Getting To Know Your Camera – Student Comments

Scroll down to see comments and to add comments.

Thank you for taking the Getting To Know Your Camera Photography class with Sam D’Amico.

Your opinion and candid comments are valued because they help me to make sure the class is as effective as possible and help me to evaluate if I’m doing a good job as a teacher.

Thank you again for choosing to work with me, I hope that I have helped you to be a better photographer.

Sam

  • Could you please take a moment to let me know what you thought of the class in the “Leave a Reply” area below? You’ll have to scroll down a bit.
  • If you’d like, you can use the following questions as a guide.
  1. What was your main concern about taking this class?
  2. What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
  3. What specifically did you like most about this class?
  4. What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
  5. Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
  6. Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?
  7. Is there anything you’d like to add?
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128 comments on “Getting To Know Your Camera – Student Comments
  1. Kristle says:

    I am so glad I went to sams class. He is so hands on and patient. He took time to teach me about apature, shutter speed and metering. By the end of the class I was able to use my camera with confidence.
    Thank you Sam.
    And I will recommend his classes to anyone who is interested in learning photography.

  2. John says:

    Sam struck a very good balance between photography principles and practical camera skills in this session.

    1. What was your main concern about taking this class?

    Like so many others, I was concerned that I was too intimidated by my new camera (Lumix LX100) to use it effectively. Sam helped dispel many of my fears.

    2.What did you learn as a result of taking this class?

    I feel as though I now have a basic grasp of photography concepts and a working understanding of my camera.

    3.What specifically did you like most about this class?

    Sam’s patience and humor was key to me relaxing and learning.

    4.What are three other things that you found useful about this class?

    a. Learning the names and functions of the myriad buttons and dials on my camera; b. learning the difference between aperture, shutter speed and ISO; and c. setting up my viewfinder with the foregoing plus metering.

    5.Would you recommend this class? If so, why?

    I would highly recommend this class to other beginners. Sam is very supportive and uses all positive reinforcement to teach the basics.

    6.Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?

    A+. Sam conveys photography concepts in plain English and in the context of the camera.

    7.Is there anything you’d like to add?

    This class is well priced and very well paced for the beginner.

  3. Mike says:

    Sam, great class last weekend. Appreciated your perspectives and insights and would definitely recommend the class to others. Looking forward to staying in touch, and taking more pictures with better intent and control.

  4. Anne says:

    What was your main concern about taking this class?
    Wanted to learn what all the dials and buttons on my camera did, to get out of auto mode and have some control over the pictures I was taking.

    What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
    I was basically starting from zero knowledge of photography and it’s terminology, so I learned the terms, their function, and how to change them on my camera – aperture, shutter, focus, iso, meter, exposure!

    What specifically did you like most about this class?
    The small group (there were only two of us for my class) so we were really able to get into understanding, and not move on until we both fully understood what we were learning.

    What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
    Getting out of auto mode. Learning all about exposure. Learning the terms/features and how to use them.

    Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
    Yes! If you bought a camera, learn how to use it!

    Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?
    Sam was great! He really made sure we understood what he was teaching us before moving on to the next step, he asked us a lot of questions to test our knowledge and made sure it sunk in. He was very patient, and gave us plenty of time to practice and experiment.

    Is there anything you’d like to add?
    Highly recommend this class, if you have a camera, learn how to use it. I look forward to experimenting more with what I learned and then taking the introduction to photography course.

  5. Liz Donelson says:

    I had been feeling overwhelmed at the complexity of learning to operate my awesome new camera. I had been reading a book about photography, which was helpful, but having a hard time knowing how to transfer the knowledge from the book to actually taking pictures.

    The thing I liked best about the class was that it broke everything down to some very specific concepts that will be easy to practice until I am ready to learn more.

    Also, at one point I got really frustrated and upset, feeling like I couldn’t get it (which is something that happens to me and I don’t always handle it well). Sam made it totally okay and made me feel comfortable.

    I recommend this class (Getting to know your camera) and him as a teacher!

    Liz D

  6. Rebecca says:

    I absolutely loved Sam’s class! I have been using my DSLR for the past few months and thought I had been taking great pictures. However, I was relying only natural light and could not shoot when it was cloudy out. This class was everything anyone who has a new camera wants to know and I can not wait to take another one of Sam’s classes!

    Rebecca

    • Thank you for taking the class, Rebecca.

      You’ve been taking great pictures all along because we all take the greatest pictures we can considering our understanding of photography and camera operation. I appreciate that you have an opinion about your work.

      Compared to other camera formats, your DSLR allows for more choices in terms of exposure, focusing, metering etc. These choices allow photographers to deepen their compositions.

      Keep practicing your photography and continue to use your owners manual to learn how to operate your camera effectively and efficiently.

      Sam

  7. Terri says:

    Sam:)
    Your class today was interesting informative and fun! I learned the basics and you made me excited for the next level. You are a VERY patient instructor. Some first time students don’t know an F stop from there nose (do we?) BUT we learn that and much more before we leave your class. Thank you for sharing your vast knowledge with us and I look forward to continuing in you upcoming classes.
    Anyone considering Sam’s classes– Just DO it, you will be so glad you did!!!
    Thanks SO much
    Terri 🙂

    • Hi Terri,

      Thank you for taking the class and being an active participant.

      I enjoyed meeting you and working with you during the class.
      I hope you now know an f-stop from your nose. 🙂

      Keep practicing.

      Sam

  8. Molly says:

    Thank you for taking the fear out of using my new camera. I really appreciated the fact that the class required me to consult the manual myself and then refine what I learned in person. I was also happily surprised that we learned about taking photos using manual settings in addition to just figuring out the camera. I cannot wait to get out and practice. Many thanks!

    • Hi Molly,

      Thank you for your comments and thank you for being an active participant in the class.

      I’m happy to learn that the fear out of using your new camera has been eliminated. You can now use your camera fearlessly to thoughtfully make pictures.

      Using your owners manual is an important part of your practice.

      Keep praticing by working in manual exposure mode.

      Best regards,
      Sam

  9. Sonya says:

    Hi Sam,

    Thank you for a great class on Wednesday. I was confused on how to implement my Film SLR knowledge to the Digital SLR and you helped clarify all of my concerns.

    Please keep me informed of upcoming classes. I would like to learn more.

    Thanks again!

    Sonya

    • Hi Sonya,

      Thank you for your active participation in the class. I’m happy that you found that the class was able to help you to implement your Film SLR knowledge to the Digital SLR and helped you clarify all of your concerns.

      I sent out a follow up e-mail after class. Did you get it?

  10. Brendan says:

    I wanted to take the class because I was completely intimidated by my camera. I didn’t know where to begin even though I really wanted to learn how to use it but Sam’s class bridged the gap and broke things down in a simple manner.

    His teaching style make take a few minutes to get used to but if you’re willing to listen, you’ll come away from the class feeling much more comfortable with your camera, as well as an understanding of why he teaches the way he does.

    I’ll definitely feel much more comfortable just picking up my camera and practicing now that I have taken this class.

    • Thank you for taking the class Brendan, I enjoyed working with you.

      You’re active participation in the class was valuable and is what has made you more comfortable with your camera.

      Please keep practicing.

      Sam

  11. Michael Hannon says:

    Hi Sam,

    I thoroughly enjoyed the class today. I feel more comfortable with using my camera and am excited to take more pictures and get better. I would love to attend more classes in the coming weeks, unfortunately I cannot make them due to my work schedule and other commitments. If I am available to register for ‘Introduction to Photography’ April 30 on Thursday, will I have missed too much information and too many classes? Can I transition from today’s class to a photography introduction course several weeks later?
    Once again, thank you.

    Michael Hannon

    • Hi Michaeal,

      Thank you for taking the class and thank you for your helpful participation.

      Keep practing by making more pictures and you’ll continue to get better.

      The class you took today will enable you to easily transition ito the four-week introduction to photography class any time you’d like.

      Thank you again, Michael.

  12. I took WSP-DSLR Primer-Getting To Know Your Camera Follow Up.

    I took this class, because I had very specific questions about how to take good pictures in low-light settings and with active subjects.

    As a result of taking this class, I learned how to not rely on my auto settings to get the pictures I really want–regardless of the setting.

    I specifically liked the class, because Sam…
    1. Used laymans terms and broke it down to the basics
    2. Stayed on topic
    3. Really honed in on the idea that we, as the photographers, need to be able to answer our own questions through the use of the manual and simply using the camera.

    Here are three things that you found useful about this class:
    1. How to set my AV, TV, and ISO settings regardless of the setting.
    2. How to meter effectively
    3. That composition is in the eye of the beholder, and you have the power to change it.

    I would recommend this class, because I think Sam does a great job of teaching you the essential basics to using your camera effectively.

    As an instructor, Sam was a little eclectic, but that’s to be expected of an artist. He’s got a unique way of teaching, but it’s effective and entertaining. It only took a few minutes to really warm up to him.

    • Thank you for taking the class and thank you for your comments, Amanda.

      Now that you’ve the basics and are begining to use your camera more effectively, please keep practicing.

  13. Karen says:

    I took the “Getting to Know your Camera” class. Sam is a wonderful teacher. He was able to break thinks down in a simple manner that made it easy to understand. For the first time, I’m able to pick up my camera and actually have a sense of what I’m doing! Thank you Sam!

  14. Diana says:

    As other students I to was a little intimidated by attending my first class after so many years. After spending the first hour with Sam I was more comfortable and relaxed in taking in the info he was providing. He was clear and walked you through each topic you were there to learn. By the end of the class I walked away understanding the basics of my camera and how to start exploring photography on my own. I would recommend Sam’s classes.

    • Diana,

      Thank you for taking the class and thank you for your comments.

      I’m glad that you now understanding the basics of your camera and that you can explore photography on your own.

      Please keep practicing.

  15. Haley says:

    This introductory course was excellent. Before taking it, I was concerned that camera jargon and the immense amount of technical terms/features of my camera would be overwhelming. Sure, there is still plenty to learn in the realm of equipment and photography, but Sam explained the basics of manual exposure and what my camera can do as long as I know what I want it to do. Now I know enough to practice on my own, take better photos, and understand what my camera is capable of doing and recording.

    I learn much better in a classroom setting, so his “quizzes” were helpful, as it forced me to remember and recall terms, and actually practicing in the studio was helpful. Sam allowed any and all questions and made sure that I understood each subject before moving forward.

    I would recommend this to anyone wanting to learn how to take better photos, and I look forward to taking his Intro to Photography workshop.

    • Thank you for your comments and thank you for taking the class, Haley.

      Although there are a lot of things that your camera can do, you don’t have to do everything to be a good photographer. You now know something about the basics of photography and how to do the basics of photography with your specific camera.

      Keep practicing.

  16. Susan Hubert says:

    Who knew there was so much to learn about lighting and how you can control it. I missed a lot of photos in the past because it was just too dark … but Sam showed me how to adjust the aperture and shutter so I will be able to get so many more (great) photos! Thank you Sam!! The class size was small which allowed for a lot of individual attention to each person’s camera and settings. A “must” class for anyone who has just purchased a camera and thinks they know what they are doing! 🙂

    • Thank you for taking the class, Susan. It was good to have you as an active participant during the meeting.

      Beyond aperture and shutter speed, don’t forget about ISO.

      Keep practicing and enjoy!

  17. i am a complete novice at photography and just purchased a new camera. taking this class gave me the essential basics of photography and made me understand how to operate my camera…..but perhaps more importantly, to understand the key elements of photography. i left the class feeling a comfort with my new camera……and excited about using it.

    i highly recommend this class to everyone who needs an introduction to photograph……and who needs to know how to operate their new camera. great instructor who is excellent at conveying his knowledge.

    • Steven,

      Thank you for taking the class, I enjoyed working with you.

      For a novice, you caught on pretty quick.

      Keep practicing what we covered during the class and you’ll deepen your understanding of basic camera operation and basic photography.

  18. Stephanie Bell says:

    My main concern about taking this class was if I would be taught useful information that I could use when I left. Sometimes when classes of a short time span is offered they only teach you enough so that you can sign up for other classes. That was not the case with this class! I was very pleased with the information that was given and that I could apply it when I left. The most specific thing that I liked about the class was the Teacher. His language was simple enough for me to understand and he took his time to answer questions and he also made sure we understood. This class is worth taking. I would recommend it to anyone that wants a simple lesson on picture taking. He also offers advanced classes but I am just a recreational photographer. Sam D’Amico is a Great Teacher!!

    • Stephanie,

      Thank you for taking the class and thank you for your comments.

      I’m glad that you were able to apply the information and techniques that were covered in the class.

      Please keep practicing.

  19. Madeline Simpson says:

    My main concern about the class, would it be to advance for me.
    In taking this class I learn about ISO, metering, aperture, shutter speed and so much more.
    We were told to ask questions and tbere was always time to ask and answer questions.
    Three other things that were usefull;
    1. The class was hands on from the start
    2. Sam made sure each person understood
    3. He also made sure we understood our notes
    Yes I would recommend this class, it helps for someone to tell you starting steps oppose to just reading the manual.

    Sam D’Amico is an awesome instructor. He is very informative and takes time with each student.

    I will take additional classes.

    • Madeline,

      Thank you for taking the class and for your comments.

      I’m happy to learn that you found what we covered useful.

      I designed the class for photographers like you. By focusing (no pun intended) the class on the basics of photography and basic camera operation, my intention is to help the participants in the class to become more thoughtful and proficient photographers.

      Keep practicing.

      I hope to work with you again.

  20. Ann Ramsey says:

    This concerns the “Getting to Know” workshop. I work in video, and I took a photography class last summer and loved it, but I was using a more automated camera. I’m familiar with ISO/Aperture/Shutter speed on manual settings, but didn’t know exactly where/how to use the precise controls and readouts on this DSLR camera, so I’ve been kind of learning by trial and error, reading manuals, etc. Now I feel I will use my camera much more effectively. This 3 hours saved me a lot of time! I also had questions about lens-care, color space, and manual focus, which Sam answered. The sections he did on metering and focus were excellent. Sam provided lots of time for questions & made sure we all understood. Small class-size a real plus. A handout would have been nice to reduce note-taking. Recommend this class if you are at all befuddled by your DSLR!

  21. Samantha Sault says:

    This class was very worthwhile. I had a little instruction on aperture and shutter speed previously, but I never really “got it” and switched back to auto because I was frustrated. This class made these concepts very easy to understand, and I liked the small size of the class, too. I feel much more confident practicing in manual mode and look forward to further instruction. In fact I just signed up for the weekly into class beginning May 7! Thanks!

  22. michelle says:

    Awesome class!! Well-organized, interactive and engaging small class. I left feeling much more familiar with my camera and excited to practice what I learned. Sam was a great teacher — good-humored, extremely knowledgeable. He wonderfully articulated what we needed to know, and every minute was of great use. Highly recommend!

    • Thank you for taking the class, Michele. I’m happy that you feel much more familiar with your camera and are excited to practice what you learned.

      Keep practicing and you’ll become more involved in the creation of your photographs. The more involved you are in the creation of your photographs the more thoughtful, and unique, your compositions will become.

  23. Robin Trevillian says:

    I took getting to know your camera, I wanted to learn more about my new camera and to see what Sam’s classes were like, since I would like to take more photography classes. It was an extremely useful and informative class. I gained a good understanding of how to use my camera in manual mode through discussion and application in class. I have also used these skills outside of class. I will be taking more of Sam’s classes. Thank you for passing along your wisdom.

    • Thank you for you comments, Robin. It was good working with you. I’m happy that you’ve already put into practice what we covered in class. Please keep practicing. As I mnetioned during our meeting, the more you practice, the more fluid the process of creating photograhs becomes.

  24. Olivia Burgess says:

    I am an aspiring photographer eager to start shooting and testing out the many features that my camera has to offer. However, with the features on my Canon EOS 70D being plenty I needed some guidance on where to begin. Sam was very helpful and introduced me to the basic principles behind focus, exposure, metering, aperture, and iso to name a few. All which has allowed me to venture off the manual setting of my camera without fear of my photographs not reflecting what I see. I highly recommend this class to DSLR newcomers. Thanks again Sam!

    • Olivia Burgess says:

      **venture off automatic!

    • It was good working with you, Olivia. Thank you for taking the class.

      You’re right, a DSLR has a lot of features and functions, however photography is a craft and the camera is a tool that you use in the craft to make a photograph.

      If you practice the basics of photography, especially in manual exposure mode, you’ll begin to identify what features/functions are important to you and which are not.

      As an aspiring photographer, I think that the most important things to do are to learn the basics of photography and to learn about how to use your camera thoughtfully in terms of focusing, metering, and creating a exposure.

      Keep practicing.

  25. Carolyn Rush says:

    Taking the “Getting to know Your Camera Class” was not only beneficial to me, but very much essential to my knowledge of my camera.

    I am an aspiring photographer, and am shooting a friend’s wedding next weekend.

    That being said, I am a bit nervous, but Sam walked me through everything I need to know about my camera. I just got a Nikon D7000 about 2 months ago and started a full time job that has really inhibited my from exploring it as much as I used to. I learned more in 3 hours of sitting and talking with Sam than I have ever learned about the art of photogaphy… ever!!

    I HIGHLY reccommend Sam for all ages/levels/experience. If you would like to email me specifically I’d be happy to share more about my experience as it was one I will never forget and I am already looking forward to the next time I work with him.

    Carolyn Rush
    cdrush1@gmail.com

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for your comments, Carolyn.

      I’m happy that you found the class beneficial.

      In my mind you are not an aspiring photographer. You are already a photographer with aspirations of being a better photographer.

      Have fun at the wedding. Being nervous is good, in my mind it shows that you’re concerned about your work.

      Thank you fore taking the class, Carolyn.

      It was good to work with you.

  26. Brian Ai says:

    Introduction to photography was great. Sam is a wonderful teacher, very patient and thorough. He fully explained aperture, shutter speed, iOS and tied it all together neatly at the end with metering. Walked into class having only used “Auto” mode and now will only use “Manual.”

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for your comments and thank you for taking the Getting To Know Your Camera class, Brian.
      If you keep practicing making pictures in manual exposure mode you’ll become more familiar with aperture shutter speed and ISO as elements of effective photographic composition.

  27. Adriana says:

    My “Getting to know your Camera” session was great, so much so that I am definitely going to take more classes with Sam. I definitely recommend him, he is a great teacher and gives you the opportunity to think, practice and ask questions. I have always been interested in photography and this class was amazing motivation! I learned about focus, metering (yay!) and how to control some of my camera features I did not even know existed. Thank you!

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for taking the class and thank you for your comments, Adriana.

      I’m happy that you found the class motivating. Keep practicing what we covered in the class and you’ll become the photographer that you want to be.

  28. Lisa Holland says:

    1. My main concern – a sinking feeling that my camera is “smarter” than i am!
    2. I learned not to be intimidated.
    3. The class took the basic elements of focus, exposure and metering and provided a “how to/why to/when to” breakdown. I liked the format and structure of the class.
    4. Having an experienced instructor, being able to ask questions, individual attention within the group setting…
    5. Yes, it’s a great resource for people with a lot of interest and a little bit of time. Also a good intro for people who may want to go further with their studies…
    6. Sam is knowledgeable, approachable and practical – I felt very comfortable asking questions.
    7. I haven’t taken my camera out of manual! I would like to take more classes as soon as I have time. Thanks for a great intro.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Lisa,

      Thank you for taking and participating in the class.

      I hope you now realize that your camera is not “smarter” than you. Your camera doesn’t “think”, your camera doesn’t “know”, your camera doesn’t “feel”, your camera doesn’t “imagine”. You, on the other hand, do all of those things and more.

      Your camera is simply a tool for recording light.

      Working your camera thoughtfully by choosing where to focus, where to meter and choosing your exposure in manual exposure mode allows you to create photographs that are as unique as your perception.

      I’m happy that you haven’t taken your camera out of manual exposure mode.

      Keep practicing. You’ll only get better with a consistent and thoughtful practice.

      Thank you again for taking the class.

  29. Karen Pal says:

    Great session today. Purchasing a new DSLR at Christmas was my first attempt to go beyond a point and shoot type camera. Although I had the manual and had bought a guide I was stil having difficulty understanding how and why to use the different features.
    With Sam’s guidence and patience it is all starting to make sense. I have gone back to my reference materials and notes which I am now finding useful.
    I especially appreciated Sam taking the time to ensure each person understood their own camera. He was encouraged questions and provided scenarios which were helpful.
    I highly recommend Sam as an instruction and this course for beginners.
    Thanks Sam.

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for taking the class and thank you for your comments, Karen.

      As you know, manuals and guides can only take you so far.

      It’s not enough to know HOW to use your camera you need to know WHY you make the choices that you do when it comes to metering, exposure and focusing.

      I think that good, unique, photography is made by thoughtful photographers.

      If you continue to practice, on a regular basis, what we covered in the class you’ll become a more thoughtful photographer.

      Thank you again for taking the class, Karen

  30. Anita says:

    1. What was your main concern about taking this class?

    I was not sure how familiar I needed to be with my camera, but Sam walked you everything – basic or otherwise.

    2. What did you learn as a result of taking this class?

    I definitely think of photography, more generally, differently now and have already started to think about light and taking pictures in a better way.

    3. What specifically did you like most about this class?

    I liked the step by step walk through from focusing to exposure to metering.

    4. What are three other things that you found useful about this class?

    The interactive nature of class was helpful as was the iterative nature of what we learned.

    5. Would you recommend this class? If so, why?

    Yes, definitely. Sam explained the basics of photography really well!

    6. Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?

    I think Sam was a great instructor, and I hope to take another class.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Anita,

      Thank you for answering the survey questions.

      Remember, it’s all about light and how you want to record it.

      Working your camera in manual exposure mode will make sure that you make the picture that you want instead of taking the picture that your camera gives you in an auto-exposure mode.

      Thank you for taking the class and Keep practicing.

  31. Anne Brannock says:

    Mr. D’Amico is a gifted instructor with an encouraging casual teaching style that allows the student to fully engage in the course. He is able to impart practical functional photography skills so that the student can move beyond the mechanics of photography to a more thoughtful appreciation for the craft of photography. The course provides a hands-on learning experience with a solid foundation in the manual mode skill sets of speed, apeture, ISO setting and metering that permit the student to immediately begin practicing and exploring their individual photography interests. This is a great course for anyone who wants to step out beyond auto mode and learn the elements that capture what you see into the photograph you want it to be.

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for your comments Anne.

      It was good to work with you in class.

      I’m happy that you’ve stepped out beyond auto mode and have begun a practice to explore your interest in photography.

      Keep practicing, be thoughtful,be attentive and keep working in manual exposure mode.

  32. Elizabeth Sheldon says:

    What was your main concern about taking this class?
    Was Not sure where to begin and I found it to be an outstanding class giving me the exact information I needed.

    What did you learn as a result of taking this class?

    What specifically did you like most about this class?
    The teacher was excellent. The information was presented in a clear and concise manner.

    What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
    The technical aspects of a camera are not as complicated as I imagined.
    The class made me want to learn more and at the same time I walked away fully ready to go manual.

    Would you recommend this class? Absolutely If so, why? Great instructor and great instruction.
    Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor? An excellent instructor.
    Is there anything you’d like to add? Many thanks for a great class!

    • samdamico says:

      Hello Elizabeth,

      Thank you for taking the class and thank you for taking the time to answer the class evaluation.

      Now that you’ve got the hang of things in terms of exposure modes, focusing modes and metering modes, keep practicing what we covered in class.

      The more you practice, the more of what we covered in class becomes a solid foundation for becoming a better photographer. A thoughtful practice leads to better understanding and a more fluid in practical application. A good understanding of the material that we covered coupled with a fluid practical application will insure that you are the one creating the photograph instead of the camera creating a photograph for you in an automatic exposure mode.

      It was good to meet you and thank you again for taking the class.

  33. Marci says:

    This class provided the structure I needed to finally learn how to take my digital camera off automatic and explore how to operate in manual. Sam taught us focusing, exposure and metering. I was one of those students still “stuck in the darkroom,” clinging to the old ways; yet Sam was very patient in helping each of us to understand his or her camera’s unique operating system. I also appreciated his philosophy and approach to photography.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Marci,

      It was good having you in class.

      Focusing, metering an exposure are foundational to what we do,that has NEVER changed.

      What’s changed are the cameras, and how we work the camera and lens to focus, meter and change exposure settings.

      Keep working in manual exposure mode and pay attention to where you are focusing and what you are metering off.

      Keep practicing and learning and you’ll become a better photographer.

      Thank you for taking the class Marci.

  34. Jim Reynolds says:

    This is a very good course. Very thorough in covering the basics of focus, camera modes and exposure metering set up. It had a great punch line at the end which put it all in perspective for me. Using manual mode for exposure, you become less worried about metering and more focused on your pictures.

    • samdamico says:

      I’m glad that you liked the course, Jim.
      Thank you for your comments.
      I’m happy that you feel that things were put into perspective for you.
      I think that learning to use your camera thoughtfully and fluidly, in terms of focusing, metering and exposure, will allow you to pay more attention to whatever you are seeing and, as a result, create better pictures.

  35. Victoira G says:

    This class was VERY enlightning. I learned how to use apeture, ISO and shutter speeds settings to get the desired exposures for my pictures. I am looking forward to attending an intermediate class soon. Thanks Sam for sharing your expertise. The information you gave us will help me a great deal when taking photos for our agency functions.

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for taking the class and thank you for your comments Victoria.
      Now that you are working in your camera in manual exposure mode you are able to use aperture, ISO and shutter speed to get the photographs that you want. I’m happy that you’ll be able to apply what you’ve learned to make pictures during your agency events.

  36. Stefanie says:

    1. What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
    The class was exactly what I needed in order to understand how to use my digital SLR camera. Since the class I’ve exclusively taken pictures in manual mode and the results are getting better and better.
    2. What specifically did you like most about this class?
    It was well structured and informative. Theory was put in praxis.
    3. Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
    I would definitely recommend this class. It gives you a good foundation and you get to know your camera.
    4. Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?
    Is there anything you’d like to add?
    The instructor was well informed, structured, and was able to create a relaxed learning environment. He was patient and did not mind repeating certain things. Overall, I had a great time and many many aha moments.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Stefanie,

      Thank you for taking the class and thank your for your comments.

      I’m glad that you’ve been working exclusively in manual exposure mode and your results are getting better and better. The more you practice the better photographer you’ll become.

  37. John S. says:

    The class met and exceeded my expectations. You did a great job of distilling mysteries of the DSLR camera into 3 simple steps. I feel like I have enough to go out and experiment on my own or to pursue additional education.

    I expected the class to be more complicated and technically challenging. But your “KISS” approach makes a lot of sense. It would be great to have some homework exercises that I can use to practice these new skills.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi John,

      Thank you for taking the class.

      As long as you work your camera in manual exposure mode and thoughtfully practice the three things that we covered during the class, you’ll be doing homework to practice your new skills.

  38. Amanda says:

    What was your main concern about taking this class?
    I was worried that I would leave the class still confused about my camera and feeling like I might still need to use it in Automatic mode.

    What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
    I learned how to use my camera in Manual mode, how to let in appropriate amounts of light to take a fairly successful picture, how the camera focuses in Auto vs. Manual mode, how to use metering, and I learned more about my camera than I had ever known before. Honestly, I had never read through the manual much because I lacked the patience!

    What specifically did you like most about this class?
    I liked the small class size.

    What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
    Sam went very slowly with his instruction, which was helpful. It takes a while for this information to sink in. I liked the class time (3 hours) because I was specifically looking for a short, one-day class. I also liked that the class was in DC and not too far from me in Northern Virginia.

    Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
    Yes, because I learned so much and found it very laid back.

    Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?
    Sam was great, easy-going, friendly, patient, and knowledgable as an instructor.

    Is there anything you’d like to add?
    Thanks!

    • samdamico says:

      Amanda,

      Thank you for taking the class, I enjoyed working with you.

      Keep working your camera in manual exposure mode and keep practicing what you learned.

      You’ll become a better photographer and the outcome of you pictures will become more of what you see as successful.

  39. Cathryn Jones says:

    1 – My main concern was being able to comprehend technical terms and different buttons to operate a certain function.
    2 – I learned not to be intimidated by the camera since they all basically function the same. I can move with ease from picture taking in auto mode to manual mode and achieve a good result.
    3 – Sam was attentive and answsered questions completely. Nothing seemd too out of the ordinary to discuss.
    4 – The locations was good i.e., right across from the Metro. Cost was reasonable and had a hands-on teaching style without a lot of lecturing.
    5 – I would recommend to anyone who wanted a quick course without the fanfare and boring listening aspect of any course. You are able to feel comfortable and have fun.
    6 – His passion for photography shows in trying to get you excited about photography, too.
    7 – Enjoyed the class. Plan to take “Intro to photography” in the near future.

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for your comments Cathryn.

      There’s no reason to be intimated by the camera and, as you mentioned, working in manual exposure mode can be as easy as working in an auto exposure mode. The main difference is that you get more controllable results when working in manual exposure mode.

      I look forward to working with you in the Intro to Photography class.

  40. Liz H says:

    What was your main concern about taking this class? wasn’t sure how we were going to learn anything working with all different cameras; and that i didn’t know my camera well enough (w/o the manual) to do anything with it.
    What did you learn as a result of taking this class? answered my technical questions (aperture v shutter priorities); lighting questions, learned a thing or two about my camera!
    What specifically did you like most about this class? Learned so much in such a short amount of time, all questions answered, Sam was happy to take any questions, and supportive environment……
    What are three other things that you found useful about this class? see previous answers 🙂
    Would you recommend this class? If so, why? Yes! If you live in the city, it’s accessible, great time (weekend), great price, and goals are achieved!
    Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor? Accessible, knowledgeable, great advice, happy to help…..
    Is there anything you’d like to add? Thanks for doing a 4-hour class! Great idea!

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Liz,

      Thank you for taking the class and for your comments.

      Remember, you’re going to have a more difficult time getting a shallow depth of field because of the relatively small size of the sensor in your camera.
      Try to compensate by focusing closer.

      I’m curious why you felt that the three hour class was four hours. Were you bored or did you think that the class seemed like it had four hours worth of content.

  41. Rebecca F. says:

    I took the “getting to know your camera” class and had a wonderful experience. The information was clear and well organized. I left class with a much deeper knowledge of not only my camera and how it functioned, but photography in general. I would definitely recommend this class.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Rebecca,

      Thank you for your comments.

      I’m happy that you left the class having a deeper knowledge of how your camera functions and photography in general.

      I hope you continue to make pictures in manual exposure mode so you continue practicing your skills.

  42. luis meade says:

    Sam,

    I liked very much your course.
    It is very easy to take pictures in auto, but it is more fun when you have the knowledge of your camera and you take the pictures as they have to be taken.
    There is no doubt that we learn from the cameras the least we need to know in order to take advantage of it.
    The best part of the course is that I thought that my camera was obsolete and that I needed a new one. The fact is that I do not need a new one and I have to learn better the one I have.
    Thank you

    • samdamico says:

      Hello Luis,

      Thank you for your comments about the class and I enjoyed working with you.

      While there is something to be appreciated about easy, when it comes to photography easy (working in auto) is not nearly as fun and it doesn’t help you get the picture that you have to have.

      As you know, once you learn what your camera does and how to work your camera you can take advantage of the creative controls that are avaialble to you by knowing how to work your camera in manual mode.

      I’m happy you realize that you don’t need a new camera. Your new found knowledge has made your old camera new to you again.

      Than you for taking the class Luis.

      • Arlene Schneider says:

        Hello Sam:

        My buddy Lyn and I took your class yesterday. While I am loving my new camera I needed to learn enough to enable me to make decisions about my photos rather than letting the camera do all the thinking…because of the class I feel more capable now.

        The discussions about light and metering were particularly helpful. While I had some knowledge about aperature, shutter speed, and ISO settings your class helped me better understand the relationship of those three functions and flexibility I can enjoy when manually manipulating same.

        Thanks for being patient with all of us…your light touch as an instructor was just what we needed. Particularly liked the fact that you said WE have to critique our own work because I discovered a long time ago that I respond differently to many of my photos than others do. I will certainly recommend your class to other shutter bugs.

        I look forward to taking your 4-week intro class once I’ve got some practice under my belt. Please keep me on your mailing list.

        Cheers,
        Arlene Schneider

        • samdamico says:

          Hello Arlene,

          It’s good to hear from you.

          I’m glad that you’re feeling more capable in your photography now.

          Remember, you’re working with light and all you camera does is record light. HOW you record light should be your thoughtful choice, not an automatic setting on a camera.

          I look forward to seeing you again. Keep practicing.

          Best Regards,

          Sam

  43. Ria Malinak says:

    1. My main concern was that I would leave the class knowing theory, but not knowing how it applied to my individual camera.
    2. I learned some theory but also learned how it applies to my own camera!
    3. I specifically liked the fact that the class did not try to cover so much material that one would become overwhelmed and get behind. Everyone received individualized attention in order to keep up with the course material.
    4. I enjoyed learning about lighting, how to adjust for different types of lighting conditions, and how to use my manual.
    5. I would highly recommend it because I think I learned a lot in a non-threatening environment.
    6. He was very respectful and kept good control of the class speed and group dynamics.
    I think a one-page handout with some of the key statements Sam made would have been helpful. I am a visual person and seeing it in writing would have helped me keep it straight. I did write things down but a handout would have been a nice touch. I look forward to putting what I have learned to use and coming back for more instruction and guidance.

  44. Nellie says:

    1.What was your main concern about taking this class?

    I have a camera that shoots in manual mode, but its not a DSLR camera. I was worried that the class wouldn’t be the right place for me. However, I learned that my camera operates in manual mode the same as an SLR camera, and the class was really useful. Sam was very patient and adept at fiddling with my camera to figure out how to use it.

    2.What did you learn as a result of taking this class?

    I was starting from scratch basically, so I learned what an aperature is, what shutter speed is, what ISO is, and how to meter. I also learned about auto and manual focus. The class made me much more comfortable navigating my own camera.

    3.What specifically did you like most about this class?

    I liked how small the class was and how hands on it was. We could ask any questions. The three of us were pretty much on the same page when it came to our knowledge of photography and cameras so no question was too basic.

    4.What are three other things that you found useful about this class?

    – Explanation of ISO – using the analogy of hearing and sound really helped.
    – Atmosphere where there are no dumb questions.
    – Ability of instructor to adapt to any camera with ease.

    5.Would you recommend this class? If so, why?

    Yes. Sam is able to explain the basics of photography, cameras and light in a way that is so much less complicated than beginners photography books. He’s a great teacher.

    6.Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?

    Sam is clearly an expert in his field. However, unlike some experts he hasnt lost the ability to relate to beginners. This is a great combination in an instructor.

    7.Is there anything you’d like to add?

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Nellie,
      It was good working with you in the Getting To Know Your Camera class.

      Now that you know how to work your camera in manual mode and are starting to learn about the basics of photography you have the ability to create photographs that are made by YOU, not by the camera. This is what good photography is all about.

      A camera is a camera and they all do the same thing, record light.

      A photographer is a photographer and even though they all do the same thing, use a camera to record light, each photographer sees and experiences things differently.

      A good photographer creates unique photographs because they have learned to effectively communicate how they see and what they experience through their camera. I think that this can only be accomplished by working your camera in a fully manual exposure mode.

      This is what you are now starting to to do.

      Keep up the good work!

  45. Naina Singla says:

    What did you learn as a result of taking this class?

    I learned how to finally put my camera in manual mode! I have a better understanding of aperture, ISO, and shutter speed as well.

    Sam gave us great practical tips with our camera that we could immediately implement.

    Would you recommend this class? If so, why?

    Absolutely! Sam is knowledgeable, a great instructor, and provides information in an easy to understand format.

    Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?

    Yes, in fact I am taking another class Sam is teaching called Metering and Exposure today.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Naina,

      It was good seeing you in the Metering and Exposure class today.

      When we were practicing in class, I could tell that you have become more accustomed to working your camera in manual exposure mode.

      Keep up the good work.

  46. Terrence says:

    What was your main concern about taking this class?
    My main concern and goal was to get more familiar with my new camera and learn as much as I could about shooting in manual mode.

    What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
    I learn about the 3 basic principal of photography – metering, focus, exposure and how it all plays a part in taking pictures in manual mode.

    What specifically did you like most about this class?
    The class size – I was the only one there! I was also to ask many questions and Sam was the best.

    What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
    Learning about the features of my camera and display information.

    Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
    Yes, Sam teaches at a great pace and makes is simple to understand.

    Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?
    He explained everything in plain terms that photographers of any level can understand.
    Is there anything you’d like to add?

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for the comments Terrence and thank you for taking the class.

      Keep practicing those three primary things that we covered and I think that you’ll find working your camera in manual mode will get easier and easier.

  47. samdamico says:

    Thank you for your comments Doug.

    Now that you are working your camera in manual mode your pictures will become more thoughtfully composed and you’ll be making pictures that will come out the way you want them to.

    I see that you’ve registered for the upcoming four week Introduction To Photography class. I look forward to continuing to work with you.

  48. Alex says:

    I truly learned more from Sam in 4 hours than doing it by myself in the last year. I feel you get way more than what you pay for. I would recommend this for anyone interested in photography.

  49. samdamico says:

    Hi Ashley,

    Thank you for your comment and thank you for taking the class.

    I’m happy that you mentioned that you are thinking about light. After all, your camera is nothing more than something that is used to record light and now that you no longer seem scared of manual mode you’ll be the one creating your photographs instead of the automatic mode on your camera.

  50. Kathryn Fabrizio Eszeki says:

    1.What was your main concern about taking this class?

    My main concern was that,even though the class was billed as a beginner’s class, that you, as the instructor, would assume some prior knowledge that I did not have.

    2.What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
    I learned how to let go of the security of having my camera on AUTOMATIC and to work and experiment with the various ways to change the manual settings in order to get the photo that I want to capture.In short – to operate completely differently than I had been.

    3.What specifically did you like most about this class? I liked that the content of the course was specific and manageable and I liked that we were given the chance to practice and experiment in class while we still had a teacher to help us through problems or questions as they came up/

    4.What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
    5.Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
    I would recommend this class to other beginning photographers because it presents just the right amount of information about the camera. The material covered is specific/ At the end of the class one can actually use the skills we were taught.

    6.Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?

    Lots of patience, ability and willingness to restate instructions in various ways so that all students understood explanations, Sam gave us the time we needed to practice and ask general and specific questions and he did not deviate from the stated content of the class.
    7.Is there anything you’d like to add
    Thanks Sam

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Kathryn,

      Thank you for your comments.

      You said that you “learned how to let go of the security of having my camera on AUTOMATIC”.

      I think that having your camera on automatic provides a false sense of security because I don’t think there is anything secure in depending on your camera to do all the things that you can be doing in manual mode.

      There’s nothing more secure than working in manual mode because you are the one that’s making all the decisions.
      I hope you find as much security in manual mode as you felt tat yuo had in automatic mode.

      Thank you for taking the class.

  51. Paul Fields says:

    1.What was your main concern about taking this class?
    My main concern was that there would not be enough time to cover the basic functions of manual operatoin of the DSLR. Sam did a great job. I came away very pleased.
    2.What did you learn as a result of taking this class? I learned the basic functions of manual operation. In addition, I learned great “rules of thumb” that will help me a lot.
    3.What specifically did you like most about this class? The small size and the individual attention.
    4.What are three other things that you found useful about this class? (1)Using spot metering. (2) “Ask yourself if it needs more or less exposure – bright enough or dark enough?” (3) “The take-away is ‘get it in the middle'”
    5.Would you recommend this class? If so, why? I would reccomend this class to beginners because there is an enormous amount of information transmitted in a short time.
    6.Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor? Sam’s knowledge is excellent. In addition, his style and delivery is nurturing and positive. There was no “attitude”. This is very important for a teacher at any level. Also, he did a great job of dealing with a wide range of photography knowledge and experience in the same class.
    7.Is there anything you’d like to add? I just signed up for two more classes with Sam!

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Paul,

      I’m glad you found spot metering useful. As you know from the class, I think that when it comes to getting the “right exposure” spot metering can’t be beat.

  52. I took this class to become more familiar with my camera to enable me to take better photographs. Sam’s class helped me gain confidence in navigating through the various settings and options that my camera offers.

    I really liked that the session was more than just a hands on “work with your camera” class. By focusing on 3 basic elements of taking better pictures, I came away with a clearer understanding of focus, exposure and metering.

    The class was not overwhelming. Sam took time with all questions and he shared insights about photography in general, as well as the details about my camera. I would definitely recommend this class to anyone wanting to do more than point and shoot with their digital camera.

    After the class, I’m much more comfortable about exploring what my camera can do!

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for commenting Arlene,

      Having a clear understanding of how your camera “focuses”,”meters” and “exposes” is an essential starting point in moving beyod point and shoot and starting to create thoughfully composed photograhs.

      Once you are the one making the decisions, instead of your camera, you can begin to not only explore what your camera can do, you can begin to explore the basics of photography.

  53. Kelly says:

    I received my first DSLR for Christmas and really wanted to take full advantage of it. If I didn’t want to go beyond shooting everything in automatic, I would have continued using my point and shoot. This class was the perfect introduction to shooting in Manual mode. I learned the basics of focusing and metering. It was great getting a review of ISO, aperture, and shutter speed since that can all be confusing. Everything clicked with me after this class. I’ll never go back to shooting in automatic mode because shooting in manual makes me feel like I’m doing everything I can to make the photograph look exactly how I want. It’s nice to know I have control of all the settings.

    I would absolutely recommend this class to anyone who owns a DSLR and doesn’t know how to operate it in manual mode. It’s the perfect starting point for a beginner photographer and I look forward to taking more classes from Sam. He is an excellent instructor who encouraged the students to ask lots of questions. He is very knowledgeable and patient. I will definitely be taking more classes to build on what I have already learned. Thank you!

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Kelly,

      Thank you for your comments.

      I’m glad that you found this class to be good starting point and that everything clicked for you after the class.

      If you keep working in manual mode and keep practicing the three main topics that we covered during class, you’ll become a more proficient photographer.

      Thank you for taking the class Kelly.

  54. kearse lowe says:

    i took the Digital Primer class today and I learned so much! I think you are a wonderful teacher! you explained things in an easy way and made it seem so much more simple- i was making it too difficult in my head. I know that I had an “ah ha” moment when you covered Metering- it all made sense. I hope to take more classes. I really enjoyed your teaching style and hope to take more classes. thanks again! I would recommend Sam as an instructor very much so! Patient and full of information.I really enjoyed the visual examples of what we were learning too! Thanks again!

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Kearse,

      It was good working with you in class.

      When we begin to study photography we tend to make what’s fairly simple into something much more difficult than it really is.

      I’m glad that things are making sense for you.

  55. Garvey Dyer says:

    Sam D’Amico’s class was liberating and empowering. It has freed me from the servitude of automatic exposure and thrust me into the realm of spot metering and manual exposure where real photography resides.

    If I had to make one suggestion, it might be perhaps that Sam bring a film camera to the class, to show to the very beginners how a camera diaphragm opens and closes with different f-stops. Because it may be difficult to understand—-in the abstract—-that the higher the f-stop number, the smaller the aperture, etc.

    I thoroughly enjoy the class and my classmates.

    –Garvey

    • samdamico says:

      Thank you for your comments Garvey.

      Your choice of words are very accurate. With understanding and knowledge comes freedom, liberation and empowerment.

      With the understanding of how to work your camera in manual mode and a basic understanding of photography; You are now free to create whatever type of photograph that you want. By working in manual mode you are liberated from the constraints and limitations of automatic exposure. You are now empowered by your imagination and knowledge.

      You’re suggestion is noted and I’m happy that you enjoyed the class.

      Sam

  56. Glenn H says:

    In the year since I got my DLSR, I’ve gathered bits and pieces of information on photography online and I’ve started playing around with settings other than the fully automatic one. Unfortunately, the results are often not at the level I strive to reach, and after seeing me get frustrated again and again over somewhat blurry and/or improperly exposed photos, my wife signed me up for Sam’s intro class. Although going into this class I did know a little bit about aperture and shutter speed and how they affect images, I evidently was missing a significant exposure element in that I knew nothing whatsoever about metering! I also didn’t really know how to optimize the setup of my camera (focus point, type of metering used by camera, etc.), and Sam helped me with that (I had actually read most of the manual, but all that tells you is what a setting does and how you change it – it doesn’t necessarily tell you what the best choice is). This class allowed me to get a good understanding of how to take a properly exposed image, and I can already tell that I will spend less time correcting photos after the fact using software (yay!). I definitely want to go back for more of Sam’s classes and plan on doing so in the New Year!

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Glenn,

      Thanks for you comments.

      There are a lot of bits and pieces when it comes to photography and although they are all helpful you, as the individual photographer, need to figure out how to apply those bits and pieces to your own process as a photographer.

      Like me, you seem happy at the idea of spending less time on the computer.

      It was good working with you Glenn.

  57. katie barta says:

    What was your main concern about taking this class?
    Better understanding the functionality of my camera and taking better pictures.

    What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
    Understanding more about light (reflective and illuminating);

    What specifically did you like most about this class?
    Informal style made for a great learning environment. Limiting what you were going to cover was important as it felt as it were all at different levels of knowledge and experience.

    What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
    Referencing the manual was helpful as I tend to be a hands on learner and forcing me to “look it up” gave me another resource outside the class – the manual.

    Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
    Yes – I learned a lot

    Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?
    Sam was knowledgeable and answered questions clearly and succinctly. I would like to see some of his actual work.

    Is there anything you’d like to add? I think reminding attendees to bring their manuals would be helpful as I did not see that in the confirmation and just happened to have mine with me and a couple folks did not.

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Katie,

      It’s good to hear from you and I’m glad that you learned a lot.

      “Looking it up” in the manual is important because each camera has a particular way that it does things. As you said, When you learn to look things up in the manual you have another resource to continue to learn how to work your camera.

      You can see my work at http://wwww.samdamico.com.

      Anyone attending one of my classes at WSP should receive an e-mail from the school confirming whether the class is going to run or be cancelled. If the class is going to run, there should be a link to a page on my website that tells you how to prepare for the class. I’ll forward our conversation to WSP as reminder to send out the e-mail in a timely manner.

  58. Genevieve Maurice says:

    The main reason I took this class was to make sure I was doing things right, having learnt most of my “skills” by reading the camera manual. Well, I was not, so I am very glad to have taken this class! I still can’t get over how much the ISO speed has an impact on the end result! Also, because my goal is to take more photography classes, it was important to start at the base, to understand the fundamentals and grow from there. I received the information I needed. Thank you Sam and I hope to have you as my teacher again soon (love your sens of humour!).

    Gen

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Gen,

      Thank you for the reply.

      Understanding what your camera does is very important. Without understanding how your camera focuses, meters and makes an exposure in manual mode, any future classes will be without the foundation that you need. I’m glad you enjoyed my sense of humor. I think I’m an inhibited stand up comic.

  59. Pete Fredlake says:

    I just bought a new Canon T2i and needed a hands-on tour before using it. If I had wanted to just use full-auto, I would have kept my point-and-shoot.
    My session ended up being one-on-one, and that was great. We went through the basics of the camera’s operating system, did some practice shots, and I left with enough knowledge to get started on manual mode —
    The next day I walked Klingle Road, into Mt. Pleasant and then to the Dupont Market, and I enjoyed experimenting with what I’d learned and ended up with some interesting shots.
    I’ll be back to take the beginner course.

    • samdamico says:

      Hello Pete,

      Thanks for the comments.

      Now that you are working in manual mode, your pictures will be more thoughtfully composed and deliberate. Your photograph will be based on how you want the picture to look rather than based on the cameras automatic settings.

      While an automatic setting may get you a decent exposure, the camera has no way of knowing what you want the picture to look like.

  60. Ayanah says:

    I thought the class was extremely helpful and informative. My camera has not been on Auto mode since taking the class and I doubt it will go there again. The pictures I’ve taken since the class are different (in a good way) and I am more confident in taking pictures.

    Sam is very knowledgeable and patient. In addition he gave great examples and analogies that help make the process easier and intuitive.

    At the end of the class something that I think may be helpful would be something similar to a 1 to 2 page summary sheet, highlighting the fundamentals of the course: f-stop, shutter speed and exposure. In addition a list of recommended photo websites for beginners and/or more sample photography would have solidified the concepts even more. Overall I thought it was a great class and I will definitely recommend it to friends and family interested in “getting to know their camera”

    Thanks again,

    Ayanah

    • samdamico says:

      Hi Ayanah,

      Thank you for the comments.

      I appreciate the suggestion about the class summary handout.

      Instead of a handout, what I’ve created is a an online members area for this and other classes.

      Have you joined?

      I think it would address all of the things that you mention AND as an extra measure it allows for continued communication between us.

      If you’re interested visit http://beingabetterphotographer.com and look at the right hand side bar. You’ll see the class that you attended listed. Click on the link and follow the instructions.

      Instead of leaving you with a couple of pieces of paper filled with links that might not be working in the future, I want to keep working with you personally via the members area.

      Please have a look and contact me if you have any questions.

      Thank you for attending the class and thank you for the comments and suggestions.

      Sam

  61. samdamico says:

    Recently I implemented a new way to receive comments from students in a more efficient and engaged manner. At this time, because the system has only recently become available, there are not many comments about classes.

    You can view comments that were made by students before I instituted a new way to receive opinions and reactions to my photography classes. Please use this link if you’d like to see comments that were made by students prior to the implementation of the new system. There are plenty for you to read.

    Thank you.

    • Heather says:

      What was your main concern about taking this class? – I was worried that I wouldn’t know how to use my camera.

      What did you learn as a result of taking this class? – I was so excited that in 3 hours I was able to use my camera on manual mode. I now know about lighting, metering, aperture and shutter speed. I was amazed at how much you were able to pack into 3 hours.

      What specifically did you like most about this class? – I loved the small group format. With only four of us, I really appreciated the individualized attention.

      What are three other things that you found useful about this class? – Easy metro access, comfortable setting and learning that I actually have to read the manual 🙂

      Would you recommend this class? If so, why? I would highly recommend the class and am really glad that Aikens recommended it to me.

      Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor? – Sam was extremely knowledgeable, helpful, attentive and gave us the real deal about photography.

      Is there anything you’d like to add? – Great class! If you want to know more about your camera definitely take this class. I can’t wait to take another one.

      Thanks,
      Heather

      • samdamico says:

        Thank you for your comments Heather.
        If you keep working your camera in manual mode, you’ll become more comfortable using and applying the material we covered in class.

    • John Mullen says:

      1. My main concern was that the class was going to consist of the things I learned in the first day of Intro to digital photography, however I did learn new material.

      2. I learned how to better work the camera in manual mode and more on utilizing aperture, shutter speed and iso together along with metering.

      3. I like that the class is hands on so that u actually learn the material and don’t forget it the moment you leave.

      4. Three other things: you don’t move to the next subject till everyone understands, you get the basics, u learn how to shoot in manual mood.

      5. I would recommend this to anyone who is just starting out and wants to get started and take control of their camera.

      6. Sam is there to make sure you understand your camera and how to manually use it. He will make sure your three hours are not wasted.

      7. This class is just the right amount of information for someone just starting out even if u never touched your camera you will be shooting manually in no time.
      BRING YOU CAMERAS MANUAL AND MAKE SURE IT’S THE CORRECT LANGUAGE!! Haha

      • samdamico says:

        Thank you for taking the class John, it was good working with you.

        I’m happy that you learned how to better work your camera in manual mode.

        If you want to create photographs that are more aligned with the compositions that you visualize, manual mode is the only way to go.

        And yes, it is good to have an owners manual in a language that you could understand.

    • Ellen says:

      What was your main concern about taking this class?
      That I didn’t know enough to get started. (That turned out to be not true)

      What did you learn as a result of taking this class?
      How aperture, shutter speed, and focus affect a photo

      What specifically did you like most about this class?
      The small group setting and the ability to ask questions

      What are three other things that you found useful about this class?
      Learning the meaning behind the photography terms. Understanding metering. Helping address what will work best for my own photography interests.

      Would you recommend this class? If so, why?
      Absolutely – it turns out taking pictures doesn’t have to be intimidating and it’s certainly not impossible

      Can you comment on Sam D’Amico as a photography instructor?
      He was fabulous – taking the time to make sure everyone understood without ever being condescending – he is clearly very knowledgeable and a wonderful instructor

      Is there anything you’d like to add?
      Sign up now – you won’t regret it.

      • samdamico says:

        Hi Ellen,

        Thank you for taking the class and thank you for taking the time to answer the survey.

        I’m glad that you realize that photography doesn’t have to be intimidating or impossible.

        The most important things are to enjoy the process and, if you feel you want to know more about photography, you can always learn more.

        You always know enough to start. Some of us know more and some of us know less. Doesn’t matter how much you know, there’s always more to learn.

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