Also I have started a new course as a student. *g* T189 Digital Photography is the first Open University photography course and it's totally done online. It doesn't actually start officially until tomorrow, but knowing how I tend to be mugged by Life[TM], I always like to get ahead at the beginning. I'm thus about half way through the week 1 work.
We're divided into small groups in order to post and share our photos. Having decided that it's a fun thing to do, I've finally got around to setting up a Flickr account so that I can continue posting and sharing photos after the 10 week course is over. My Flickr name is helenhall2007.
There are well over a thousand students in this first presentation. We've been divided into two main groups from with the subgroups are drawn. Regarding prior experience, I fall somewhere in the middle between those who have only just bought their first digital camera and have never really taken photos before to those who post photos and links to their websites and you think, "WTF are you doing on an introductory course?"
Fortunately I didn't have to pay for the course. (One of the (very few!) perks of being an OU tutor is that you can do other OU courses for free.) I say "fortunately" because less than a week in, I realised that I'm going to need something more than a simple point-and-shoot camera. After perusing reviews and prices, I settled for a Canon PowerShot S3 IS, which has a much better zoom than my current Olympus µ 400. It also has the manual settings, which I need for the latter parts of the course. It should be winging its way to me as I type. A digital SLR would be nice in some ways, but I can't justify spending that much on something that's just a fun activity for me.
And that's another thing... Some of my fellow students are so serious. They talk about winning competitions and producing Art. I just want to learn how to analyse why some of my photos work and some don't and develop the necessary vocabulary to explain it clearly to someone else. I've already started teaching the introductory digital photography class that my college offers. I want to be able to teach the level 2 and even the level 3 course. Apart from that, my photography will remain purely as something fun to do and largely illustrative rather than High Art that's intended to stand alone.