Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Second Photography Class

So I got back home after my second photography class on Tuesday, and the minute I stepped inside, my family asked: “How did it go?” To which I answered. “IT WAS GREAT! WHAT AN AMAZING CLASS!”

Big smiles all around. The family is pleased. And my younger daughter was the happiest of all. Because as you know, if you read the post about the first photography class, she’s “very concerned” and “anxious” about my social life (or lack of, as she has said), and “worried” that dear old mom is feeling alone and discontented. Taking this class has somewhat alleviated some of these “concerns”. Made her feel that I’m beginning to get out there and connect with the world and meet others and get into something and live life. So maybe she won’t have to think up a way to schedule play dates for me. Because she probably would, if she could.



Anyway...the class...

I. LOVED. IT.

It was exactly what I’d hoped our second class would be. I am beginning to truly understand my new camera, and I finally feel that I will begin to get the most out of it.



The teacher covered so many areas including ISO, aperture, focal length, bracketing, depth of field, shutter speed, overexposure, underexposure, panning, f-number, and on and on. He explained the purpose of many of the camera controls and functions, the different shooting modes (manual and automatic), exposure fundamentals and a variety of other things that helped me really appreciate what my camera can do. And what I can make it do.



I found myself eager to poke around the camera’s menu and see what options there are. I even dared to switch settings! And went so far as referencing the manual to learn more. Why, I’m being downright adventurous, folks.

“You don’t intimidate me anymore, camera. Soon I’ll be running the show and telling you what to do.” [sinister laugh]



I’m ready to step out of automatic mode (where the camera does all the work for me and all I have to do is point, focus and shoot) and take control of the image taking. I must do this. We have been instructed by the teacher to “never use automatic modes again.” Ever. The only time an automatic mode may be necessary is if you are in a rush to take a photo and you don’t have time to adjust your camera settings. Then you may not have a choice. But other than that, he frowns – heavily – on automatic modes.



We are meeting on Saturday morning at the Cataraqui Cemetery; one of Canada's most beautiful and historic cemeteries. It is over 90 acres of gorgeous, natural landscaped settings, which makes for a great place to practice some of the things we’ve learned. My husband and I took a stroll through there a couple of years ago, and it really is a lovely place. Canada’s first Prime Minister, Sir John A. Macdonald, is buried there. His gravesite and the cemetery are designated as National Historic Sites of Canada.



Saturday, so far, promises to be a beautiful day. It will be warm and sunny and – hopefully – a lot of fun. I am very excited about this particular class because I’ll get to apply some of this newfound knowledge, which in turn will open up a whole new world of photo taking.



I am very pleased with the teacher. Not only does he know his stuff, but he teaches it with passion. It is obvious that he loves photography, and that he enjoys sharing that enthusiasm and the knowledge he’s garnered over many years. And this is terrific. Because nothing is worse than a teacher who doesn’t have passion for the subject he/she teaches. You don’t learn that way, and it makes for a very long course.



And the family – particularly my younger daughter – is thrilled that I’m finally getting into something since we moved here to Kingston. And to be honest, so am I.



I will write about the photoshoot next week. I’m sure I’ll have a lot to say.

16 comments:

  1. Hahaha, I love that you've now read the riot act to your camera! Glad your second class was everything you'd hoped it would be. You are going to learn SO much :) Great pics again - esp Mr. Squirrel.

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    1. The riot act was way overdue! It was a terrific class, and there are things now that make more sense. I just need to get out to different places and practice.

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  2. It is great to master the camera. Great series of photos today. Enjoy the photo shoot on the weekend.

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    1. Thanks, Crafty! If I take some nice images, I'll show them on the next post about this class.

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  3. And so if you never use auto mode again, does this mean that your already awesome pictures are going to become SUPER AWESOME? I'm ready for it, bring it on! :-)

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    1. Thanks for the nice comment, TB; I appreciate it. But...I still have a lot to learn. Now that I'm starting to understand the camera settings so much more, I'll try to be a little more creative. It should be interesting!

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  4. Field trip! Field trip! That will be fun -- looking forward to seeing your photos. Glad you're enjoying the class so much!

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    1. Yes, a field trip! I LOVE field trips. They're always much more fun than sitting in a classroom.

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  5. I have to say that throughout the Spring season you have inspired me to try my hand using a camera. Your photos are always so beautiful, clear and full of colour contrasts. Please keep them coming. I look forward to seeing them each day.

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    1. Cathy, be careful! If you start using a camera, it can become highly addictive! Hmmm...but that's not such a bad thing :)

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  6. My goodness, can your photos get even better than they are now? I am amazed at your photography! Interesting that your teacher says to never use the automatic setting...but don't you have to be quick to take photos of some of the birds that you get?

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    1. Thank you, Kay, but I'm sure if my teacher saw my photos, he'd find mistakes in them! But maybe I'm off to a good start. You don't have to be in automatic mode to capture the birds. The shutter speed is good for that. And once I have my settings ready, I'm good to go.

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  7. Congrats on the photo classes. I am glad that you are getting some great information out of it. I am looking forward to see if I notice the changes in your photography. :)

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    1. I figured there's no point in owning a DSLR if I don't put it to good use. It seems like such a waste when this camera can do so many things my point and shoot can't.

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  8. So glad you enjoyed this class so much, Martha. You sound really fired up to get the most from your camera,I can see you as teacher's pet! Looking forward to see what you do on the field trip.

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    1. I don't know about the teacher's pet. I seem to be the quietest one in the class. But then, that's not a surprise considering I'm an introvert. I prefer to observe rather than speak out. I am enjoying the class, though.

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