Otago Polytechnic

Photography night class


Dunedin School of Art (P block, Riego Street)

One weekly session per term: Mondays, 6.00-8.00pm

On campus 

18 February, 29 April, 15 July and 16 September 2019
You can apply anytime via the APPLY tab in the top right corner of this page. This will take you to our Eventbrite page where you can apply and pay online.
Time to start crafting your photos!

You know the technical side of your camera but you now want to work on how to craft your images.

This class is for those with previous photography experience and is great for someone with a basic understanding of the manual settings of their camera. During this course, we will further explore the abilities of your DSLR camera including the exposure controls of the camera, bracketing and bulb shooting. There will also be more of a focus on the crafting of your images with exercises in composition and lighting. This class also covers pinhole photography, digital scanning, exposure solutions, editing in Adobe Photoshop (RAW Processing, Layers and Masks, HDR and Panorama Stitching), sorting and filing digital images and post-production options for your photos.

2019 term dates 
Term one 18 February - 12 April  
Term two 29 April - 21 June
Term three 15 July - 6 September
Term four 16 September - 8 November

Please note: There will be no classes on public holidays.

What if I want to attend the same course next term?

If you want to repeat this course, you will need to apply and pay for each term separately via our Eventbrite platform (by clicking the APPLY tab in the top right corner of this page).

You will study
  • Composition
  • Lighting (using the lighting studio)
  • Exposure solutions for tricky subjects
  • Adobe Bridge basics
  • Bulb Shooting and Light Painting
  • Shooting for panoramas
  • Photoshop Basics (RAW Processing, Layers and Masks, HDR and Panorama Stitching)
  • Digital Scanning (depending on the level and interests of the class)
  • Darkroom taster (Pinhole Photography)
  • Digital Printing and Post-production options

Please note: You will need to shoot film outside of class.


This class will be run by Hannah Cooke.

Equipment required
  • A Digital Camera (DSLR or MILC cameras only)
  • A portable storage device (portable hard drive or a USB thumb drive)
  • A USB card reader
  • Notebook and pen (optional)
  • Your camera’s manual, printed or electronic (optional)
  • Tripod (optional and not required every week). 

Is my camera suitable for the course?

There are two types of cameras that are suitable for this course:

DIGITAL SINGLE-LENS REFLEX (DSLR) are digital cameras with an interchangeable lens. They combine the optics and the mechanisms of a single-lens reflex camera with a digital imaging sensor, as opposed to photographic film.

MIRRORLESS INTERCHANGEABLE LENS CAMERA (MILC) are digital cameras with an interchangeable lens. It is called mirrorless since it does not have a mirror in the optical path and instead uses the image sensor to provide the rear image display and/or the image electronic viewfinder.

What course should I do?

This depends on your level and how comfortable you are with your camera. The Introduction to Photography class (Wednesday) has a strong focus on understanding the settings of your camera and basic Photoshop. The Photography class follows on from the Introduction to Photography class so you will want to be confident with at least aperture and shutter priority and a basic understanding of the manual shooting mode. The class builds on the technical skills learned in the first class with the additions of composition, light, panorama images and solutions for tricky exposures.

Do I need to buy anything for the class?

Throughout the class there will be items recommended for you to buy. These items are optional; however, you will need to buy a USB card reader for class (where you can buy this item is covered in the first week of class).

Will there be any additional costs during the course?

Yes, there will be a couple of extra costs however these will changefrom student-to-student and will be explained during the first week of class.

What do I need to bring for the first week?

  • Your Camera (and its manual if you have it)
  • Fully charged battery
  • Empty camera memory card
  • Notebook and pen
  • Your Student Login (this will be on your invoice)
  • Yourself!

Do I need to be a wiz on the computer?

It will definitely help if you have used a computer before as you will be using Adobe Bridge and Photoshop as part of the course (you don’t need previous experience with these programs). If you have never used a computer and are nervous about the computer component of the course, you may wish to complete a computer course beforehand.

Does the course cover specific types of photography?

Yes and no. The course utlises a group format often with a range of equipment, budgets and skill levels between the students. Because of this, the course covers transferable skills for a range of photographic genres.


All classes are held in the Photography Studio at the Dunedin School of Art. Please click here for a map.

Go to the main entrance of the Dunedin School of Art at 19 Riego St (off the Anzac Avenue end of Albany St). The Photography Studio is on the first floor, halfway along the main corridor.


For enquiries, please email artnightclass@op.ac.nz 


While every effort is made to ensure that this sheet is accurate, Otago Polytechnic reserves the right to amend, alter or withdraw any of the contained information. The fees shown in this document are indicative ONLY. Both domestic and international fees are subject to change and are dependent on the development and implementation of Government policies. Please note that additional fees may from time to time be required for external examination, NZQA fees and/or additional material fees.