*This is not a sponsored post. The writer paid for their class.
Night photography is a special skill. Who among us hasn’t seen those gorgeous shots of car light trails and wanted to learn how to do that? Here’s the thing: I think I was quite similar to many folk around Australia who own an entry-level DSLR. I thought it was cool, but had no idea how to use it!
Learning to use your Big Camera
Having expressed an interest in photography, my Nikon was a gift. Both my husband and I loved it – it takes great photos after all – but we had always just shot it on “Auto”.
We knew there was more to the photographer’s art but always struggled to understand the other dials and buttons! Eventually, my mum saw an ad for a night photography course that wasn’t exorbitant so we resolved to go.
Taking a Photography Class
The class was run by a business called Photoh, a nationwide outfit I believe that is constantly putting on lessons. We met at the iconic Wheel of Brisbane just before sundown.
Our teacher, a knowledgeable young lady, scooped up we nervous little photography chicks, and directed us to a nearby lawn. Here, we started to learn the basics of shutter speed, aperture and ISO.
Putting into practice straight away stuff we’d just learned was fantastic. I learn by doing so being able to experiment with the settings instead of listening to dry classroom-style content was useful and fun.
A Night Walk
After a while capturing the big Wheel at various shutter speeds and marveling at our blurry, seemingly magical photos, we proceeded along the riverside and set up with a view across to the casino. Here, we talked about white balance and learned more about capturing subjects in low-light conditions.
I loved taking long-exposure shots of the City Cats cruising up and down – they left lovely streaks of light across my photos. And the 30-second exposures we were taking made the river smooth as glass, and the multi-coloured lights of the scene more intense.
Later we moved up to the Victoria Bridge, where we were taught a few more basic photography principles like the rule of thirds.
Lastly, we lugged our cameras and tripods across the bridge to the highway overpass and took photos of the car lights streaking along the road below. Loved this part!
Photography lessons learned
Our little group broke up at this point, after about 3 hours of intense learning and shooting. We had a great time and couldn’t believe how much had been taught in the class.
The principles we learned could be just as easily applied to day photography and we finally knew what most of the dials and buttons on our Big Cameras did!
Photoh runs regular classes across most major Australian cities, including smart phone ones! Our Brisbane Night Photography class was $100/head.
Have you done a photography class or course? Tell us about it!