Creative Career Cohort

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2024 Cohort Session Two

We are proud to introduce and showcase the work of the 2023 Creative Career Cohort. This 17-week, three-part cohort explores photography, graphic design, lighting, styling, and editing.

Session Two: Honing Artist Vision

Applying photography knowledge to build and create in a working photo studio

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I’m Alex and I have a story. Through my art, I choose to tell my story, some people might get it, some people might not, but I don’t really care because this is mine. But that’s a lie, I can’t really call it “mine”. This is for everyone, I want people to see their own stories in my art. I want my art to mean something different for each person. I want my art to be undefined, as I want people to find their own meaning in the art I make. I want my art to make people think, reflect, and most of all, inspired. I’m Alex and I have a story, and so do you.

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My name is Iza. I’ve been raised in Seattle, and I’ve always been into all kinds of art media. Youth in focus is my first photography centered class, but I’ve done a bunch of camps through coyote central. I’ve mainly worked only with traditional art (pens and paper), but during High school i started experimenting more with digital art and photography. I love photography because of the ability the camera gives you to tell a story. Colors, framing, and just focusing on a specific subject alone can speak so many words. I’ve been exposed to a lot of photography influencers, and seeing each unique style inspired me to draw from my own life and discover what my own style is. Seattle itself if the perfect place for creativity. My work currently is focused in senior portraits, creative portraits, and couples photography but I hope to expand!

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Khemmanat (Near) L.

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My name is Near L. I’m in 10th grade. I’m from Thailand, I moved here when I was 2. I live in Northgate. I’ve taken art classes in school, including media literacy in middle school. I was always given the position as “Camera Holder” instead of taking a shot at directing, however I paid attention to the techniques that they directed me and the actors to do and built off of them when I had the chance to have creative freedom in single person projects. My favorite kinds of photos to take are nature and wildlife photography. What brought me to them was wildlife documentaries my grandparents put on the TV as a kid. At first, I thought they were boring and wanted to watch Ben 10, but then I gave it a chance and became captivated with the cinematography. Frans Lanting is a big inspiration for me. I like how his photos are an effort at promoting an understanding of the Earth. A technique he uses that I especially like is conveying his photos through the eyes of animals.

My movie poster begins with a boy who wants to follow his childhood dream of becoming a pilot but feels obligated to go down a different career path in gratitude for the sacrifice his parents made in their journey to secure a better life for him in a new country.Throughout the movie, he ends up diving deeper than just careers and begins to search for his purpose. He has only 2 months until the end of his highschool graduation and begins to take on all these events and internships in order to find what he really wants but still deals with that internal struggle as he feels that the only way to repay a sacrifice so big is to sacrifice his own life and dreams. The movie is called “A Boy’s Purpose” The dandelion represents wishes as the boy’s childhood self throws a paper plane through the dandelion and out of it comes an actual airplane.

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My name is Nasrina but I also go by Nasra. I’m from Kenya but I moved here 2 years ago. I have had a passion for art since I was in kindergarten. I use to draw, sketch and color all the time. Now it’s a hobby of mine and as I grew I learnt new forms of art like painting. My dad introduced me to (CCC creative career cohorts). I found this a good opportunity to explore art further in the form of photography. I had no past experiences with cameras, so I knew this was going to be a new experience and I would have to encounter challenges in the process.

The connection I had with art in kindergarten has followed me through life. It acted as a form of outlet. I believe my life would be in black and white if I hadn’t embraced the creative world of art. It painted my life same way I painted with my heart. It brought essence to my life the same way I captured essence through my camera. I’ve taken pictures  I didn’t like at all and ones I’m very proud of however they’ve both played a part in my growth. I still have a long journey of exploration ahead, and I hope CCC will lead me through it. Thank you.

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I am Noor A. This is my second Photography class. I took a portrait photography class for a credit in fall of 2023. Where I learned some basics of camera and lightroom. 

Why I like doing photography:  I find photography interesting.  It is cool - you can take pictures and preserve the moment.  I have been taking pictures since forever. When I was young my dad owned a canon camera which he took with him whenever we had family outings or a wedding.  My dad had a phone with a camera in it after that.  I began taking pictures when I used my dad’s phone - I used to take his phone all the time.  My sister and I used to take pictures and edit them with the filters – we would take pictures of my older brother, and put a mustache on him and hats.  

These days, especially when cameras are everywhere it’s hard to find someone who can operate a real camera. It was good to learn how to use a camera in this program. 

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My name is Paloma L, I’m 17 years old. I have been doing photography for around 4-5 years now and Youth In Focus has been my main source of information, gear, and opportunities. I love to work in the darkroom and do film photography but this year I decided to try something different and take a digital photography-focused class (the Creative Career Cohort). 

Although you will end up with an image either way, working with film and working with digital cameras aren’t interchangeable by any means. I love experimenting in the darkroom a lot whether I’m incorporating origami into the process, trying different framing techniques, using two enlargers at once, or printing inverted images. Darkroom feels like a more hands-on way of using mixed media to create different effects on prints. 

Everywhere around me I see amazing art and artists so I am constantly inspired to create something new of my own to show the world. Some artists that inspire me are Michelle Zauner, Mitski, Tyler, The Creator, Wes Anderson, Fiona Apple, and Sufjan Stevens.

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My name is Shaheer AA, and my family and I are Pakistani immigrants that have now resided in Seattle Washington for over 10 years. Throughout my life I've always enjoyed movies and TV at a young age, and later I even started getting the passion for making them – a passion that mainly blossomed thanks to a multimedia class I took during middle school. The teacher I had was awesome; he taught me the basics of photography and video, while also providing a supportive environment to learn and experiment with video editing in applications like Premiere Pro & After Effects. And it is through this learning that reinforced the reason I love making movies and films in the first place; I believe that they are a powerful medium—if not the strongest—to tell a story that can deeply affect viewers in an emotional manner.

I want to emphasize how much my family, especially my mom and dad, have supported me throughout my life — as without them, I would not been able to pursue such a passion. And truthfully, they are my greatest inspiration in all my work.

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My name is Sophia B. i’m a junior at Garfield high school and I’m from Seattle, Washington.

when starting my obsession with film and photography i signed up for film classes and took them throughout my entire freshman year. when taking my videos and photos i liked to take pictures of buildings and street photography or anything with pink and being super cutesy i loved. when i was younger i loved watching Tyler the Creator in loiter squad and watching those super cool skateboarding videos on Disney XD and MTV.

watching Tyler the Creators music videos really got me into art, photography, and film just because of how amazingly the videos were put together and i think that’s what made me really want to try and make something as beautiful as that. 

i really started to feel better about myself when getting cute comments on my posts about my photography and that’s when i really started getting into art.

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My name is Stephanie, I am 18 years old and I go to Hazen High school in Renton. I practice digital photography centering myself in images that depict people, sometimes in candid moments. I am influenced by the environment around me and the people that bring me joy, and joy for me can be through people I know personally or strangers whose presence seems so alive and dear. I also explored a lot of color editing in this.

For my movie poster I searched and searched for inspiration, until I found a theme of eyes being a portal to know someone. While the process of taking the image was straight forward, making it in the style that it is took time mostly because I was just experimenting around to see what it was that I wanted. The image depicts an eye with this little flower in the center of it, representing as the title says, blooming, and what that means for me is the process of my perspective growing as a flower does. The use of colors in this poster was mainly for my own experimentation of something out of my comfort zone, I wanted to try something new and this is what it resulted in. 

Continuing with the theme of color, I edited this image with similar colors, and I liked this one because I am drawn to people in whatever setting they are in, specially in candid moments because those are ones you can’t fully replicate.