It’s been three weeks since classes started at my new photography school, so I think I ought to write an update on how things are going so far. I’ll also include photos of stuff I’ve taken for school, I know they aren’t quite worthy of an exhibition, but it’s just to show you the general idea of what we’ve been doing.
School officially started May 8th, but that week, it was mostly just orientations and explanations of things in class. Last week we started class for real, so I got a taste of how the classes were actually going to be like. And each day the classes are different and they focus on different aspects of photography.
Each week, we have a class on using stuff like Adobe Bridge and Adobe Photoshop; we have a class explaining technical stuff about the camera; a class where we get familiar with studio photography; a dark room class to develop film photos; we also have sort of seminar-type classes; and, my personal favorite class, outdoor photography classes where the teacher gives us what setting to use (like in black and white, or using film cameras) but we can choose freely what to take photos of.
To be honest, the first week of class where they were doing all these explanations about the classes, I was pretty scared out of my socks. First, cause I didn’t know anyone yet, I didn’t have anyone to ask if I didn’t understand something. And I’m honestly quite terrible with the nerves of being around lots of new people in a new school environment.
And second, cause when the teachers were explaining the classes, it seemed quite intimidating. I’ve never even had proper photography experience before this, outside of taking photos on my phone and putting them on Instagram, and we were going to be doing all of this stuff I have zero clues about. So naturally, I felt quite nervous and started doubting if I knew what I got myself into.
So sometimes I would even tell some people I know that I was starting to doubt things and wasn’t sure if this was for me, because I was honestly super nervous about everything and worried I wouldn’t be able to do anything.
But throughout the first week, although it wasn’t immediate, I got to talk to some people, and found out quite a lot of the people in my class were also like me, no experience in photography at all, some are even at the level of having never even touched a camera just like me. So it made me realize I’m not alone at least.
On the second week, we got to experience the classes for real. Although I would go back to thinking like “omg wait what is all of this!?” and start feeling nervous again at times, the more I got a feel for how the classes were, slowly by slowly, I started realizing it won’t be too bad.
And, although there would be a few times (or maybe a lot of times) that I would still feel some doubts, I got advice from someone who was in this same scholarship as I am many years ago, she’s from America and studied fashion. She said although she realized early on that she wasn’t going to be the next Christian Dior or the next big fashion icon, she told me that it definitely didn’t stop her from enjoying the ride.
Because getting to go on a special training college means you get to try lots of things. It’s going to be full of great new learning experiences. So basically, she helped me realize that I’m here and so you bet I’ll enjoy it.
And besides, this is why I came to study in the first place, even if I might not be the next big photographer, it’s fine to not be perfect or to not know everything, because I am still just learning after all.
And it turns out, I’m having a lot of fun doing it too.
So, since I mentioned this at the start, here are some of the photos I’ve taken for class, I’ll give a bit of explanation as well, like for what class they were and a bit of story behind each one.
So for the first set, these are photos I took for the outdoor photography class I mentioned, we went to Ueno Park to take photos. To be honest, I forgot that the teacher had instructions to take in monochrome/black and white lol, so I just edited them in Photoshop to follow what the teacher said (although I do prefer the colored versions of these though)
For this second set, this is for our studio class, we were separated into groups by the teacher, and we had to take photos of the other people in the group. The people with the white background are my groupmates, and when we were done, I just sort of went around taking pictures of other people in my class as well (I hope they don’t mind me uploading their photos, but eh, it’s probably fine lol)
And these are just random photos of the other people in the class:
And this is how it looks like during the studio class (sort of lol):
For this next set, we had to take sort of ‘speed photos’ (I call them that, but there’s probably a more proper term for them haha)
Yesterday, for the outdoor photography class I mentioned, we had to use a film camera to take photos in Asakusa. I have never, I repeat, never used a film camera before. I didn’t even know at first where to load the battery lol.
I went with some friends on the first week so I found out about a second-hand camera shop from one of them, so when I had to buy the film camera for class (yes, I had to buy it, and being the poor student that I am, it wasn’t easy for me to) I went back there and met someone who was visiting Japan and a student in the Philippines. He told me about a different camera shop that was cheaper and went with me there.
He also helped me pick out a camera and tested if everything worked fine for me as well (I didn’t know there were so many things to open in the camera and buttons to press and levers to pull just to check!)
I probably looked super confused that’s why he helped me out lol but I seriously can’t thank him enough, I really was super confused and if I’d been on my own I probably wouldn’t have been able to choose a good camera.
And that’s how I ended up with this baby:
I won’t be able to find out how the photos turned out until next next week Wednesday when we develop them for the dark room class, and I’m a little worried they might be too bright or dark, since unlike digital cameras, you can’t check the photo immediately and then adjust the settings for the next shot.
But I did quite enjoy taking photos with the film camera. There was a sort of amazement with using a camera that was made probably before you were even born, and having limited shots with the film (I admit, I’m a terrible *clickclickclick* type with photos, I take maybe ten shots continuously of the same thing) so you have to take that into consideration too, and really think of what you want to take photos of with your limited film.
And so, so far that’s how it’s been for me with the photography school.