Otago Polytechnic

Introduction to Photography night class

Location

Dunedin School of Art (P block, Riego Street)

Duration
One weekly session per term: Wednesdays (either 4.00pm-6.00pm OR 6.30-8.30pm)
Delivery

On campus 

Start
Various - see term dates below for options
Everyone has a camera, but do you know how to use all of its capabilities?

Learn the basics of photography! This course is great for people who have recently bought a camera and want some help discovering what it can do. It will help you get to grips with controlling your shutter speed and aperture as well as an understanding of how ISO, white balance and RAW shooting impact your images. Alongside learning how to use your digital camera, we will look at darkroom photograms, digital scanning, basic editing in Adobe Photoshop (black and white editing, RAW processing), sorting and filing digital images and post production options for your photos.

2018 term dates 
Term one 19 February - 13 April  
Term two 30 April - 22 June
Term three 16 July - 7 September 
Term four 10 September - 2 November

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

You will study
  • Exposure (aperture, shutter speed, ISO)
  • Camera Settings (white balance, focus)
  • Bulb Shooting and Light Painting
  • Adobe Bridge Basics
  • Photoshop Basics (black and white, RAW processing)
  • Digital Scanning (depending on the level and interests of the class)
  • Darkroom Taster (photograms and contact prints)
  • Digital Printing and Post-production options

Please note: This course does include some small homework tasks some weeks.

Equipment required
  • A digital camera with manual settings.
  • 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)
FAQs

Is my camera suitable for the course?

There are three types of camera that are suitable for this course:

  • BRIDGE CAMERAS are digital cameras that bridge the gap between the digital single-lens reflex cameras (DSLRs) and the point-and-shoot camera. Like DSLR cameras, Bridge cameras have an adjustable aperture, shutter speed and ISO (however these settings are more limited)
  • 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.

Which photography 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 cameras and basic Photoshop. The Photography class follows on from the Introduction to Photography class so for this 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 learnt 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 change from 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 with a fully charged battery (and its manual if you have it)
  • 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.

I am purchasing a camera for the class what would you recommend?

If you can, a good option to begin with might be borrowing a camera from a friend to test it out first. Otherwise, to benefit you in the long run, perhaps look at getting a DSLR or MILC camera (Removable Lens) instead of a bridge camera. If you go into Jonathan’s Photo Warehouse on George Street in Dunedin, ask them for recommendations for the type of things you want in a camera and your budget. They should be able to point you in the right direction. You can also look up reviews and specs online which might help with your decision from the recommendations given. As for the lens that goes with it, get a single lens kit (better for learning as you won’t need to swap lenses) with a 18mm-105mm lens or something similar.

Tutor

This class will be run by Stacey Butler.  

Directions

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.

Enquiries

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

Disclaimer

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.

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