This Saturday I did something totally out of my element - I taught a class for the first time ever. Not just any class, but a six HOUR food photography and styling class. Normally the thought of:
- speaking in front of a group of people by myself
- touting my 'expertise'
- and setting a pace from a lesson plan
would totally freak me out. And I was really nervous. I've had something like this started before, but I chickened out before I could get it official with the people I was working with. I've had lots of people ask me to teach a lettering class or a photography class, and I hadn't worked up the courage to do it yet.
But this specific situation really worked in my favor. The idea for the class came from another person who had to cancel teaching it, and a friend recommended me to fill in. Because the class didn't pay for ME specifically, and because I knew it would be a small size (maxed at eight), and because the Flower City Arts Center is only five minutes walk from my house, it just felt like fate that I got to step into the role.
So I said yes, and came up with the lesson plan and figured out demonstrations that would help show my points. I packed up a bunch of props and food and backgrounds and tools, and my shooting partner Rachel came with me to assist me with setup and shooting. It actually went pretty well, and I think all of my points came across. I did a lot better than I thought I would do :P
What we went over:
- planning & workflow
- props & backgrounds
- and editing
And here are some of the shots I got from the day:
teaching aperture, shutter speed, and lighting
going over exposure limits
food styling demo (aka making ugly food look good)
working with a "hero", food styling tricks, composition, and lighting
We did other demonstrations that I didn't shoot, and spent the last hour and a half letting the students choose their own backgrounds, props, food, styling, lighting setup, and shooting setup. (That first image in this post is the setup I made between going around critiquing & giving advice.)
Here are a few iPhone snaps I took as well:
This was such a long day for me, and a lot of prep and cleanup, but I'm so glad I had the experience. I'm hoping this will just be the first class I teach, and I hope I just get better and better at it. :)