Photography

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Photography, B.S.

Today there are more images being made, consumed, and used for more purposes than any time in history — and there's no sign of things slowing down. Major advances in image capture, manipulation, and distribution have redefined what is possible and have raised the bar for working professionals. It isn't enough to just know how to use the tools of photography. We extend that working knowledge to include honing a student's creative vision, elevating their aesthetic choices, and helping them develop a photographic voice that will set them apart from others. MTSU's Bachelor of Science degree in Photography combines these skills with a foundation of theory and history to prepare students for various careers in photography.

Some of the program highlights are:

  • Multiple digital printing labs with editing stations and up-to-date Adobe Software Suites
  • Professional printing capabilities with 4 large format printers
  • Scanning lab with flatbed scanners and virtual drum scanner
  • Multiple studios including one with a large Cyc wall
  • Classroom sizes accommodate low student-to-instructor ratio
  • Traditional and alternative process darkrooms
  • Multiple camera systems (both film and digital) for student use
  • Internship opportunities
  • Active student organization
  • Faculty comprised of experienced, active professionals

Students are immersed in contemporary photography through the Baldwin Photographic Gallery which brings several visiting artists each year to interact with students. Associated with the gallery is the Baldwin Photographic Collection & Archive which holds photographic prints from many well-known photographers. The unique blend of the program sets it apart and establishes a foundation for the students to build upon and evolve with the medium of photography across the entire curriculum.

Careers
Requirements
Faculty
Information
Careers
Requirements
Faculty
Information

News Briefs

Guggenheim Photography Fellowship winner brings expertise to MTSU

Kristine Potter has never stayed in one place long but has found that wherever she goes, photography is sure to follow. "I went to the University of Georgia for undergrad, where I earned a BFA in Photography and a BA in Art History. From there, I moved to Paris, France, on a crazy whim and ended up getting a full-time job in a high-end photo lab, printing for artists, fashion houses, and journalists. Eventually, I longed to get back into a rigorous conversation about my own photography and so I applied to the MFA program at Yale - where I was accepted and attended 2003 to 2005." In the time between teaching at Purchase College in New York, and joining the Photography faculty in 2020, Kristine has received several awards, including the 2018 Guggenheim Fellow in Photography and 2019 Grand Prix Images Vevey. She has been published in several publications like Manifest and Oasis and her work is in numerous public and private collections, including, The Georgia Museum of Art, 601 Artspace, Swiss Camera Museum, and Foundation Vevey. Her wide talent showcase has mixed well with the MTSU facilities and Kristine has been very hands-on with all of it. "I am teaching courses at all levels, from the darkroom to the digital lab, and helping to create opportunities for the students post-graduation. The McFarland Building is a really special place. The facilities are incredible and the whole building just has a good vibe. Students are able to explore photography in a wide range of applications. We are educating students to prepare them for life, but they are also receiving practical training that they can apply to a wide range of jobs."

Photography students learn in a building all their own

Photography students at MTSU enjoy their own dedicated space — the recently renovated McFarland Building — filled with classrooms and functional areas that enhance learning and overall growth as people. The building is roughly divided into a "dry side" and "wet side," says Jonathan Trundle, Photography program coordinator. The dry side includes two digital classrooms as well as an open digital lab for use outside class. Equipped with large format scanners and printers, the area also includes space for socializing. A camera obscura in one of the classrooms "allows students to see the physics of light and puts them inside a camera to see how it works," explains Trundle. A student gallery gives Photo majors opportunities to prepare and display work from their portfolios. The wet side includes two traditional darkrooms and one alternative process darkroom. Spacious tabletop and photo studios, the latter with an infinity wall, inspire imagination and foster creativity. However, students will find aids beyond equipment that make their work easier. A strategically placed squeegee panel for wet prints and detailed instructions for operating various equipment and gear are touches Trundle has added as student and curricular needs became apparent. "I want to encourage students to "use light to tell stories," he says.

News Briefs

Guggenheim Photography Fellowship winner brings expertise to MTSU

Kristine Potter has never stayed in one place long but has found that wherever she goes, photography is sure to follow. "I went to the University of Georgia for undergrad, where I earned a BFA in Photography and a BA in Art History. From there, I moved to Paris, France, on a crazy whim and ended up getting a full-time job in a high-end photo lab, printing for artists, fashion houses, and journalists. Eventually, I longed to get back into a rigorous conversation about my own photography and so I applied to the MFA program at Yale - where I was accepted and attended 2003 to 2005." In the time between teaching at Purchase College in New York, and joining the Photography faculty in 2020, Kristine has received several awards, including the 2018 Guggenheim Fellow in Photography and 2019 Grand Prix Images Vevey. She has been published in several publications like Manifest and Oasis and her work is in numerous public and private collections, including, The Georgia Museum of Art, 601 Artspace, Swiss Camera Museum, and Foundation Vevey. Her wide talent showcase has mixed well with the MTSU facilities and Kristine has been very hands-on with all of it. "I am teaching courses at all levels, from the darkroom to the digital lab, and helping to create opportunities for the students post-graduation. The McFarland Building is a really special place. The facilities are incredible and the whole building just has a good vibe. Students are able to explore photography in a wide range of applications. We are educating students to prepare them for life, but they are also receiving practical training that they can apply to a wide range of jobs."

Photography students learn in a building all their own

Photography students at MTSU enjoy their own dedicated space — the recently renovated McFarland Building — filled with classrooms and functional areas that enhance learning and overall growth as people. The building is roughly divided into a "dry side" and "wet side," says Jonathan Trundle, Photography program coordinator. The dry side includes two digital classrooms as well as an open digital lab for use outside class. Equipped with large format scanners and printers, the area also includes space for socializing. A camera obscura in one of the classrooms "allows students to see the physics of light and puts them inside a camera to see how it works," explains Trundle. A student gallery gives Photo majors opportunities to prepare and display work from their portfolios. The wet side includes two traditional darkrooms and one alternative process darkroom. Spacious tabletop and photo studios, the latter with an infinity wall, inspire imagination and foster creativity. However, students will find aids beyond equipment that make their work easier. A strategically placed squeegee panel for wet prints and detailed instructions for operating various equipment and gear are touches Trundle has added as student and curricular needs became apparent. "I want to encourage students to "use light to tell stories," he says.

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CAREERS

MTSU's Photography program prepares students for commercial, artistic, and photojournalistic career paths. Prospective professional opportunities include

  • Aerial photographer
  • Archivist/historian
  • Artist
  • Automotive photographer
  • Cinematographer
  • Commercial/advertising photographer
  • Corporate photographer
  • Creative/art director
  • Digital imaging
  • Documentary photographer
  • Educator
  • Fashion or food photographer
  • Freelance photographer
  • Gallery curator/owner
  • Industrial photographer
  • Medical photographer
  • Photo editor
  • Photo lab owner/operator
  • Photo restoration
  • Photo retouching
  • Photographer's assistant
  • Photojournalist
  • Portrait photographer
  • Product photographer
  • Real estate / architectural photographer
  • Staff photographer
  • Studio owner
  • Videographer
  • Virtual reality photographer

Employers of MTSU alumni include

  • Chattanooga Times Free Press
  • Cracker Barrel
  • Jack Daniels
  • MTSU Photo Services
  • Nissan
  • "Paw" Magazine
  • Saks 5th ;Avenue
  • Southern Living Magazine
  • The Nashville Zoo
  • The Tennessean

REQUIREMENTS

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FACULTY

INFORMATION

Students may choose from five Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degrees in the Department of Media Arts.

For complete curriculum details, click on the REQUIREMENTS tab above. 

Students may minor in any program that is not under the same degree as their major. Animation majors are required to have an Art minor.

Master of Science (M.S.) degree is available in Media and Communication.

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