What is A Year with my camera?
A Year With My Camera is unlike any other photography course.
1. It's for complete beginners.
2. It takes a whole year - you can't learn photography in a weekend.
3. It's entirely step by step. You learn one thing, then you move on. You can relax and stop worrying about whether you are covering everything in the right order. I take care of that for you.
4. The email version is free (join below). It is also available in workbook, app and video formats (all details below).
5. I really care whether you make progress.
6. I have a masters degree in education, as well as being a professional photographer. There are many people out there who claim to be able to teach photography, just because they can use a camera. If you've met a teacher who made you feel bad about yourself because you don't understand something, you'll know that's not true. This course took me a year of research, feedback, and editing until it was ready to launch. Try it and see why it's different.
7. Everyone is welcome, but I wrote it for people who have maybe already had a career (or two), have maybe spent the last 10 years (or more) looking after their family, and who have maybe recently managed to carve out some time for themselves to finally understand their camera and be able to take photos they are proud of.
Heard enough? Join here and get started today
You need a mindset shift to get the most out of A Year With My Camera.
A lot of people who join come to us a bit bruised from online encounters in Facebook photo groups, or real life encounters in camera clubs. Photographers are astoundingly competitive. Many think everyone should take photos like they do, use the kit they use, only shoot natural light, only shoot with off camera flash, only shoot at the crack of dawn.
Many think the way other photographers should learn is to have all the flaws in their images pointed out to them.
One of my students coined the phrase, "The shouty camera club guy" to sum up this type of photographer.
The A Year With My Camera method is the opposite of this.
The first thing you do is make this promise:
"The only photographer I will compare myself to is the one I used to be."
(I know it's grammatically dubious, but the correct version is too cumbersome.)
The next thing to do is to embrace the journey, look forward to making mistakes (because that's the only way to learn), and find the good in every photo you take, and every photo you look at:
"I will strive for progress, not perfection."
The last thing to remember is that photography is supposed to be fun. This is what you do to enjoy yourself. To let the creative spark sing. To lose yourself in the moment, preserve memories, capture a part of your soul. Do not listen to anyone who tells you what you should take photographs of. Take photos of what you love. If you just want to photograph flowers, do it. Doors? That's fine. Only black and white? Go for it. Don't know yet? Follow along with the emails, I give you plenty of suggestions.
"Never, ever underestimate the importance of having fun."
And if you think the shouty camera club guy only shouts at beginners, you'd be wrong. I was out and about last year having just been shortlisted for International Garden Photographer of the Year, and someone asked me to take a group photo. I lined everyone up, against the sun as is my style, and he told me I was doing it wrong. I shouldn't shoot into the sun. I had JUST been talking to him about how I was shortlisted for the biggest prize in my industry, and he STILL knew best.
Shoot into the sun if you want to.
1. You'll need a DSLR, mirrorless or bridge camera. One where you can change the exposure settings (aperture and shutter speed) but not necessarily change the lenses.
2. Register today (below - hit the "JOIN" button) and you'll get an email straight away with more details. The lessons go out by email every Thursday. The course starts on the first Thursday of every month, except August and December. If you join in between starts, you'll get the pre-course fun stuff - lots of photo projects, tips, challenges and information to get ready for the start.
3. The first 6 lessons of the main course are technical lessons, to get you off auto mode. You'll understand all the concepts by the end of 6 weeks, even if you can't remember them every time you go out with your camera. The email course covers the first 6 lessons in complete detail, all for no charge.
4. The next couple of months of the main course are creative lessons where you'll learn about composition and light, and also keep practising all the technical stuff. The email version of the course from this point onwards has a comprehensive but abridged version of each lesson. You can finish the whole course with the free emails, but if you want the expanded lessons, more examples, different projects and all the checklists, you'll need to buy the workbooks or join the video course (see below). And of course you can opt out at any time in 1 click.
5. The rest of the year is also designed to keep you practising shooting off auto, until it becomes unconscious. Projects include landscape, macro, and using a tripod. We touch on editing and sharing your photos as well.
By the end of the first month you'll be off auto.
By the end of 3 months you'll be taking photos you're proud of.
By the end of the year you'll be the best photographer you know.
Why is it free?
I want everyone with a big camera to be able to use it properly, stop feeling frustrated and guilty, and actually enjoy taking it out and taking photos. If you've got the patience and sticking power to open the emails every Thursday and do the homework, then the course is yours for no charge. The first 6 lessons are the entire expanded versions that are included in the workbooks. The remainder of the course has abbreviated lessons with fewer examples and projects, but enough technical information to finish the year.
For those who prefer their lessons in book or video form, want the expanded lessons with more examples and demonstrations, or can't wait a whole year, I offer the course in 2 other formats - workbooks (via Amazon) and video lessons (via my Teachable site):
The course is also available on our app, together with a thriving community of photographers sharing their progress. Search on Android or Apple app stores for “A Year With My Camera” or click for details: