expertise on a single iteration of a camera in camera history. We spent the greater part of the morning in pairs to become experts on specific types of cameras.
Ally and Khalia compiled their very own timeline of Polaroids.
Amelia and Oscar started testing whether using one-eye versus two-eyes makes a difference when judging distance (re: stereoscope).
Julian used his knowledge of mirrors to create diagrams of DSLRs.
Audrey and Lucie drafted a list of qualities in digital point-and-shoot cameras.
Frances and Kaia took apart an old Brownie to see how it works.