Tuesday, February 1, 2011

No. 19: A Photo Workshop

This past Saturday I participated in Kristen Duke's Say No! to Auto photography workshop. Let me start off by saying that I'm so glad I did! 

When I put "take a photography class" on my 101 list, I never thought I'd be able to mark it off so quickly.  I got my dSLR in December 2009, and since then I've toyed with the idea of taking courses through the local community college, online, and via a Groupon offer. I didn't feel ready to commit to any of those options though. Out of my budget. Too time consuming. No idea what the class size/environment would be like. (I'm making this sound like a life-altering decision, I'm sure, but I didn't want to go down an avenue that would be a waste of my time or money, you know?) But when Kristen posted a link on facebook about this workshop, I thought it sounded perfect for me:
  1. Afternoon commitment. 
  2. Affordable price. 
  3. Small class size (10-15 students).
  4. I already knew Kristen,* and I knew she wouldn't scam me!
We all met at Kristen's house, which was nice and cozy. She started by giving us all a packet with our textbooks for the day, one large, more detailed spiral and a smaller one to take on the go. We jumped right in and learned how to adjust ISO, aperture, and shutter speed.

And Kristen explained the basics for figuring out where to start with each setting. She also shared her tips for getting great portraits and doing basic photo editing.
 The information was a little confusing at first, but it started making sense once we practiced. We took a walk to an open field down the street from Kristen's house.

First we took pictures of our model and Kristen's assistant/photographer for the workshop, Jenny Polson.

Then Kristen asked us to pair off with a partner to practice some more. Naturally, I picked my friend Laura. I tried to get some fun backlit ones...

But this one is my favorite. You're so beautiful, Laura!
So, the bottom line: I loved the workshop. Not only did I finally get a grasp on ISO, aperture, and shutter speed, but it was also so much fun! I can't wait to practice, practice, and practice some more...and my husband thought I took a lot of photos before...he ain't seen nothing yet!

*Kristen took photos of me and my husband in February 2009. I was so impressed with her kindness and the quality of her images. She took the photo we had made into a canvas print that now hangs above our TV. 

You can read Kristen's recaps of the workshop here and here. Click on over.


The Warrens said...

You are SO SWEET and Thank you for posting about this class on your Facebook page! I absolutely enjoyed it and loved that you were my model partner ;)

Great pics, you actually make me look normal hehe

Kristen Duke Photography said...

That was fun! Made me smile all over;) Great great shot of Laura at the end! So excited and happy that your fear at the beginning was conquered! Can I link to your blog from my site?

Jenny Polson said...

Great shots! Can you email me the photos of me? They look great! jandjpolson@hotmail.com

Anonymous said...

Congrats on completing another goal. The workshop looks great and your photos are so lovely, I think I definitely need to learn how to use a camera on something other than automatic as well.