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Brooks Institute

From its founding in 1945, Brooks Institute through the Professional Photography Program has provided a hands-on, student-focused education. This method of experiential learning remains the foundation of instruction in all programs at the Institute today. Close collaboration between faculty and students in the classroom, the darkroom and digital labs, and the field continues to help prepare individuals for careers in professional photography. This California-based photography school is proud to have trained some of the leading visual artists of yesterday and today, and looks forward to inspiring the next generation.

The Film and Video Production Program began at Brooks Institute in the mid-50�s, as a natural outgrowth of the training in photography. Using the same hands-on approach to teaching and learning, Brooks’ students have the opportunity to master the art and craft of moviemaking. Considered by those in the industry as one of the field�s best kept secrets, this program has a long standing history of graduating some of the best in the field: Isidore Mankofsky, Cinematography for The Muppet Movie and Somewhere in Time; Dominick Palmer, Cinematography on the TV series M*A*S*H; Robert Legato, Academy Award winner for Best Effects (Digital Domain) on the movie Titanic, Visual Effects Supervisor for The Aviator; and most recently, graduate Boris Undorf, Best Cinematography at New York�s VisionFest �04� Festival for Sonata.

In the early 90�s, the Institute began a tradition of international documentary expeditions. It was these excursions to China, India, Africa, and Southeast Asia that paved the way for the Visual Journalism Program. This photojournalism program concentrates on teaching truthful, non-fiction storytelling with industry-current digital equipment (digital still cameras, digital video, computers). The reliance on industry-current digital technology makes Brooks one of the few all digital college photojournalism programs in the US.

The Graphic Design program at Brooks evolved in response to the demands of new media. Today�s graphic designers and multimedia practitioners need broad-based skills and adaptability to achieve success in a rapidly changing field where art and technology have merged together. Brooks provides the opportunity for the visual communicator to acquire knowledge and skills in a variety of disciplines � design, illustration, writing, photography, video and film � in order to be successful.

27 E. Cota Street, Santa Barbara, CA, 93101

Classes are available in 5 areas:


Master of Fine Arts in Photography

In today’s marketplace, many corporate and educational positions require advanced degrees. The Master of Fine Arts in Photography Program at Brooks Institute is designed to expand the knowledge of students’ undergraduate learning experiences. This Photography Program allows students the opportunity to benefit from higher technical, aesthetic and practical knowledge while enhancing their pursuit of occupations requiring graduate education.

As a student, you will have access to a comprehensive curriculum encompassing the entirety of the photographic art industry. Fostering critical thinking, creativity and professional excellence, this Master of Fine Arts in Photography Program can help each student discover his or her potential. This program provides an experimental learning environment that allows students the opportunity to stay abreast of technological, aesthetic, business and societal changes while integrating personal, professional and social responsibility.

The Master of Fine Arts in Photography degree program is designed to be completed in two years; however, a student may take up to three years to complete the program.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Professional Photography

Brooks Institute’s Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Professional Photography is designed to prepare students for the creative, business, and technical challenges for a career in the field of professional photography through a philosophy of “learning by doing.” The program integrates liberal arts, professional business practices and ethics with a core of photography and media production curriculum. In Lower Division courses, students learn basic and intermediate photographic skills, while Upper Division courses enable students to develop creative style and problem-solving skills in specialized areas of interest.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film

Brooks Institute’s Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film prepares students for a variety of opportunities in motion picture production for traditional and emerging media markets. The program offers a deeply immersive, experiential learning experience that promotes creative expression, best practices, and collaboration. Students experience the art of storytelling through the visual language of film while also exploring business topics related to the visual arts.

Bachelor of Science in Visual Journalism

The craft of visual journalism combines words with images to create works of nonfiction, multi-media storytelling that communicate to the public what is happening in our world. Brooks Institute’s Bachelor of Science degree in Visual Journalism aims to prepare students to become journalistic storytellers committed to truth telling, ethical practice and the highest level of creative craftsmanship.

Students can learn to produce journalistic stories using a variety of tools, from photography and writing to video and audio content, in order to realize their research-based stories from the concept stage all the way to the final product. Topics such as documentary film and website design support the core program to prepare graduates for employment in the digital age. The intensive, real-world curriculum – locally, nationally and globally based – follows Brooks Institute’s “learning by doing” approach to support students’ professional goals.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design

The Graphic Design Program provides an intensive learning experience that challenges students to enhance their unique creative abilities while developing critical design analysis skills based on visual design fundamentals. Student engage in hands-on, project-based learning meant to foster an understanding of problem solving and targeted messaging for a broad range of emerging technology and media applications. Projects are specifically designed to reflect ‘real-world’ scenarios and build on the student’s level of knowledge while providing an understanding of professional expectations.

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