Downtown Natural Light Portraiture


Check back soon for new dates to be posted in 2017.

To hell with the camera…First, it is all about the light folks. (Bring an iPhone if you want*) I will do demos with our subjects and then have you shoot based on the light and good observation skills I shall impart upon your photographically curious and fertile minds. We dig in… Light on faces, and the shapes of faces, soft light, hard light, key light and fill light. Chiaroscuro or High key? Learn what makes people look good and to make photographs not take them.

Then, as we go…we will examine the camera settings for portrait work, my un-patented but original “Way to Shoot” review cycle, and last but not least, I will also will micro-manage your life in manual Mode, to get you into the creative zone with your camera. What lenses to use and why. Shoot from the hip and shoot as a premeditation. There is method to the madness. You will thank me.

Pre-requisite: Tripods and patience, the Jumpstart Deluxe Class is recommended but not required if you are comfy with your camera in Manual mode. Six people only.

*(IF you do THEN, bring a tripod, rascal.)

If you have questions about what kind of camera you have, please read the sidebar  “What is a DSLR/M?” to determine if you have the right camera for this class.

What is a DSLR/M?

I teach how to use cameras in Manual Mode, the most creative mode in which to use your camera. Once you are comfortable with Manual Mode the other modes fall neatly into place, and your camera’s functionality opens up like a Lotus Flower.

The way to know if your camera is good for PhotoTrainer is to see if the lens is interchangeable. If you can swap lenses this is good – sign up and take my class with this camera. Cameras with fixed lenses, are in the “point and shoot” genre and rarely stop down lower than f/8. Taking this class with one of these cameras is like taking a shower with a raincoat on. Not recommended. 🙁


“The DSLR Jumpstart class 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