Lisa Burton Tarver

Lisa Burton Tarver

Southeast Region
El Dorado, Arkansas
870-862-5474 870-866-6970
[email protected]

I enjoy being an AIE artist working with students both young and old. My approach to photography in a classroom setting is to introduce students to the fascinating and powerful work of photography. By being exposed to photography as an art form, they can learn to express themselves in a positive way. The possibilities of digital photography are unlimited, but in my past residencies I have also delved into the science and history behind the camera, constructing a camera obscura and using light reactive fabric panels to make photos. These programs were very well received and had many positive outcomes in addition to the obvious learning about photography. I promote visual literacy through the use of digital cameras. Students are taught the correct usage of the cameras, and are then allowed to explore and express themselves through photography. The digital camera is a very practical, hands on instrument that helps make children more aware of their image saturated world. I align my photography goals with those of the classroom common core standards. Students are learning the concepts of vertical and horizontal orientation, contrast using black and white or colors, image selection, and manipulation of a selected photograph, size and proportion. Students are also using their writing skills to write stories or simple sentences that tell about their photographs. Journals are created as a final project to share with their parents. There are massive learning opportunities with the discipline of photography.


My love for photography began in my early childhood with memories of the black and white images taken by my father. I learned the most about photography from my journey through life. I found that photography awakened the artist within me. I think of my camera as my brush and my film as my canvas. I love my film camera, black and white film, and working in the dark room, as well as working with digital media. I enjoy sharing what I have learned through the past 25 years of experience. The digital age has led to many rapid changes in the media of photography. I-pads, cell phones, and digital cameras are the new tools of the trade. These changes keep the art form new and fresh. I am currently the Photographer in Residence at the South Arkansas Arts Center in El Dorado where I teach photography classes through the AIE program and document events for news releases, publicity brochures, the web page, and archives.

AIE Program

Preferred Age Level: Elementary
Geographic Availability: South Arkansas
Time Availability: September - May
Special Needs: Workspace; cameras are provided