Okay so you know I attended a 2-day photography course. And now I’ll tell you that is was with Richard Wood, an award-winning NZ photographer and finalist for NZ Photographer of the Year 2010. Check out his work to see how seriously good he is.

I hunted for a photographic course to attend but those I found cost heaps of money and full-time attendance at some college or institute. So I thought it would be smarter to find NZ photographers whose work I admire and see if they offer workshops or short courses. Bingo. Richard Wood was offering a Christchurch course in April.

The 2-day course was jam packed and what I liked about it most was that Richard freely admits he’s not a geeky, technical photographer but an artist and creative photographer. Someone who uses intuition to spot the unusual. I am self-taught on photography, having read dozens of books over the years on the technical side of things. But when it comes to taking photos, I’m drawn to light, patterns, textures, shapes. I don’t stop to consider “would this make a good technical photo?”.

I was also pleased to hear Richard say he is greatly influenced by Rembrandt. I studied his work during all the years I studied art (about 10 years of painting and learning to draw). I even tried to create a Rembrandt-mood in a couple of photos that I took in Rome during 2008.

UPDATE: Richard became NZ Photographer of the Year 2011, so I learnt from a Master!

I also discovered that my penchant for snapping red and green isn’t so bad – it creates a powerful image. Here’s another photo I took on my Rome trip.

And the best photos are minimalist and tell a story. Hopefully, these photos I took fall into this category.

The course made me realise that I have so much more to learn and that I have to do something I’ve been putting off. Learn Photoshop. I used to think that you should aim to take the best photo possible in-camera and not bother with post-production. But after attending this course and seeing Richard’s amazing new photos (really, it’s like digital art), I have to bite the bullet. Richard showed us tips and techniques in Photoshop, most of which went over my head as I haven’t used it. But I aim to master it now.

Because I enjoy shooting in B&W film with my plastic fantastic cameras, I’m thinking of hunting down an old film camera – maybe the Leica M6. Any photographers reading this – any suggestions? Here are some of my B&W shots taken with the Diana F+ camera.

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