Noah Breakspear

if x=y then C+=A+


The final countdown.. ZIP!

img_1066-copy1. What is your inquiry question? What initially drew you to this question? Did your question stay the same, or did it change over time? Why?

What type of descriptive language makes an effective story through a single photo?

I am already fascinated in photography and the one thing that I was still not so sure on was how to create a story through a singular photo. It’s interesting how the angle of the photo or the composition can spark a conversation between the photographer and the audience. I also chose this topic because it puts me in a better position for a future career. Having this as a skill will allow me to put it on an application and have a higher chance of being accepted to a university.  My inquiry question technically stayed the same as it all revolved around the idea of storytelling. However, I had to make some adjustments as my original question was too general.



2. What skills have you expanded on / learned during the inquiry process? How are these skills applicable to your success as a student?


Throughout this project, I have learned how to effectively synthesize a general inquiry question into a specific point that I can research in the given time in class. This skill is crucial to my success as a student as I have the ability to apply this to other assignments such as essays where I must create a theme and then turn it into a thesis statement. Having this skill will allow me to begin the researching phase a lot quicker instead of figuring how to synthesize something.


3. What did you learn about / what is your answer to this inquiry question? Remember to be specific and provide direct evidence from your research.


I learned how I could spend more time taking a photo to make sure it sparks a story in the audience’s mind. This includes:

  • Choose a theme (be specific)
  • Start with a simple story composed of simple elements
  • Think about your audience
  • Be aware of the background (try to make it work with you, not against)
  • Engage emotions
  • Stay candid!

The last point being “stay candid” has shown the most amount of help when it comes to taking photos as it makes me think about capturing images “in the moment”. This allows the audience to feel like they were there when the image was taken!



4. In what ways does your final learning artifact demonstrate your learning/answer to your inquiry question? How does it connect to your chosen curricular competencies? Consider listing your competencies and including images, links, or excerpts from your work to demonstrate this.

My final artifact are the photos I have taken in sort of game-like style where the audience and I choose a photo and discuss the emotions we feel and what ideas it sparks up in our minds. After I will give them the choice of a story starter and we will go back and forth, creating a story about the image. Presenting in this format will demonstrate my work immensely as I can learn which photos are more effective in storytelling. This also connects to the Creative Thinking competencies as it requires both the audience and me to conjure up a story with only a photo and a story starter to assist us. As for the curricular competencies, my artifact connects to the “Recognize and appreciate how different features, forms, and genres of texts” as I share the photos I have taken and explain how stories and creative texts can be expanded out of literature and into artistic pieces. As for the second Competence, my artifact demonstrates this by using a variety of language within the photo, helping readers understand my research more. Finally, my artifact connects to the final curricular competencies by showing the fact that pieces of texts and art can be viewed in more than one way and the audience can feel many different emotions of said text.



5. What resources did you find useful during your inquiry and why were they useful? (Cite at least four sources you consulted, with links, and write a brief 25-50 word response as to was important to your learning).


“Stories of Animals, Nature, and Culture.” National Geographic, National Geographic,

  • I know this is a very general link, but it’s proven itself useful so many times! National Geographic is a website for people with their own stories to share through the art of photography. NatGeo is also an amazing place for people to share their photography skills, further inspiring photographers like me to go out and capture beautiful images.

Gabriel, Michael, and Michael Gabriel L. Sumastre. “Storytelling Through Photographs.” Contrastly, Contrastly, 21 May 2016,

  • This website deemed itself useful because It gave very specific information about the things I needed to consider when taking a photo. It lists each element I should think about and explained what each one meant in full detail.

“Storytelling Through Photography – a Case Study.” Brent Mail Photography,

  • This is definitely one of the most helpful websites I have stumbled across. The publisher has given many examples of his own photography to help guide me when I go on my own photo shoots. I am a kinesthetic/visual learner and this website allows me to connect and learn much more than just an article.

“Storytelling.” Artifact Uprising,

  • This website was very useful as it showed the steps in storytelling through photography in an organized, concise way, with a clear step one, step two and so on. The steps were also in a progressive manner helping me be able to build up and visually learn how to complete the task.Bug Perspective

6. What new questions do you have about your inquiry? What motivates you or excites you about these questions?



    • How can this be applied to graphic novels?
    • Is this skill useful in any other careers other than a photographer?
    • Are there courses that could enhance these skills?
    • What would the definition of a “perfect” photo be like?

These questions excite me because they are all questions that I can learn throughout my In-Depth. As you may know, I am learning all about Film Photography and the entire process of the chemicals and the dark room. My research from ZIP! can be applied to further illustrate stories through my photography both in In-Depth and my future as a photographer.





In-Depth Blog Post #1

For my In-Depth project this year, I decided to dive into the depths of Film Photography. As you may all know, I have a very strong passion for photography as last year I focused on narrowing my photography skills. I feel like this is an excellent opportunity to become familiar with the schematics and fine-tuning aspects of Film. Film Photography requires an immense amount of patience and will power making the photographer wait through the entire process of producing magnificent images. Choosing this as my In-Depth this year allows me to become more versatile with the aspect of photography as I will soon be able to say that no matter what circumstances I am in, I can still capture beautiful photos. For the mentor aspect, I am planning on meeting with a couple of photography teachers around SD43, mainly looking at Gleneagle, Heritage Woods, and Charles Best as they all have usable dark rooms. In the case that they are unable to help me, I plan on talking with PDPC and more specifically my mentor from last year, Garry Johns, who will be able to point me in the right direction.

By the end of April, I hope to have a great selection of film orientated photos, allowing me to choose the best that I want to present on In-Depth night. I also plan on creating a published album of my photos and get it printed for a physical copy of my endearing work of film photography. As for the actual presentation, I plan on making a short video of the process. I intend to have about 60 seconds of this video b-roll (short clips of myself taking photos to enrich the video), taking the photos into the dark room, and processing them. The last 30 seconds will be the images themselves. I vision a sort of “the steps to create these pictures” as it begins outside, then into the dark room, and with all the time you put in, you come out with a stunning photo.  

This project will be an amazing opportunity and I am thrilled to study Film Photography for the next few months.


Zip DOL #4

Knowing what you know now, what advice would you give yourself at the start?

Knowing what I know now after dwelling in ZIP! for a while, I would inform my past self to not be so general and try to narrow down the overall project. At the very beginning, I wanted to do something with storytelling without words but looking back now, the project is starting to become onerous and much larger then it should be. The research that I have done has helped direct my ZIP! on event photography or photos that already have a story in it helping my inquiry become a lot more focused on what I am really trying to study.  With these minor changes, I can conclude that I may not be able to learn absolutely everything about storytelling without words. However, my ZIP! actually connects to my In-Depth project meaning I can continue learning autonomously until the end of the school year.


Zip DOL #3

Take a look back at your inquiry calendar. Do you need to adjust anything?


Being two weeks into Zip! and only having little under two weeks left, I think my calendar should be adjusted according to what I have learned so far. I believe that I should be trying to take photos as soon as possible and as much as possible as I have dedicated too much of my time to the storytelling research and writing. Over the exam break, I now plan to shoot every other day and gather all my photos on Friday the 24th. This gives me enough time to edit my images and create the presentation for the following week. Revising my calendar will allow deeper knowledge into storytelling without words and provides more room if I want to adjust the photos I plan on sharing.


Zip DOL #2

What have you done to make retrieving evidence and research easier in class?

In the last couple of work blocks we have had in class, I have struggled with finding solid evidence of how to tell stories without using words. I have many different resources with examples of people taking photos of events and having a short description beside it, but I’m finding it difficult to locate resources that can give me tips with my inquiry. As I’ve learned in the past, photography is a skill that usually requires context behind it. For an example, social media websites. Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest; they all have one thing in common and that is captions. After posting a photo, it gives you the option to add a caption describing the photo or maybe saying a quote of some sort. This is the reason my ZIP! could become very difficult. However, I have reached out to some friends and family who know a lot about photography and asked them if they could point me in the right direction. After talking with them, I have started to look more at news articles and more specifically photojournalism (something in which I look at for a future career). With making this slight change in resources, I have found many new examples of my inquiry, allowing me to find more valuable evidence.


Zip DOL #1

A specific source of information that I have found valuable is National Geographic is a website for people with fascinating stories to share through the art of photography. NatGeo is also an amazing place for people to share their photography skills, further inspiring photographers like me to go out and capture beautiful images. NatGeo is a valuable website for the fact that it allows people to share and communicate about the experiences they have in their lives. Not only is the website filled with extravagant stories, but there are certain links within NatGeo that help you write stories about the images you take.


Zip Proposal


What type of descriptive language makes an effective story?

Storytelling without words. Sounds crazy, but definitely not impossible. That’s exactly what I would like to learn. The skill and ability to create a story with only a title is skyrocketing in the photography industry as it enables viewers to stare at a single photo and wonder what it took to capture that image.  I am choosing this area of interest because photography is one of my many passions. It requires the perspective and the risk-taking to get the beautiful images you desire. I believe that I am a great photographer as I show the willpower to infuse into our world and capture moments. I am willing to fight for an outstanding image and not quit until I am satisfied. However, I struggle with storytelling and capturing a specific moment that has a story behind. When audiences view my photos, they should not only gaze at the photo, but query about the challenges and risks taken to create such photo. Zip is an amazing opportunity to not only improve my English writing but to apply it to my passion. Furthermore, If I have any questions about my project, I can reach out to many sources of information. Garry Johns, my mentor for last years indepth, is a phenomenal photographer and I have kept in contact, allowing me to approach him whenever I need help capturing an image. For the storytelling aspect, I was thinking about approaching Michelle. Her writing abilities astonish me, and I would love to ask for a few tips and tricks to enhance my writing. Another resource that could be great use is National Geographic. They frequently upload photos that have unmistakable stories behind. NatGeo is a great place for becoming inspired and will unimaginably set me on my journey. In this case, I plan on presenting my overall learnings in a artistic representation/video. I envision my so-called “station” to be a casual conversation between me and my audience. I would like to have some of my own photos to display, and have my audience member attempt to create a story using that image.