Photography students turn STEM into STEAM with inspiration from Michael Benson

Photography students turn STEM into STEAM with inspiration from Michael Benson

A Level Photography students in Year 12 have produced impressive solar eclipse images, built from scratch using CGI (computer-generated imagery) skills, to explore the connection between science and the visual arts.

The anachronism STEAM extends 'STEM' to recognise the vital real-world relationship between the arts and science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Students have taken inspiration from Michael Benson, an artist, writer, filmmaker, and 'space science' specialist, who works at the intersection of art and science. Benson has staged large-scale shows of planetary landscape photography internationally. He takes raw data from planetary science archives and processes it, creating large-format landscapes. He edits, composites, mosaics, and then finally optimises images to produce seamless photographs of landscapes currently beyond direct human experience.

The images created by students - working remotely at home to practise and experiment with newly developed CGI skills - mark the beginning of a 'surreal planet series' which will form part of their A Level portfolio

The work of Masha I, Olivia B, Sofia A. and Daria S, created around the theme of 'solar eclipse' has provided much needed creative exploration during lockdown and the results are particularly impressive, considering students are working remotely without access to the digital art suite at No.47 our Art and Photography Centre.

Student work

Head of Art, Ms Conroy says “In a time when lockdown prevents physical exploration, why not try creative ones instead! I am so impressed with what our students have achieved at home.”

A Level Photography Gallery 2020

Remote learning in Sixth Form