Jordan Whitten started at Brevard College as an Adjunct Instructor in 2019 and is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor. A native of Memphis, Tennessee, he holds a BFA from Memphis College of Art and an MFA from East Tennessee State University, both in photography. In addition to teaching at Brevard College, he provides artistic and photographic support to museums and galleries in the Asheville area.
Whitten is driven to help Brevard College students understand how to create images that look like they envision. He said: “It’s the most rewarding moment when you work with a student who finds their ‘aha’ moment.” He became interested in teaching while working in the digital media department of an action sports camp in 2010, helping campers recreate the images they admired in skateboarding magazines using the right lenses, flashes, angles, settings and design software. “I immediately felt drawn to the mentor role that helps bridge the gap of opportunity for budding photographers and videographers,” Whitten said.
Due to the collaborative atmosphere at Brevard College, Whitten evolved his teaching approach to include more group projects to build relationships and simulate professional environments that students might encounter after graduation. . He said, “Collaborative work helps create a supportive peer group that I find absolutely necessary in the arts.”
To help student photographers achieve their goals, he encourages them to shape viewer experiences and expectations with every photo they take. He said, “Photographs live in an interesting artistic realm since the camera can render the world so accurately. People believe that what they see in photographs and a photo can be perceived in many ways – a short visual history, a sociological study, a historical recreation or many other things.
Whitten recently undertook two projects to improve experiential learning at Brevard College. In February, he organized an interdisciplinary exhibition of artists in an exhibition at the Spires Gallery in the Sims Art Building, titled “Forged Replica: A Contemporary Look at Landscape”.
The inspiration for the show came from students enjoying the beautiful scenery that surrounds Brevard. The painters, photographers and multidisciplinary artists in the exhibition explore how the landscape is heavily manipulated by man; asking the future to question their experience of the landscape. Professor Whitten said: “I learned where the interests of a lot of students lie and wanted to bring an exposure of work to campus to provide opportunities and options to explore in their own work.”
After learning about the needs of photography students at Brevard College, Whitten also completed a redesign of the photography studio, remodeling the space to streamline the workflow for digital media and photography students to use lighting from the studio, green screens, an infinity wall, printing and large format printing. management.
Whitten believes in the campus community of Brevard College and relies on the kind and supportive nature of faculty and staff. He said: “Whenever I need help I am fully supported and never treated like a question is a waste of time or a bad question. Everyone is fully committed to supporting the growth of students, faculty, staff and themselves.