Programs in Schools

Programs in Schools, 2016-2017


Residencies, Workshops, Personalized Gallery & Darkroom Tours, Digital Photography and Literacy Workshops

The Light Factory provides inquiry based, arts-infused programming to schools throughout the Charlotte-Mecklenberg area. Our photography workshops and residencies are engaging, innovative and hands-on. We send guest artists into your classroom to share photography as a means to enhancing your classroom curriculum and providing a creative experience that can reach all levels of learners.  We also provide on site gallery tours and darkroom experiences; you can bring your class into our nationally recognized photography gallery to see first hand the power of photographic image. On site field trips also offer the option of a demonstration or hands on activity in our community darkroom.

Programs are booked through the Arts and Science Council.  

To book a program, visit the ASC Education Provider Directory:

And locate The Light Factory under the drop down tab. If you are a recipient of ASC grant funding for programs, you must go through your school’s ASCAR to book programs with this grant funding.

Below is a listing of our Workshops and Residencies. All Programs are carefully developed to meet the goals of the Common Core and the North Carolina State Standards.

Capturing Your Natural Environment 

All your students the opportunity to discover the natural world around them using photography and film. We’ll teach your middle and high school students to learn the art of photographic composition. Then they’ll use cameras to observe and document what inspires them outside the classroom whether a mini photo-excursion or full field trip. In extended programs, students will also learn how to combine creative writing, scientific observations and fine art photographs in their own nature journal.

Fun with Sunprints: The Cyanotype

This is one of our favorite photography programs! The Cyanotype is one of the earliest forms of photography, using only light sensitive paper or fabric and sunlight. Students will receive a fun hands-on approach to understanding light by creating their own individual sun print, or cyanotype, using found objects or objects from nature. This lesson can be adapted to suit older students by adding more of a focus on conceptual image creation or showing students how to mix chemistry and coat their own papers. We can also adapt to create full size class murals! It is also a great option for students with special needs. Perfect for Autumn and Springtime lesson planning, these images provide excellent prompts for discussion and writing.

How to See Like a Photographer

Learn how to see like a photographer with The Light Factory’s teaching artists. Students will learn how to compose beautiful images by incorporating elements such as line, texture, perspective, shape, balance, and color. After viewing and responding to master works, students will explore their environments to compose through their own personal lens. iPads, smartphones or digital cameras are always welcome. Each student will recieve a print of their best image at the end of the program. This program can be followed by an additional lesson on conceptual photography in which students will use their new photography skills to convey their ideas about a topic of your choice.

Look at Me: Student Self-Portraiture

Your students are growing up fast, forming their individual ideas, opinions, and feelings. The Light Factory can use the power of image to empower your students express themselves. We will share the art of strong photographic composition. We’ll guide your students through brainstorming sessions and help them create strong, concept-based self portraits. Students will also be encouraged and supported through writing narratives, as poems, songs or short stories, to compliment their expressive self portrait. 

Photography and Literacy

Photography literally means “to write with light.” The Light Factory can teach your students communicate their ideas visually and use that inspiration to compose a written narrative or poem. Whatever the theme (Self, Community, History, or Storytelling), whatever the technique (sunprints or digital photography) we can get your students on the path to learning.

Photography for Social Change

The power of image can be fully realized with this photographic program. The Light Factory has customized projects with educators to inspire their students to document family, build community, promote peace and acceptance, think creatively, speak their minds and build confidence. Multiple visit residencies will allow students the opportunity to continue their photographic journey at home and in their own life outside of school, to fully realize a very personal and powerful project.

Gallery and Darkroom Tour

Bring your students to our gallery and community darkroom in the heart of Plaza Midwood for a tour they will not forget! We will guide you through our newest exhibition with informative discussions, a scavenger hunt and an introduction into the career of a photographic artist. If you choose, you may also add on a personalized darkroom experience where each student will learn how to make a photogram. The magic of watching a print emerge from the developer tray always seems to amaze, and the opportunity to create a print in this unique hands-on experience is truly inspiring!

  • Costs: The cost for fieldtrips is $5 per student. The cost of a customized tour experience is $10-15 per student. We require chaperones to be present, and they are always welcome free of charge.The Light Factory can accomodate larger groups by rotating the students through different experiences. We can customize to allow for a photo-walk alternative to the darkroom experience.