Photography for beginners: stage 1

Course Dates: 10/11/20 - 15/12/20
Time: 14:00 - 17:00
Location: PS - Photography Studio

Always wondered what half the buttons on your camera actually do? Discover how to use them properly and produce impressive photographs, even as a complete beginner. Gain useful technical knowledge and get expert creative guidance in easy-to-understand language. An ideal first step before enrolling on our intermediate courses. Image - Alice Danger.

This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit


What is the course about?

Getting to know your camera and using it in a technically competent and visually interesting way, from knowing the right buttons to press, to composing a photograph creatively. Learn about shutter speed, aperture, composition, light and indoor/outdoor photography. An inspiring introduction to photography as a form of creative self-expression anyone can learn.

What will we cover?

The basic mechanics of photography, including but not limited to:
- choice of camera
- exposure and taking light readings
- shutter speed settings
- apertures (f-stops) and depth of field
- lenses
- composition and light
- creative approaches to photographing different subjects.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Use the manual functions of your camera
- Understand the terminology surrounding photography
- Identify and use different sources of light eg. daylight and artificial light.
- Create visually interesting photographs.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

You don't need any previous knowledge to join this course; it's for complete beginners or anyone needing a technical refresher.
You should be able to follow simple written and verbal instructions, demonstrations, hand-outs and health and safety information, and will be invited to take part in group discussion. You should be happy using numbers and be able to do simple measurements and calculations.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

A mixture of talks, demonstrations, group and individual practical exercises, discussions and project work, involving some individual tutoring. You will receive and be invited to contribute to positive critical feedback on your own and each other's photographs. To get the most from this course, you should take time to practice between lessons.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Please bring a working camera (either digital or film) which has manual settings for aperture and shutter speed. If you do not have a camera you will be supplied with a digital SLR for use in the class. If you are using a film camera you will need to pay for up to five rolls of film, together with processing and printing - you can use colour or black and white. (Please note we do not sell or process film at City Lit). The City Lit has a selection of tripods and lenses (Nikon and Canon) which may be used during the hours of the class.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

If you've been inspired why not take the next step up to our 'Beginners photography: stage 2' course, select a London photography walk or choose a specialism (people, landscape, performance, wildlife, documentary etc) or enrol on the intensive 'City Lit photography' long course.
The photography department also runs software courses in Lightroom, Photoshop, Affinity photo, Capture One and courses in digital and traditional darkroom printing.


Customer Reviews 21 item(s)

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Reviews below are by students who have attended this course, regardless of the course teacher. Please be aware you may not be booking onto a course with the same teacher.

An enjoyable course
Course Rating
Review by Tony / (Posted on 18/11/2019)
I absolutely recommend Photography for Beginners 1.The tutor is very knowledgeable and patient and keeps us interested and motivated. The content of the course is rich and the pace is excellent. It is important to give yourself enough time to do the homework and home exercise to get the most benefits form this course. I loved my time in this class and look forward to taking more.
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Review by Julie / (Posted on 10/11/2019)
Great course if you know nothing about photography and want to start
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Review by Izabella / (Posted on 04/11/2019)
Great place to learn a new skill
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Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 08/10/2019)
A good introduction for beginners, and a good refresher for those who want to get more familiar with their cameras
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Review by Paul / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
Excellent start at getting to grips with the technical aspects of your camera.
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Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
If you are a beginner and have no idea how to use your camera this is definitely for you. It has enabled me to take much better photos than I could when I depended on the auto settings and I feel ready to start an intermediate course.
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Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
For a beginners course very good.
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Review by Simon / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
Go for it. If it’s what you want?
Why wait
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Review by Jason lincoln / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
I would highly recommend this course for beginners. You certainly get to learn about the features on your cameras and the teacher was great and very knowledgeable.
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Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
Go for it. Enjoyable and rewarding
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Review by Satish / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
That it is very practical and relaxed.
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Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
A great course if you are new to photography. Very informative and clearly explains from the basics of using your camera. The teacher is excellent and gives confidence to all students. Inspired me to sign up for a further photography course.
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Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
I would recommend the course to anyone who would like to learn camera skills. Very knowledgeable tutor who was able to share her passion for photography to her students
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Review by Anon / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
The tutor is both highly competent as a photographer and as a teacher- a good combination. Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 05/09/2019)
Really good course & brilliant tutor! Thanks! I enjoyed this course and learned a lot.
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Review by Denislava / (Posted on 17/10/2015)
A really great course for those wanting to learn the basics of how to use a camera, in a very nice setting. The tutor is great and other classmates were lovely. Would definitely recommend.
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Review by Kathryn / (Posted on 01/08/2015)
Excellent & Essential Course for anyone interested in Photography
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Review by R S / (Posted on 09/07/2015)
An excellent course! I learnt a lot more than I thought I would, I'd recommend this course to anyone wanting to gain confidence with their photography and learn more about the functions of the camera. The tutor was excellent and the activities really helped to practice what we had learnt.
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Review by Sam / (Posted on 09/07/2015)
This is a very good course for people who have a good camera but very little knowledge of how to use all its functionality
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Review by Laury / (Posted on 30/06/2015)
Very good course. Learned lots.
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Review by ab / (Posted on 13/04/2015)
Tutor Biographies
Rachel Wegh Tutor Website

Rachel is an award-winning professional photographer and film maker. She has displayed her work in various parts in the UK, France and the US. She has a first class degree in Wildlife and Environmental Photography and an MA in Wildlife Documentary Production. She teaches a variety of photography courses, workshops and one-to-ones to both adults and children. At City Lit she currently teaches Beginners Photography, Creative Nature Photography, Mindful Photography and Creative Wildlife Photography in London Parks. Rachel produces personal photography projects, sometimes in collaboration, e.g. with the Royal Air Force on a project about the women who took part in the Battle of the Atlantic. This was displayed in central Liverpool and the docks during the commemorations. Rachel fosters a warm and empathic environment in her class so that students feel supported by each other and are encouraged to explore their creativity with an emphasis on skills development, wellbeing benefits and having fun!

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.

Book your place

Course Code: VY655

Please choose a course date 

Tue, day, 10 Nov - 15 Dec '20

Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)

Full fee: £239.00
Senior fee: £191.00
Concession: £120.00

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

Any questions?
or call 020 7492 2700/2703

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.