Welcome to Life’s Front row seat!

Welcome to Loyalist College Photojournalism 2011!

My name is Frank O’Connor. I am the coordinator of the Photojournalism Program here at Loyalist and would like to welcome each  and every one of you, with camera in hand, to life’s front row seat!

This year we begin celebrating the  25th year of Canadian Photojournalism education here at Loyalist. We have graduates working around the corner, across Canada, and all over the world. (http://www.loyalistcollege.com/news/loyalist-photojournalism-graduates-earn-industry-r )-just one example!


This is a hands-on practical course. We are content driven. We want you to produce pictures that say something………that mean something………….that capture a moment or little slice of life.  Some have defined photojournalism as “the marriage of words and pictures”, or “storytelling”…………….sometimes with one picture………sometimes with ten pictures…………and more recently, sometimes with  the added multimedia dimension of  sound or video. The modern photojournalist is one who is adaptable and multi-skilled.  Our pledge is to provide you with that “triple threat skillset” of  still photography, writing and multimedia.

This blog site is designed to help you get to know us a little better and also to help answer some of the questions you may have as first semester students coming into the program. Along with the information sent to you by the registrar’s office, we hope to help get you started on your new path in life and at the same time, take some of the stress and mystery out of the orientation period here at Loyalist.

You are one of approximately 55 first year students in this year’s class, divided into three sections, A, B and C. You will be joining approximately 40 returning second-year students divided into two sections.,

Almost all of your classes will be taught with your section only, so you can expect to get to know well about 20 of your classmates almost immediately! You will no doubt find that you have a lot in common with your classmates. Many of our students develop lifelong friendships at Loyalist, and a sense of family and kindred spirit prevails here. Our students come from across Canada and on occasion from around the world.

Our students range in age from 17 to 60! Some students come to us right out of high school. Some students have just finished university, and still others are coming to us as lifelong learners starting a second or third career! Year to year on average, the class is 60% female, 40% male.

Our labs are equipped with Macintosh computers, loaded with all the software you will need. Most students arrive with a laptop but it is not mandatory to have one. PCs are fine, and if that is what you prefer, stick with it! You can always come around to the Mac world later!

Equipment is a big question for many students. What to buy can be an intimidating  experience. We have included an equipment list in PDF form, that will list the things you need to have.  Please refer to it and contact us if you have any questions. As multimedia demands and capabilities increase in our profession, it makes increasing sense to use one of the newer digital slr cameras with high quality video and sound capture capability. It is not necessary to have everything on the list to start, but you should have your camera and at least one lens at your disposal. You will need a dedicated flash as well by week 5 of first semester.

If you have not yet purchased your camera, it is advisable to do so as soon as you can. Getting to know your camera over the summer will certainly help give you confidence when you start in September. Cameras are complicated devices, often with confusing ergonomics that challenge the best of us! Read your camera’s manual as often as you can this summer! Spend some time exploring your camera’s controls, and then re-read your manual. This is a hands-on practical course, and coming into it with some personal hands-on experience getting to know your camera will benefit you immeasurably!


Program staff consists of  ten faculty members, six of whom will teach you during semester one.

Frank O’Connor- This is my eleventh year at Loyalist. I come from the newspaper world, having worked in the business for 23 years prior to coming here. Being the “visual record keeper of your time” is the best job in the world! I look forward to meeting you!  I will be teaching in the Intro to Photojournalism course and running the Photo Seminar Class. My college e-mail is  o’connor@loyalistc.on.ca My phone number is 613 969-1913 ext 2270. Watch this blog in the coming days for other faculty welcomes and introductions!

Patti Gower-

Scott Whalen-

Bill White

Gord Horne-

Tyler Anderson-

Luke Hendry-

Doug Wicken-

Peter Snell

Daniel Williams


Some Summer tips to keep you busy and help get you in shape for the course

–       Get to know your camera.  Explore its features. Shoot pictures and read that manual!

–       Practice your people skills. Good things happen when you talk to people! Strong interpersonal skills are extremely important.

–       If you haven’t got a drivers licence yet, begin or advance the process. Many jobs or internship opportunities ask that you have a valid drivers licence.

–       When you see a photo that moves, informs or excites you, think about why it is successful. Try to deconstruct it!

–       Visit as many journalistic websites as you can. Read newspapers and magazines. Explore the vast array of places to apply your future skillset.

About loyalistpjblog

coordinator Loyalist College Photojournalism Program
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