Strobist Off-Camera Flash Boot Camp: More Details

I have been thinking long and hard about the format (and assignment content) for Strobist's first-ever version of summer school. And I think I have something pretty fun lined up for you guys.

There will be six assignments. Each will be very realistic, with real-world problems and opportunities. The assignments will all center on specific (and very accessible) subjects, each to be shot with a specific technique. We will mostly be shooting people.

Yes, I realize that art schools tend to tell you to light something inanimate, like an egg. (Booor-ing, Sidney.) But lighting and shooting a person has its own special challenges. And besides, this ain't no art school.

Further, if you can light a person you can light an egg. Not so, the reverse.

The first assignment will be deceptively easy - it is designed to let a publication test-drive your level of ability and committment to your craft without taking much of a risk. The jobs will quickly progress to more challenging assignments just as they would in the real world - provided you had been nailing the easy stuff.

You will have to declare (in you photo tags) whether you are a pro or an amateur. For the purposes of this series, anyone who earns more than 10% of their income shooting photos is a pro. We'll be on the honor system - but I want people to be able to compare work within their own class.

If this works out well, by the end of the course you will be able to rely on a new bag of techniques. Beyond that, you will see what dozens - possibly many dozens - of shooters from around the world did with your exact same assignment. That is very valuable stuff. If you are building a portfolio, the assignments will likely produce a couple of new entries for you.

And if any of you photo students are out there interning for the summer, I hope you'll play along, too. The assignments may prompt you to shoot some cool stuff on assignment for your respective publications.

I am very psyched about the series, and I hope word of it spreads before the fact. I am pretty sure word will get out after it starts, as I do not think anyone has done something like this online before. But the more people we have participating from the very start, the better it will be for all.


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