True Star Media Workshops Take Creativity To Another Level

In the kick-off to the True Star Media Workshop series participants learned the fundamentals of Canva design.

True Star has officially kicked off its media training workshop series for youth, starting with the Canva Basics and Camera Basics and Fundamentals workshops!

The Canva workshop took place at the True Star office located at 1130 S. Wabash Ave. Desktops lined a room in the office, preloaded with the Canva website, ready for the next generation of graphic designers to create something from a blank canvas.

Hector “Hex” Danniel, True Star’s digital director, said the program was designed for beginner and intermediate learners of the Canva platform. “As an organization, we’d like to invest [in] and educate our youth. Upskilling and upscaling people’s skillsets, especially the youth, is a major part of our mission statement,” said Danniel.

Prior to the workshop, Keyon Hackle, a junior at Kenwood Academy, had a background with platforms such as Photoshop, in addition to photography and video editing skills. He came to the workshop to deepen his skills with digital media.

“What made me come to this workshop was I do a lot of different things that have to do with digital media and digital imaging,” said Hackle. “Joining True Star will give me really good insight for what I need to do and how to improve on my digital skills.”

Programs like these are especially important for youth who are seeking opportunities to improve their skills in different areas.

“I’d like to stress the importance of getting out of your comfort zone and actually opting into these workshops. Not only does it build a sense of community, but it gets your foot in the door,” said Danniel.

The Camera Basics and Fundamentals workshop, held in the Pullman neighborhood, was led by professional photographers Sylus Green and Deshaun “Trig” Adams. Students ages 10-24 years old from across the Chicagoland area learned how to use professional grade cameras in manual mode by adjusting settings such as shutter speed, ISO, and aperture. Green and Adams then taught the students how to light photography subjects to achieve proper exposure and create cinematic effects. After the education portion of the workshop, the students got hands-on experience as they paired up and moved through five stations with different mannequins where they practiced capturing shots that matched those created by the instructors.

In the Camera Basics workshop participants practice photographing each other.

The first activity was a difficult lighting challenge. The students shot photos with the sunlight coming through the window. They were challenged to correctly adjust camera settings until their subject was properly exposed. Next was the shutter speed challenge where students focused on adjusting shutter speed to capture still shots during action. This activity is helpful for photographers who often take pictures at sporting events or during high-movement activity. The aperture challenge showed students how to create a shallow depth of field which creates sharp, focused, properly exposed pictures of a subject while taking focus off of the background.

By the end of these challenges, student photographers were excited about the photos they took and felt comfortable operating a camera without using automatic mode. They left Green and Adams outstanding reviews and many expressed a desire to learn more based on their experience in the Camera Basics and Fundamentals workshop.

Green was pleased with how this initial workshop turned out, and is looking forward to providing opportunities like this to more youth. “Ever since I became a certified trainer, I have dreamed of providing industry level training in the community I grew up in,” he said. “I am excited to deliver the same level of media training that I provide for the White House and Disney to the young people of my community.”

Don’t miss out on these FREE workshops that True Star Media is offering. Reserve your spot now by clicking here to register.

By Cierra Lemott, Senior, Columbia College Chicago

Instagram: @cece.kodak / @kodakscamera

By Christopher Lockridge

Instagram: Lockotb


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Written by TrueStar Staff

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