STAPLES -- What do the following have in common: Jesus, Jungle Jane, witches, Spiderman, a disco queen and a victim of electrocution?
They are personalities portrayed by Communication Art & Design students at Central Lakes College in Staples.
Inspired by these personalities, these students have a new understanding of the word "visual" after their latest project.
Their assignment was not only to conceive the message for a professional magazine advertisement; they also had to put it all in context by knowing the audience for their message. Then they designed costumes for the essential photograph that conveys the message.
Sarah Berg of Staples explained how she adjusted her advertisement and achieved a Jungle Jane look that was different without Tarzan to help promote a popular beverage.
"The point was for them to understand the complexity of their job," said instructor Don Garey, "and the complexity of the interaction of their goals with that of the photographer."
Fully 50 percent of the project grade required the students -- in costume -- to reveal the gnarly details of their two-week assignment to an audience of outside observers as well as each other.
-- The wrong film was used.
-- The light wasn't right.
Jill Arnold of Pillager created a musical product for a magazine ad in which she posed as a disco queen. It was part of the Communication Art and Design project at CLC.
-- The model didn't have the right look.
-- The props didn't work.
One saving grace: Jamie Williams, photographic technology student. Her expertise earned credit from just about everyone. She earned an A-plus for her part.
While photo students taught by Bruce Fuhrman operated the cameras, the students in Communication Art and Design taught by Garey were in charge. As the art director, "each designed a magazine advertisement in which the layout, design, photo and strategy should all be working together," said Garey.
The Halloween Day presentations in the Staples campus photo studio revealed how the students adjusted during the photo shoot, what went wrong, what went right, the difficulties and successes. Several instructors, in the spirit as costumed adjudicators, helped score the presentations.
The toughest part of the project for Browerville student Andrion Becker was to keep his "Jesus" sheet on.
"Witches" Kristi Van Watermulen of Perham and Vicki Olson struggled with composition to obtain the contortion required for their "American Chiropractic Association" message asking "All bent out of shape?"
"Jungle Jane" Sarah Berg of Staples couldn't get her "Tarzan" back to re-shoot with proper film, so she had to settle for a different look for her ad offering the drink Kahlua as "Jane's little secret."
Wendy Huntimer of Beulah, N.D., gladly ruined a pair of jeans and a shirt to demonstrate the look of one who ventures too close to dangerous high voltage. Her fictitious account, the Universal Power Co., would probably have liked the novel and attention-getting look complete with body smudges and electrified hair.
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