Education



Online Courses for PSA Members

Education Services
Director and Instructor

Jon Fishback, APSA   

Fishback_John.jpg PSA Online Courses are a PSA-member benefit, designed to help beginning and advanced photographers improve their skills in a guided manner. They are free to all members and usually take place over a period of months. To enroll in a course, fill out the corresponding online Enrollment Form. You will be contacted shortly thereafter to set up the course. 

If your photography has never been critiqued or you would like additional information about having your photography critiqued, please read The Pain and Pleasure of Critical Analysis.

Our other instructors:


Cowles_Susan.jpg PORTRAIT_HALGRIMSON-DAVID.jpg
Susan Cowles,
APSA, PPSA
Scott Fowler,
APSA
David Halgrimson Terri Hood Vicki McLead Wes Odell
PORTRAIT_PIRES-RUI.jpg PORTRAIT_YAU-ANDY.jpg

Marie Otero

Ron Paxton Rui Pires Terry Stipe Andy Yau

Please select the course you are interested in to reveal or hide its description. To see a list of all course descriptions at once, choose "Show All."
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  • Photography Analysis
  • Image Analysis

    This online course is designed for individual members of PSA who wish to know more about photography and what may constitute a pleasant photographic image, and would like to learn what to say in the analysis or evaluation of a photograph.

    COURSE INSTRUCTORS:
    Jon Fishback, Ron Paxton

    COURSE ENROLLMENT:
    Course Enrollment Form  (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)

    COURSE GRADUATES:
    Image Analysis Course Graduates
    Many times camera club members are called upon to discuss the work of others. The Image Analysis Course is designed so the student may learn to formulate thought patterns toward more intelligent discourse.

    ABOUT THE COURSE:
    This course is also designed to improve the student's personal work through comprehensive analysis of the work of others. The lessons will contain the work of master photographers as well as the work of the amateur and beginner, for a broad range of visual stimulation.
    Since the course is designed for members of the PSA, it is designed to help the student evaluate work within the framework of PSA-recognized International Exhibitions and the camera club environment. Evaluation of student's analyses by the instructor will be for the purpose of helping the student have a positive and productive PSA experience and contribute to the positive experience of others.
    The course is self-contained; there is no text book or additional material required. There are 12 lessons to be completed in three (3) months. Each lesson includes two images to be analyzed by the student for a total of 24 images. The instructor returns the analysis with comments and discussion regarding what was written by the student. When one lesson is finished and returned to the student, the next lesson is sent. It is planned that the student will finish the course in the three (3) months allotted; however, if a student is not finished at the end of the three (3) months the course will end. An application for an extension will be considered, under special circumstances.
    At the successful conclusion of the course a certificate will be sent to the student, and the student's name will be listed here and in the PSA Journal.
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  • Individualized Photography
  • Creating Competitive Images

    This course is for the intermediate to advanced worker that wishes to fine tune their competitive eye.  All course material is provided, there is nothing to buy.

    Competition is a major activity in PSA and camera club.  This course will attempt to teach the norms necessary for making images which may have a better chance for judge’s acceptance.

    This course is not for the beginning photographer, and will not deal with the basics of camera operation. This is a structured course with six lessons and multiple exercises to be completed in six months.

    COURSE INSTRUCTORS:
     Jon Fishback, APSA;  Scott Fowler, APSA

    COURSE ENROLLMENT:
    Course Enrollment Form  (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)

    There is a combined application for Creating Competitive Images, Photography Instruction, and Still Life Photography.

  • Photography Instruction (students work with instruction)
    This course is designed for the beginner to intermediate worker that wishes a more traditional instruction process. The advantage of this type of training is the technical instruction provided within the lesson text which may go a long way toward guiding the beginning and intermediate student toward the goal provided.

    COURSE INSTRUCTORS
    Jon Fishback, APSA; Terry Hood, Wes Odell, Marie Otero, and Terry Stipe

    COURSE ENROLLMENT:
    Course Enrollment Form  (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)

    There is a combined application for Creating Competitive Images, Photography Instruction, and Still Life Photography.



    ABOUT THE COURSE

    This is a structured course based on lessons provided online. These lessons are designed to instruct and then provide the student the opportunity to submit work based on the lesson instructions. The lesson content has been selected based on past experience with student's interests.

    The lessons are:

    1. The elements of photography
    2. Portrait photography
    3. Architectural and Night photography
    4. Macro and Still life photography
    5. Action, Sports and Animals
    6. The Landscape

    This course is available to individual members of PSA. Students will have six (6) months to complete the course. At the end of that period we hope you will be finished. If, however, you are not finished, the course will end.

    After completion of an assignment, and when your instructor is satisfied, a new assignment will be sent to you. There is no textbook requirement for this course.

    Additional needs:  Camera, computer and access to the internet,  the ability to work with Microsoft Word, the ability to upload and download photographs, and Adobe Reader. 

    At the successful conclusion of the course a certificate will be sent to the student, and the student's name will be listed here and in the PSA Journal. We hope you have as much fun as we do making these courses available to you.
  • Portraits in Available Light (in English)
    This course is designed for the serious worker who may not feel strong doing portraits of people in available light. The course will dwell heavily on backgrounds and available light.


    COURSE INSTRUCTOR:
    Susan Cowles, PPSA

    COURSE ENROLLMENT:
    Course Enrollment Form  (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)

    COURSE GRADUATES:

    ABOUT THE COURSE:

    There will be six lessons, all designed to help the student make portraits of individual subjects in a proper setting and with minimum distraction. The course is not designed to help the student make portraits for competition. The course is designed to give the student a foundation in portraiture so advancement toward competitive portraiture may be much easier.

    There will be no discussion of electronic flash, umbrellas, snoots or background lights. There will also be no lessons on hair lights, makeup, or software that make the portrait look unnatural. There will be no instruction regarding complex setups with multiple people. There will be no discussion of weddings or babies.

    The only light discussed in the course will be available light; there will be no discussion of studio work or the use of supplemental lighting. All of this will be left for a more advanced study.

    There will be lessons on portraits of men, women, and children. At least four of the lessons will dwell on the head and shoulders portrait. One lesson, #5, will revolve around the ¾ pose and its pitfalls. The final lesson, #6, is an elective and the student may wander into any area of portraiture that is comfortable, bringing forth the tools learned in the previous five lessons.

    This course will be six (6) months in duration, with one lesson expected to be done every month, at the very least. 
    At the successful conclusion of the course a certificate will be sent to the student, and the student's name will be listed here and in the PSA Journal
  • Portraits in Available Light (in Chinese)
    在可用光下拍攝人像
      

    运用自然光照明的肖像

    Instructor: Andy Yau  
    andy.yau@adv-products.com

    Portraits in Available Light Enrollment Form
    (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)
    此課程特別針對在可用光下拍攝人像做得不夠完美的攝影工作者而設。

    課程著重介紹背景及利用可用光的拍攝。課程共分為六節,全為助學生選擇較為理想的位置,拍攝單一物件的人像相片。課程並非專為人像攝影比賽而設計,而是希望學生透過課程,掌握人像拍攝的基礎,誠然,能夠充分掌握人像攝影,自然對於日後參加公開比賽無往而不利。

    課程中並不會談到使用閃光燈、控光傘、聚光筒或其他背景光源,也不會提到利用人物頭髮的光線或人物化妝加強效果,甚至使用電腦軟件令人像看來不自然。課程亦不會提到複雜的群體人像拍攝,當然拍攝婚禮或拍攝嬰孩的指導也不會覆蓋得到。

    這個課程只會提到使用可用光源,即是不包括所有影樓所用到的輔助光源,而使用輔助光源便會留待加入在更高階的攝影課程中了。
    本課程會涵蓋男性、女性及小孩的人像拍攝,至少有四節課論述頭及肩以上的拍攝方法。第五節會提到拍攝 ¾ 姿勢,以及拍攝時會遇到的陷阱。最尾一節課是選修的,可以由學生自由選擇自己喜歡,而在之前幾節課提到的拍攝方法。

    課程估計歷時六個月,預算一個月最少上一節課。
  • Portrait in Available Light (in Spanish)

    Retratos en Luz Natural

    Instructor: Rui Pires  
    rui.f.pires@netvisao.pt

    Portraits in Available Light Enrollment Form
    (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)
    Este curso está pensado para los rigurosos fotógrafos que sienten algunas dificultades para utilizar luz natural para retratos de personas.

    El curso estará fuertemente orientado a segundos planes y aprovechamiento de la luz natural. Estará compuesto por seis clases diseñadas para ayudar al estudiante a hacer retratos de personas individuales en un entorno adecuado y con pocos elementos perturbadores. El curso no está diseñado para ayudar al estudiante a hacer retratos para concursos o competiciones.

    El curso está pensado para proporcionar al estudiante una base sólida en términos de retrato y ofreciendo al estudiante de conocimientos para avanzar individualmente en términos de retrato de concursos o competiciones.

    No tratan con el uso de flash electrónico, sombrillas, luces en segundo plano. Tampoco aborda la iluminación de su cabello, maquillaje, o el software que hace que la imagen poco naturale. No habrá ninguna instrucción sobre configuraciones complejas con varias personas. No habrá discusiones sobre el bebé o bodas.

    La única fuente de luz utilizada en este curso será la luz natural, no habrá discusiones sobre trabajos de estudio o el uso de iluminación adicional,  lo que se deja para estudios más avanzados.

    Habrá clases de retratos de hombres, mujeres y niños. Al menos cuatro lecciones serán el retrato de los hombros y la cabeza. La quinta lección será el retrato con pose ¾  y sus trucos.

    La sexta lección final será electiva y el alumno puede trabajar cualquier área del retrato donde se siente más cómodo, aprovechando las lecciones aprendidas en los últimos cinco lecciones. Este curso tendrá una duración de seis meses y cada lección tendrá que ser completado por lo menos en un mes.



  • Still Life Photography
    This course is designed for the intermediate to advanced worker and should be familiar with photography in general. Through guidance of each lesson and completing its accompanying assignments this course will help you in creating a pleasing still life photograph.

    COURSE INSTRUCTOR:
    Vicki McLead

    COURSE ENROLLMENT:
    Course Enrollment Form  (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)
    There is a combined application for Creating Competitive Images, Photography Instruction, and Still Life Photography.

    COURSE GRADUATES:

    ABOUT THE COURSE:
    Lessons include:
    1. Composition, Rule-of-Thirds, & Balance
    2. Backdrops & Backgrounds
    3. Lighting
    4. Simplicity
    5. Found Still Life
    All work presented in this course will be photographed specifically for this course, after the date of enrollment. No work created previously will be considered.
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  • Advanced Photography
  • The History of Photography
    This is not a course for beginning photographers. It is designed for those who already understand their camera, peripheral equipment, have been serious about photography for some time, and have a substantial archive of serious work. This course is for those who have the time each week to complete a lesson.This course, much like a college course, includes written work as well as photography, many times both in the same lesson. The textbook contains nearly 300 pages and over the sixteen weeks, all will need to be read and understood. The course is primarily essay work regarding the history of photography with challenging photographic assignments.

    Course Instructor: Jon Fishback

    COURSE ENROLLMENT
    Course Enrollment Form  (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)

    COURSE GRADUATES
    The History of Photography Course Graduates

    ABOUT THE COURSE

    The course is developed around a sixteen (16) week semester. There will be 16 lessons, one to complete each week. Students missing three lesson assignments without a very good excuse will be dropped from the course. Extension of weekly lesson assignments for valid reasons (e.g., travel, illness) will be considered.

    This is not primarily a digital photography class, however those using film may find additional pressure to finish lesson assignments in one week.

    A small portfolio of the member's work and a short resume will be required before acceptance. Not all who apply will be accepted.
    This course is available to all PSA members. Students will have sixteen (16) weeks to complete the course. At the end of that period we hope you will be finished. If, however, you are not finished, the course will end.

    After a completed assignment has been received by your instructor, a new assignment will be sent to you. If there is re-work to be done it will need to be done in the week following its submission. There are no grades; the course is pass/fail. There is no delay for failing to adequately present a lesson. As long as the lesson is submitted the course will continue. For presentation of the certificate your instructor must be satisfied with all sixteen (16) lessons.

    After successful completion of this course, you will be allowed an additional four (4) weeks of post graduate work of your choice. The area of study will be discussed with your instructor.

    The tools for this course are very simple. You need to buy the textbook; "The History of Photography" by Beaumont Newhall, published by the Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1982. It is available online in new or used copies and should be purchased before making application. The ISBN number for searching purposes is: 8-87070-381-1

    What you will need in addition to the textbook.
    • A camera with manual capabilities
    • A computer and access to the Internet.
    • The ability to work with Microsoft Word.
    • The ability to upload and download digital images.
    • PhotoShop or the equivalent
    At the successful conclusion of the course a certificate will be sent to the student, and the student's name will be listed here and in the PSA Journal.
  • A Portfolio Experience

    Any member of PSA may apply. However, not everyone will be eligible. This is an advanced course and the applicant should be very familiar with photography in general. A small portfolio of the applicants work will be required.

    Course Instructor: Jon Fishback

    COURSE ENROLLMENTA Portfolio Experience Enrollment Form  (requires member be already logged in or link will take you to home page to login)

    COURSE GRADUATESA Portfolio Experience Course Graduates

    ABOUT THE COURSEAll work presented in this course will photographed specifically for this course, after the date of enrollment. No work created previously will be considered.

    • The portfolio will consist of at least 10 images
    • The images must be thematic, that is, of a single theme. For example: late blooming iris, racing greyhounds, or cemetery headstones. 
    This course description is a simple outline description of the course and does not actually mirror the lesson template which is provided separately. It is an advanced photography course for the serious worker who may want challenges beyond the scope of his or her present work. The course will be considered to be six (6) months in duration and will have one (1) project.

    Required for this course is the purchase of the book, "On Being a Photographer" by Bill Jay and David Hurn. It may be purchased online as a hard copy or downloadable. It is available here as well as used elsewhere online. http://www.lenswork.com/lwp.htm

    PROJECTS:

    Part A - Selecting a Subject: Over the course of two weeks or less, the student will list projects. Using text instruction provided, the student will compile a list of as many projects as possible. The student will be required to submit progress on this exercise at regular intervals during the two week time frame. After this weekly progress reports will be sent to the instructor.

    Part B: Reduce the list to do-able projects. This is explained in the textbook, or by handouts. 

    Part C: Using the list compiled in Part B, select one project and in the time frame of six (6) months or less, create one or more of the following:
    • Selection 1: A thematic portfolio of at least 15 images, and no more than 20. The portfolio is to be printed and prepared for presentation housed in an archival clam shell portfolio box. (Size to be agreed upon by the instructor and student.) Copy photographs of the finished images as well as all presentation material will be required for completion.
    • Selection 2: A thematic gallery show of at least 10 images and not more than 15. Images to be mounted and matted and prepared as if being presented to a gallery for a show. Copy photographs of the finished mounted and matted images will be required for completion.
    • Selection 3: A thematic book of at least 15 pages.
    • Selection 4: Application for publication in LensWork magazine
    • Selection 5: application for the distinction LPPSA
    The book is to be published using one of the online publishing houses such as Blurb. The book pages will be presented to the instructor and a photograph of the finished book will be required for completion as well as the link to the finished publication online. Success of the project will be determined by how well the photographer follows the theme as well as the relationship between the images within the theme and their individual quality. Additional requirements for completion will be specific to the section chosen.
    At the successful conclusion of the course a certificate will be sent to the student, and the student's name will be listed here and in the PSA Journal.