Welcome to PhotoTrainer

Learn with a Pro by your side!

“Took this class recently and it was fabulous. It’s the easiest way to understand your camera. I have read websites, taken college classes and nothing ever made sense. There’s nothing like being in a small class where you can ask questions when your not “getting it”. The lightbulb went on and it’s made so much sense now. Loved the class. Money well spent.”
– Orlanda Silva
“There were at least five separate times during the class, where I said to myself, wow that alone was worth the money I paid to be here. One thing Tom has done that allows the student to be fully present during the class, is create high quality hand outs that mimic what he is teaching. Tom’s teaching style combines practical facts, deep knowledge and true passion to put together information that is completely accessible to a novice photographer, while also inspiring you to believe in your own ability. I would highly recommend this class.”

– Shannon L
“The DSLR Jumpstart was perfectly utilized. Tom was very patient and even though my camera was not a classic DSLR (I have the Sony Nex 5n, mirrorless), he was prepared specifically for me with a reference sheet and explanations. Besides that I understand better how to use my camera and take better pictures for my food blog. I highly recommend this class.”

– Mark Hassin

Thank you for a very helpful session today. I enjoyed the day and had several things explained that I have been wondering about for quite some time. I am looking forward to putting it all to practice soon. And I am looking forward to some photo walks as well!

–Doug Klein

'Tis the Season! Gift Certificates for Every Class.

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Jumpstart your inner photographer.


Jumpstart Deluxe Class

For those who want it all at once! Come in at 9am and leave at 4pm knowing all about the things in your camera that have been vexing you for days, weeks, months! Manual Mode for once and for all, Amen. Read more …

Portraiture at PAL Workshop

Join my Portraiture Lighting class. Sponsored and hosted by the Pacific Art League. Read more …


Whiplash Portrait Explore

Whiplash Sculpture Explore. Join us at an unusual place to shoot portraits. I will do posing Demos, go over good exposure habits, and have tips and handouts. Read more …

Photo Composition

Do you want more from your photos, feeling stuck? In my composition course, learn how to make your images strong. Join a me for a small intimate photography intensive. Learn in person, from a Pro; (What a Concept!)  Read more …

Advanced Portraiture class

Advanced Portraiture. The Next Level. There is a difference between taking pictures and making photographs. Learn secret portraiture lighting tips, the shapes of the human face, and posing the body. How to get the sparkle-moment with your subject. And much much more… Read More …


Private Training

My signature specialty is personal one-on-one training and mentorships. This level of personal connection with a seasoned pro knows no equal. When you are really ready … Read more …

Stanford Gems Explore

Stanford Campus Hidden Gems Explore. Join us on an Explore of Stanford for the coolest photos spots. Manual mode metering and  auto focusing demos. Great shooting tips for travelers. Read more …

Lightroom Training

Learn Lightroom quickly with one of my private Jumpstart classes. I can also help you get organized of you have run into trouble after starting up on your own. Read More …


Water Temple Explore

Water Temple Explore. The water temple has it all. It is a fantastic place for portraits. It is great for black and white and sepia camera modes with the Greek columns and there is beautiful landscaping with trees and a reflecting pool. Read more…

Macro Lens and Flowers Photo Explore

Get the scoop on using your macro lenses in a floral context. Flowers and magnification serve up a great opportunity to practice your exposure and composition skills. Read More …

Learn from a pro!

In my Jumpstart DSLR photo classes, I teach you the way to shoot a DSLR in manual mode. I have personally taught over a thousand people how to do this. Your camera does eight basic things, that I will teach you. After that, all you have to do is practice!
You can do this!

Classes for every level!

In my photo coaching work I bring over thirty years of professional experience for you to learn at your level and get excellent shots. I help beginners with their brand new cameras, I work with avid enthusiasts as a mentor, and consult with professionals, companies and start-ups on targeted problem solving.
Take a closer look!

Tom, where do I start?

Right here!