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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre General Photography Talk 
Thread started 04 Jun 2012 (Monday) 14:50
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POLL: "Have you ever taken any kind of photography course?"
Yes, it really helps and would do it again.
52
40.9%
Yes, but in hindsight, I wouldn't do it again.
6
4.7%
No, and I don't see much value in it.
29
22.8%
No, but I would like to if I had the time and/or money.
40
31.5%

127 voters, 127 votes given (1 choice only choices can be voted per member)). VOTING IS FOR MEMBERS ONLY.
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Have you ever taken a photography course?

 
SunTsu
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Jun 04, 2012 14:50 |  #1

A friend of mine who just took up photography, bought a bunch of gear and is taking courses. I took a look at some of his materials and although I know most of it, there were some things which I know, but didn't know the proper term for.

For example, he showed me a slide deck with the 10 shades of grey. I've never heard that phrase mentioned but already understand the concepts, albeit not in a structured and formal manner. So I'm wondering how many of you (pros and amateurs) have ever taken a photography course, seminar or other formal education (including high school, etc.).


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JakAHearts
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Jun 04, 2012 15:01 |  #2

Nope. Ive learned everything from POTN and associated links. :)


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FerozeK
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Jun 04, 2012 15:08 |  #3

One course in wedding and one in glamour/nude photography. I enjoyed it, but I learn more by making mistakes....




  
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FlyingPhotog
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Jun 04, 2012 15:09 |  #4

There isn't really a poll choice for my situation but having a four-year degree in broadcasting has transferred a lot of knowledge from video (especially digital video) to digital photography.

I simply look at digital photography as video that doesn't move... ;)


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Jun 04, 2012 15:32 as a reply to  @ FlyingPhotog's post |  #5

Haven't taken any photography courses offered at camera stores, but I'm doing a degree program in Photography at a local college here. I'm almost in my 3rd year and it's lots of fun and hard work, learned a lot so far.


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Jun 04, 2012 15:38 |  #6

Would being mentored by a professional qualify, along with workshop sort of things?


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bjyoder
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Jun 04, 2012 15:42 |  #7

I've completed a 2-year Associates program (Associate of Applied Science in Digital Photography), and it did help me a lot.

A lot of people will say that they can find out everything they need to know by searching the internet. The problem there becomes that, if you have taught yourself everything you know, you don't know what you don't know. I picked up so much stuff in the beginning courses that were filled with stuff I "already knew" that helps me now it's crazy to think I might have missed it.

For instance, a good friend of mine started looking into some of the same course work I was doing for the AAS. He decided to pass on the program because he didn't want to do the low level work that he "already knew". I was in his same boat that I knew most of the info being taught the first few quarters, and it was a bit tedious to get through. However, I have seen my photography improve more in the same time period than his has, and I owe it to the info gained through the courses in the last few quarters of the AAS. I have a much better working knowledge of what it takes to make some shots happen than my friend. I used to aspire to shoot like him, but now I'm far more comfortable blazing my own path. Now, although I still maintain that he is awesome at what he does, I don't aspire to be like him, as I think I can go farther with photography after trudging my way through the stuff I "already knew."


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frugivore
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Jun 04, 2012 15:45 |  #8

I am self-taught, and I think the bulk of knowledge can be gleaned from basic texts. But I will be taking a course when I have some downtime. It's very hard to really know what you don't know.




  
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nathancarter
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Jun 04, 2012 15:55 |  #9

I took one in-person Scott Kelby workshop (Light it, Shoot It, Retouch it LIVE) which I found pretty useful, and have a subscription to lynda.com that I continue to use pretty extensively.

I've never taken anything in the vein of a college course, though.


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rpaul
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Jun 04, 2012 15:58 |  #10

I've taken some one-off classes ... I won't say they're useless, it was nice to have information presented in a formal and structured way, but by and large I've never come away with more than some tidbits. And when all half the class wants to know during Q&A is "what lens did you use for that shot" and "what settings should I use for a wedding" ... bleh.

I've learned more from just a couple sessions assisting than I have from all my classes/seminars combined.


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hockeyplaya13
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Jun 04, 2012 16:00 |  #11

I really got into photography the summer before my senior year of high school, and purchased my first dSLR that July. I had been reading around on POTN since that spring, and was registered for a photography class at my high school. I honestly did not learn a thing from that class because I had already learned everything on my own from POTN, my own reading, and practice. Granted, it was only a high school class, and I'm certainly not a pro. But I lived down the hall from a photography major my freshman year of college (he was a junior at the time, well into his coursework), and still knew leaps and bounds more than he did about photography. I'm sure he was much more educated on the history of photography and art, and they are forced to take a class where they only shoot with film cameras (something I've only tinkered with), but when it came to actual photography and the ability to learn to use and capture light, he was still very much a newb. So from that standpoint I don't think a class is necessary- there are resources everywhere, and POTN is a pretty comprehensive resource in and of itself. And honestly the technical aspects of photography are the only thing that can really be taught, and are not hard to learn. Learning to properly expose a photo and to use the camera is something you can learn on your own. But learning to create good photographs isn't something that can really be taught in a classroom setting- you just have to practice and observe others' works and see what works and what doesn't.

The only time I might recommend taking a class would be if it's being taught be a seasoned pro and is on a specialized topic of interest to you- ie. weddings/glamour as mentioned above. But any sort of photography class or workshop from a university or anything that's on general photography is a waste of your time, in my opinion. Just hang out on POTN! :D (give your wallet to your wife before doing so though...)


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harcosparky
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Jun 04, 2012 18:40 |  #12

Many years ago, long after I had acquired my Canon F1n SLR, I decided to take a college level Photography 101 and I am glad I did.

It made me slow down and really think a shot through and I could see a marked difference in the work I was producing.

It taught me some darkroom techniques through hands on experience that I felt I would not have learned otherwise.

But the most important part was how it changed the way I though when shooting.

I do not believe there is anyone who has not taken a course, who would not benefit from taking one.

No matter how much you think you know, you can learn something new.

No matter how good you think you are, you can improve.




  
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gjl711
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Jun 04, 2012 18:43 |  #13

Way back in H/S I took a two classes. They were helpful and taught me the basics. This is way back in the film days when AF was just starting to com on the scene.


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Mark1
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Jun 04, 2012 18:53 |  #14

I took it through high school... 4 classes in all. Then was a photo major at the university. But still consider myself more self taught than "educated".


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RichSoansPhotos
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Jun 04, 2012 19:19 |  #15
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SunTsu wrote in post #14530434 (external link)
A friend of mine who just took up photography, bought a bunch of gear and is taking courses. I took a look at some of his materials and although I know most of it, there were some things which I know, but didn't know the proper term for.

For example, he showed me a slide deck with the 10 shades of grey. I've never heard that phrase mentioned but already understand the concepts, albeit not in a structured and formal manner. So I'm wondering how many of you (pros and amateurs) have ever taken a photography course, seminar or other formal education (including high school, etc.).


I know a photographer who is a travel specialist and said that he is self learnt

I have never taken on any formal qualifications in photography, just a couple of workshops




  
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