Digital Media E-5: Exploring Digital Media
Harvard Extension School
Spring 2023
Assignment 3: Composition and Mood
Due 4:00pm ET on Monday, February 13
Submit this assignment at:
🎥 Watch the assignment Walkthrough video 🎥

There are two parts to this assignment. For part one, you are showing us a variety of shot sizes (remember wide shot, closeup, etc?). This part of the assignment is meant to be iterated through pretty quickly. The second part is really where we want you to spend most of your time, focusing on making images that convey a feeling/mood.

Part 1: Shot Types/Sizes

Cast a human “actor” for this part of the assignment: a family member, roommate, or friend. You are welcome to get as involved as you like, but the intention is to move through this portion of the assignment quickly, showing different shot sizes.

We expect images to be exposed well for the scene and to have a neutral white balance (for this assignment, using Auto Mode is OK). All shots must be in sharp focus. You are not required to shoot in RAW for this portion of the assignment, you may use JPEG without editing.

The shots may be as creative as you wish, but having someone stand in the same pose for every shot is OK. You should not take one photo and crop it. We want an original image for each number.

With your actor, shoot one image to demonstrate each of the following shot sizes:

  1. Wide Shot
  2. Full Shot/Long Shot
  3. 3/4 Shot
  4. Medium Shot
  5. Medium Close-Up
  6. Close-Up
  7. Extreme Close-Up

Just as in Project 1, you should name your photos to correspond with the shots listed above:

  • firstname_lastname_assignment3-1.jpg (this is the wide shot)
  • firstname_lastname_assignment3-2.jpg (this is the full shot/long shot)
  • firstname_lastname_assignment3-6.jpg (this is the close-up shot)
  • firstname_lastname_assignment3-7.jpg (this is the extreme close-up shot)

For example:

  • dan_coffey_assignment3-1.jpg

Part 2: Creating Feeling

For this portion of the assignment, you will submit 2 photos. We will give you three feelings that we want you to convey, you will choose 2 of the 3 feelings to bring to life in your images. You should feel free to play with framing, focal length, color, lighting, camera placement, balance, depth, movement, or anything else that you’d like to explore to compose your shot. Your images should have a human subject and you are encouraged to work with your actor from part 1, though that is not necessary.

Shoot two of the following three feelings (you choose which two):

  • disconnected or lost
  • scared or a feeling of doom
  • empowered or confident

The feelings should be conveyed through your framing, composition, lighting, and other aesthetic choices you make while photographing, not just through the actor’s performance/expression.

For part two, please name the photos of the feelings you chose as such:

  • firstname_lastname_assignment3-disconnected.jpg (this is for disconnected or lost)
  • firstname_lastname_assignment3-scared.jpg (this is for scared or a feeling of doom)
  • firstname_lastname_assignment3-empowered.jpg (this is for empowered or confident)

For example:

dan_coffey_assignment3-scared.jpg (if I shot feeling of scared/doom)


That was a lot! Here’s a checklist to ensure you’re set:

Part 1:

  • You shot all 7 different shot sizes, enumerated above
  • Each shot is named in the correct order specified in Part 1
  • All shots are properly exposed and are in sharp focus

Part 2:

  • Chose 2 of the 3 emotions
  • Photographed scenes conveying each emotion
  • Each shot identifies the emotion you chose according to the naming specification in Part 2

For both:

  • You uploaded your photos to the Canvas assignment

Once you are ready to submit, please submit your photos to this assignment on Canvas!