Independent Project: Explore Your Personal Vision

Download the Planning Sheet for this assignment here: Advanced Photography Explore Vision Independent Project


“At Warm Springs” by Sally Mann, 1991


  1. Shoot 2-3 rolls around a specific idea in photography that you want to explore.
  2. Make a minimum of 6 small prints (5×7”) and one larger “exhibition” print (11×14” or 16×20”)
  3. Refine your darkroom skills (easel use, using larger paper, controlling contrast, dodging and burning)
  4. Explore a new shooting technique or take something you’ve done in the past further.
  5. Create a series of images around a theme to tell a story with photography.


  1. Describe your idea in writing (see next page)
  2. Give your project a title
  3. If needed, learn new technology to shoot your assignment
  4. Shoot (can be shot over several weeks—not all at once)
  5. Print (contact sheets, then as many small test prints as you like)
  6. Edit (choose from the test prints, arrange them in different ways)
  7. Final prints (8×10 or larger; one 11×14 or 16×20)


  • Series of portraits of a particular group
  • Photos exploring one location or type of place
  • Shoot a series of objects that are connected or important
  • Go out at night; shoot long exposures
  • Get very close up with a macro lens


 “Night Blooming Cereus” by Sally Mann


Name: ________________________________________ Date: ______________

Working Title: ______________________________________________________

Describe the Idea – What is the content you want to explore, and why does it interest you?

Describe the style of the work – how will the photos be shot and printed? What will they look like (describe light, frame, time of day, location, texture, mood).

You should challenge yourself technically with this new work. What do you need to improve or review? Do you need to learn any new techniques to shoot the work? Describe.