Today, I attended a Digital Days Workshop hosted by Popular Photography and sponsored by Sony in Los Angeles. I had the worst drive down there trying to get through heavy rain, low visibility, and minor hydroplaning. I'm thanking my lucky stars that I made it back safely through all of that.
Back to the subject at hand - The Digital Days Workshop was a two-day event (Saturday and Sunday). Saturday included a Beginner Video Workshop and a Beginner Photo Workshop. Neither of which I attended but from what I heard from those who did, they really enjoyed themselves and it was very informative. I attended the Sunday workshop which was an all day 9-5 Beyond Beginner Photo Workshop. The Beyond Beginner Photo Workshop included two sessions to discuss slightly more advanced photography skills: achieving the right exposure, framing, knowing your subject, background, using manual mode and shutter & aperture priority modes, just to name a few. It also a few minor breaks, lunch, an hour long model shoot, the 30 minute critique of the model shoot, and learning a little bit of image editing.
I must say that I was very pleased with most of the shots I got from the model photo shoot and I was pleased with the pace of the photo shoot. The models were excellent. The models went through several dress changes combined with variable backgrounds, lighting setups, and challenges such as capturing motion to offer lots of variety in the shoot. The lecturing photographers were also right there by our side to offer assistance and suggestions to make sure that everyone went home with at least one quality shot. It does get a bit crowded in the model shoot and some other photographers do not make apologies for jumping right in the middle of your shot. I felt a little out of place saying, "Excuse me....Sorry...Am I in your way?" Every photographer in there is trying to get that money shot so be prepared to feel as though you're a sports photographer standing on the sideline fighting to get that shot or a fashion photographer during Fashion Week.
At the end, we wrapped up with seeing favorite photos shot by the lecturing photographers, Mark Reis and Leslie Fish. Both of whom were excellent at presenting the material and very entertaining. Phil Mistry, the Director of Digital Days, was also on-hand assisting during the model shoot and taking care of the logistics of the entire event. The rapport between the pros also made it a very comfortable and pleasant event for us all.
For me, my knowledge was a bit more advanced than the topics covered. Everything they discussed, I already knew but I really enjoyed the opportunity to shoot models. If you're new to the world of digital photography and want to learn the basics fast, I would strongly recommend attending a Digital Days Workshop.