Robin Michals | COMD 1340 Photography 1 OL89 | FAll 2020


Add a comment to this post introducing yourself to the class. You could include your academic interests, why you chose your major, what you hope to do when you graduate, how photography may play a role in that , your experience with photography, and anything else that you want to share such as the languages that you speak or instruments that you play (include your pronouns, if you wish).

Please add your introduction before Wednesday 12 midnight.

It should be between 250-300 words.

Before next class, read the comments and get to know your classmates! 

For extra credit, reply to one of your classmates’ comments (in a full comment of at least 150 words.) Do you have something in common? Did you learn something? Be kind.


  1. Andre Jones

    Hello! My name is Andre Jones and my current academic interests are laser-focused on obtaining my Communication Design BFA from City Tech. I chose this major because I had already been utilizing design thinking in my music, and other, endeavors. I’ve always been cognizant about the power of marketing, promotion, and advertising and how a visual message is designed has a direct effect on these concepts.

    I’ve always been a great communicator using the music, dance, and writing mediums – but I feel that communication design is where my communication skill will be most effective and where that skill needs to be developed. I will also be able to incorporate music and writing into my design skillset! I plan to upgrade and re-launch my communication design consulting business while studying for my BFA as well as after graduation (I currently do freelance projects).

    Photography is a necessary part of a well-rounded communication design education because of it’s natural place in the visual communication sphere. Adding photography to the list of skills that I possess as a communication designer will not only add to my value as a consultant, but will give me an added edge when fulfilling obligations to potential clients.

    I have very little experience with photography, but I have my little Canon EOS Rebel T7 and I’m ready to learn!

  2. Ariana Dejesus

    I’m Ariana, She/Her, a junior at City Tech. I’m studying communication design as my major. I’m mainly interested in graphic design and advertising, which I’ve been studying since my sophomore year of high school. I’m not sure what I want my job to be exactly after I graduate, but I’m hoping I’ll be in an advertising firm. I’ve taken photography in high school, and I was also in a photography/film club. I’m hoping the visual skills I learn in this class can help boost my skills in designing overall. On my free time, I play Overwatch (I main Junkrat), and I also play acoustic guitar, ukulele, and recently started practicing bass guitar.

    • rmichals

      I think the experience of being in a photo/film club will help you with this class!

  3. Lisa lliguicota

    Hello, I am Lisa. My academic interests are Photography, drawing, painting, graphic design, creative writing/poetry, and finance. I chose this major because I wasn’t feeling fulfilled and knew I had to fall back into my passion and it so happen to blend nicely after graduating with an A.S in business. I hope to grow my own brand with all that I am learning in school, being my own marketing team, photographer, and graphic designer. Photography falls in line with advertising and marketing because you need to have images that catches the audiences attention. It’s a great way of expression as well as story telling. I have been interested in photography ever since I got my first iPhone back in 2010. I hope to constantly learn and duplicate all the knowledge that I am absorbing into my own work outside of school.

    • rmichals

      Your degree in business will be very helpful to you in the graphic design field. And better photos certainly help in branding.

  4. Cui Zhang

    My name is Cui Zhang. I am a sophomore in New York City College of Technology. Originally, the major I was going for is Interior Design. However, City Tech does not offer that major. That is when I found out about Communication Design. Instead of doing Interior Design, I might as well do something similar to it. I’ve learned that Communication Design is not just for Graphic Designs. It can also be advertising, photography, illustration, typography, web design and etc. I was shocked in my freshman year, the first semester when one of my professors said in Communication Design you can do all that. The path I am highly interested in is advertising. I am glad that I chose Communication Design. I cannot imagine myself doing something else other than design.

    • Ilda Medel

      Hi Cui Zhang,
      I also was surprised when I discover all that you can learn in Communication Design. I love it!

    • rmichals

      Yes, Communication Design is a broad field with many choices! Hopefully, photography will help you in your career in advertising.

  5. Chris Jean-Baptiste

    Hello, everyone! My name is Chris Jean-Baptiste, but you can me CJ for short. I am a junior in City Tech, and my major is, of course, Communication Design, or COMD. When I graduate, I am hoping to become a video game designer in the industry, but I am willing to dabble in other COMD aspects like Photography, which is partially why I am in this class. I feel like photography is so important nowadays, so knowing a little bit about cameras and Photoshopping and etcétéra will help me understand better about how I want my work to be captured in the future.

    • rmichals

      And hopefully knowing a little more about light and composition will help you design the look and feel of aa game.

  6. UnphasedEli

    My name is Elijah, some call me Eli, either doesn’t matter to me. I’m not the most talkative person I like staying within my space. Academic interest, I would like to become a Game Designer/Graphic Designer after I graduate or something dealing with creation/expression. I chose the major Communication Design because I know that I’m whatever career path I choose I want it to be something where I can create/design and also just express thoughts and emotion through that work and hope to inspire others. At the end of it I don’t wanna just make things just for the sake of making them. If I become a game designer I want each character and each scenic moment in the game to resonate within the player or just to be like a sort of relatable figure in that persons life. Photography can help with that because as people always say “a picture is worth a 1,000 words” and is another form of communication. I don’t really have any professional experience with photography but I understand a little bit about how picture taking works.

    • rmichals

      It is really hard to teach how to express thoughts and emotions through photography. The class will focus on the technical stuff it is easy to teach but I hope to never lose sight of what is important which is what does the picture make you feel.

  7. Andres Nunez

    Hi my name is Andres Nunez and I am in the communication design major. I chose my major while I was studying architect before. During architect I was drawing building and also sketching buildings in the city and then realized I wanted to draw and sketch other stuff rather then just buildings. I chose photography because I wanted to take a photography class and it could help me capture imagines and be able to use them as references for projects. Also it will let me capture details that are specific to mine needs that say other photos don’t have.

    • rmichals

      Your background in architecture will help you in Communication Design. It will give you an awareness of space. And yes hopefully you can shoot your own photos instead of using stock photos or photos you find online. It will help your projects feel fresher and more original.

  8. Alex Veras

    My name is Alex Veras, and my pronouns are he/ him. Although this is a required course for my major, it’s definitely the one I looked forward to the most this semester. I’m a musician and believe that photography and music go hand in hand, and although I’m not particularly a fan of what I look like in front of a camera, I do like the process behind shooting and the magic that happens behind it. Good photography is an art, and it’s one that I’d hopefully like to get better at in order to help the other people in my circle who may need photography done for whatever particular reason. Aside from a good piece of music, I don’t think there are many other things besides photography that have the potential to give you an instant “wow” factor. A great piece of photography is awe inspiring whether it be a portrait, landscape picture, or based on any other subject matter, and the ability to know what would make a great picture is a skill that I believe goes a long way. As the virus came into play and started to keep people at home, some of the most impactful things that I saw were the pictures of Time Square completely empty, and I do believe that photos of that nature have the ability to make a mark on history, The protests for rights and equality that have been taking place over the last few months have also been the sources for many great pictures and videos; I think photography has the ability to really show how people feel when presented with a certain situation. As for instruments, I play guitar and a bit of piano, and I’m hoping that learning a bit of photography now can help me in the long run as I try to make music my career and what I shape my life around.

    • rmichals

      We have been living through a historic time and I agree that photography is an important part of capturing it. Glad to know that there is a musician in the class!

  9. Aj Boney

    Hello! My name is Ajahalee but I usually prefer going by Aj or Ajee. My academic interests are anything that has to do with Typography, English, or movie or graphic literature. Major is Communication Design and this will be my second semester taking it. The classes I am taking this semester are Figure Drawing and Graphic design Principles. I really would love to do something in either advertisement or UX design with my major. My major used to be Computer Information Systems but I switched over to this major because I always had an interest in illustration and how I can use it to express things to an audience. I think that Photography I will help me with my major by helping me better understand things like perspective, perception and contrast a little bit more. I am studying things like that in other classes, but I feel like it’s easier to see through a lens (especially perspective) where it is already demonstrated whereas in other situations I find that I am making the perspective. Lastly, my hobbies consist of playing video games, making visual art, and playing the ukulele. I’ve recently picked up cooking since I’ve had so much more time during the quarantine. I am very interested in languages. I have been studying Japanese for about six years, and studying Spanish for four. My most recent language I’ve become interested in is Korean.

    • rmichals

      We will certainly talk about perspective in this class and I am glad if you can see some overlap with your other classes!

      I am super impressed with the languages that you are studying as a typical American who only speaks English.

  10. Natasha Sarmiento

    Hello, I’m Natasha Sarmiento. I’m a major in COMD and hope to expand my knowledge more into this field. I’m still not sure what exactly I would want to become or do after I graduate, but I hope that I would remain in this kind of field and possibly do work for it in the future. Photography is still something new to me and I haven’t done much experience with it, since I only got to do it in high school for a short moment, but I’m open to learning more about it with this class.

    • rmichals

      As noted in the hand exercise, you are already thinking about the light despite photography being new to you. I look forward to seeing your work over the semester.

  11. wjing

    My name is Jing Wang and my major is communication design. I was indecisive in choosing a major during my first semester in college. Initially, I chose architecture as my major because architecture requires strong math and drawing skills, and I was confident that architecture was the right major for me. However, after studying architecture for a while, I realized that it is not really what I want to study. Then I withdrew from the architecture department and chose liberal art because I was still not able to decide what major to study. While taking core classes for the first semester, I kept looking for the things I like and wondering what I want to do after I graduate. Eventually, almost at the end of the first semester, I finally discovered what I am passionate about.
    Ever since I was still a kid, I have been attracted to the beautiful scenes in animations. Even though I was not able to produce any animations, I started to learn how to draw and gradually learned to express my thoughts and feelings through drawings. I was sure that with animations, I could turn my ideas into reality. While taking my core classes, I was constantly researching different majors and careers, then I stumbled upon 3D techniques. Therefore, after careful consideration and friends’ encouragement, I changed my major to Communication Design.
    I think photography can help me better transform things in the real-world into anime to create a real and fantasy world. In my daily life, I also like to record beautiful things through my phone’s camera, such as sunrise, sunset, and sky.

    • rmichals

      You are not the only student in our class who transferred from architecture. Andres Nunez did too. You two should compare notes about your experience in both departments.

      Also, even if you have no real interest in photography hopefully the explorations we will do into composition and lighting will help you with animation.

  12. Beverly Chetram

    Hello, My name is Beverly.
    I go by Bev for short.
    I am majoring in communications design. I am in my junior year of the moment. With continuing my journey of completing my degree, I hope to figure out what I would like to do with it. Work for an advertising company? Continue my education? Its still a deciding matter for me. But taking these courses will help me lean into what I enjoy most among this field. I do enjoy composing pieces of works such as flyers, logos and signs. And building my skills in photography will be sure to do justice. Photography is such an importance when it comes to advertising.
    My experience with photography is quite ranging. I’ve taken out photos for family events, and parties. I was in photography class in my high school, where we had film cameras and a black room to produce our own prints. I was in the yearbook class as well in my high school, where I would have to take out photos of the students, teachers, staff, sports teams, literally everything. As well as taking the yearbook photos, I had to design everything online and arrange the photos and designs in time, in order for the yearbooks to be printed. I use to work in a library and I would have to take out photos of the children doing whatever programs the library was hosting. I recently got an instax camera, so I am still test trialing photos with that camera since they produce photos instantly when the photo is taken.
    With this day and age, we have smart phones. So selfies are a constant habit. I’ve been taking selfies for years and still trying to always get the right angle haha. And with a more deeper habit… food. I’ve been taking out food photos for yearsss. I have many photos of food and how its placed and presented to you by restaurants and bars. ( @bevleeeatz ) .
    Food is quite fun. People enjoy and are satisfied with a pretty crisp plate of food so why not capture it with photo! 🙂

    • rmichals

      Great to know that you have some experience. You are probably one of the few in the class who have ever worked with film!

  13. Ilda Medel

    Hi everyone!
    My name is ilda Medel.
    I live in Astoria Queens; my major is Communication Design. I hope to become a Graphic Designer. This is my first semester at City Tech, and I wish to meet all of you in person and walk to school one day. I am transferring from Borough of Manhattan Community College in which I got an Associated Degree in Science.
    This is my first Photography class; I am excited to look forward to all the great activities we are getting in the class. I like to take pictures of buildings and nature but nothing professional. I think this class is going to help to learn more about photography and improve my skills. Additionally, is going to help me a lot in terms of communication design career because I think photos are a way to communicate anything you want to express. After I graduate, I would like to work at Non- profit Organization or School to share my knowledge with the community or I want to do freelancing and do my own work.

    • rmichals

      Welcome to City Tech. It must be really hard to start in a new school during the pandemic when all classes are online. Samantha from our class has also recently come to City Tech from BMCC. Maybe you have already met. You should compare notes!

  14. Samantha Louriero

    Hello everyone!!

    My name is Samantha. But you are more than happy to call me Sam.
    I am a Communications Design Major. This is my first semeter here at Tech as I am a graduate from BMCC. I was an Animation and Motion Graphic at the college. However, I did more design classes in that major than animation classes.

    I am looking forward to taking this class. I have always been a fan of taking photo. I started taking it more seriously when I got into high school. When I join the Photography club in my school in 2014 than it changed into yearbook club. The teacher of the club had a lot trust in me to help out with the club. I became the head person of the club to make sure that the photos in the yearbook were placed in the spot and that every student in the school was in the yearone at else once because I was a well know person in my school since I was the main person with the yearbook.

    I really hope that this class will help me out to get better skills with taking photos. Hopefully we can get to know what cameras are better for certain place, people, event and other areas that we can use cameras.

    I did start a Art page on IG which is @SamL.0407.Art. You guys are more than welcome to take a look. Haven’t been on it for sometime do to what is going in the world.

    Hope we all can get along and have a good semester.

    • rmichals

      Welcome to City Tech. It must be a hard time to start in a new school. Hopefully, we will all be back on campus next semester though who knows.

  15. Deandre Barnett

    Hi, my name is Deandre Barnett and I am currently a junior majoring in Communication Design. My passion in life is to become a digital marketer working for advertising agency a marketing firm or even a tech company. I chose this major because I always had an insightful mindset for Design. At first, I was always doing my art on rough paper now I enjoy doing it digitally on multiple software’s making it look more realistic. I recently started an online sneaker business called Handsof_gold where I restore retro sneakers back to fairly new. This entails repainting the sneakers, customization of color or adding a design. Being in this photography class will help capture great lighting and angles of my before and after work done shown to client sneakers. Along with enhancing the colors in my photos making it look rich and attractive. One thing that I will always keep in mind while capturing photos is to use the rule of thirds. Although being in quarantine was unfortunate, I took the time to learn various software’s such as photoshop, illustrator which helped me to create and design my business logo and InDesign. Learning all these skills will also help me build and advertise my business professionally. I am also edging towards learning advanced Web design because I look forward into building my own website for my business and also for people. Additionally, I’m excited to advance my photography skills learning different techniques to utilize our camera phones and learn the foundation of lightroom.

    • rmichals

      Congratulations on your business! Hopefully, you can use what you learn in this class.

      And quarantine is a good time to learn new software.

  16. Brianna Edwards

    My name is Brianna Edwards and I’m a sophomore. I’m majoring in Communication Design. I took a variety of classes and so far Raster & Vector, Graphic Design and Typography were more interesting than expected. They are not what I want to pursue for the moment, but it’s nice to keep them in mind. I’m not sure what I want to do as yet. In the meantime, I’m considering illustration. I have been interested in drawing for a long time. So, I hope to improve on my skills and acquire more knowledge in this major. I hope to do concept art and or character design. Photography may play into that role by helping me understand composition and what makes an interesting shot. I don’t have any experience with photography, therefore I am open minded to learn a great lot.

    I used to take piano lessons when I was 10 years old. I practiced different songs, such as classical music, Christmas songs and fun little tunes. There is also a time when I took swimming lessons but, I couldn’t get used to getting up early on Saturday mornings. At least, I learned how to swim. I am not into sports, but I enjoy playing badminton. I liked playing it in my gym class in high school. Unfortunately, right now there is no indoor gymnasium for me to play badminton. I love riding my favorite blue Razor scooter almost anywhere I go. I always take the long routes to prolong the ride for the day. I have done cycling, roller skating and ice skating. But none can top the joy of riding my scooter. Well that’s me.

    • rmichals

      In this class, we will focus on composition and lighting and I hope it will help you in a range of fields including illustration.

      We are going to do some photos with motion blur later on in the semester. Consider shooting from your scouter!

  17. Mercedes Alvarez

    Hello everyone!
    My name is Mercedes Alvarez. I’m from Miami, Florida, and moved to New York a little over a year ago. This is my first semester taking design courses. I graduated with an associates degree in Sociology from Santa Fe College. I decided to take a gap year to better understand what I really wanted to continue my studies in, then finally decided on Communication Design. I am still not exactly sure what I want to do with it yet, but I am hoping to be inspired by the different design classes I am taking to have a clearer vision for my future. I hope to learn a lot about digital design and master the skill of photoshop/illustrator and programs of that sort. I chose this major because I want to tap in to my creative side and find a career in something where I can be hands on. This is my first time taking a photography course. I enjoy taking photos of people, things and moments that I want to cherish for longer than just the present moment, but I haven’t really taken any professionally. Im excited to see what I learn and how my skills progress.

    • rmichals

      Welcome to City Tech. It is a hard semester to start at our college. So much of what students learn in our program is from hanging out together in the labs and going to Meet the Pros and other talks. Follow the department Instagram account for more info on what is going on. I am sure there will be virtual programs.

  18. Hajar Merfouk

    Hi, My name is Hajar Merfouk. I am from Morocco and I speak Arabic and a little french. I am currently majoring in Communication Design. I am still indecisive about what I will be doing with my degree. I am an independent, hard-working determined, and organized person. I am a transfer student with an Associate in Arts. I am interested in Graphic Design. I hope to learn to take better pictures than the usual pictures I take. It would be interesting to learn new techniques that would result in better images. My favorite sport is soccer and I like to try out new things in my life. Photography is also an important part of branding, hence the connection with graphic design. Graphic designers manipulate photos to communicate an idea. Some employers look for graphic designers with a photography background and vice versa.

    • rmichals

      You still have time to decide your exact direction within our field! Photography skills certainly enhance what you can do as a graphic designer.

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