Developing photography skills at our recent ‘In Focus’ Workshop
Our latest photography workshop entitled In Focus was held at our Hertfordshire studio on Saturday morning and we were all hoping for the forecast rain to hold off. The plan for the morning was to recap on the techniques taught on the Introductory Workshop and then combine practical sessions with some more advanced skills.
The six enthusiastic photographers started by taking an initial series of photographs in the garden where there was a vast range of subjects to choose from. Everyone selected their favourite photo and the aim was to improve on it by putting into practise what they were to learn during the session.
We recapped on the main functions of the shutter button – focussing, reading the exposure and taking the photo – and then moved onto how setting the aperture or depth of field can create different outcomes.
Ian went through the importance of composition where positioning the subject differently in the viewfinder completely alters the final results. For example, a very different result is achieved when a person or object is placed to one side. rather than centrally, allowing space for the background to set off the subject. With Emma as the model, the students practised different compositions combined with different depths of field.
One of the most difficult areas of photography for amateurs is understanding how to set the controls on the camera for the different light conditions. Most modern digital SLR camera allow users to let the camera automatically adjust the ‘white balance’ which controls the hues in a photo – in other words photos taken sunlight, tungsten, fluorescent and other light conditions will all look very different. Ian also explained the ways in which Exposure Compensation can make an image brighter or duller.
It is not only the amount and quality of light which needs to be taken into account but also its direction. Deciding where to position people for a group photo means careful consideration of the sun’s rays as you don’t want to end up with everyone squinting! Unflattering shadows are not what you are looking for in a portrait either and Emma demonstrated how reflectors are used to create the perfect light.
Fortified by tea, coffee and pastries, the participants then had ample time to practise and ask lots of questions before a roundup of the morning’s learning and a review of their morning’s creations.
If you are interested in developing your photography skills or learning the basics please get in touch. Our ‘Introduction to photography’ workshops run monthly and the ‘In Focus’ workshop every few months, please get in touch if you are interested.
We hope to hear from you.