One-on-one with the Snapshooter

One-on-one with the Snapshooter

As an alternative to workshops, I started offering individual photography tuition in late 2009 — more so for people who wanted to purchase a one-on-one workshop as a gift for a family member, partner or friend. While, cost-wise, the one-on-one photo tutorials are more expensive than workshops, learners gain more from having a one-on-one learning experience with the instructor.

I conducted two such sessions recently.

Josh M and his Nikon D90
The first session was conducted for Josh M – who has had his DSLR (a Nikon D90) for about 6 months. Josh had traveled quite extensively with his camera, but mainly shot in auto or programmed-auto modes, partly because he wasn’t 100% confident in his understanding of what the more creative modes of the DSLR allowed him to do.

The focus of this tutorial was to get Josh moving beyond the automatic modes, towards more creative exposure modes such as Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority and Manual Exposure. An intrinsic part of moving beyond the auto modes (where you let the camera decide pretty much everything except the point of focus), is the understanding of the fundamentals of digital SLR photography: Aperture, Shutter Speed, ISO, White Balance, exposure modes, exposure compensation… the list goes on. Coming to grips with these gave Josh greater  control over his image  making– and he began extending your photography into more creative realms, experimenting with exposure compensation, auto exposure lock, depth of field control, motion control and so on.

The tutorial included a guided photo walk through the streets and parks of Fremantle, where the Josh was able to see exactly how changing the controls on his camera was affecting the images he took. We finished at Fremantle Harbour at sunset, in time for Josh to take some long-exposures of a magnificent, golden sunset over the harbour.

Sean B and studio strobing
Sean loves working with models and is a mad keen flasher. By this, I mean Sean loved strobing with his flash gun (what did you think I meant?? 🙂 ). Like most digital photographers, Sean used the shoot and preview method when photographing models, to estimate correct strobe exposure. Having learned as much as he could about using the speedlight from the Net, Sean wanted to grow his confidence in using strobes, and in lighting his models.

We worked exclusively with studio strobes to photograph our fantastic models, Tara and Matt. Sean learned how to effectively use a light meter to take the guess work out of measuring strobe exposure, about lighting ratios for men and women and about using reflectors and fill-lights to fill in the shadows.

Matt and Tara put on a real show, and Sean soon became very conversant in directing the models and taking light readings. Have a look at his images below.

Photographs of Matt and Tara (c) Sean Breadsell 2010

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