Whether you are eager to learn the basics of traditional landscaping, moving on to your first DSLR or similarly advanced camera, looking to experiment with more abstract ideas, or simply feel that your images could benefit from a little inspiration and your technique from some mentoring, I offer Informal, one-to-one or small group (seldom more than three participants) tuition sessions of roughly eight hours in the West Sussex area.
I will guide you through camera settings and their effects on your final results, explain photographic theory and demonstrate how to apply the essential principles of the rules of composition to your images. We will refine your files to their full potential in Adobe software and we will spend time reviewing your work from our session and going through some constructive critique of your portfolio.
Practical sessions on location are planned around your needs and with particular attention to the weather forecast, tide times and the invaluable Photographer's Ephemeris. As we all know, Mother Nature is a polemic contrarian here in the UK, so, subject to her whims, the day will include an early morning or late evening shoot that starts or ends with photographing in the blue hour. I do make a point of teaching that all light is good for acquiring very satisfactory photography results but, if you particularly crave specific conditions and the day doesn't deliver, we can re-schedule.
As regards image refinement, interpretation and enhancement techniques, my knowledge is appropriate and wide-ranging enough to demonstrate all the essential processes in Adobe software; anything from crisp monochrome to full-on technicolor; from basic raw file conversion in Adobe Camera Raw, to Photoshop tools, masks and layers.
My hourly rate for commission work is £65 but I offer a full-day session of mixed practice and theory tutoring, as outlined in the tuition section of the website for £395, for up to three participants. With so much variance in abilities and divergence in personal goals within a large group, my preference is to keep numbers to a maximum of three. This ensures that there is ample time for focusing on individual needs.
With a number of variables in the schedule, it is not always possible to predict the timings absolutely accurately but a day will be approximately ten hours, including time for refreshments and a little travel.
Summertime in England equals incredibly early starts. With sun-up in midsummer as early as 04.30 we need to be on location at 03.30 to catch the blue hour. The alternative is of course to make a later start and shoot the other end of the day, at golden hour, throughout sunset and into the twilight blue hour. Please bear in mind though that the blue hour can linger into 22.30 - 23.00 in June and July; I am therefore more than happy to split the session over two days if we end up shooting as late as that. This means that we will review your work and continue with the theory and discussions the following morning.
In winter we can get away with being on location as late as 06.30 - and with winter sunsets at 16.00-ish it is possible to do both in one day. Schedules are flexible and, after watching the weather forecasts for a few days, I will arrange things with you directly before your tuition date.
You will need the following basics:
- a camera (preferably one with manual control over the exposure) with its battery fully charged, plus a spare if you have one
- any lenses you may wish to shoot with
- a remote shutter release
- a memory card, with plenty of space on it, plus a spare if you have one
- a tripod
- a graduated neutral density filter if you have one, but don't worry if you haven't (with many modern digital sensors this is no longer essential anyway)
- a neutral density filter if you have one
- a torch (head torches are very useful as they're hands-free) with a red bulb setting so you don't ruin your night vision when making camera adjustments in the dark
- sensible clothes for the time of year and shoes for reasonable, though not strenuous, walking in the countryside or on beaches
- a packed lunch
- six of your favourite current images on a memory stick so we can discuss and constructively critique them
You may also bring
- your PC/Mac notebook
- items you feel may be interesting or inspirational