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Gummy Bear Memes (Lesson Plan)

Updated: Jan 16, 2023

Background Information: This still life/macro photography lesson was inspired by the work of Michael Fanta. I actually conducted this lesson back in 2019. I like to teach my students to work with "what they have" versus concentrating on the fancy and expensive equipment that photographers use.

Each student had access to the following materials:

  • Black Butcher Paper

  • Assorted Gummy Bears

  • Any Classroom Materials (Thumbtacks, String, etc.)

  • A Flash Light

  • Colored Cellophane

Only cell phone cameras were used for this project. Students were allowed to work in pairs to help one another hold lights or set up props.

The room was blacked out to allow for students to have full control of their still life areas.

After students created their still life/macro images, the students were assigned to create "memes" using their gummy bear photos OR advertisements for Haribo. Instead of using apps, I used this opportunity for students to use Photoshop to learn how to follow specific guidelines set by a "job."

As you'll see in the student gallery, some followed the required use of the font impact guidelines for the memes, and some took their own creative turns. As a result, I always enjoy looking back on the final products.

Learning Objectives:

  • The student will use various materials to create original still life/macro photography images.

  • The student will create original memes using their original images and various Photoshop techniques.

  • The student will create an advertisement using various Photoshop techniques.

Anchor Standards:

  • Anchor Standard 1: Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work.

  • Anchor Standard 2: Organize and develop artistic ideas and work.

  • Anchor Standard 3: Refine and complete artistic work.

  • Anchor Standard 4: Select, analyze and interpret artistic work for presentation

  • Anchor Standard 5: Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation.

  • Anchor Standard 6: Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work.

  • Anchor Standard 7: Perceive and analyze artistic work.

  • Anchor Standard 8: Interpret meaning in artistic work.

  • Anchor Standard 10: Relate and synthesize knowledge and personal experiences to inspire and inform artistic work.

Essential Questions:

  • What conditions, attitudes, and behaviors support creativity and innovative thinking?

  • What factors prevent or encourage people to take creative risks?

  • How does collaboration expand the creative process?

  • How do artists work?

  • How do artists and designers determine whether a particular direction in their work is effective?

  • How do artists and designers learn from trial and error?

Enduring Understanding(s):

  • Creativity and innovative thinking are essential life skills that can be developed

  • Artists and designers experiment with forms, structures, materials, concepts, media, and art-making approaches

  • Artist and designers develop excellence through practice and constructive critique, reflecting on, revising, and refining work over time.


  • Students may be given pre determined lighting set up diagrams for their still life/macro setups.

  • Students may be given a Photoshop template to create their advertisements or memes.

Project Duration (1-2 Weeks):

  • Introduction, Brainstorm and Research: 1-2 Days

  • Project Time (Still Life Shooting): 1-2 Days

  • Project Time (Photoshop): 1-2 Days

  • Reflection and Critique: 1-2 Days

Student Gallery:



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