Photographic Field Studies at HMSC
A showcase of student work from Photographic Field Studies course at HMSC


During the first summer session, nine students had the challenge of combining marine science and oceanographic research to approach scientific studies through art. Some students decided to try and tackle big issues of climate change, rising sea levels, and rising ocean temperatures. Other students took a direct look at concepts like countershading, survival techniques, and necropsies of marine life. Finally, we had students look philosophically at our ocean and marine life by addressing issues of pain, the complex interdependency of humans and whales, and through contemplating the cycle of existence here on the coast. 

To approach these works of art, our students started as any scientist might, with a little bit of research. Here at the Guin Library, many students dove into the research which would help to shape their final artworks. The students then spent time in the field; witnessing marine life firsthand at beaches here in Newport. After collecting enough research, the students set off to create their pieces. Most students completed a photo series or video to document the creation of their work, though a few students spent time physically crafting sculptural elements for their finished products.

Those who wish to learn more about each piece are encouraged to visit the complete exhibit when it is showcased in the Hatfield Visitor Center this Fall (dates forthcoming). Send questions to