This full photography course collection of lessons is based on a number of classroom photography courses I teach at various locations around the Essex area. After helping many people to improve their photography, we decided to combine our series of classroom photography courses into one distance learning photography course available to you, regardless of where you live. This course is over 100,000 words long and packed full of illustrations and photographs. It has everything you need to teach you the fundamentals of photography moving up to advanced levels of photography skills and knowledge.
Why do this Distance Learning Photography Course?
I find that the biggest reason people attend my lessons is their love of photography and their desire to improve their skill and therefore the quality of the pictures they take. Some students have become so serious about the medium, they are now submitting images to stock libraries. I also have students now embarking upon a career as a photographer. So whether you wish to get started in a new career, make extra money part time, improve your photography for the love of it, or really, just want to take better holiday shots or pictures of the family, this distance learning course will help you to achieve your ambitions. The lessons are split into five modules:
You are welcome to download a free sample of this course – a small part of it, which will give you an idea of its quality and content:
Lesson one: Covers how to access your camera’s menu functions, an explanation of camera formats, focus modes, exposure metering modes, exposure modes, ISO numbers, white balance, using white balance creatively, image quality settings, use of the histogram, exposure compensation, exposure lock, exposure bracketing, shutter release modes, colour space, D lighting and memory card care.
Lesson 2 covers: Explanation of focal lengths, prime lenses, zoom lenses, angle of view, properties of wide angled lenses, properties of telephoto lenses, how sensor size affects focal length, explanation of depth of field, exaggerated perspective, compressed perspective, explanation of aperture, explanation of the F number, lens speed, advantage of fast lenses, how to control depth of field, depth of field preview, how to use shutter speed creatively, variables that affect motion, panning, camera-shake. Tripods and other supports, cable-release.
Lesson 3 covers: Developing the photographer’s eye. How to compose an image, rules of composition, creative use of depth of field, creative use of shutter speeds, separation of subjects, golden ratio/mean.
Lesson 4 covers: EXPOSURE. Taking a light reading, types of light meter, 18% grey, how to expose for dark subjects, how to expose light subjects, what is a grey card, how to take a substitute light reading, exposure latitude.
MODULE TWO (Five lessons)
Lesson 5 covers: LIGHT. Covers:Intensity of light, direction of light, colour temperature of light, when to use hard light and soft light, how direction of light affects the subject, understanding how colour works, understanding how colour temperature affects the mood of an image.
Lesson 6 covers: ARTIFICIAL LIGHT. Covers: Incandescent light source, short duration light source, built-in flash units, hot shoe mounted flash units, camera flash modes, flash exposure, flash exposure compensation, fill-in flash, metering options, diffusing flash output, bounce flash, guide numbers and trigger voltage and flash synchronisation.
Lesson 7 covers: ARTIFICIAL LIGHT, PART TWO. Studio-style lighting. Incandescent lighting, flash lighting, advantages of studio flash, advantages of continuous studio lighting, flash meters, correct exposure, setting up a home studio, basic studio lighting using more than one light, lighting ratios, lighting accessories, how to trigger studio flash heads.
Lesson 8 covers: LIGHTING PROJECTS. Covers: Three lighting set-ups to photograph different types of subjects, to show shape and form, to show texture, to photograph liquids and glass.
Lesson 8a covers: FILTERS. Covers: Useful filters, filters’ systems, polariser filters, skylight UV (ultra-violet) filters, neutral density filters, graduated neutral density filters, filter factors, correct exposure using different filters.
MODULE THREE (Five Lessons)
Digital Imaging and post-production (based on Photoshop Elements). At this stage, students will receive a disc with all the images that are used in the projects included. You can work through all the projects in this module as many times as you like until you have mastered the techniques.
Lesson 9: Covers: Adjusting tonal range of image using: levels, colour curves, brightness and contrast, shadow and highlight commands, correcting lens distortion, cropping, using the clone tool, using the healing brush, how to re-size and re-sample an image, how to save an image.
Lesson 10: Covers: Converting raw files, making selections, the magic wand tool, lasso tool, selection brush tool, setting up your monitor and printing.
Lesson 11: Covers: Adjusting colour balance using hue and saturation command, the variations command, converting colour files to black and white (grey scale), colour toning a black and white image, the burn, dodge and sponge tools, sharpening.
Lesson 12: Covers: Layers. How to use adjustment layers, to re-adjust adjustment layers, blending modes, combining layers, selective use of adjustment layers, split toning.
Lesson 13: Layers continued: Layer masks, H.D.R. (high dynamic range) technique, gradient tool, sharpening using a layer, boosting colour saturation using layers and blending mode, using lighting effects filter.
Lesson14: Basic portrait photography,
Lesson15: Advanced portrait photography,
Lesson16: Location portrait photography,
Lesson17: Available light plus lesson on creating mood and impact in an image.
Lesson 18: Covers architectural photography,
Lesson 19: High dynamic range technique,
Lesson 20: Painting with light,
Lesson 21: Covers creating a digital panoramic,
Lesson 22: Macro photography
Lesson 23: Nature photography
Lesson 24: Controlling depth of field, advanced technique.
There is no time limit when it comes to completing this distance learning photography course. You can complete modules at a pace that suits your own personal circumstances. This course is a very convenient way to really improve your photography. You can learn at home at a speed that suits you with your personal tutor just a ‘phone call or an email away helping you to create perfect pictures.
In keeping with the classroom lessons, this course includes advice and support from us throughout the duration of the course and beyond in many cases. We still have ex-students calling for advice many months after attending a series of lessons. We are more than happy to help wherever possible.
All the modules are supplied on disc to your home address or emailed directly to you giving you the choice of viewing each lesson on your computer or printing it out as hard copy. Each module comes complete with a set of projects for you to complete which you would then return to us for assessment – by email or by post. We find this is a really useful part of the course because photography is a practical subject. By working your way through the projects, you will find that it cements the information gained from the lessons. Our constructive critique of each of your images will help you to improve in leaps and bounds!