Wednesday, 21 September 2011

My Digital Photography course

With me finally going down the road of being a serious and very professional Photographer, I felt and thought it was only right for me to take the next step. I decided to advance the knowledge I already have of photography and learn a whole lot more.

I initially had a course which got cancelled a few days before we were supposed to start. That was such a disappointment for me, but I soon came to realise that every disappointment is for a good because I didnt give up. I got back on the band-wagon and found a new course to enrol on. Digital Photography Level 1 Award in Image Capture.
My first day was Tuesday September 13th 2011. I was all prepared with my camera, bag, laptop, little snack, travel pass and the plan for the journey I was going to take. I had never been to Beeston before, so coming from living in London most of my life, a lot of Nottingham was very new to me.

I used to have a tendency to be quite shy and reserved as a teenager, but over the years and becoming an adult I had to come out of my shell. I'm comfortable with who I am and because of that I was really looking forward to taking this step. I wasn't nervous about being around complete strangers; instead I was looking forward to actually making some new friends in Nottingham.

I arrived at the college 2 hours early and to me that wasnt even a problem. I prefer to be early than to be late so I got my student pass and spent time in the library. Perfect place for me because I am an Author and an avid reader. (As a child I didnt go to sleep without reading a book. Call me a geek if you want to) LOL!

My first lesson was great. I only attend college for 3 hours every Tuesday but I found it to be enough to learn a sufficient amount, get some practical work in and make some very beneficial notes.

I was so pleased with my first day that I turned to Facebook and posted "There's nothing like going to college and learning new things; especially Photography in my case. You are never too old to learn."

Below are the photos I took during my 1st week at college because we learnt about Aperture, Focus, Depth of Field (Small and Large) and became familiar with how to set the camera in order to achieve and use the techniques available to us on DSLR cameras.

Small Depth of Field (foreground in focus) 

Large Depth of Field (background in focus) 

Small Depth of Field (foreground in focus)

Large Depth of Field (background in focus)
I cant forget that I got a piece of homework to do. It felt so strange writing H/W like I used to do when I was in high school or doing my GCSE's and A Levels. But let me tell you it also felt great. I cant be idle. I have to do something, so going to college and being productive is right up my street.

Large Depth of Field (all in focus)
I would like to keep you updated with the things I learn and do during my 10 week, good quality course but if i'm delayed by a few weeks its because Im very busy.

Check back as often as you can because there will be something new for you to enjoy. I have a large event coming up weekend starting Friday 23rd September 2011 and another enormous event Sunday 2nd October 2011; so stay tuned.

Photos from my 2nd week at college.
I can't emphasise how good it feels to go to college. I was last in education for a very short 2 day course in early 2009 and after two years even though I self taught, being in college is remarkable. Nothing compares on this scale.

We learnt about capturing action, freezing movement, showing movement and the difference is really in the effect/ result left in the photo and the settings you use on the camera.

Close up of moving swivel chair

Swivel Chair in action

I'll have much more work for you to see as the weeks go on, I'll also upload the homework I had to do.

My homework for week 2 was to show movement and stop action. My little sister soon became my model for the week because each time I got an idea, she was there for me to try it out on and each time I was successful. Learning is paying off.

Wave your rag
Falling balloons
3rd week of homework was to work on Architecture and I chose to create a Montage using different angles of the building of my choice.

Nottingham council house/ Town Hall
After spending time with Frank Doorhof, whilst he conducted this shoot when I was in Florida back in April, he quickly became my inspirational Photographer.  As well as having to capture architecture, we were told to look into three photographs taken by our inspirational Photographer. We were given a list to do some research on and then decide who would take that role but to be honest. I HAVENT EVEN LOOKED AT THE LIST! WHY? BECAUSE FRANK INSTANTLY CAME TO MIND AS I HEARD WHAT OUR HOMEWORK WAS AND I INSTANTLY KNEW WHAT PHOTOS I WOULD LOOK INTO AS PART OF MY HOMEWORK.

I went to and found the photos I needed because I remember the exact day that I met Frank and was more than pleased because he taught me so much and still assists me to this day.

Model Myam
I just love how he works, especially because he always has his wife by his side, but more so because he is so humble, yet great at what he does!

Homework for week 4 was to capture landscape and let me tell you. I had so much choices because living in Nottingham for the time being means there is more than enough land and greenery but I decided to do a Panorama of a view I had captured before.

Its only a piece of Nottingham but when you look at the great expanse, you realise that there are so much views you still have yet to see in the world we live in. I just like how neatly placed all those buildings look and how their brick work and roofs are almost all the same colour.

For week 5 we had to bring in an item that said something about us for still life photography and for me it wasnt very hard to choose. I'm not a materialistic person and when I heard what our homework for that week was, I knew straight away what I was bringing in.

My Holy Bible means a lot to me!
My Holy Bible tells a lot about me as a Christian and a newly baptised disciple.
My Holy Bible tells a lot about the life I live and the heart within me.
So without much thinking, I brought my Bible in and took great photos of it in the college studio under Tungsten lamps. We had to do a little bit of maniuplating to it but it doesnt make a difference to how strong of an item it is.


Grey scale

Black and White high contrast

High contrast and saturated
My favourite is the Negative effect
Leading on from still life is Portraiture and thats where my heart lies. The joy I'm able to bring an individual and more with one photo that I take, creates a feeling inside of me that I cant actually put into words. (Thats strange for me as a writer - Author of a soon to be published book ) so you know that that feeling is tremendous and too much for words.
For week 6, I did my homework before the half term because I had to jet off and dont worry there will be an extremely extensive blog about exactly where I jetted off to. (My camera/ husband was by my side for that - we experience a lot of things together!)
I had a great time doing this shoot with Ryan, he served as a post of his own (check "Amazed by Ryan), my homework for week 6 and he will appear in my Final Self Directed Project for my course.

I had a session in the college studio with one of my fellow students but I dont want to post her photo without her permission now that the course is finished. Instead I'll post her work of me because I'm more comfortable with doing that. Photographic ethics and consideration of people's wishes/privacy and all. I'm not sure what kind of post-production she used but for a short 5minute session we both got some great shots.

As of now I have no more photos to post because my course is coming to an end and we are just working on our projects during our lessons BUT dont worry!! As soon as my course is finished I'll be posting blogs for each photo shoot I did for my project and then I'll be doing even more photo shoots, so fear not.

I actually feel the need to advance and do the Level 2 course so if I decide to do that I'll be starting in December and will have even more to share with you.

Until then thank you for being interested in my college course. The journey has been great and I surely have learnt a great amount.

Bringing beauty to the world through photography?


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