I got my first point and shoot when I was in college. I do not remember what drove me up to buy that, but I remember I did a review at Techenclave. It was a Canon Powershot A400.
In July 2013, I attended basic photography workshop from Bhaskar Dutta.
I had been searching for the workshops in Bangalore but most of them were conducted by wildlife photographic experts and professionals, in one or two days, over the weekend at big hotels at the heart of the city. I kept prodding him to get a DSLR initially, but after N was born, I rarely got time to take photos, and if at all I did, it was with my phone camera. But then, in December 2012, we got our first DSLR, Canon 600D. For 38k, it was quite expensive, but RK is like that sometimes, unlike me, who will keep thinking for long whether to buy or not and will skip at the end.
This one by The Academy of Photo Art, was very close at walking distance, and conducted at his home, near Marathahalli, only on Sundays, for 4 weeks. The distance attracted me very much and I jumped in at the last moment, without giving much thought.
The basic topics were covered beautifully and detailed explanation were given. There would be printed notes for the same, and some cheat sheets, which you think would be useful for later, but will not touch it ever afterwards. Why? Because that would be the lesson you take after the classes. That only practice can make you perfect and nothing else. There would be simple practical sessions in between. But at present its indoor photography. Complimentary snacks and drinks are provided.
It was already six months after we got the SLR, and so we had gone through major tutorials available online, regarding aperture and exposure. But in-class theory and interaction can clarify many lingering doubts and provide very good foundation. I was expecting more on practical sessions and complex settings like white balance, metering modes but it was to be covered only in the advanced courses.
Now onto what I liked. Bhaskar was way too cool and down-to-earth than I expected. To be frank, I never completely read his long introductory page fully, which spoke of his achievements and runs two pages long. I assumed there would be a studio room with chairs and tables, just like a headmaster at his home tuition class. But he was like the next-door neighbour, who was just trying to share with others whatever info he mastered on its own. And this makes you very much at ease. His stories on his photos inspires you to weave a story for yourself and makes you think in angles you have not ever thought before. There were weekly assignments which I looked forward to. Not that you were given star badges, but I realized it was something you needed as a photographer. Ideas and prompts. Just like blogging.
I have been hooked onto various online groups since then, to motivate myself to get more photos. Thanks to this session, I also got Photoshop installed after ages. The last stint was during the college, when I was active at the Techenclave forums and Deviant Art. The new Flickr and 500px along with the Facebook groups overflow my daily dose of photo cup.