By Joe Salas
Beginning on January 9, 2018, Greenwich House, in partnership with Lifetime Arts, will add Photography 101 to its roster of senior citizen health, wellness, arts, and education classes. The inaugural class will be a nine-week course held at Greenwich House’s Judith C. White Senior Center at 27 Barrow Street (near 7th Avenue South). During the term, students will delve into photographic history, aesthetics, and techniques and have ample time to practice their photography using digital cameras.
The class will be led by Brooklyn-based documentary photographer and filmmaker, Robert Pennington. Over his 25 years in media arts, Pennington has developed a strong reputation for photography that investigates socio-political, cultural, and economic phenomena, and their impact on the human condition. In his own work, Pennington is known to focus on the margins of society, where oftentimes hubris and virtue are easily transposed and human architecture is gravely affected. The impressions embedded in these communities and the narratives discovered inspire his practice.
At Greenwich House, Pennington hopes to help participants develop an appreciation and familiarity with the physical aspects of photography, even as the art form becomes increasingly digital.
“This curriculum uses a variety of hands-on activities, history, aesthetics, and technical instruction to impart a sense of process even without access to a traditional darkroom,” said Pennington.
At the end of the class, students will have an understanding of the three major genres of photography: Landscape, Portraiture, and Documentary, as well as a foundation in aesthetic elements such as: leading lines, triangles, symmetry, the Rule of Odds and the Rule of Thirds. Camera mechanics, including the functions of the body, lens, sensor, flash card, and battery, will also be studied.
The new class is being offered at the Judith C. White Senior Center through funding from Lifetime Arts, a national nonprofit service organization that encourages creative aging through the inclusion of professional arts programs in organizations that serve older adults. According to Lifetime Arts, photography, among other sequential, skill-building, creative aging workshops, help combat isolation and reinvigorate learning among seniors when included in socially rich community settings.
Two more nine-week sessions will be held at other Greenwich House Centers. Dates and details are forthcoming.
Classes are intended for senior center members. For more information, contact Anthony Cilione, the Judith C. White Senior Center Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (212) 242-4140, Extension 254.