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Photo project captures campus life
'Day in the Life at West Forsyth High School'
Photo WEB 1
Erinn Hartley takes photos for photography class at West Forsyth High School. Students captured campus life through their recent photo essay, “A Day in the Life at West Forsyth High School.” - photo by Autumn Vetter

What’s it like to attend West Forsyth?

Stephanie Pickens’ photography classes can’t say for sure.

But they did manage to capture campus life through their photo essay, “A Day in the Life at West Forsyth High School.”

“Some of the stuff they took as things happened,” Pickens said. “There’s one of a girl and a hallway and they set up a ladder and a tripod and had the camera propped just right so they can take pictures between classes.”

Others, such as one in the gymnasium, were set up as a still life.

The overall assignment was for Photography 3 students to capture life as a typical high school student at West. But Pickens said her Photography 1 and 2 students helped out.

The project was the idea of Gabe Arango, owner of In and Out Photo in Cumming.

He said he based the concept around the old books about a day in the life of various places across the globe.

“This was kind of a take off on that,” he said. “It’s just an idea to let the kids show what their life is like at West. What do they see.”

Arango’s company donated posters and framing for the photos, which now adorn the hallway at the school.

“We’re trying to help them learn,” he said. “This is an opportunity to teach them just how fun photography can be. We’re a part of the community. We’re not just a business. We should be a resource.

“If we take the time to teach the kids in our community what we do and how we do it, that can have a positive impact on their lives.”

The project taught photography students about lighting, perspective, composition and photo editing. It also gave them communication skills, Pickens said.

The feedback has been so strong, there could be more photos in the future, she said.

“The kids absolutely love them. I get people from all over the school who tell me that it makes it more of a comfortable, homey feel here,” she said

“The kids are always asking me, ‘Can we do more so we can put them around the rest of the building?’”