As a member of the photography program you will explore aesthetic and conceptual perspectives of photography with students who are working in diverse areas of personal image-making. You will join a department that is recognized as among the best in the country. The program is active in darkroom and lightroom production and provides strong grounding in professional lighting, and you will work extensively to develop your digital and Photoshop skills.
A preeminent faculty of educators who are exploring, producing and exhibiting their art nationally and internationally will provide you with current practical information, aesthetic knowledge and professional skills.
You will be exposed to all modes of contemporary fine art photographic practice, including narrative, landscape, portrait, documentary and expanded photographic works, including installations and emerging relationships between the still and moving image. The elective program is developed in conjunction with core curriculum instruction to provide a variety of methods for you to develop your personal aesthetic approach to photography.
The Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts is comprised of three central units, each of which boasts a rich history:
- The College of Art was founded in 1879 as the first professional, university-affiliated art school in the United States, and is the only art school to have fathered a major metropolitan art museum.
- The College of Architecture was established in 1910, and has the distinction of being one of the 10 founding members of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture.
- The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum (formerly the Washington University Gallery of Art) was founded in 1881 as the first art museum west of the Mississippi River.
The Sam Fox School as we currently know it evolved over several years. The Visual Arts & Design Center (1997), subsequently named the Sam Fox Arts Center (2002), was envisioned as a hub for interdisciplinary programs among the College of Art, College of Architecture, Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, Art & Architecture Library, and Department of Art History & Archaeology in Arts & Sciences.
The vision grew to encompass the launch of a new school at Washington University in St. Louis. In January 2005, Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton announced the creation of the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts, uniting the academic units of Art and Architecture with the University Museum under the leadership of a new dean.
Imaginative. Versatile. Proficient. These are the qualities Webster University tries to instill in its photography students.
The students are taught through a hands-on approach that encourages the capability to work in a variety of photographic fields and technical environments. They graduate with a sold grounding in the aesthetic and the communicative aspects of the medium.
Courses are offered in a variety of formats (small, medium and large), materials (black/white and color) and technical environments (chemical and digital). Class sizes are small to ensure maximum access to needed equipment.
Students ultimately concentrate in one area of application, such as photojournalism or commercial/studio photography, making Webster the only university in the area that offers an applied photography degree. Upon graduation, students will be prepared to seek employment with a newspaper, portrait studio or commercial studio; to establish their own freelance operation; or, to move into further specific training such as forensic photography.
On campus, student work often is display in the May Gallery. The gallery was established in 1988 and remains one of the few spaces in the St. Louis area dedicated to showing a wide range of photographic work. It hosts the Annual Juried Student Photography Exhibition, a competitive and respected event.
The Small Wall Gallery, opened in Fall 2000, complements the May Gallery by hosting smaller photographic exhibitions -- especially student work, work-in-progress and work that otherwise might not be seen in a gallery setting.