How to Teach a Digital Photography Class
Teaching a digital photography class can be beneficial for several reasons. For the photographer, it is an additional means of earning an income while imparting valuable knowledge to other budding photographers. Those attending these classes will learn a new skill or improve on existing ones. The following are a few guidelines for photographers who are interested in teaching their own photography classes.
Step 1: Advise Students on What to Bring
Before meeting with the class for the first time, advise them on what they will need to bring during the sessions. Students will need to bring their own cameras to each session to understand how to use the device properly. Taking down notes is useful but limited. Participants will learn more from using their own cameras especially when doing practice shoots during the sessions.
Step 2: Start with the Basics
Do not assume that all students are at the same level when they come in to the sessions. Unless there is a specific agenda for the class, it is worthwhile to begin learning with the basics. Show the different parts of a camera, the different types and how digital models differ from film. Give the students a general overview of how each part of the camera works as well as basic techniques in taking photographs.
Step 3: Allow Students to Photograph
This allows students to be on their own and try applying the lessons they learned during class. Allowing the students 30 minutes to an hour to shoot is enough time to explore. A small class and a limited timeframe also allows the photographer to see how each of the students are doing with the shoot. Give them a basic guideline on what you would like to see at the end of the shoot.
Step 4: Evaluate the Photos
Review the photos produced during the shoot. It also gives the photographer a chance to teach about the basics of viewing the photos. Evaluate the photos based on what has been taught in class so far. Give praises for any efforts and constructive criticism on how the images can be improved.
Step 5: Teach Students How to Save Images Properly
Discuss the basics on how to save digital photographs. Teach them the importance of capturing and saving in full resolution. There are several sizes and types for image files. Explain what makes each one different from the other. This is also a great time to teach the participants how to transfer the images from the camera to the computer to a printer.
Step 6: Introduce Photo Editing Software
Altering too much of the image using photo editing software is not commonly recommended as it makes the photographer more reliant on post processing stage, but image editing software can also help enhance the image. Introduce the students to various programs used in editing photographs such as Photoshop. Show them the basics of how to correct and embellish photographs. Teach the students how to create a watermark to protect their photographs especially when being posted online.
Step 7: Explore Distribution Options
There are many ways of sharing the photographs besides printing. Teach the participants the basics on how to share the images using the Internet, creating albums, slide shows and even video.