Photography for Parents Fundamentals course - how busy parents learn with us

So you want to start taking better photos of your family - but where so you start? As parents, we only have limited time on our hands and deciding where you invest this precious commodity is a big decision. I'm here to tell you that if your goal is to learn how to capture your kids at their natural best, there is no better course for that than our Photography for Parents Fundamentals course. 

1. What is the Photography for Parents Fundamentals course?

The Fundamentals of Photography for Parents is a 6 week course designed to help you ( the parent) learn how to work with your camera and how to capture your families in a natural environment ( aka your home!) 

We built it up to cover not just the camera skills ( knowing what the buttons do, without understanding why and how you might use them is pointless) but also all the other elements that come together to help you capture a beautiful moment skilfully - understanding composition, understanding visual storytelling and understanding light. Between these 4, you have the fundamentals of photography covered.

2. Who is if for?

Any parent out there who wants to learn to take better photos of their kids! But specifically, level wise, it's suitable for levels from complete beginner ( 'I've never used a camera other than on auto' or 'I only just got my first camera') to intermediate ('I've dabbled a bit and self taught myself stuff but it seems patchy' or 'I've done a short course that taught me the camera basics but don't feel confident when capturing my kids).

And yes, we do have courses that cater for those that are more advanced, and if you're not sure which level you are, here is a handy questionnaire that can help. Just so you know, at the moment we're fully booked for all the spring/summer Advanced courses and if you're interested, you can get onto the waiting list for September. 

3. How do you learn photography with us?

The reasons our courses work so well is a combination of well designed instruction materials and personal, instructor support available for you. Here is how the course works: 

The course consists of 5 core modules, plus a bonus, idea-bank module. It's spread over 6 weeks, including a break week after the first 3 weeks. And here are the key components: 

  • The core materials:

Each week, on Monday morning we open a new module which focuses on a specific building block in your photography education. We start with camera know how, followed by composition and light. You don't have to be online when your module opens, you can simply access the materials at the most convenient time for you, either directly on our site, or in the form of a downloadable pdf. 

  • The live class

Each week, we run a live webinar class in which we go over the week's materials, answer your questions, show additional examples, explain techniques and chat to you. These are held on Tuesday or Wednesday evenings - typically from 8.0 pm and are recorded so that if you can't access them live, you can always re-watch them

  • The home assignments and personal feedback

Each week you get given a home assignment to help you practice what we cover in that particular week. You submit your images to your instructor and receive a personal, video feedback in which your instructor goes image by image to provide you in depth feedback. This means the advice is fully tailored to you and your progress.

  • The support group

Each individual course run gets a dedicated support Facebook group which is where you can connect with your course-mates, communicate with your instructor and get additional help and support. Our courses are limited in numbers per group to ensure that you get the right amount of support and instructor time. 

After you complete your course, you are invited to our long standing Alumni group where we run weekly and monthly themes and where you will find lost of likeminded parents sharing their love for photography.  

Between those 4 support elements, you are guaranteed to progress and get better week on week. We know, we have a roughly 90% course completion rates and everyone who joins in progresses, and progresses well! And that's a promise!

4. What do you need?

A camera. It doesn't have to be expensive or fancy, but you do need to be able to use manual and semi manual modes - usually marked with letter such as A or AV, S or TV, M and P. If in doubt, ask us! In fact, if you don;t have a camera, we can even rent you one free of charge. we just require a security deposit which comes back to you when the camera comes back to us in full working order. 

5. Who are our Instructors?

We have some amazing instructors waiting for you! Michaela Strivens,  Alex Tandy, Sarah GibsonAlannah Hebbert, - they are all seasoned pros specialising in photographing children and families with years of experience under their belt. They are very skilled at capturing children in their natural environment, being their authentic selves, showing their true personalities. There is a wealth of knowledge gained both in their professional lives and as photo parents themselves! But as well as being amazing photographers, they are also fabulous teachers - understanding, patient, encouraging and able to make complex concepts easy to understand. 

When? How?

Next Fundamentals course starts on Monday 15th January 2024 - book your place now

3 more reasons why:

  • You will  FINALLY learn to PROPERLY use your camera. No more being intimidated by strange buttons dials and acronyms. No more guesswork, no more of that sinking feeling when you press something accodentally and you donlt know what it did or how to undo it. Actually learn what to do to with all of them and why!

  • You will learn the strategies for capturing different types of photos - from gorgeous baby shots to fast action shots - when they zoom on their bikes or crawl at lightning speed, to beautiful portraits and everything in between. 

  • You will learn how to notice, celebrate and document your children's big and little moments, beautifully. No external hired photographer, however good, will ever be able to see your children the way you see them, at their most tender moments and get those photos. 

You will surprise yourself at how much you’ll pick up in a few short weeks. 

Here are just some of the skills you’ll have learned by the end of the Fundamentals  course:

  • how to take lovely, flattering portraits
  • creating meaningful, candid photos that truly tell the story of your kids
  • highlighting your kids little details – toes, eyelashes..
  • capturing your kids in action – hops, jumps, sprints, fun on the swings and more
  • creative  techniques such as photographing fireworks, water play, silhuettes and a lot more
  • rules of composition to apply even to your phone snaps – those will improve too!
  • making the most of your home light and finding beautiful light outside
  • plus a lot more!


Module 1: See what your camera sees

Our first module is dedicated to breaking you our of the snapping habit and giing you a fresh perspective. We show you how your camera sees the world differently than what you might expect in three major ways - the optics. the focus and the light.

Major Takeaways:

At the end of the module you will have gained full control of your focus - no more guessing game and kids turning out all blurry, you will also gain an insight of how to use your lens ( there is a skill to it) and how to let the light help make your subjects stand out.

What's included:

  • The importance of focus and what it does to our brain 
  • Taking control of your focus - the Where and HOW your camera focuses
  • Mastering focus formula - a process to help you determine what settings to use for each occasion
  • To zoom or not to zoom and how it changes what and how your camera sees
  • Learning how your camera sees the light and how to make it better, especially with tricky light
  • learning how to shoot against the light - like a bright window and NOT end up with the person looking all dark

Module 2: On exposure and all things sharp and blurry

In our second module we take you off the auto setting and dive deep into learning about exposure - i.e. making sure that your images are not too dark or bright or blurry. BUt not only that, we pay special attention to how to make some of the things in your image sharp and others blurry through the use of specific compbinations of settings 

Major Takeaways:

How to work your camera in priority ( semi-manual) modes, how to capture detail or portraits with a great separation of sharp and blurry to make these elements stand out. 

What's included:

  • understanding the mechanics of your camera - how does a photo actually happen inside
  • taking your camera firmly OFF the Auto settings - learning the key factors ( aperture, shutter speed and ISO) and how they interact with one another
  • How to capture portraits and those precious detail shots beautifully 
  • switching to Aperture priority and controlling your aperture - the how and the why
  • taking control of what in your image will be sharp and what will be blurry - hello full control over blurry backgrounds, blurry foregrounds and pin sharp subjects in between. 

Module 3: Capturing movement 

One of my favourite modules, dedicated to helping you capture your kids in motion - whether they're wriggling babies, speey crawlers,  wobbly toddlers or perpertual-motion-machines that most children are. We learn how to match your focus settings, your shutter settings and your composition to capture great movement photos. 

Major Takeaways:

Learn how to capture your children on the move, SHARP but also how to use blur and speed to really showcase and highlight movement. Big AH-HA moments here! 

What's included:

  • switching your camera to shutter priority and mastering MOVEMENT
  • learning how to capture moving things SHARP - yes, that includes those fast movingbaby arms and legs
  • learning how to capture moving things BLURRY - and why would you want to do it?
  • learning how to highlight action and energy and speed  in your images and how to help yourself with composition
  • creative techniques like night time light trails or panning or creative blur
  • how to use your focus settings on top of your shutter settings to help capture things sharp

Module 4: And then there was LIGHT

We should call this module the AH-HA module because there are so many discovery moments here. Learning how just turning around or taking 3 steps to a side will change the light in your image completely and take your image from MEH to WOW. Learning how the kind of light you have will result in a completely different look. 

Major Takeaways:

How to find good light in your o=home and outside, how to use light in a way that enhances your images, how to find great light for a portrait and how to find beauty in the shadows. And if you have never thought about either of these, this is probably why your images so far are not consistently great

What's included:

  • Learning to see the different QUALITIES of light and how they influence your images
  • discovering how to find good light in your home and outside
  • learning what kind of light might be best for moody portraits and light and light and airy baby shot

  • learning to see the light - really see where it comes from, how it affects your child and how to bend it to your will
  • learning how sometimes just turning around will make the hugest difference to the way your image looks
  • getting creative with light : bokeh, light flares, startbursts, halo effect and more! 

Module 5: Photographic composition and storytelling

Although we introduce elements of photographic composition throughout the course, this is the module entirely dedicated to it. We look at composition not just as a set of arbitraty rules, but more as something that helps you express what you really see and feel. We look at photographic storytelling and helping your images get look more impactful and stronger

Major Takeaways:

Good photographic composition principles to help you really show the magic you are seeing. At the end of this module you will say goodbye to boring flat photos and will instead start taking rich images with lots of depth and eye catching composition. 

What's included:

  • understanding how we 'read' photographs and how to compose so that the magic YOU see translates into what the others see when they pick up that photo
  • fundamental rules of photo composition - we started you off with the rule of thirds but there is MORE
  • Good crops, bad crops, crazy crops and everything in between
  • storytelling through your photographs - how to make your images mean something and show something real, beyond 'my child looks cute here'
  • getting creative and expressing yourself through photographs 
  • learning to go beyond your usual compositions and discovering different styles

BONUS Module 6: Idea Bank : Photographing children at different ages

This last module is a bit different. We us it to give you lots of ideas for photos with children of different ages - from photographing milestones to capturing what's unique about them at a particular stage and really getting into their world to capture where they're at. The module is packed with ready to take ideas and will let you take all that you have learned in the first 5 modules and apply it in real life sitautions. We also help you think ahead to the next steps in your photography education - should you want to continue. 

More questions?

What photographic knowledge do I need to start the course?

What do I need for the course?

What happens in the course? How does it actually work?

What camera do I need? Does it need to be a Pro camera?

Will I improve? I’m not an ‘artist’ type


about our courses, family photography, general photography

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