Los Angeles Center of Photography Brings Life Changing Photography Classes to Boys & Girls Clubs

submission by corneliaemerson
Los Angeles Center of Photography Brings Life Changing Photography Classes to Boys & Girls Clubs

About Your Application

Organization(s) name(s):

Los Angeles Center of Photography

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Describe Your Organization(s)

Non-profit organization

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In one sentence, please describe what your organization does.


The Los Angeles Center of Photography is a community for new and seasoned photographers to come for artistic growth, discussion and inspiration--with classes, certificates and a one-year professional program, as well as outreach to underserved youth.

In one to three sentences, please describe your proposal.


LACP will bring a year-long digital photography program to four Boys & Girls Clubs in LA County. Youngsters from 10-18 learn basic digital photography skills, followed by portrait, street photography and documentary classes, focused on their lives and communities--but also exposing them to careers. LACP will host a final exhibit for each group in Hollywood—heightening student self-esteem by following through with a long-term creative project and helping mount the show.

Please write a sample tweet to describe your submission.



help Los Angeles Center of Photography bring life-changing photography classes to Boys & Girls Clubs.

Where will you be working? Please be specific (e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County).

Central LA

East LA

San Gabriel Valley

San Fernando Valey

South LA


South Bay

Antelope Valley

County of Los Angeles (countywide)

City of Los Angeles (citywide)


Other (please specify below):

e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County:

Long Beach Boys & Girls Club

How do you plan to use these resources to make change? (check all that apply)

Conduct research

Engage residents and stakeholders

Implement a pilot or new project

Expand a pilot or program

Mobilize for systems change

Advocate with policymakers and leaders

Implement and track policy

Other (please specify below):

How will your proposal improve the following “Create” metrics? (check all that apply)

Employment in the creative industries

Arts establishments per capita

Concentration of manufacturing activity in LA

Federal research grant funding

Patents per capita

Jobs per capita

Minority- and women-owned firms

Gini coefficient

Number of high growth startups

Venture capital investment

Measures of cultural and global economic influence (“soft power”) (Dream Metric)

Recruiting and retention rates for local higher education institutions (Dream Metric)

Percentage of graduates from local higher education institutions that remain in LA County 5 years after graduating (Dream Metric)

Unemployment rates (and opportunities) for the formerly incarcerated (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the best place to create.


LACP Founder/Executive Director Julia Dean has volunteered her time to launch a pilot program at the Variety Boys & Girls Club in Boyle Heights. There are four classes of ten weeks each: Basic Photography, Portrait, Street Shooting and Documentary Photo classes. Each serves 15 students, and ideally every student would take the sequence. But there’s some attrition. So “the basics” are built into all classes, letting new students join later classes. Besides technique, the curriculum teaches communication skills, shows the meaning of long-term commitment to a project, and enhances pride as students help mount the show at LACP’s gallery in Hollywood--where family and friends go to the opening.
The history of Boyle Heights, where gangs were prevalent, meant youngsters were often forced to stay indoors after school for safety. According to Boys & Girls Club staff, many have a parent who is an alcoholic, drug abuser, or simply working too hard to supervise their kids after school. Boys & Girls Club is a refuge where students are dropped off after school and picked up at 8:00 pm. For LACP, the club is a perfect venue: structured, yet students can participate based on their interests. Through networking with other B&G Clubs in LA County, Julia has targeted three other neighborhoods that are similarly disadvantaged, and contacted the Executive Directors. All are enthusiastic about hosting the program. Besides continuing in Boyle Heights, LACP would use the grant to expand to clubs in Lincoln Heights, Venice and Long Beach in 2016. The program meets the metric of making Los Angeles “a better place to create,” as well as “a better place to learn” in overlapping ways. Instructors will introduce students to many career opportunities in professional photography. LACP adult workshops cover a gamut of classes focusing on photography’s applications to many creative industry specializations--advertising/graphic design, editorial/journalistic, older entertainment forms (film, television, music) and digital ones (gaming, website design and more). Photography is involved in LA’s premier manufacturing industries—fashion, food, furniture, toys and products of all kinds. Students learn about fine art photography, and its ecosystem of schools, galleries and publications. The introduction can inspire students to explore many routes into LA’s creative economy--after high school or through higher education in LA’s community colleges, universities or art schools.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.


Though cameras (especially phone cameras) are everywhere, serious digital photography is still a skill to be taught, mastered and perfected. So LACP’s program assumes no prior knowledge, and covers basic photo concepts and skills first. Pre- and post-tests on this “book knowledge” will be administered for each class in the sequence. Equally important, instructors will continuously evaluate the creative work done by each student—a process that will culminate at the end of 2016 as student photos from each club are selected for the final exhibitions. The program director, Julia Dean, will observe classes from time to time, to monitor the effectiveness of the instructors and the students’ progress. A final, extremely useful source of evaluation will be the staff at each Boys & Girls Club location. They will observe classes as well, and will be in frequent contact with Julia to share their insights over the course of the year.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed? (check all that apply)

Money (financial capital)

Volunteers/staff (human capital)

Publicity/awareness (social capital)

Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)


Technical infrastructure (computers, etc.)

Community outreach

Network/relationship support

Quality improvement research

Other (please specify below):

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I've been a fan of both the Boys and Girls' Club and Julia Dean for years. The former is an organization that offers boots-on-the-ground opportunities for local kids every single day, and Julia has been doing something kinda-pretty-much like that fir 20 years, creating a ground-up photo community in Los Angeles with The Julia Dean Workshops, which welcomed all. (JDPW is now known as the Los Angeles Center of Photography.) That Julia has chosen to work with the Boys and Girls' Club seems obvious and inevitable: it's where she's been headed all along. And what a double-win for LA: eager young students receive an opportunity to learn and grow and participate in their community, making pictures in their homes and neighborhoods, and the city at large benefits from the bounteous record those young people will produce---photographs that will throw a light on little-seen corners of our community, creating a historical treasury of deep and long-lasting value.

by tmalleman
5 months ago

I've known Julia for 45 years and she has always been dedicated to sharing and teaching the love of photography. Giving the Boys and Girls Club her talents would enrich their lives beyond measure. She will give these children an outlet for the creativity they might never have known they have, and perhaps lead them forward to a career. In any case, she will inspire them.

by deeb
5 months ago

I have known Julia Dean for years and she is a beacon of inspiration for many low-income children in our community as well as any one that comes in contact with her through the many wonderful work the LACP has been doing for years in Los Angeles.

Julia and LACP staff teaches, motivates and encourages the Boys & Girls Clubs children by using creative ways so they can develop the right tools that will be needed one day to be assertive and successful while navigating the complex roads and difficult decisions that we all face as adults.

Manuello Paganelli
Los Angeles California

by photoLA
6 months ago

What greater contribution is there than bringing art into the community with Julia Dean at the helm?! I am excited about what's possible for the kids at the Boys and Girls Club and the city of LA.

by TCP
6 months ago

Julia Dean and her team at LACP are creative, giving, and talented. The Boys & Girls Clubs are THE best out-of-school-time organization in the country that helps build character, confidence, and purpose for youth from disadvantaged environments. They truly change the lives of kids! I can't think of a better combination to create a meaningful and creative partnership in this community than with LACP and Boys & Girls Clubs!!

by its4thekids
6 months ago

I hope she can come teach at the Los Angeles Boys & Girls Club.

by JuanaLambert
6 months ago

I have taken many classes here at this great place over the course of 5 years. The teachers and classes are so varied and just as inspirational. My photos have improved and the people I have met have been a creative boost.

by love2f
6 months ago

LACP is such a wonderful, creative place for kids and adults. Julia Dean is amazing!

by lisabevis
6 months ago

LACP is a terrific organization, and Julia Dean is an inspirational leader. This project will make a transformative difference in the lives of Boys & Girls Clubs kids!

by sarahbach
6 months ago

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Submission Began
Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Submission Ended
Tuesday, October 06, 2015
at 07:00 PM UTC

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Voting Began
Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Voting Ended
Tuesday, November 03, 2015
at 08:00 PM UTC

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Winner Announced
Tuesday, December 08, 2015