Na'eem Goins Capstone

​For my capstone, I decided to write a art book that incorporated both poetry and photography. At first,  the book was just going to be different poems that I wrote about my everyday life but I got inspired to write about others. I wanted to provide a space for my classmates to vent and talk about issues that affected them internally. Seeing that my classmates all have different stories and survived dire situations only to not tell their testimonies, I created a platform for that. During the school year, I  interviewed seniors at SLA. My goal was to give them a confidential session that allowed them to share life stories that shaped them into who they are today. Struggle that they never fully shared with their own circle of people. My hope was for them to be proud of their past and feel better after talking to me. I recorded the interviews and listen to them every time I got inspired to write a poem. Putting myself into their shoes, I wrote a poem inspired by that person. Then I volunteered for paid surveys at Penn hospital and saved up money to buy a camera. With that camera, I took picture of the people I interviewed in my own minnie photoshoot setups. When I was done with the interviews, I wrote poems about my own struggles and took photographs that symbolize each poem. I summated all of the poems and pictures into a book that is available for sell.

Link to book:


  • Barthes, Roland. Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography. The Noonday Press, 1988. I found this source useful because photography is such a big part of my capstone. Barthes exemplified the distinct different between the object and the image, how standard photography is mainly motionless, and feeling a lense on you while posing. The idea that being ask about your favorite photograph and not being able to pinpoint the image, just the desire body, is a powerful thing. I'm trying to make my audience love not the image but the body that's in it.

  • Furedi, Frank. Therapy Culture: Cultivating Vulnerability in an Uncertain Age. Routledge, 2004. I selected this source for the interview portion of my project. It is very important that I have pre knowledge of certain behaviors the interviewees may have, how to help someone become more vulnerable, and ultimately not make the interews a basic conversation. I want to know more than their friends do. Parts of the book really help me understand the reasons for problems in our internal world be what people perceive as personal issue.

  • King, Carla. How to Self-Publish Your Book: a Practical Guide to Creating and Distributing Your E-Book or Print Book. PBS MediaShift, 2013. This source was very helpful because of how much information it have on publishing a book. Being an independent writer and making my first real book, I needed to find cheap, easy, and quick publishing ideas. This book gave me a lot of publishing resources for e books and physical copies. Since I want to make several physical copies of my book for everyone involve to have, I am definitely revisiting this source on companies and free printing. This source has open my eyes to fundraising because It can be very expensive.

  • Wojcik, Pamela Robertson. Movie Acting, the Film Reader. Routledge, 2004. This book was used for the movie part of my capstone. Since I will be the main actor and havent done anything acting in a year, I needed to refresh my mind. Its a big difference between acting on stage and acting in front of the camera, both require different techniques. This source exemplifies on the meaning of "overacting". It doesn't mean that you turn your performance into theatrical acting. I want to make sure that this film becomes my best performance of highschool.

  • Starr, Ringo. Photograph. Genesis Publications, 2015. This source was helpful for my capstone by providing different photography techniques. Since each poem will be accompanied by photographs, it is very important that I get professional quality photographs. This source taught me a lot about portrait photography. I also learned about making it a comfortable environment for the model, focusing on detail, and capturing emotions. This source also provided photographs as examples of the different techniques. Being a artist, I am always open to learning new ways of taking photographs and helping the model show emotion on the picture instead of treating it like fashion.

  • Nelson-Jones, Richard. Essential Counselling and Therapy Skills: the Skilled Client Model. Sage, 2002. This source helped me with interviewing the participants in my capstone. The interview session is the heart of the poems, pictures, movie, and for me to get to know them. This book talked a lot about how to deal with certain questions, how to keep your composure, and remaining neutral in every situation that is presented. This is very important because I want to have great interview sessions and no dull conversations. I also do not want anyone to feel uncomfortable and instead, build trust with me.

  • Feidelson, Charles. Symbolism and American Literature. The University of Chicago Press, 1965. This source help me by completely explaining the symbolism in literacy and why its accepted to the broader but not so much critics. The book bring in sources from medieval times to politics and how language leave little room for symbolism. My poetry is going to have a symbolic style for the book. Its very important that I use metaphors correctly in the book because I want the reader to question what i'm saying and , later, understand. This source gave me a lot of reasons for the use symbols though it was hard to understand.

  • Goins, Naeem C, and Alexa Lahr. “8 The Book: Interview.” 12 Jan. 2018. This source help me alot because it is one of my interviews for the project. Being one of the participant, Alexa talked a lot about her past traumatic experiences with middle school. She had body issues because of what people said about her. Knowing she was different from a young age, she started accepting herself at a Christian camp. She find outs that she is made in God's image and started to look towards the good in being different. During the interview, it was a little challenge trying to get her to open up but she did. I cant go into detail about everything that was talked about during the interview because it is confidential.

  • Goins, Naeem C, and Samantha Davis. “8 The Book: Interviews.” 12 Jan. 2018. During our interview, Sam was very open to talk about her deep connection with the good times and bad. She first started talking about her social skills being an only child, which both me and her share. Then, skin color became the topic of conversation. As a woman of color, Sam talk to me about the hardships with having a dark complexion. She never felt truly accepted or attractive to the people who share her skin color. She even shed light on people perception of her because of her personality and her family.

  • Goins, Naeem C, and Tatiana V Rivera. “8 The Book: Interviews.” 12 Jan. 2018. This source help me by becoming one of the interviews that inspired a poem in my book. Tatiana came into the interview already comfortable because we had deep conversations before. It seem like she couldn't wait to talk to me about her life and situations, good and bad. She first talk about her contribution to her home. Working under the table jobs, sacrificing her youth to mature quicker for her siblings, and her relationship with her mom. She found her peace when coming to Science Leadership Academy where she found that she had many opportunities. She inspire me to make a heartfelt poem that require me to do a lot of self examining in order to put myself in her shoes.

Screenshot 2018-05-05 at 6.51.52 PM
Screenshot 2018-05-05 at 6.51.52 PM