The Complete Photography Experience

A Workshop in 365 Easy Steps

(This course is a work in progress. It can be pre-purchased through our Indigogo campaign)

About This Course

The 365 day challenge is a well known concept among many who are interest in photography. It’s decades old. But it’s not obsolete and it’s not just a concept. Put into practice this method is one of the surest ways you can become an accomplished photographer.

Taking at least one photo a day for a year will help you improve, but without some structured teaching to go with this discipline your learning experience will be limited.

We have designed this Complete Photography Experience Workshop to be a course you can easily conclude in one year without having to take long periods of time out from your busy schedule.

Each lesson is short and to the point, lasting about five minutes. The videos can be watched on a smart phone or tablet as you commute to school or work, or on laptop or desktop computer – whatever suits you best.

Each lesson has an experiment attached to it so you can put into practice what you’re learning straight away. Using this practical technique frequently you will be learning at an advanced rate and without needing to make large chunks of your time available for study. The experiments are designed to complete in as little as ten minutes each (or take as long as you have time to dedicate to them.)

Making photography learning part of your daily routine, developing a habit of making new photographs and learning new techniques every day, you will become a skilled photographer faster than you can imagine.

Enjoying creating a photography lifestyle, as you begin to create a body of photographs you’ll want to share with others, you will not only learn camera tips and techniques, but also learn more about how to recognize more of what makes a good photograph and develop your own personal style.

Step by step the lessons and experiments will take you thought the essentials of camera understanding and control and then further on to more creative expression. Most encouragement about the 365 day challenge that I have found centers around what to photograph and not about actually learning new skills. With every step in this course you will be learning new skills and developing them.

Course Design

All the steps include video lessons. We’ve used loads of example photos, diagrams, and animations to help make the teaching as clear and enjoyable as possible.

The course is divided into 8 modules covering essential, intermediate and advanced photography teaching. As the course progresses the teaching becomes more in-depth and detailed. The first 5 modules are focused on development of camera understanding and technique and for the remaining 3 modules you will have the choice of a selection of topics and photography styles. You can opt for any 3 (or more) that you wish to study and practice in more depth.

If you want to take up the challenge and complete the course in 1 year, start at the beginning! But it’s not necessary to start with module 1 if you feel you already have some basic understanding of how your camera works and how to control it. However do take a look at all the module outlines as you may find some lessons you need to take to gain a more complete understanding and experience.

If you feel you are at a more advanced level of photography and do not wish to start with module 1, but still want to complete a 365 day challenge consider the more advanced modules.

The Premium Workshop Option

You have the choice of purchasing one module at a time or purchasing 8 modules to complete the full 365 steps. You also have the option of purchasing the Premium Workshop.

The Premium Workshop includes personal coaching through the course modules. I know in person learning is the best and students who connect with the teacher will have a more enjoyable and effective learning experience.

I always strive to make my teaching as clear and easy to understand as possible, however, there may be instances where things are not so clear and you need to ask a question or two. Through our email Q&A you have the opportunity to ask questions pertaining to the lessons and difficulties you may have in understanding the teaching.

Taking lots of photos and filing them away is not going to help you learn so well. If you have the opportunity to have your images critiqued as you work through the course will be find incentive to critique them yourself and you’ll also learn how to recognize your best photos.

Sharing your photography experience with others will make you sharper. You will have the opportunity to share your photos and discuss them with others who are participating in the Premium Workshop and with myself.

And to make the connection as personal and practical as possible we will have two video calls together during the module to discuss your progress, answer any questions you may have and generally encourage you! If you’re in Chiang Mai this could even be done over coffee.

With this Premium Workshop the content and lessons are the same, the difference is in the extras. I will provide:

  • Email Q&A about the course material

  • Two reviews and constructive critique of the photos you are making during the module.

  • Access to a group discussion forum online for students purchasing the Premium Workshop

  • Two video calls during the module to discuss your progress and generally encourage you.

Module 1: Photography Essentials Part 1

Getting To Grips With Basic Camera Settings and Control

Covering camera control and also focusing in on light, exposure and composition, module 1 is designed specifically to give you a solid foundation in the most essential aspects of photography.

I have found many people neglect to learn how to quickly and effectively control the basic functions of their cameras and instead rely on the automatic features. This if fine if you have little interest in being creative or producing photographs that really stand out from the millions of photos taken every day.

If you are truly interested in becoming an accomplished photographer, (or any creative artist,) learning the fundamentals first is necessary. Modern cameras are crammed with artificial intelligence which makes picture taking easy. But these days you can do that with your smart phone. Learning to understand your camera and control it manually will give you the foundation you need to become the photographer you want to be.

Module 1 of this Complete Photography Experience will teach you how to understand and control your camera and avoid having boring photos that never get noticed. During the module you will produce a series of photographs enabling you to learn the essential of photography and empowering your to continue on to more advanced skill levels.

Each lesson is short, to the point and includes easy to follow guidelines on how to put the lesson into practice so that you can gain true experience. Lessons are designed to take about 5 minutes each and the photography experiments a minimum of 5-10 minutes, but more depending how much time you have to enjoy them.

Module 2: Photography Essentials Part 2

Light, Color and Composition Basics

Continuing on from the first module you will learn about different lenses and how best to use them and we will teach indispensable exposure and composition technique. There’s also some camera set up tips that most people never take advantage of.

Understanding different lenses and how to most effectively use you zoom lens give you an edge towards creating cutting edge compositions, every time you make a photograph. In this module I will teach you to know how and when to use a wide, medium or telephoto lens and what the advantages and disadvantages can be. You will practice and see the real results for yourself.

Choosing to get to know your camera and use it effectively, in whatever situation you find yourself wanting to make a photo, takes commitment. Sure, you can switch to any auto mode and the camera will often make a clear exposure, but leaving control to your camera gives away most the most important aspect of photographic creativity – making creative use of your exposure.

Controlling how much light affects your camera’s sensor is a key component of photography. Learning to do this consistently well will help promote every other aspect of your photographic expression. In this module I will teach you about the options you have and the techniques to obtain the exposure you want.

You will learn the importance of composing well and how to incorporate color and tone dynamically in your photographs. Learning to see how your camera sees tone and altering your composition to accommodate the strengths and weaknesses will have you producing professional looking photographs in no time at all.

Each lesson is carefully and clearly explained and so easy to understand. Along with the lessons are individual experiments designed so you can fully experience the techniques I am teaching.

Module 3: Intermediate Techniques Part 1

Creative aperture and Shutter Speed Settings, Composition

Now that you have gotten to know your camera and lenses better and become familiar with the way they function, it’s time to get a bit more creative. Similar to learning to play a musical instrument, once you have learned your scales, practiced them and know your instrument you are more ready to move into more creative expression.

In module three you will learn about creative use of aperture to control how much of you photo is in focus. You will also learn the other crucial techniques that will give you the skills to really be in control of how much of your composition is in focus.

Choosing the best shutter speed, especially when there’s any movement involved, is an important creative aspect of photography. We will explore the various options and how to make the best use of shutter speeds for various creative effects.

There’s more lessons on composition and also about further camera set us and technique.

Much of what you will learn in this module is about creating photographs where you are controlling how your main subject integrates into the composition. You will learn to control the amount of depth of field and to control motion blur effectively.

As in each of our teaching modules in this course every lesson has an experiment so you can put into practice what you are learning, preferably on the same day you take the lesson.

Module 4: Intermediate Techniques Part 2.

Exposure Techniques. Obtaining the Exposure You Want

The word ‘photography’ means drawing (or painting) with light. The more you understand and have a feel for the light and how to create a well exposed image, the better your photos will be. Now that you are more familiar with your camera and how to control the various settings it’s time to explore photography from a more creative perspective.

We covered a lot about exposure in the first two module and now we will teach in more depth about how you can obtain the exposure you think will be best for the photo you want to make. Because you are using your camera on manual mode and selecting the settings for exposure yourself, you must make choices rather than leaving it to your camera to decide.

If you use your camera in any or the auto exposure modes the artificial intelligence in the camera is making the exposure choices for you. Controlling you exposure manually requires that you make the choices and opens up whole new realms of creativity, because you are creative and your camera, on it’s own, is not creative.

You will learn how to make critical choices about exposure so that your photos will look the way you want them to (and not like photos made with auto exposure settings.) I will teach you the importance of careful exposure metering and how to have more control of how the meter reading is effectively achieved.

Different light and lighting conditions have a dramatic effect on photography, so a number of the lessons in this module are dedicated to teaching you how to recognize different lighting conditions and the options available to you in various situations to produce creative photographs.

By the end of this module you should have a good understanding of light and learned how to control your settings so you can obtain the exposure you want.

Module 5: Intermediate Techniques Part 3

Composition

I find composition in photography to be a lot like grammar in language. It is necessary to have well composed photographs as it is to have well composed sentences. As with any creative expression, there are usually sets of rules that have been drawn up for us to follow. This is so with composition.

Learning the rules is helpful, but what’s more vital to creative photography is using the principles behind the rules to be more freely creative. As with grammar in language, composition in photography is not easy to study and learn to be creative with. If you have ever learned are second language you will understand more easily what I mean.

We never study the grammar of our mother tongue before we use it. We absorb it from whoever we learn it from, (usually our mother,) by hearing and repeating. It just happens naturally. Later, at school, we will be taught the grammar of our language so we can better understand it. This is not appealing to most students. I can never recall a class mate saying “great, we have a grammar lessons up next.” Thankfully the rules of photographic composition are not so complicated or boring as the rules of grammar.

In this module you will learn more of the rules of composition and how to experiment with them. Learning the rules will help you understand the principles of composition and the more you apply them in appropriate situations the more creative you will become with them.

Many photography teachers will encourage you to learn the rules of composition so you can break them. My aim is to teach you the rules of composition and encourage you to use them frequently in the right situations so they become as second nature to you. Once you have learned the rules and practiced them over and over, they will become ingrained into your subconscious if you let them and you will begin to ‘see’ in different ways. This will take time and practice.

Modules 6, 7, & 8

Advanced Photography Modules

This selection of modules is designed to teach more advanced photography to people who are familiar with their cameras. Lessons are designed to help you practice more what you studied during the first five modules of this course.

Each module stands on it’s own and will be an enjoyable learning experience if you understand your camera well and know how to control it whether you’ve taken the first five modules or not.

With these modules I want to encourage you to discover or develop more of a style of photography that you are comfortable with and learn to excel in.

If you are in the process of completing the 365 steps of this photography experience you will need to choose three of these modules to make up the remainder of the lessons.

Over time I will add more modules so as to give more options. I may also develop more in-depth teaching and publish more advanced modules on certain subjects and styles.

Options for the final three modules to make up The Complete Photography Experience will include:

  • Black and White
  • Portraiture
  • Street
  • Product
  • Travel
  • Using Flash
  • Using Reflectors
  • Story Telling/Documentary
  • Abstract
  • Relating To Your Subject
  • Night
  • Family
  • Fast Lenses and Depth of Field