In some previous posts I talked about a photography course I took, now that it ended is the time for a review (frankly, the time was a couple of weeks ago but being
lazybusy, only now I managed to sit down and write something): back when I registered for it, very little information was available on the net about it beside the official site.
In very few words, I can say the course was within my expectations, but this does not tell much, it may tell something about my ability to set my expectation level or to perceive value, so there is a clear need for more words… At 6 weekends, the course is short, you will learn some stuff but also will feel the need to continue learning on your own, do not expect to walk in a total noob and walk out Cartier-Bresson.
Regarding theory, if you read a good photography book and/or a couple of websites, the course will add very little, but I found more important the opportunity the practical experience of a real studio and working in a real studio, as well as the interaction with other photographers: both the Marius and Vlad, the teachers and your fellow colleagues (about a dozen of classmates).
In a very conventional style I will try to outline what was, from my subjective point of view, the good, the bad and the ugly.
The good: for me, the best part was the open atmosphere, it was pretty much like an open conversation where you didn’t feel afraid to contradict the teachers at times and also felt your opinion matters. You are treated like an equal.
The bad: the "Photoshop" class was a wasted day, I could not care less about what are the shortcuts in some proprietary Adobe software or how awesome some people think are the plug-ins from Alien Skin. But I expected that, too bad that I didn’t have ready a “each time you
pirateillegally download an expensive proprietary graphic editor and your job would be accomplished fine with a Free alternative, God kills a kitten".
The ugly: the course has an online presence, a discussion group on Yahoo and also a very inactive and less populated flickr group, you can easily see a lack of experience about online communities. In fact the entire "community" part is lacking, most likely I won’t get it touch with the colleagues.
As a conclusion, I find it a positive experience at a right price (for me it was an impulse buy, finding the news about it when I was browsing an online photo gear store, but I am odd with money spending and priorities), so if you can afford, go for it.
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