Learning to light is one of those big steps that you will take as a photographer. True, there is a lot you can do with ambient light, or if night time photography is your thing, then investing in a tripod makes sense.
As a wedding photographer or portrait photographer, I am called to a variety of scenarios and I have to make quick calls to whether to use the existing light or enhance it with a flash. I recall buying two Nikon SB-800's and then asking myself, “now what?” I didn't know much about flash, how apertures and shutter speeds and ISO's all worked in tandem, or that my images would truly rock if only I took the flash off of the hot-shoe on my camera body.
Subjected to wedding after wedding where the reception lights were getting dimmer and dimmer, I was desperate to learn to light. Through the Digital Wedding Forum, I learned about Zack Arias, an Atlanta-based photographer who had cut his teeth photographing bands and music concerts. Zack was and is photographing weddings with another fabulous photographer named Marc Climie (more on him in a future post). When I heard about Zack's OneLight Workshops, I had to attend. The description matched my needs to a T. It was meant for those who wanted to learn from the ground-up, to light.
Well, some weeks back, Chase Jarvis and friends inaugurated CreativeLive.com, a website for photographers to learn from the very best photographers in the world.
On June 11, 12 and 13 (yes, this coming weekend), Zack, will be presenting at CreativeLive. If you can't make it you can buy his presentations as a digital download for $79. That, my friends, is what I call a STEAL. Get it!
And you've got to watch this by my man Zack:
I have to be on the road for that weekend, so I have ordered the download. If you are anywhere near Connecticut, bring some popcorn; we can watch it over at my place. I hope it is in HD! I am sure it will be a treat and a great learning experience. Perhaps we can even watch it and then go out and practice like real Strobists.
So, in full disclosure – I have attended two OneLight Workshops by Zack – one in Boston and the other in New York. They were both fabulous and I recommend them to anyone who is just starting out. If using your flash freaks you out (I was one of those to be totally honest), you should go. If you don't know what “off-camera lighting” means, you should go. If you want to create images with a greater depth, by using lighting, you should go. Well, you get the picture, right? [grin]
Unlike a lot of workshops where you sit and stare at an instructor and take furious notes, Zack broke it up and had us go out and shoot and practice and practice and practice. He split us into groups, had models stand in and made his equipment available for our use. He isn't just a photographer, he is a teacher. And by that I mean he talks and shows and makes darn sure you GET IT, before moving on to the next topic. One of the first things he declared was that there were no “stupid questions.” All was fair … from the very basic to the very technical. And if Zack didn't know the answer, he would say that he didn't know rather than bullshit his way through it.
Well, with this workshop now on CreativeLive.com, you don't have to travel far. The workshop comes to you online. That's bonus number one. And as I have said, if you are busy or away from your computer or you are still running on dial-up (God save you!), you will want to get that download for $79. That's bonus number two. Both will lead you to bonus number three, which is your desire to go and see the man in person at a workshop near you.
I don't make a dime for saying all this, so rest easy, sit back to watch and learn from a lighting guru. Your comments (after you watch the live event, which is FREE, by the way) would be greatly appreciated.