I am frequently approached by friends and acquaintances to 'help them learn' photography. So, recently, I decided to set up an informal course for a small group. I'm going to see how things go and then maybe offer it wider as a bit of a sideline.
I've racked my brains and have come up with the following topic areas to cover and a rough structure. The delegates will all be complete newbies who have just bought their first SLR and have not yet taken it off Auto.
Has anyone got any thoughts on the following or any other advice? I want to keep it nice and informal and use lots of different locations to meet and shoot (so, maybe cityscapes, landscapes, sports, night time etc). The topic areas are not necessarily going to be taught in this order.
A second part to my question is, how would you go about teaching exposure and DoF? I was thinking that what I might do, is quickly explain the exposure triangle of Aperture, Shutter Speed & ISO and then get them to play with this in a shooting situation. So maybe set them all on Manual, at a fixed Aperture and ISO, then get them to change the shutter speed and notice what happens to the image. Then to do the same thing, but for A and ISO, with the other elements being constant.
Taking this to DoF, I was going to get them all to focus on the same point in a scene, to shoot on Aperture Priority (for ease) and to then change the aperture by a stop at a time - noticing the difference on DoF.
Any thoughts or tips on any of this appreciated!
1: Basics and composition
How modern cameras work
Introduction to lenses (focal length, speed, angles etc)
Basic camera operations (focusing M v Auto, zooming)
Holding the camera
Composition + framing (rule of thirds, leading lines, perspective, clutter, subject selection etc)
Timing (shutter lag, critical moment etc)
Light (golden hour, shadows versus highlights)
2: Exposure & depth of field
How camera's interpret light (metering)
Camera presets (auto, A, S, M et al)
What is aperture
Relationship between them both – controlling exposure
ISO & light sensitivity
Problems and basic solutions (low light, backlit, washed out sky, no detail in shadows etc)
Different ways of metering (spot, centre, matrix etc)
3: Depth of field
How depth of field works
Using the DoF scale and preview modes
Relationship to focal length
4: More advanced stuff
Shooting in bright light (fill)
Limitations of flash
Effects (eg rear curtain sync)
5: Filters & accessories
Skylight and UV
Special effects and grads
6: Shooting in low light and a night
Cable and remote releases
7: More advanced camera adjustments
8: Basic Photoshop