Is a black and white course worth it?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Dubie, Nov 13, 2007.

  1. Dubie

    Dubie TPF Noob!

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    I am just finishing up a camera and composition class and learned the basics. I now undertsand aperture, lighting etc so I can pretty much take it from here and just read, learn and shoot.

    I was thinking about taking a black and white class too just to get that experience under my belt but am now thinking twice about it. One student told me it's a lot of projects and a lot of time in the lab. Time is not what I have. I live a good hour away from the school that I go to and have to take evening classes because I work like everyone else. I don't forsee having a darkroom in the future but photoshop. The school even offers a class for that which can be taken another time.

    What are your opinions on taking a B&W class? Or should I just do a lot of reading and do my own thing. I use a digital and don't use film.

    Thanks
    Melissa
     
  2. Jeepin59

    Jeepin59 TPF Noob!

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    I am in the same boat as you. I would love to take that course but time doesn't allow. I am considering a course in Photoshop, more expensive but it is my darkroom too.
     
  3. playswithlight

    playswithlight TPF Noob!

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    I think that a course in the dark room puts things in perspective. It helps you fully grasp the concept of exposure which will make any future photoshop work less difficult and time consuming. It's kind of like how you can't really start out as an abstract artist until you've learned how to draw and paint realistically. But... you only get as much out of the dark room as you put into it, and if you don't have time, then it won't be worth it. Hope that helps!
     
  4. Dubie

    Dubie TPF Noob!

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    Thanks to both of you. I am still kind of on the edge about it. I have until the 29th to decide.
     
  5. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    Time is unfortunately what's necessary if you want to improve. Projects are an especially great way to force you to think about what you are doing. It's a lot of hard work either way. At least one way, you have an instructor helping you through it, and keeping you motivated.
     
  6. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    another thought to consider, if you love black and white images, taking a darkroom class will help you learn how to "see in black and white".

    Using black and white is more than just converting an image on a digial file , it needs thought about tones and how they relate to each other , learning how to print will also help you learn how to translate those terms to inkjet printing as well.

    However, if your not going to committ to doing the foot work to learn, it will be a waste of time and money.

    THere is no easy answer here, you need to consider what are your goals and go for there.
     
  7. Dubie

    Dubie TPF Noob!

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    Yep Matt. And I am one of those hands on people. I learn best in a learning environment. So I may decide to do it. What I need is a mentor I can just bug from time to time!:lol:
     
  8. Dubie

    Dubie TPF Noob!

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    And that may be why I do decide to take it. B&W really is my favorite. So I should bite the bullet and just make the time.
     
  9. Yup, you should take it. It will even make you a better Photoshop user. Learn about matting, and dodging & burning, to begin with.

    Oh, and cropping.

    And the sheer friggin' pride of showing someone a print that you made of an image you captured.

    Next stop: buying rolls of 120, and spooling the exposed film into development cans.

    Ahhh.... I can smell it now.

    Go on... say "Fixer."
     
  10. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Yup.. take it...

    I enjoyed mine so much that 1/2 way through the class, I purchased a used Bessler and started doing my assignments at home. My only wish is that I had more time to spend in the dark.
     
  11. Dubie

    Dubie TPF Noob!

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    Thanks again! How can I not with such positive reinsforcement. I really love B&W too and would love to understand it better and excel at what I do.
     
  12. JIP

    JIP No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Well I say if you have never experienced a B+W darkroom it would be a great experience to take a B+W class. I think anything you learn will make you a more well rounded photographer.
     

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