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Fine Arts: Photography 1


Entrance requirements

Participation in an entrance exam that will consist of a motivation interview with the teacher and an assessment of your artistic work. The entrance exam for Photography 1 is 2 September 2020. After your online application the KABK will contact you in August.

More information about the entrance requirements of Photography 1:

Make the following assignment:

Choose a person that you consider to be special in some way or another and produce a series of photos made through the eyes of that person. That person could be a public personality, but alternatively it could be someone from your family or social circle. Try to place yourself in that person’s shoes and to imagine what he/she would consider interesting subject matter for a series of photos. Take these photos, using your fantasy and imagination. Try to take the background and interests of the person you have chosen into account, making this visible in your photos. So, it’s not a matter what you find interesting in your surroundings, but rather what the person you have chosen would find interesting. It does not matter whether you use an analogue camera or a digital one. You should make at least 8 photographs for this assignments. Additionally, you make a portfolio of earlier work you made on your own initiative
The 8 assignments photographs and the portfolio should be merged into one PDF, which you should upload during the application process.
In addition, you need to write a motivation letter of max. 500 words in which you explain your assignment and why you want to participate in Photography 1.


This elective course is an introduction to the medium of photography, where the focus is on exploring photography’s expressive capacities and its possible applications. We see photographs all day long: in the news, in advertising and presented as works of art. We normally think that we immediately understand what we see and that a photo is simple and easy to understand. But is that really true? Do we know how an image actually works and how we perceive reality through visual representations? In this course, through practical assignments and theoretical lectures, students will discover photography’s power, complexity and modes of action and learn to manipulate them. This course is structured around a number of individual assignments that allow students to try out different directions in photography, letting them to discover their own interests and to continue developing. Practical assignments are supported by theory and by examining both history and contemporary photography. Class meetings capitalise on the fact that students participating have a broad range of disciplines and view photography from the perspective of their own background. The role of photography in the sciences, history and other disciplines is also discussed. In addition to practical assignments, students write a short essay about photography (1,000 to 2,000 words) from the perspective of their own area of study.

Learning objectives

The objective is to discover how photography plays a role in society, how the perception of images works and how people interpret them. Students learn how they can apply this knowledge to communicate their own ideas to their audience through photographs. Students broaden their awareness of photography’s potential and possibilities through experimentation and by exploring different styles, techniques and directions in this medium, The assignments are focused on individual artistic development. At the end of the course, students will be able to produce photographic works independently.


Entrance exams: 2 September 2020 from 16.00 hrs. - We do not negatiate about the date of the entrance exam

Lessons: Wednesday from 19.00 – 21.30 hrs.

Period: 23 September until 16 December 2020

Location: KABK, Prinsessegracht 4, Den Haag.

Room: BA020

Mode of instruction

Seminars with individual guidance.

Mode of assessment

Attendance to the lessons is mandatory for 80% Individual assessment of work at the end of the course. At the end of the course there will be an exhibition. Participation in that is required.


Will be anounced in the first class.


Liza Swaving


NB: This course is NOT available in Usis. Registration: 10th June – 20th August 2020 To register, visit


This course is part of Practicum Artium. These courses are exclusively intented for students of Leiden University.

For other courses in the domains of fine arts and music, please visit: Elective courses music and fine arts