Session 1: Light and Reflection
Wednesday October 10
- Why add light?
- What is light?
- Types of reflection
- Direction of light
- Size of light
- Light colour and white balance
- Inverse square law
Session 2: Intro to Flash Photography
Wednesday October 17
- Why use flash?
- Equipment: flash + trigger + slave trigger
- Colour of flash - white balance settings
- Shutter speed and sync speed
- Controlling flash with aperture
- Blending flash and ambient
- TTL flash and fill flash
- Deliberately over-driving sync speed
Session 3: Intro to Lighting People
Wednesday October 24
- On camera flash
- Off camera flash
- Softened light
- Using multiple lights and reflectors
- Bounce flash
- Evil pop-up flash
Session 4: Using Available Light
(outdoor Sunday night session in city)
Sunday October 28
- Big lights
- Small lights
- Light direction
- Using found reflectors
Session 5: Lighting Modifiers
Wednesday October 31
- Gels, grids and gobos
- Creating natural vignettes
- Feathering light
- Applied inverse square law
Session 6: Lighting for Product Photography
Wednesday November 7
- Shiny objects
- Transparent and semi-transparent objects
- Lighting food
Session 7: Advanced Lighting Techniques
Wednesday November 14
- Butterfly lighting
- Beauty dish
- Ring flash and simulated ring flash
- Layered lighting
- Course conclusion
Course: Photographic Lighting
The course consists of 6 lecture/demo sessions plus one practical outdoor
session, conducted over 6 weeks.
Light is something we all interact with on a daily basis. Surprisingly, many
photographers don't understand how it works or how it can be manipulated.
This course starts with basic theory and then applies that theory
through a structured series of live camera demos displayed on a digital projector.
Students watch each photo being created and are able to scrutinise the lighting
setup and the camera settings used.
Lighting is best learned by doing it. Unfortunately, designing a course that
allows every participant to try each shot themselves would require a lot of time
spent waiting for people to take photos. Homework is assigned each week so that
students can get some first-hand practical experience.
I use flash lighting heavily as that is my preferred light source. If you are
scared of flash, I spend some time taking the mystery out of it. Students who do
not want to use flash will find that the lighting concepts will generally work
with any other light source they choose to use (with some flash-specific
The Wednesday night sessions are conducted in a function room at the Rosstown
Hotel, Carnegie. The Sunday evening session is conducted outdoors in the
There is a course fee of $200. Student numbers for each course are limited to 10.
The course assumes that students have not manipulated light before. It also
assumes that students understand how to operate their camera and that they have
a working knowledge of aperture, shutter speed and film speed.
What to bring...
Students need to bring their cameras to session 4 but they will not be required
for any of the other sessions. Basic notes for each session are supplied and all
demonstration photos are posted online within a couple of days of each session.
Students are welcome to bring pen/paper if they wish to make additional notes.
If you've seen me speak before...
Basic versions of these sessions have been run at camera clubs around Melbourne.
The course features expanded versions of my "Introduction to Flash"
presentation and my two "Playing With Light" presentations (which are split into 3
sessions and expanded). The last couple of sessions are new content, designed to
push students beyond the basics covered in the first few sessions.
If you are interesting in attending this course in the future, send an email to
email@example.com to sign up.
Previous students have said...
"Overall your style of teaching is really easy to understand and I learned a lot from
"This was advanced for me but still got lots out of it."
"Much of the photography was different from what I normally do but I have been inspired to use
my camera more and differently. Thanks, well done!"
"A fantastic course. Would recommend to anyone wanting to improve your lighting knowledge and technique. "