I wanted to bring a post into light about photography, and explain to those why I do teach workshops and offer services in photography education over on my Photography Workshop Page.
As many people might know, I’m self taught with my photography, however, I really hate that term because ultimately, I wasn’t solely self taught, but rather was taught by thousands of people through critiques, tutorials, workshops, DVD series and general discussion while showing off my work and building my photography business over the last 8 years.
So when I say Alternative Education, I mean anything that can be done or learned outside a classroom. This could be workshops, DVD series, YouTube videos or articles. And while these aren’t always as information as a class on photography, they still have all the key components to help further your education on the subject.
Insight Into Modern Photography
Perhaps the biggest advantage with alternative education in photography is the insight within the modern world of photography. It’s no secret that over the last 15 years, photography has completely flipped on his head. Before then, it was exceptionally expensive, involved film, and a lot of complicated practices that are no longer necessary (I haven’t developed film myself in over 10 years and would certainly destroy it if I tried at this point). It wasn’t something that people could begin to learn and enjoy at a relatively inexpensive price. In these last 15 years, we’ve been gifted Instagram, cameras on our phones, and a million new ways to share our work and ideas. And that is probably the biggest asset to alternative education in photography – the insight into the modern world.
I have met some brilliant professors in my day, with some amazing insight into how photography used to be. Many of the practices they teach no longer apply, and are flooded with a brand new market with brand new ideas and ways of things. Certainly, many professors of photography and art still use their cameras, and have some insight within the industry, but their careers have largely transformed into educators. By having a photographer as your educator, you can learn from someone who is at the forefront of the industry, and tell you exactly what they do to remain a household name within photography.
The Business Of Photography
While staying on the topic discussed in the last point, is the nature of formal education within photography. Many of the professors on a formal education system were previously art students, and are now teaching you how to create art. While this is great, but the best artist in the world needs to know how to promote their work and make a living wage from it. Informal education opens the doors for all aspects of photography, including the business and marketing side of things. The best artist in the world is useless if no one knows his/her work.
One thing I’ve learned from my workshops and my work as a writer for Fstoppers, is that many people are fantastic photographers and artists, but really have no idea how to market their business to potential clients. Informal education allows you to learn this practices, as well as the practices that are among the core of photography. And while my workshops aren’t strictly business related, business practices are always brought up, and build some in depth conversations during the Q&A portion of the workshop.
Hands On Education
I’m a huge advocate for one on one education, workshops and assisting others to get a better understanding of how they work. Like many of us, it’s so much easier to learn by being apart of the process, rather than reading an article on Fstoppers or Photofocus. And while those articles are a great alternative, being on location is one of the biggest advantages to any workshop or other alternative education method.
In my workshops, I specifically tailor it to my students. I have complete understanding that my students aren’t going to photograph things like me, and I try to take advantage of that. So my workshops have an outdoor session, where we take the principles learned, and apply it to each person’s style and workflow. The results are that everyone gets photos that they want, using techniques that they often never even considered before. (Shameless plug – A few seats still available for the workshop information above).
Hopefully these three components to nontraditional education has helped you consider workshops and other options to further your career or interest as a photographer. Of course, for those unaware, I do teach workshops as well as give 1 on 1 training in retouching, lighting and client interaction for those who are interest. Below is a quick breakdown of my upcoming photography workshops, and ofcourse be sure to check out my photography workshops website for more information.
For more info, check out http://zsuttonphoto.com/workshops
About This Workshop Tour
This workshop tour is of my highly accredited Outdoor Lighting Workshop, sponsored in part by Phase One Cameras, LensRentals.com and AlienSkin. The workshop is to show people how to properly light portraits in an outdoor location, under some of the harshest conditions. Designed to take your work to the next level, The Outdoor Light Photography Workshop is among the highest rated workshops in the world.
This is just a small amount of the information available for this workshop tour. For more info on the workshops, feel free to check out my photography workshops website.
Zach Sutton will be teaching an Outdoor Lighting Workshop in Kalamazoo on September 28th, 2014. This class is 8 hours long and limited to 10 students. A Phase One rep will be on location, to show you how to use their cameras if you’d like. A few months ago, this very same class sold out in 48 hours, so act fast. Click here to reserve your seat.
Zach Sutton will be teaching an Outdoor Lighting Workshop in Albuquerque on October 19th 2014. This class is 8 hours long and limited to 10 students. A Phase One rep will be on location, to show you how to use their cameras if you’d like. I’ve taught this class twice in Albuquerque now, and have had an overwhelming out pour of additional people interested. Click here to reserve your seat.
In its Washington D.C. debut, the Outdoor Lighting Workshop will be taught in Washington D.C. on November 9th 2014. This class will be 8 hours long and limited to 10 students in total. As with all these workshops, Phase One will be on location with camera systems for students to try out and use if they’d like. Click here to reserve your seat.
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