Introduction to Photography

This intense 9 - lesson course is geared towards students who are looking for ways to expand their photographic skills in photographic composition and design. In this course, the composition of the photographed image is the emphasis - not the basic use of the camera. Students should already be familiar with taking photographs with their cameras (iPods, iPhones, isomethings, etc.). By exploring and experimenting with a variety of photographic styles, students will strengthen their skills and eye for composition.

By exploring the work of famous photographic artists and various photographic techniques and challenges, students will create for themselves a strong and expansive portfolio. Students should plan to spend 6-10 hours on each lesson. Based on the extensive amount of work required, it is suggested that students receive 1/2 high school credit for their work.

Expectations for each lesson:
1. Study a photographer and his/her work. Write 200-400 words about the photographer.
2. Scrapbook - Chose the photos from the photographer of the lesson that best represent the topics covered in the lesson.
3. Projects: - Complete photography project based on a composition lesson.
4. Completion of the "Final Project."

Prerequisites: None
Instructor:Amy Gillispie, B.S.
Age Level:  13 years and older
Minimum Enrollment: 3
Maximum Enrollment: 12
Tuition per Semester: $350
Class Meets: Every other Tuesday, 1:00 - 1:45 PM Pacific. Class begins September 7
Click here to see the 2021-22 Class Schedule

Spring Registration is Open

Amy Gillispie, B.S.

Amy Gillispie and her husband, Father Robert, began homeschooling their nine children in 1999.   Amy was graduated from The Ohio State University with a B.S.  in Architecture, did her Master’s work in Liturgical Architecture, played the organ for her church at twelve years old, danced in a ballet/jazz company, worked as a photographer/developer, directs musicals, is a COPE certified health coach, a registered IEW teacher and a licensed Simply Music Piano Instructor.  She wrote her own architecture curriculum and began teaching architecture courses to students from around the world when she created her business, Building Brilliant Minds, in 2009.  “Architecture” and “Music/Piano” continue to hold her heart because the possibilities are intertwined and infinite.    Mrs. G’s Architecture and Piano courses may be taken online during the arranged Zoom classes or privately.   For more information,  email Mrs. G.  at , or visit her website at .

This is a Single-Semester Course--Offered Each Semester for 2020 - 21.

Prerequisites: None
Instructor:Amy Gillispie, B.S.
Age Level:  13 years and older
Minimum Enrollment: 3
Maximum Enrollment: 12
Tuition per Semester: $350;
Early registration discount (before June 1): $325
Fall '20 Class Meets: Wednesdays, 8:00 - 8:55 AM Pacific. Class meets on September 2, then every other Wednesday beginning September 23 through January 13, 2021.

Spring '21 Class Meets:Wednesdays, 8:00 - 8:55 AM Pacific. Class meets every other Wednesday beginning 20 January '21. 

Click here to see the 2020-21 Class Schedule

Problems Registering?    Click here    for help.  

This course will be offered in Fall, 2019. Details will be coming soon!!

Instructor: Amy Gillispie, B.S. email
Prerequisites: No previous experience is required for this course
Age Level: This course is for students 7 - 12 years of age

Course Schedule (Class meets every other week):

Fall '19

August 27, 2019 -LESSON 1; September 10, 2019 - LESSON 1 IS DUE; September 24, 2019 - LESSON 2 IS DUE; October 8, 2019 - LESSON 3 is  DUE; October 22, 2019 - LESSON 4 and 5 are DUE; November 5, 2019 - LESSON 6 IS DUE; November 19, 2019 - LESSON 7 IS DUE; December 3, 2019 - LESSON 8 IS DUE; December 17, 2019 - LESSON 9 IS DUE - Presentation week

Spring '20

January 7, 2020 -LESSON 1; January 21, 2020 - LESSON 1 IS DUE; February 4, 2020 - LESSON 2 IS DUE; February 18, 2020 - LESSON 3 IS DUE; March 3, 2020 - LESSON 4 and 5 are DUE; March 17, 2020 - LESSON 6 IS DUE; March 31, 2020- LESSON 7 IS ; DUEApril 14, 2020  - LESSON 8 IS DUE; April 28, 2020 - LESSON 9 is DUE; May 5, 2020 - LESSON 9 is DUE - (Make up) Presentation Week

Materials Needed (these are not included in tuition):

Week 1


Week 2

Single hole punch
Paper clips

Week 3

Poster board
Single hole punch
deck of cards

Week 4

three different colors of paper... 6 sheets each

Week 5
Your project from Week 5
Graph paper
Colored pencils, markers or crayons

Week 6

paper cups
paper clips
Paper plates
Rubber bands the size of your paper plates (typically 8")

Week 7

Popsicle sticks
Elmers glue
Wax paper

Bonus Projects Week

cardboard boxes
large pieces of cardboard

Week 8 - your choices of the following:

graham crackers
peanut shells
paper mache paste

Week 9

Final Project: May use an option of the materials from Lessons 1-8



  1. Camera of choice. The student must know how to use its basic settings.
  2. Photo editing program (if desired).