University of Technology Sydney

80038 Photographic Intervention

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2022 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Design, Architecture and Building: Design
Credit points: 6 cp

Subject level:


Result type: Grade and marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


This subject involves an exploration of photography as a means of consciously intervening in and interpreting the social world as a narrative source. This is done through the exploration and photographic interpretation of the spaces and places people create and inhabit and their relationship to them, through the guise of environmental portraiture. Emphasis is placed on the conscious construction of meaning across still image sequences through subtle techniques of art direction and the manipulation of available light sources. This subject introduces the basic principles of digital photography including file formats, image resolution, colour temperature, contrast control, digital workflow practices, and shooting for various digital output media.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

1. Context: understand the diversity of image-based professions synthesize developing photographic techniques and skills learned in 88305 with beginning critical skills from 80027 into critical design projects.
2. Concept: develop innovative solutions to the specific demands of the project brief clearly articulate conceptual ideas as the foundation of self-motivated design projects.
3. Collaboration: understand the connections between diverse design disciplines develop inter-disciplinary design projects that creatively combine, conflate or overlap skills.
4. Process: work iteratively through the design process by responding to criticism and developing alternatives illustrate the maturation of design proposals by archiving and representing previous iterations.
5. Communication: experiment with diverse disciplines (photography, spatial design, art, situated media) to deliver mature, engaging work respond (verbally and visually) to critique with thoughtful, considered responses.

Teaching and learning strategies

This course is structured as a weekly two hour design studio with a one hour lecture component. The lectures will introduce historical and contemporary examples of a wide range of diverse disciplines in order to expose the beginning student to the complexities and opportunities of a career in photography and situated media.

Teaching and learning strategies in the studio will include in-class design tasks such as image-taking (manipulation, editing, optimization, etc), basic fabrication exposure (model-making, introductory construction techniques), and design critiques from staff and invited guests from a variety of disciplines including, but not limited to: photography, interactive design, art, art history, architecture, interior design, sound design, visual communications, and fashion.

Content (topics)

Subject content will vary depending on design tasks, but generally will include:

  • Basic compositional studies – exercises that introduce and refine the students’ basic understanding of composition.
  • Critical photography – exercises in which the student is given a specific design task and is expected to execute the task in an iterative and critical manner.
  • Multi-disciplinary design tasks – students will regularly be teamed with students from other design disciplines to create complex and discipline-challenging design proposals. The product of these projects could include: exhibition, installation art, immersive photography, publication, spatial design, situated media.


Assessment task 1: Composition Project

Weight: 20%

Assessment task 2: Collaboration Project

Weight: 35%

Assessment task 3: Final Project

Weight: 45%