photography workshops and classes  

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Another Time - Yosemite National Park

I am available as a lecturer on subjects related to nature photography, Creation, The Creator, and how we fit in to the whole scheme. Please contact me to set up a lecture in your school, church, synagogue, mosque, or clubhouse.

Workshops and Classes

Available for individuals, couples, small groups, clubs, or organizations interested in learning more about taking better nature photos. Workshops for all skill levels, from beginning amateur to the aspiring professional photographer. Children's classes can be arranged as afterschool, homeschool or private 10 week programs.Contact me for more details.

Workshop Image Archive

A showcase of particiapnt photos from various workshops over the years.


"I learned so much in those 3 days I can't begin to tell you... Youssef, your knowledge is outstanding and you have a way to impart that knowledge to others. ...If you can stand us again we may well be back."
- Chuck Castaing, Thousand Oaks Ca.

"Gaps in my knowledge were filled, fuzzy concepts were cleared up and I learned valuable new tools"
- Matt Kramer, Cotati Ca.

"Thanks for a wonderful workshop. It provided me exactly the jump start I needed. I'm feeling really excited about photography..."
- Bryant Zwart, Kensington Ca.

"Everything about the workshop was perfect: The lecture portion, the field trip (I hoped it was longer) and the invaluable critiquing of our photos at the end. Looking forward to more workshops with Youssef!"
- Marcos Hatada, Fremont CA

"Very enjoyable learning experience. Looking forward to future follow-up workshops."
- Khalid Darwish, Campbell CA

"It was a wonderful experience for me... I learned a lot and thoroughly enjoyed it. As an instructor, you are excellent. Very patient with our asking the same questions over and over and over. A delightful sense of humor and very, very knowledable."
- Marcia Smythe, San Francisco CA

"Thanks a lot for a great class. I really learned a lot. I appreciate all the time you spent on the class... Your patience with us and the great hospitality of your wife made it an unforgetable experience."
- Iftikhar Anees, Sunnyvale CA

The Current Workshop Schedule.

Speical S.F. Bay Area Workshops

Workshop Title Dates Details

Technical Workshops

The technical workshops are designed to give the student the requisite working knowledge of photography. Until basic techniques of photography are grasped and understood, producing photographs that convey the photogrpaher's vision will continue to be a struggle. They are short intensive courses lasting no more than a day with as much time as possible devoted to hands-on exercises. The exercises are designed to demystify the workings of a camera by operating it manually from metering, assessing tonalities, to determining proper aperture, shutter speed and ISO settings in order to obtain a photograph that is a true rendition of the subject the way the student sees it and not necessarily the way the camera sees it. Each clinic includes a short classroom lesson (class notes provided) and field exercises outlined in a field workbook and led by an instructor.

Workshop Title Dates Details

Creative Workshops

Photography, like any art, has techniques which must be mastered in order for the photographer to convey his orher vision to the viewer. Beyond the technical skills, the artist has the ability to sense something intangible capture it in his or her media of choice and convey it to the viewer. This too is a skill that needs nurturing. These day-long creative clinics are designed to sharpen the eye to seeing photographically and to open the heart and mind to capturing what they feel with the goal of conveying those feelings through the resulting photographs.

Workshop Title Dates Details

Photography Tours & Field Workshops

Photography Tours are a great way to explore an area with a knowledgeable guide. A tour also provides the photographer with an intensive learning opportunity by working along side other photographers and generating an extensive portfolio of images from a specific location. The Photo Tour can also be extended into a full photography workshop by scheduling an extra day ahead of the tour for in-class photography instruction followed by additional field exercises during the tour.

Workshop Title Dates Details

Photoshop For Photographers

Designed around developing the necessary understanding of Photoshop for the needs of the photographer. Learn the workflow from camera to final print. Workshop covers everything from capture to layer adjustments to printing. Includes demonstrative instruction and hands-on practice in both the Basic and Advanced class. The basic class introduces RAW processing, global adjustments in Photoshop and preparing an image for output to print or for web viewing. Color management and proper image capture are also discussed. The Advanced class introduces masks and maks creation for localized adjustments as well as introducing the techniques of using Luminosity Masks, Luminosity Painting and Saturation Masks developed by photographer Tony Kuyper. It includes time to work on personal photos and instruction on sharpening techniques for print output. Three 8 x 12 inch proof prints and two 12 x 18 inch prints of students personal images are produced at the culmination of the class.

The Photoshop workshops are scheduled once per year or arranged by request. Contact the studio for availability at other times of the year.

Workshop Title Dates Details

Individual Private Workshops or Tours

Individuals, or groups up to 3, can receive private instruction at the student's preferred location. All instruction in given while in the field and put into practice immediately. Topics include, but not limited to, exposure, metering, light and composition. Fee: $500 / day / person for locations outsdie the S.F. Bay Area and $300 / day / person within the S.F. bay Area.

Contact the studio for availability and scheduling your instruction or tour.

Once a date has been worked out, return to this page to register for your private workshop or tour by Clicking HERE.

Youth Photography Courses

Photography as a discipline combines several different fields of study into one practical means. It combines art, mathematics, physics, chemistry, optics and electronics along with the skills of observation and presentation like no other medium. Photography is a great way to put these other discipline into practical use for entertainment, journalism or to effect social change.

At Organic Light Photography students learns photography from the ground up on a professional level DSLR camera. Each class level introduces new skills and techniques that allow the student to express his or her ideas most effectively. Currently Organic Light Photography offers 4 different class levels all taught on-site. Class level 1 and 2 can be taken stand alone from the others, but class 3 requires class 2 as a prerequisit and class 4 requires both class 2 and 3 as prerequisitis.

Level 1: Pinhole Camera Design and Photography

Students learn about the origins of photography and the basic principles of optics. They will design and build their own working pinhole camera and use it to make photographs on black and white film paper. They will learn about photographic theory including measuring light and assessing the correct exposure to form a latent image on the film paper. They will learn about chemical development and get a chance to develop their own photos in photographic chemistry and then create a contact print in a real wet darkroom.

This is an 8-week class that meets once a week for two hours each week.

Level 2: Digital Photography Foundation

Students learn about the origins of modern photography and the basics of exposure, metering, composition, and color. They will have the opportunity to work with a professional level DSLR camera to make photographs of their liking as well as to go through several photographic exercises involving exposure, aperture and shutter speed selection, and composition. Afterwards the students will learn digital photography editing using Adobe Photoshop where they will learn how to process digital photos for display on the internet as well as learning how to properly prepare a digital photograph for digital printing and will print a 6x9 digital enlargement on a professional grade digital printer and then learn how to mount and mat their photo for display.

This is an 8-week class that meets once a week for two hours each week.

Level 3: Digital Photo Essay Creation

Students learn how to tell a story with pictures. They will learn the history of photography used for social change through the power of imagery. They will develop their cause or story and learn how to create a story board and work out what images are needed to covey the message they wish to share. A good majority of the sessions are devoted to photographing the images needed to tell their story. Finally the images are edited digitally and then arranged using digital slide show software to create a digital slide show that can be viewed as a computer slide show or as a DVD slideshow.

This is an 8-week class that meets once a week for two hours each week.

Level 4: Digital Stop Motion Movie Making

Students learn how to create a digital stop motion movie. They will learn about the science behind movies and moving pictures. They will develop a story line and a story board and work out what images are needed and what angles and perspectives from which the images need to be taken. They will learn how to determine technical difficulties with making inanimate objects appear to be animated and find creative ways to solve those technical challenges. They will spend a good portion of the time photographing their movie, one frame at a time and then assemble the individual frames in digital slide show software and learn the correct speed in which to display each image to give the appearance of a moving animated 3 minute movie that can be uploaded to the internet or burned on DVD to viewed at home.

This is an 8-week class that meets once a week for two hours each week.

Contact the studio for availability and scheduling your instruction. Organic Light Photography is registered as an Approved Vendor with Ocean Grove Charter School in the San Lorenzo Valley, CA and can provide services to the Home Schooling Community as well as After School throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

Other Services . . .

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Copyright 2002 - 2024 Youssef M. Ismail / Organic Light Photography, all rights reserved. All photographs and essays are copyrighted to Youssef M. Ismail / Organic Light Photography, all rights reserved. No part of this site may be reproduced, stored, or transmitted in any form or by any means -- electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise -- without the written permission of the copyright owner. To obtain said permission Contact Organic Light Photography

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