Kate and I get so much from this blog and the community around it. We really enjoy updating you all on our adventures and even more so reading the emails and comments we get from you after you have read the blog or visited the youtube channel. This got me thinking about how amazing it is that with all the fantastic blogs and youtube channels out there, that you guys take the time to visit us and chat with us. We really appreciate it, so I thought it may be time to give back some of that love and learn some new skills to help make Ar Bruadair more exciting for you guys to visit, so I’m retiring my trusty smartphone and learning to use a proper grown up camera and hopefully in the process, learning to take some really interesting photos and videos. I though it might also be an interesting journey to document on the blog for those of you who may also be considering the leap to DSLR cameras.
Let’s start at the very beginning….
This has all begun with lots of learning online about recommended camera and kit. No mean feat as I needed to find the kit that would offer what I was after for both static photography but also for video creation for youtube. After much deliberation, I decided on the Canon 70D. Not only is it a great DSLR with all the features you’d expect, it also has focal tracking for video, a must when you are alone and videoing yourself. I wonder if I can buy a cameraperson somewhere?
Well fancy kit purchased and it was time to learn how to use it, after all no matter how fancy the camera, if I can’t make the best of it, nothing will change. As a complete NOOB to anything more than point and shoot, a beginners course seemed like a good place to start. So I enrolled in a beginners photography class with Jessops, a local camera shop and patiently waited for the day to come around.
Saturday came and I packed my little camera bag ready for school with the usual butterflies any new student experiences. There was no need for the butterflies, though, I had the most fantastically fun day, a whole day learning about aperture, shutter speed, exposure control and ISO with Jefferson Wilcox a photographer from Fife who works with the Jessops training academy.
The class consisted of 8 folk, a good mix of genders, ages and experience (well camera kit) at no point did it feel like there was a difference between me as a total NOOB and the guys with the massive lenses, everyone was there to learn and Jeff, the guy teaching, had a fantastic natural ability to bring all the students into the lessons. Unfortunately, the weather was pretty awful on Saturday so we didn’t get out to test our skills and had to settle for photos around the tiny classroom, but Jeff came prepared and let us test out shutter speed as he threw a hockey puck around (nice touch to make a personal connection between student and teacher Jeff).
The take home for me was controling aperture, just playing with this last night made a huge difference letting me muck about with backgrounds as I took pictures of Kate but even looking at photos I took at the beginning of class compared to at the end I can see a difference already. I guess we watch this space for more.
If you fancy trying out a course with Jessops, I would recommend it. Take a visit to their website for more info.
I still have a lot to learn (I can see things that are wrong with these photos which I’d like to fix so I think that’s a good thing), and I will keep you all up to date on my adventures, I promise.