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Welcome to the Digital Photography Courses monthly newsletter Update for July 2010

Sorry if this newsletter looks a bit familiar but due to the amazing response to our last newsletter I've to added some extra photography & Photoshop courses plus a new part payment gift voucher option. We've also added an extra course in July


A big thank you to the many people who commented on the new logo, which is on it's way to being printed on my new polo shirts. In response to your requests we now also added a combined DSLR & Hybrid camera course on Sunday August 8th 2010 and moved the Photoshop Image Restoration Workshop back to the winter months. Remember if you have any special request let us know.A case of take pictures while the sun shines.

We hope you will enjoying reading the Digital Photography Courses newsletter and get some useful photography tips along the way. Each month we will keep you updated with any new photography course dates, supply you with some useful photography tips and projects and include any special offers. See the footer for our special 2 for 1 offer.

We are also in the process of building a new web site so we would value your feedback.You can seen the original web site at: and the new one at

This months issue includes:

  • Part Payment Gift Vouchers - NEW
  • Upcoming Course Dates
  • This months project
  • Pictures by Students
  • Testimonials
  • Help us choose a logo
  • The Essential Holiday Checklist
  • Special 2 for 1 Offers

Part Payment Gift Vouchers - NEW

We have also added the option to buy Gift Vouchers as part payment towards any photography or Photoshop course. This is a useful option if the recipient would like a photography course and various family and friends would like to contribute seperately. The vouchers are available in £25, £50, £75, £100 and £135 options.

Upcoming Course Dates (including new dates)

Sunday 11th July 2010 -Beginners DSLR £135 SOLD OUT.

The next beginners courses are Sat 17th July, Saturday 7th & Sunday 8th August.

Sunday 17th July 2010 -Beginners DSLR £135 EXTRA COURSE - Only wo spaces left

Learn how to take great picture before your summer holidays on this extra course.

Saturday 31st July 2010 - DSLR plus RAW & HDR - one day course for max 3 students £175

There's only two spaces left on this specialist photography & Photoshop course so book early.

Sunday 1st August 2010 - DSLR plus Photoshop - one day course for max 3 students £175

Another specialist DSLR course but with extra hands on Photoshop tuition. Limited to 3 students

Saturday 7th August 2010 - Beginners DSLR £135

Our most popular beginners DSLR course. Just read the feedback from students

Sunday 8th August 2010 - Beginners DSLR & Hybrid combination course

An extra course dedicated to both DSLR and Hybrid or Bridge camera users

Saturday 4th September 2010 Bird & Nature Photography Course at Rutland Water £135

Sunday 5th September 2010 Bird & Nature Photography Course at Rutland Water £135

If your are into bird or nature photography then this course at Rutland Water is perfect for you.

Bird Photography at Rutland Water

Saturday 9th October 2010- Portrait Low Light Night Photography £135

Sunday 10th October 2010- Portrait Low Light Night Photography£135

This very popular course, just before Halloween and Bonfire night, will show you how to take portraits by candle light, scary portraits, fireworks pictures, buildings at night, car light trails and much more.

Help us to help you.

Which version of Photoshop do you have & what courses would you like? Please complete this short survey

This months project - Create a framed photo-collage in Picasa to hang on your wall.

This months project is to create a 10" x 8" (20x25cm) collage of themed photographs using the Collage Tool in Picasa. This can be on any theme of your choosing but some suggestions could be a day out, a holiday, flowers or pets or family. The trick to a good collages is to remember each individual image needs to be quite bold so landscapes tend not to work well. If you need help with the collage tools look here:

Students Pictures from a recent courses

pictures by june students


" A perfectly balanced day and I gained exactly what I wanted to from the course. The time you took to explain each function in detail then the opportunity to try them all out was amazing. I'm looking forward to coming back for more." - Niksha Sewpaul.

"I've had a fantastic day and thoroughly enjoyed this course. Through careful guidance I now feel confident come of the auto and really start to experiment with my photography. Thank you for an informative and enjoyable day." - Hannah Rigby.

"Objectives achieved. I now know how to take the kind of photographs I've always aspired to. Glen is patient and informative and I felt I got the level of tuition without being to technical. I would definitely recommend this photography course to others." - Tina Cornah.

Help us to choose a logo for our new web site

We are also in the process of building a new web site and designing a new logo so we would value your feedback on these items. You can seen the original web site at: and the new one at

We are in the process of creating a new web site and logo. Below are a shortlist and we value your opinion as to which you like the best. This logo will appear on our web site, shirts, marketing materials and handouts.


Thanks to your feedback we chose this logo


The Essential Holiday Checklist

1. Check the camera settings

Before you go on holiday or any important photo shoot it's a good idea to check all your camera settings. Did you know that most compact cameras, fresh from the box, are not set to deliver the best quality. Check that the image size is set to "largest or Maximum" and the jpg quality is set to the highest setting. This is often called " Fine or Superfine". It's also a good idea to make sure the lens is cleaned with a soft cloth. Finally check your colour balance is correctly set as this is the one of the most common reason for poor image quality.

2. Charge your batteries

All rechargeable batteries will lose charge over time so if you haven't used the camera for a while you need to check them. Charge your camera battery and consider buying a spare at or who will often sell replacement batteries considerably cheaper than the branded batteries from your manufacturer. Buying a spare means you can run one battery to flat before using the second one. This will help your batteries last longer.

3. Buy another storage card

With bigger cards available now at low prices there is a temptation to buy one really big card. This is not a good idea as a friend of mine found out recently when she had her camera stolen. She lost 1000s of images from the trip of a lifetime. I recommend you take at least two cards on holiday. Buy a spare card and take half of your holiday pictures on one card, then store it safely away from your camera, and take the rest on the images on another card. This way if you should lose your camera or a card you will still have some precious pictures of your holiday.

4. Use the self-timer and buy a mini tripod

How many holidays have you been on with a partner only to come home with pictures that make it look like you went by yourself. Invest in a mini tripod for a few £££s and learn how to use the self-timer. Set the camera up on the tripod and include yourself in the group picture. Visit for a great range of mini tripods.

5. Tell a story

It's very easy to come home from holiday with a few photographs of the family sitting by the pool or drinking in a bar. Remember these images are reminders of memories. You probably paid a lot of money for your holiday so try to show the venue and views of the area. Sunsets are a great addition to any album so use your new tripod and switch off the flash for great sunset pictures. Look at local postcards for ideas where to get the best shots.

6. Viewing your pictures

Digital Photography has many advantages over film and prints but it does have a downside. It is all too easy to either leave 100s of images on the camera or save them to your computer never to be seen again. Look at getting your best pictures printed or you could make a picture DVD or CD. Windows users can use the excellent built in Movie Maker program to make a picture CD complete with music. Mac users have iPhoto or iMovie to play with. Picasa also has a gift CD option so family and friends can view a slideshow on their PC. On the subject of music beware of copyright restrictions if you intend to publish your work.

7. Saving and finding your pictures

One of the problems with taking 100s of digital pictures and then storing them on your computer is they can be difficult to track down after a while. A good filing system is essential and I recommend the free Picasa program from Google. This awarding winning file management and editing software helps you import, file and save your images as well as allowing you to view and search for them. It also has some tremendous editing tools for making your lighter or darker, cropping and much, much more. Picasa also has a very good back up option for saving your images to DVD.

8. Don't hide your precious pictures

The downside of digital is sometimes you never get to view them after the initial upload onto your computer. You could use Picasa to create a gift DVD for viewing your pictures on a TV or PC but sometime there is no substitute for handing your best pictures around. Rather than just get your images printed straight from the card, which is the quick and easy option, I suggest you save them to your computer, choose the best ones, crop and improve them in Picasa, Photoshop Elements or some other editing program, then copy them back to a card. This way your pictures will all be spot on and you can wow your friends with your new found photography skills. Another great option is to buy a digital picture frame. These will hold 1000s of images and rotate them in a slide show.

9. Back Up, Back Up, Back Up,

Your digital images are the equivalent to your negatives. If you lose them you have lost all those precious memories. Backing up your files is like storing your negatives in a safe place. The easiest option is to burn your pictures to a CD , which will hold about 700 MB of pictures, or to a DVD, which will hold 4.7GB, which is about five times more than a CD. If you have a 5-6 mega pixel camera set to the best quality each image will be about 2MB so you should be able to fit around 350 pictures on a CD or over 1700 images on a DVD.

Other options are online storage or an external hard drive. It's also a good idea to back up all your data, not just pictures and store a copy away from your PC in case of theft or fire.

10. Take advice and invest in your photography

'How many photographs to you think you will take in a lifetime? - 1000, 10,000, 1/2 million. Even a conservative estimate of 250 per year - that's less than one a day on average- will return a figure of 20,000 over a lifetime. Investing in your photography skills early on could save you 1000's of badly exposed, unsharp or poorly composed pictures. Instead of your friends resigning themselves to looking at your holiday snaps they'll be impressed a pleased to look at your stunning, well composed landscapes and sunsets that capture the feel and excitement of an expensive and memorable vacation.

You could start by reading your instruction manual or buying a book or tutorial DVD. Better still attend a digital photography course and learn from the professionals. A one day course will cost less than a couple of tank of petrol in a family sized car and the skills you learn will last a lot longer.

2 for 1 Special Offer

241 Special Offer

To launch our new web site we are offering a special 2 for 1 offer for July and August 2010. Book any of our private tuition courses and bring a friend for free. This means you get 221 private tuition for not much more than the group course price. This can be a dedicated courses of your choosing or one of our standard courses:

  • Photoshop Elements - Levels, Curves, Layers, Cloning & Replacing Skies
  • Photoshop - Using Levels, Curves, Layers, Cloning & Replacing Skies
  • SLR plus Photoshop - Extended one day course for 3 students covering DSLR & Photoshop
  • Digital SLR plus RAW & HDR - Extended one day DSLR course covering RAW & HDR photography
  • Photoshop - Restoring old photographs.

The weekday courses are £299 (= £150 pp) or weekends at £399 (=£200 pp) Call 0116 279 6906 to arrange a date.

We hope you have enjoyed this newsletter

Best Wishes


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25 Westerby Lane, Smeeton Westerby, Leics, LE8 0RA 0116 2796906