The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography at Seattle University allows you to explore diverse modes of expression in the mediums of photography and video as you learn to incorporate multiple perspectives and methodologies. Our curriculum—firmly embedded in the liberal arts tradition—is complemented by small class sizes and our cohort model. You’ll benefit from close mentorship and become part of a supportive learning community that fosters professional and personal growth. It’s that holistic approach to education that delivers a vast array of opportunity to develop your own artistic practices both inside and outside the classroom.
Photographic Center Northwest's, Executive Director, Michelle Dunn Marsh and Programs Chair, Eirik Johnson, visiting a photography class critique
In collaboration with the renowned Photographic Center Northwest, our instructors and diverse course offerings encourage you to reflect on how the arts, and your own work, respond to contemporary and historic issues of social justice.
Our program offers:
Jennifer Bacon is currently a MFA candidate in the Visual Studies program at Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon. Her current projects include ideas relating to the subversion of photographic conventions and tropes and thoughts around an approach to the making of a conceptual photographic edition as if it would enter an art market. The Photography program at Seattle University gave her the foundational skills necessary to both jump-off and breakaway from photographic standards and techniques, towards a more aesthetic and conceptual studio practice.
The BFA in Photography program does not require an entry portfolio. At the end of their sophomore year of study, students present a portfolio of images and are advised by faculty. Based on the student’s work, faculty will recommend courses to help ensure that each student will be prepared to successfully complete their degree requirements and to pursue their chosen career path.
Students will need the following equipment to successfully participate in the program:
Students will have access to access to professional level computer labs and printers, analog and alternative processing labs, and lighting studio and equipment.
Students who wish to pursue an emphasis in documentary photography would substitute nine of the fifteen elective credit requirements with the following documentary courses: Documentary Survey, Documentary Methodology and Documentary Stills and Video.
BFA Photography students at Seattle University have completed internships with area Non-Profit and government agencies such as the Seattle Housing Institute, Jewish Family Services and Head Start. They have also interned with area news agencies such as The Stranger, The Weekly and the Seattle Times. Students interested in the arts have interned with area working artists, the Frye Art Museum and the Seattle Art Museum. Finally, students have learned about careers in commercial photography by interning at Seattle University’s Marketing and Communications and with area commercial photographers.
Graduates from the BFA in Photography program have been accepted to MFA programs in Photography and Media Arts at institutions such as the Cranbrook Academy of Art, the San Francisco Art Institute, the Pacific Northwest College of the Arts, and the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies. Our students have found careers in commercial photography, journalism, and web design, and many go on to receive grants and exhibition opportunities for their photographic arts projects.
The BFA in Photography program culminates in a series of courses taken in succession during the senior year at Seattle University. These courses prepare our students to develop and complete a portfolio of works to be exhibited in the Vachon Gallery during the annual BFA Photography Exhibition.