ips letter from director

Hello and welcome to the Icon Photography School online course. We appreciate the opportunity to help you become a better photographer. This course will walk you through the fundamentals of photography and provide you with a solid basis on which to build your photography portfolio.

Many of you are looking for work as freelance photographers, some of you may be simply interested in art photography as a hobby. Others may be looking for a career change and their artistic side is curious about photography. For some of you this career change could mean getting involved in advertising or fashion photography while for others it could mean learning more about underwater or adventure photography. Whatever the reason for enrolling in this online course, we’ll be sure to help you along the path to your goals.

Our main focus within this course is to focus on your desired outcomes. Therefore, if you are interested in abstract macro photography you can mould your course assignments around your particular interest.

We have two main goals for ourselves and for you throughout this course. First, we want you to become a better photographer by gaining theoretical and practical knowledge through this guide and related graded assignments.

Second we want to inspire you and help enhance your already heightened interest within the realm of art photography. So while there are lesson tests and a final exam, these testing tools are simply meant to help shed light on concepts which you might be having a difficult time grasping. For example, if you have completed our lesson on composition and you scored poorly on the lesson quiz you might want to go back and review the material to ensure you understand the concepts of basic composition.

Understanding and retaining information are important to us but your development as a photographer is more than simple memorization. These quizzes are not meant to judge you as a photographer but to help you grasp your own level of understanding within each area of focus.

If you find out through our testing procedures that you’re having a difficult time understanding lighting concepts then you should go back through the lesson and review the material you had a difficult time grasping. Each lesson is a building block for the photographer. The successful completion and understanding of each lesson is required before moving onto the next lesson. For example, the concepts which you will learn in lesson 3 will be important to fully understand in order to successfully complete lesson 4. And while no one here at our course headquarters can monitor your discipline and honesty about lesson understanding, it is in your own best interest as an artist to make sure you understand the foundation of the art form.

If you don’t understand the theoretical rules of photography you are missing out on great artistic opportunities. Our mission isn’t to force you into abiding by all rules, but we do want to ensure you at least know the rules before you start breaking them. Therefore, if you complete a lesson, but don’t fully grasp the concepts don’t rush and continue on to the next lesson. Play around with your camera and master the fundamentals before moving onto the next set of lessons.

Each lesson should be completed as follows.

  • Lesson material should be read and understood
  • Lesson quiz should be completed and passed
  • Field assignment should be completed. You should take numerous and varying shots to complete your practical assignments and then perform a self critique before uploading your best to the student workspace.
  • Once your project is completed and uploaded to our student workspace one of our staff members will review your work and get back to you within 24 to 48 hours during Monday to Friday.
  • After your photograph is reviewed you will receive advice on how you could have done it better and if needed you will be asked to re-take the photograph with the recommended changes.
  • If you complete these steps on a lesson by lesson basis you will be well on your way to mastering the art of photography!

Photography is both an art and a science. The science side of photography has to do with the proper technical understanding of elements such as film speed, aperture settings, shutter speed settings and knowledge of color theory to name a few. The artistic side has to do with the art photographer’s perspective and understanding of the world. What photographic elements or concepts will you focus on? What ideas do you want to convey? Is your art photography about teaching? Organizing? Decorating? Are your photographs politically slanted? Do you experiment with breaking color theory rules? Do you develop your photographs on materials other than paper? If so what materials will you use? These are all questions you need to ask yourself as an art photographer.

Our photography course will help you develop both your creative mind and your technical know-how. After you have completed our online photography course you will see dramatic differences in the work you produce. At this point we would like to take a moment and have our course founder offer you some insight and inspiration before you get started with the learning.

Creating this course was a labor of love for all of us who spent time on it. No details were spared and the quality is worth much more than the price you paid for it

Our collective goal was to empower individuals who have a thirst for this art form by offering a great course at a reasonable price.

Thankfully, teaching the subject of photography isn’t restricted to a classroom setting. In fact, teaching photography online is arguably a better method of teaching because:

  1. Students can attend our class at anytime from anywhere in the world
  2. We offer student centeric teaching approaches (each student has a way of working / studying which works best for them)
  3. Course material is accessible 24 hours / day and 7 days / week
  4. There is generally increased student interaction since people feel less shy to display their photography work in the online environment. An online course provides students a level playing field undisturbed by bias caused by seating
    arrangement, gender, race and age
  5. Online environments make instructors more approachable
  6. Our photography course allows students to attend their lesson when they are “fully awake” during a time of the day which is convenient to them.

Our Focus
Many of you who enrolled in this course have dreams of opening your own studio, selling your work, starting an online portfolio and impressing onlookers with your creative genius. When we created this course we took these desires into consideration. We didn’t want to just teach you about the cameras manual settings and the probable outcomes of certain setting combinations. While this is a component of the course, we wanted to focus your attention on the process of creation. As you make your way through the pages of this course you will notice that there is an emphasis on ‘creating’. We want you to create certain scenes. We want you to create certain moods. We want you to create an online portfolio as well as an offline portfolio and we want to provide you with information on promoting yourself as a photographer.

This course is objectives-based and we know what many of our student’s objectives are. While these objectives are wide-ranging (from non-commercial interests to commercial interests), We think you’ll agree that we have something for everyone in this course.

We are not interested in seeing you achieve the highest possible grade on the final exam. What we are concerned about is that you complete this course with enthusiasm and zeal! We hope that this course makes you wonder about the possibilities of this art form. We hope to inspire you to look at the world differently. We hope to teach you about the art of photographic design so you can provoke the “Awww” response from your audience.

Skill Development
Developing a skill is an important part of the human experience. While many forget about the importance of self progression, others embrace its potential. Some seek to learn languages, instruments, sports, drawing, poetry, business, dance and so on, while others are content to maintain their current skill and knowledge base. Developing new skills is the most rewarding thing we can do as human beings. Becoming knowledgeable about the arts from a non-spectator perspective is a rare opportunity that too few people take advantage of. It’s life altering. It provides a new set of insights and experiences and allows you to meet people you would otherwise never meet.

So as you begin your adventure down the road of learning how to become an art photographer We want to wish you the best of luck. We hope you’ll enjoy this experience as much as we enjoyed providing it to you.

We’ve bundled this learning material with great examples of over 100 photographs and used easy to understand language so you’ll have no problem following along. However, we didn’t provide just the basics to make you an "okay" photographer. While the material was written in an easy to understand manner, the concepts spoken about are actually quite advanced and complex. However, we believe that it is these more advanced concepts that will help fuel the fire in your belly to want to learn more and help push you to continue on with future lessons in photography.

Thank you to those of you made a one time payment. As far as payments are concerned if you have made the one time full payment you are done!

For those who are paying for the Icon Photography School on the monthly payment plan please please take note: you must contact the Icon Photography School when you have completed the course in order to stop your monthly payments. If you don't complete the course and just want to cancel please contact us. If you do not contact us, your payments will continue on a monthly basis. Please send an email to Office@Photographyicon.com at the completion of the course, otherwise your monthly payments will continue. This helps facilitate flexibility in terms of the amount of time it takes some students to complete the course. Some students finish up fairly quickly and yet others take quite a bit more time due to their busy schedules.

We look forward to seeing your work in the student workspace and we wish you all the best of luck!

Have fun and good Luck!

Duncan Rawlinson
Director of the Icon Photography School

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