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School of Photography

Faculty

James Wood
James B. Wood
Executive Director of Photography

Mr. Wood has been teaching for more than 35 years, while simultaneously running one of the largest West Coast commercial studios. He earned a BFA in photography with distinction from the Art Center College of Design. His client list tops 1000. To name a few; Life magazine, American Motors, Honda, IBM, Apple, Yamaha, Gallo, Levi's, Marlboro, Wells Fargo, Polaroid, Kodak, Nikon, Kraft and Toyota. Mr. Wood has the honor of being named one of the 65 best photographers in the world by Canon U.S.A.

Will Mosgrove
Will Mosgrove
Graduate Director of Photography

Will Mosgrove has been involved in the photographic community for over thirty years. He is an alumnus of the Academy of Art University as well as a long-time instructor in the School of Photography. Throughout his career he has maintained a strong tie to the school. In 2007, he was awarded the Academy of Art University's "Alumnus of Distinction" award. Mr. Mosgrove has run and maintained his own successful photography business for the past twenty-eight years and has won numerous national awards for his work. He has also volunteered his time with the Advertising Photographers of America (APA) where he held the office of National President for three terms. In 2008, Mosgrove was awarded APA's 25th anniversary leadership award and in 2009 he received the prestigious International Photographic Council's Photographic Leadership Award, which was presented at the United Nations.

Ryan Baldwin
Ryan Baldwin
Director, Online Photography

Ryan Baldwin is a freelance photographer based in Crested Butte, Colorado. He specializes in digital fine printing and commercial photography. He holds a BA in color technology from Brooks Institute of Photography. His work has been published in magazines, calendars, national advertising campaigns and much more. He runs his own stock photo library in addition to image representation with leading stock agencies. Ryan's fine prints are sold to private collectors and represented in galleries across the United States.

With over 14 years experience in the industry, Ryan has succeeded in merging his traditional photographic background with the newest advancements in digital imaging. Ryan has been teaching at the Academy of Art University since Fall 2001 and is currently the Director of Online Photography.

Connie Begg
Connie Begg
Graduate Associate Director

Connie Begg is a fine art photographer specializing in alternative photographic processes. She received a Masters degree in Fine Art from Mills College in Oakland, CA and maintains an art studio and darkroom in the Bayview district of San Francisco. Her photographs can be found in many private collections and have been exhibited locally, nationally and internationally.

James Goins
James Goins
Associate Director, Online Photography

James Goins is a fine art photographer based in San Anselmo, California. He holds a BFA in photography from the University of Missouri-Saint Louis and specializes in mixed media and alternative processes. His photographs and paintings have been exhibited throughout the Midwest and the West coast. James is a member of the Society for Photographic Education and the College Arts Association.

James has worked in education for the past 12 years and is passionate and committed to the arts. As an educator, he believes in creating an environment that encourages communication, collaboration, and the exploration of personal and creative growth. In 2005 James began work at the Academy of Art University and currently serves as the Associate Director of Online Photography.

Alyson Belcher
Alyson Belcher
Full-Time Faculty / Curriculum Coordinator, Online Photography

Alyson Belcher investigates the relationships between movement, stillness, and time by photographing her subjects with pinhole and other low-tech cameras. Her photographs reveal what lies beneath the surface of visible reality–stories, memories and hidden truths. Alyson’s work has been exhibited in galleries from New York to Taiwan. Recent publications include Photographic Possibilities: The Expressive Use of Equipment, Ideas, Materials, and Processes, Third Edition, by Robert Hirsch (Focal Press, 2009). She received her M.F.A. from San Francisco State University and is an Associate Director in the School of Photography at Academy of Art University. Alyson is represented by the Robert Tat Gallery in San Francisco, and Galerie BMG in Woodstock, NY.

Sarah Barsness
Sarah Barsness
Full-Time Instructor

Sarah Barsness was born and raised in the American West. Her photographs, installations and mixed media pieces, which incorporate photography, printmaking and found materials, have been exhibited in the Bay Area, throughout the USA, and in Japan and Mexico. Her photographs have been featured in various newspapers and brochures.

She is currently an Affiliate Artist at the Headlands Center for the Arts in Marin County. She is a former Artist in Residence at Recology - the San Francisco “dump”. Recent past exhibits include "Materiality" at Yorkarts, in York, PA, "Cardiovascular", in Cuernavaca, Mexico, and "I Know How You Feel", at the Santa Fe Contemporary Art Center.

She studied and taught photography at the Photographic Center Northwest in Seattle, WA, and received her MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute.

Erik Butler
Erik Butler
Full-Time Instructor

Erik Butler has over twenty-three years of photographic experience as the owner of a successful San Francisco based commercial photography studio. Whether shooting large format in the studio or environmental portraiture on location, Butler is known for his dynamic, elegant lighting style and use of saturated color to produce dramatic imagery.

Kent Marshall
Kent Marshall
Full-Time Instructor

Kent has 26 years experience as a professional photographer with studios in Los Angeles and San Francisco. He received his BFA in Art with distinction at the University of the Pacific and a BFA in Photography at the Art Center College of Design. Kent has been teaching at the Academy for 9 years and continues to maintain his San Francisco Photography Studio. Kent specializes in lighting for commercial and fine art applications both in the studio and on location.

Michael Sims
Michael Sims
Full-Time Instructor

Michael Sims is a photographer and educator living and working in San Francisco. He has been teaching in the Bay Area for the past 10 years and in 2011 joined the Academy of Art as a full-time faculty member.

Michael earned a BFA from Indiana University, with a major in photography and a minor in Art History. He earned his MFA in photography from the Rochester Institute of Technology.

Michael’s photographic practice utilizes the medium’s cutting-edge technology but also engages its historic traditions. He is interested in blurring the line between the contemporary and the antique. His work explores cultural concepts of beauty while also tracing the roots of ancient ritual alive within contemporary society. Michael’s photographic expertise ranges from medium and large format digital photography and printing to hand-brushed platinum printing and hand made bookbinding.

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