Magic happens almost every time you take a photo, says international fashion and celebrity photographer Stefan Studer. For teens with special needs, he says, photography isn’t just magic. It’s freedom.
In his ArtCenter for Teens class The Wonder of Photography: A Photo Workshop for Teens with Special Needs and Abilities, Studer will take students on a 10-week journey of self-expression and exploration within a relaxed and creative setting.
“With photography, students with special needs are able to bring out emotions that they have inside, and that they may have learned in school to analyze or control,” says Studer, also an instructor at non-profit organizations artworxLA and Pasadena’s Frostig School for children with learning disabilities.
“This class should create an open world for them where they can express themselves without boundaries, since photography has no boundaries,” he says. “They can be who they are.”
Students will start out by splitting into small teams, with one camera per team, and will experiment taking photos at the class’s South Campus location. After those sessions, they’ll review the images, and discuss them. Towards the end of the workshop, they’ll go on to do more complicated assignments outside of the building.
“They’ll develop confidence and be inspired,” says Studer, whose work has been featured in Vanity Fair, Vogue, GQ and The New York Times, and whose advertising campaign clients include Hugo Boss, Sony Music and Volkswagen. “The focus will be on ideas, images, dreams and imagination,” he adds.
ArtCenter for Teens—designed for students in grades 9 through 12—offers classes in a range of areas, from Transportation Design to Advertising.