About Photography 

The LSU School of Art offers tracks in photography for both the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Studio Art and the Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Studio Art, and an undergraduate minor.

Photography students learn to create dynamic images and to consider the cultural implications of the medium. Students are expected to form and refine a visual philosophy, utilizing photographic technique as an expressive tool. The curriculum merges new and traditional techniques with the critical concerns of contemporary art. Students explore a full array of conventional and experimental processes through course work and independent study in darkrooms and studios available for work in black-and-white, color, large-format, non-silver, studio lighting, and digital photography.

Photography News

louisiana trail riders photo

Louisiana Trail Riders

The Louisiana Trail Rider series by Professor Jeremiah Ariaz was awarded the Michael P. Smith Award for Documentary Photography.

Photographer in red hat, holding up camera on football field

Alumni Capture the World

Kyle Zedaker, BFA 2016/photography concentration, is team photographer of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Steep smooth flat rock

Photography in The Washington Post

Johanna Warwick’s photographic essay, Between the Ground & Sky, was a winner of the The Washington Post and Visura’s photo essay contest.


The undergraduate photography curriculum begins with an introduction to traditional black-and-white photographic techniques. Emphasis is placed on technical skills as students explore the fundamentals of the medium. Students are exposed to the critical concerns and history of photography while gaining an understanding of what it means to see photographically. As students move through the curriculum they transition from assigned work to self-directed projects and are introduced to a wide range of special topics classes in film and digital photography. In the junior year, students increasingly combine the visual language of art with written and verbal communication skills, and emphasis is placed on professional practices. The senior year culminates in a gallery exhibition and public artist talk.

Classes include:

ART 2995 Basic Photography
ART 2996 Intermediate Photography
ART 3994 Advanced Photography
ART 3996 Intro to Digital Color Photo
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: The Studio and Light
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: Artist as Researcher
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: Documentary Photography
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: New Archive
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: Material Investigations
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: Art and History of the Photo Book
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: Social Media and Photography
ART 4941 Special Topics in Photography: Malleable Narratives
ART 4994 Large Format Photography
ART 4996 Advanced Digital Color Photo
ART 4997 Alternative Photographic Processes
ART 4998 Senior Project in Photography


The Master of Fine Arts photography curriculum is dedicated to developing graduate students with strong artistic merits and the ability to communicate critical thought. MFA students are expected to work as maturing artists motivated by independent ideas and will be mentored through in-depth critiques in advanced coursework and seminar classes.

MFA candidates receive a private studio with 24-hour access. The school also offers extremely competitive graduate stipends to qualified candidates, and MFA students may have an opportunity to teach as an instructor of record after successful completion of the teaching seminar.

The LSU School of Art prides itself on the quality of the Visiting Artists & Scholars Program, where individual studio critiques and group discussions occur. Recent visiting artists include Carrie Mae Weems, David Maisel, Abelardo Morell, Dario Robleto, Alec Soth, and others.

Photography Faculty

Students receive guidance and exposure to a broad range of critical issues and aesthetic perspectives by studying with faculty who represent diverse artistic concerns.

Jeremiah Ariaz, Professor
Kristine Thompson, Associate Professor
Johanna Warwick, Assistant Professor & Area Coordinator

View all School of Art faculty.

Beyond the Studio

lsu snap student organization

SNAP Student Organization

The Society of Notoriously Artistic Photographers is a student-run organization dedicated to supporting and promoting artistic development and a sense of community within the university and Baton Rouge area.

Visiting Artists and Scholars Program logo

Visiting Artists & Scholars

Visiting artists, scholars, and guest lecturers provide further opportunities for students to extend their creative interests and to establish connections with artists from a variety of disciplines.

Why Louisiana? graphic with plantation in background

Art & Design in Louisiana

The high ground above the Mississippi River is an environment where landscape, climate, history, and culture allow for a lifestyle that is uniquely suited to the artistic temperament.

Facilities & Equipment

photo gallery

Gallery 229 exists within the LSU School of Art specifically to showcase photography.

The generously equipped facilities of the photography area at the School of Art are located on the second floor of the Art Building on the LSU campus. As students explore a full array of traditional and experimental processes through coursework and independent study, darkrooms and studios are available for work in black-and-white, color, large-format, non-silver, studio lighting, and digital photography. In addition to ample classroom and critique spaces, Gallery 229 exists as dedicated exhibition space for photography students and guest photographers.

Available labs/equipment:

  • Dedicated graduate darkroom
  • Undergraduate darkroom
  • Alternative processes darkroom with UV exposure unit
  • Digital labs equipped with Epson Stylus Pro 3880 and 2880 printers
  • Imacon Flextight X5 film scanner
  • Epson Stylus Pro 9900 printer
  • Epson Perfection V750 scanners
  • Lighting studio with backdrops, Alien Bee strobe lights, Cowboy Studio continuous lights, various modifiers, reflectors, and colored gels

The Communication across the Curriculum (CxC) Art & Design Studio also maintains significant equipment for students to check out, including tripods, lenses, digital cameras, video cameras, audio equipment, lighting, and more.

3 D Printer creating small table

College Facilities

Students have access to a traditional wood-working shop; digital fabrication, photography, and lighting equipment; large-scale printers and scanners; an arboretum; a foundry; a motion capture studio; high-end work stations; and more.

A man and woman observe art hanging in gallery


The School of Art hosts exhibitions throughout the year at its on- and off-campus galleries. Students have abundant opportunities to see and experience innovative work from a wide range of perspectives and social themes.

Building entrance

New Arts Building

Renovations to the Studio Arts Building are complete. The new Barnes Ogden Art & Design Complex is the gateway to the historic part of campus and will promote arts to the community and provide state-of-the-art facilities and studios for studio arts.


Kristine Thompson

Kristine Thompson

Area Coordinator & Graduate Coordinator