Entries in Canon T3i (13)
I have not had many evening lessons yet this year, but yesterday I met Pamela in downtown St. Petersburg for a 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lesson with her Canon T3i. She has had her DSLR for over a year, but had only been using it in auto-mode. With an upcoming trip to Alaska to photograph grizzly bears, she wanted to learn more about what her camera can do to improve her chances of getting great nature shots.
Pamela told me at the start of the lesson that she knew nothing, and many people actually say that, but it is never really true as everyone knows at least a little about photography. Either way, Pamela was a quick learner of my 5-step system for making a well exposed and sharp shot in any given situation, and with the fading evening light there was a wide range of settings needing to be used to get a good exposure. The Canon T3i has buttons for all the things you need to change, though it lacks a top LCD, it is still an ok camera egonomically for setting up a shot (though suffers for reviewing shots due to the usual Canon making you hit the review button twice before you can actually properly review a shot).
While Pamela practices she will be deciding which new lenses to invest in for her wildlife photography hobby.
Even though it is still only mid-April, my first 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lesson with Jahaan and her Canon T3i felt like the first lesson of the summer! Jahaan likes to make cakes and was not happy with her photographs of them. She felt they were not preserving the memory of her baking efforts properly. So she took a general photography lesson with me to learn how to use her Canon properly in manual mode. She can then take those skills and not only apply them to photographing her cakes, but anything else as well.
Jahaan had heard of most common photography terms, but did not know how they worked together to make a well exposed and sharp photograph in any given shooting conditions. Having taught hundreds of 1-on-1 photography lessons, my methodology for teaching how to do this step by step is very refined and possible to be understood by even a total beginner. Of course having some prior photography knowledge helps!
Jahaan was quick to learning her way manually around her DSLR and using the meter and reading the histogram to see how well a shot came out in the field. I look forward to seeing her cake photographs!
Another location change for our 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lesson as Jeannie finished up her 4-pack of lessons at the new Dali Museum in St. Petersburg, Florida. The museum itself makes for many architecture photography opportunities, and the grounds feature a melting clock bench, tree with ribbon messages blowing in the wind among other interesting features.
Jeannie did get a Canon 430 EX II Speedlite since our last lesson which we used to practice candid portraits in shade, direct sunlight and diffused light. We also went deeper into composition style and tips for framing a more flattering shot.
Over the course of her 8-hours of 1-on-1 instruction time I showed Jeannie many of the tools necessary to make successful photographs in any given shooting conditions, be they outdoors or indoors. I look forward to seeing Jeannie again in the future for more advanced photography lessons.
There was a bit of a change in venue this morning for my third of four 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lessons with Jeannie. We still met in downtown St. Petersburg, but inside the Yacht Club! She wanted to practice indoor photography, with flash in particular, and since she is a member we were allowed inside this Saturday morning and pretty much had the run of the place!
We started out with just my default indoor photography settings of f/5.6 1/60th and ISO 800 using her popup flash for general indoor shots, but still making best use of available background, subject positioning and composition. We moved upstairs which had great floor to ceiling windows we used for natural light portrait practice. Just like being outdoors, direct sunlight was too harsh and not until we used some side windows letting in a more diffused light did we get pleasing results.
Jeannie will invest in a speedlight before our fourth lesson so she can get the benefits of off-camera-flash as seen in the strobist portrait I made of her above just simply resting a speedlight on a banister in front of her and me shooting higher up on the spiral staircase.
On yet another cool Saturday morning I met Jeannie for our second of four 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lessons in St. Petersburg Florida. This time we went out to The Pier with her Canon T3i to photograph pelicans, and ended up finding a sailboat race and a fitness competition! When The Pier closes in May, I will certainly loose out on one of my favorite locations for photography lessons.
During this second photography lesson I helped Jeannie reinforce what she learned during our first lesson so that she can become more and more comfortable with just the physical process of getting her camera set eventually allowing for maximum concentration to be placed on composition and creativity rather than the technical aspect of getting a shot. We made great progress!