Photography Training Courses
Blackford Centre for Professional Photography
Accredited Diploma in Professional Photography
One of our learners' photos
Dear Graham and Blackford
It’s now been some 18 months since I bit the bullet and enrolled for the course in “Professional Photography” and I thought you may like to know what has happened since receiving my Diploma some 6 months ago.
At the time I started thinking about doing a course, I was also involved in the process of a life changing event, I was selling the business that I had built up over the previous 15 years, I had grown tired of living in hotel rooms, airports and trying to sleep on long haul flights.
Having been interested in photography since my teens, I decided that I wanted to be a Photographer and specialise in taking photos of golfers trying to find their golf balls. How cool would that be!
Over the next few weeks I searched the internet and after some research I found 2 possible courses, I sort of decided on one as the likely candidate, I liked the website! The Blackford Centre was relegated to 2nd place.
I called the likely company and there was nobody who I could discuss the course with, in addition the web blogs did not give great feedback and having registered my interest I was getting emails on a regular basis with the price getting ever less expensive. I was becoming very uneasy about this company and so I called the Blackford Centre. I was immediately put through to someone who was friendly and knowledgeable about the course, all my questions were answered.
A few days later I called again with some further questions and again I was impressed with the professionalism I received. That was It…………. I booked the course and in 6 -12 months I was going to be a Professional Photographer………..Yippee!
So a few days later a big box arrived with all the Course Materials (I had chosen to have a hard copy version of the course as well as the on-line access) I got stuck in immediately. I had been allocated you as my tutor Graham and sent off my 1st submission for critique within a week. This one was easy as it was to explain what I wanted to get out of the course and what my photographic history was.
Then the hard work started (I say hard work is was hard but really enjoyable and challenging). It required that I send in 6 photographs of a task relevant to the chapter in the course. Now what was the really difficult task was to choose 6 images from the 100 or so I had taken. This was the most challenging part of the whole course because it was the 6 images that I selected which would be assessed. This would take me ages and it would often require Chalida to assist me with the selection.
Anyhow the 1st photographic submission was sent to you and a few days later I received my critique from you. I could not wait to open the document but also it was with great trepidation that I did so. Questions like “will he tell me to go back to golf” be suggested. Well how relieved I was when I read your assessment of my 1st submission. It was so encouraging and positive, the way you highlighted the weaknesses was always positive and helpful and the positive feedback on the good bits was so motivating.
This was to be the norm for the 15 or so photographic submissions over the following 12 months, always helpful and always positive. I started to realise what I needed to do to really become proficient. The hardest bit for me was when you totally rejected my submission for Landscape Photography as being “off target” (about halfway through the course). Even though you rejected it you explained why they did not meet the criteria set in the assignment and this was such a wake up call for me. My second landscape submission achieved an A- and this was very pleasing but it did focus me more on my subsequent submissions. A big thank you Graham you were always so helpful.
All of the tasks/assignments were challenging and at times “VERY STRESSFUL” the most challenging was the Sports Photography assignment. Poor light, the fast moving game of rugby and getting the settings right. I will never ever forget that day. 1200 photographs later I then had to sift through them to choose 6 to send in. That alone took me a whole day and then the editing/cropping. This was not an easy job!
Finally it came to my final submission and it was to explain who I was going to apply my 12 months of learning to the business of photography.
Well you had by now established that it was something that I was keen to take seriously and I had found some space in which I could build a studio. The location was in Berkshire and I had decided that it would be for my own use and also for hire to Professional Photographers who needed a high specification facility to use. At the time of the submission it was a shell but the idea was well developed. It has taken 8 months to complete and you can find the studio link below:
The studio opened its doors last week!
During the last 6 months this has taken up most of my time but I did manage to get a Media Pass to shoot at a European/Asia Tour Golf Tournament in Thailand. This was great and I was on site for 6 days. I have also been accepted as an Alamy Contributor and as a result of the images from the golf shoot I was given access to their “News Desk Live Feed” portal.
So I have a new life now and I owe it all to you and Blackford, I can’t thank you enough and if you don’t mind I will, from time to time, send you an update on my progress.
All the Best
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