Ana contacted me last month about taking a 1-on-1 DSLR Photography Lesson here in St. Petersburg as she would be visiting the area from California in March on business. She also just did not want to take a 2-hour lesson focusing on shooting, she wanted a 4-hour lesson that would also include digital photography editing and workflow. We were able to make our cross-continent schedules work out, but there was just the small matter of Ana not actually having a camera at the time! Fortunately, she received an Olympus E-P1 as a present soon before her trip to Florida. The E-P1 is a micro four-thirds style SLR camera and my first time with this particular model. I have only had hands on time with one other micro four-thirds camera and was not impressed with it, especially from an ergonomics and usability standpoint. However, the E-P1 was fitted with the same dedicated exposure, ISO, WB and focus buttons a proper DSLR body would have and the menu system itself was intuitive to navigate. The E-P1 still hits the same limits the other micro four-thirds camera did, which was slow auto-focusing and frames per second. If you can live without using it as an action camera, then I found the build quality to be solid and the camera to be very usable for still subjects.
Ana and I practiced some natural light portrait photography among other things before heading into a local frozen yogurt shop I like to use to teach digital photograph editing lessons in. Since she uses a Mac as I do, I recommended getting Aperture 3 to be the start of her digital photograph workflow and where she can make many useful edits.
I look forward to seeing her photos of California when she returns and hopefully she will be able to see a few alligators while she is still in Florida!