The courses are designed teach the basics of good photography and to take advantage
of the leaps in technology that have put some amazing digital imaging within reach
of darn near everyone.
In addition to learning traditional photographic techniques like effective use of
shutter speed and how to work with depth of field, you’ll also learn to work using
Photoshop as a “darkroom” to create digital photos that reflect classic photographic
values. Most importantly, you’ll learn to see—and think—like a photographer.
- What camera do I need?
For the first two assignments almost any camera will work. But after those you’ll
need an adjustable camera that allows you to set the f-stop and shutter speed. This
is most likely a DSLR (digital single lens reflex). You don't need the latest and
greatest camera. Many students have successfully completed this class with older,
used DSLR cameras.
- What do I need if I take this class online?
In addition to the camera (see above), you'll need a computer that can run Adobe Photoshop
and a subscription to the Adobe Creative Suite, and of course, a connection to the
internet. For information about the online class contact:
- Can I use my point-and-shoot or smart phone?
The short answer: No.
Most point-and-shoot and smart phone cameras don’t allow you to pick your shutter
speed or f-stop. Many that do make the process so complicated that you have to be
an expert to set things that should be simple. Though you can use one for the first
two assignments, you’ll need a more advanced camera for later assignments.
- Can I use a film camera?
No, but that's a good thing. Digital is more cost effective and has a faster turn-around
time than film. Students can produce a lot more work without the cost and time consuming
nature of film and darkroom printing.
- Do you have a darkroom?
No. For a number of reasons.
• We have concerns for environment. We don’t want to dump chemicals down the drain.
• We want to save students money. Film and photo paper are costly.
• We want to use current technology.
- I’m already a really good photographer, can I sign up for Photo II?
You are really better off starting in Introduction to Digital Photography. You’ll
learn our workflow and get a chance to be a star. Plus, if you really love photography
you’ll get to take two photo classes instead of just one. But if you really think
you should be in Photo II, talk to the instructor about if it's the best choice for
- Do I need to be good at Photoshop or computers already?
Not at all. Experience is never a bad thing, but we’ll teach you what you need to
know. That’s why it’s called “school” and not “work.” It helps to be comfortable with
computer basics such as saving files and organizing them into folders, but it is not
How do I sign up?
Visit our Welcome to Los Medanos College page for information on how to enroll. When you search the schedule look in the Art Department for Photography classes.
I still have questions, who do I ask?
Examples of First Semester photo students' work
By Briana Wheeler
Photo by Armida Salazar
Photo by Kathy Quezada
by Kelsy Rivera