This page and these workshops sprung from the aftermath and feedback from my presentation at Inspire Boston 2011. The brainchild of my friends Matt & Enna Grazier, the Inspire Seminars are a fantastic opportunity for learning for both new and old photographers - and even better a great time to connect and swap ideas with tons of great local shooters. I'll be speaking about reception light again this year (with a few added tricks and tweaks from last year's presentation). The thing is though, while Inspire is a great chance to learn about a ton of subjects in 2.5 days, some people need a little more sculpted learning experience.
After I wrapped my presentation last year, fellow speaker Allana Taranto approached me and said, "When's your next workshop? You really need to teach more and I've got some great ideas." (Which she totally did.) I didn't have an immediate answer for her, because, well, I'm not a teacher, I'm a photographer. Yes I'd taught a few workshops in the past, but it's never been an area I've wanted to focus on, for many reasons. Two key reasons are that I see myself as a photographer first, and that's where I want to invest my time and energy, and secondly, it seems like every photographer and their dog is teaching a workshop these days, and I just don't want to be that guy.
That said, based on the feedback from Allana and some of the students I spoke with after my class, I decided to open up some time for teaching.
Because I really, really want my students to feel as though they're getting their money's worth, groups are going to be very, very limited in size, and the curriculum will be very highly customizable. There will be two types of workshops available, both held at the LensProToGo Studios in West Concord. And while you're more than welcome to use any of my gear while we shoot, we'll also use YOUR gear, and if you're missing pieces or are in the market for new gear, I'll point you in the right (and not always the most expensive) direction to help round out your kit.
I've been lucky enough to teach more than 25 of these small seminars in the last year, and I've learned a lot myself. If you've visited this page in the past, you'll notice a few tweaks below based on what I've learned this past year as both an instructor and photographer. This series is sort of ever evolving, and fully customizeable.
There are two different options to get your learn on:
Option 1: $400, one student, 3 hours. Me, you, and one model.
- In this one-on-one setting we'll cover the soup to nuts about using flash, absolutely everything. Wedding lighting, portrait lighting, modifiers, high speed sync, wireless triggers, lighting diagrams, headshot lighting, dramatic lighting, group photos, gels for color correction and dramatic effect, what cameras and lenses and why, TTL vs. Manual flash, dealing with reflections, mastering bounce flash, how to reverse engineer other photographer's images and more.
- The beauty of the one-on-one setting will be that it's 100% customizable. If you already understand the flash/ambient relationship, we'll skip it. Don't care about lighting weddings? We can skip that too. A few days prior to the workshop I'll e-mail you a questionnaire to gauge your lighting experience, your skill set and what areas you'd like to concentrate on and then I'll fully customize the material (and notes that you'll receive copies of) to fit the areas you've indicated you'd like to cover.
- After we wrap you'll have 2 homework assignments and a month to shoot them, then we'll setup a meeting or phone call to review and critique the results.
Option 2: $200, 3 students, no models, 3 hours.
- Grab some friends for this one - similar to option 1, except students will photograph each other and there will be no follow-up assignments. The material we'll cover will still be 100% customizable. I'm also happy to put together the groups as I gauge interest and schedules.
Workshops can take place Sunday-Thursday and must be schedule at least a week in advance. Interested? E-mail me at email@example.com, it's that simple.
Comments from past workshop attendees:
"Coming to New England from Southern California was a serious reality check when it came to my knowledge of off camera lighting. I opted to take Doug's 1:1 workshop, and I can't recommend it enough. In addition to being talented and truly knowing his craft, Doug is very personable. His teaching & communication style is exceptional. I came in feeling nervous, but Doug set me at ease immediately and made it feel like learning from an old friend. There is no ego with Doug, just good, fun, valuable information.
Doug, thank you for helping me build confidence, and giving me tips to take my work to the next level. I can't wait to see where this takes me, and will surely be checking in soon for even more advanced tips. You rock."
"I contacted Doug for a 1:1 lighting workshop since I was looking for an efficient way to customize a what I needed to learn. I wanted the 1:1 attention of another wedding photographer to work hands on with, talk about the equipment I use and to answer all the questions about how to refine my lighting techniques. I loved the lighting that Doug achieves in his own wedding photography work and was excited to book this session. The small investment was completely worth it - Doug did the due diligence to understand what I needed out of the session before hand which I really appreciated. During our session, Doug knowledge was so impressive and he answered every question I had and explained it so that it stuck. I have to say the most impressive thing about Doug's workshop has been his follow up afterwards. He gave homework after we met and reviewed what I had turned in over the phone. All of these components have brought longevity to the information I learned. I have and will continue to recommend this workshop to others. Thanks so much Doug!"
"Doug’s lighting course was a really fantastic course filled with a ton of tips and tricks. Doug really knows his equipment, understands light, and has an excellent way of communicating and transferring his knowledge to the students within the class. I really enjoyed the small class atmosphere because we could easily ask Doug direct questions that related specifically to us and our equipment. I would take a class led by Doug again in a heartbeat, it was worth every penny. You can tell that Doug is very knowledgeable and enthusiastic about photography and lighting. It was a great class and Doug is truly a natural when it comes to teaching!"
"I tried to avoid lighting as much as possible, always doing just enough to get by but not really understanding the concepts of how it all worked - flashes, receivers, transmitters, what? The technical aspect absolutely terrified me. I warned Doug of this at first and he told me not to worry about it, which is exactly what I needed to hear. I don't think he knew I'd be arriving with most of my lighting equipment still in its boxes, but he didn't even flinch! He showed me how to set everything up and worked with me at my speed level, ever-so-patiently, until he was sure I understood the basics before moving on. He asked me what I wanted to learn about most during our workshop and completely tailored the lesson to me. Now I can honestly say lighting is interesting, not intimidating. I love trying out new things and actually enjoy using my equipment because I know how to use it. Quite honestly, I couldn't have done it without Doug's assistance."
"Doug's lighting workshop was awesome for any level! The small-group setting was perfect to ask questions (and every one was taken seriously, no matter how big or small). Doug has a great, casual way of explaining things that make sense. He knows his stuff! I would definitely recommend taking one of his workshops to any photographer."
"Doug is a lighting guru! He knows his gear inside & out and has great advice for all levels from beginner to pro. Totally worth the small investment!!!"
"Doug is my tech/lighting guru. He truly knows his stuff! He is super patient and can cater the class to your exact needs. I can now go into almost any situation with confidence that I will be able to nail the lighting thanks to him."