Sandy Spring Friends School



From the Classroom: Stewardship in Photography

From the Classroom: Stewardship in Photography

During the Fall 2023 semester, SSFS Middle School students in Steffany Cartellone’s Photography Elective and Upper School students in Kris Morse’s Digital Photography classes collaborated in a cross-divisional photography project.

The middle and upper school students wrote each other letters and visited art exhibitions at the National Museum of the American Indian and The National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, together. They exhibitions were "Return to Native Place" and "The Land Carries Our Ancestors" in honor of National American Indian Heritage month.

The students then created photographs that explored the themes of Stewardship and Community, two of the Quaker SPICES. They used photographic techniques such as point of view and lighting for mood to emphasize important elements in their photographs and to help communicate their ideas regarding the importance of taking care of the natural environment, our school campus, and people in our community.

Photographs and artist statements created by the students for the project are posted below; they are also currently on display in the Upper School Art Department’s exhibition space in Yarnall. 

Artist Statement: This photo was taken by me on a walk during electives. Taking care of nature and plants can help us preserve the beauty of it for new generations. ~Alexandra, Grade 7

 Artist Statement: The photographer Julia Fullerton-Batten was my main inspiration and her use of montage in her photos to make them tell a story. I mainly used Photoshop to bring my idea to life by making edits to the pictures, trying my best to make them look somewhat believable or at least till you can see a clear vision. ~Teni, Grade 10


Artist Statement: My concept is nature being taken care of on the same level as society does with art: preserved and shown as a symbol of beauty. My intended audience is people who do not think much of nature because it is “dirty”; this is personally significant because regardless of how nature looks, it is beautiful and worth people’s attention. ~Justin, Grade 10

Artist Statement: I decided to take a photo of a dollar bill tucked inside of a broom sweeping in the collection space of the MS. I wanted to show that the act of sweeping (taking care of our community) can be as rewarding, or make you feel good as if you found/were given a bit of money. ~Vivien, Grade 8

Artist Statement: The concept I chose to focus on was acts of stewardship that are forgotten, specifically remembering to pick up trash and clean up after ourselves... I wanted to show a constant reminder of how all of these different small acts build up over time. ~Allie, Grade 12

Artist Statement: My photo is of me picking up trash. It shows how we are connected with our campus and want to take care of it. I think that it's important to show how much we care about nature and everything around us. We need to do the small things to help with the big problems. ~Ruby, Grade 8

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