I’ve been diving in the art of photography for a couple of years now, and I don’t think I can live without my camera any more. I really love taking photos. I got back into photography about 8 years ago when we were still living in Curaçao and my kids were very young. I’ve taken some courses, online and on location but I must say my favourites have been on location.
I have wanted to to learn long exposure photography for a while and I’v been following Ellen van den Doel for some time on instagram. I think most landscape photographers in The Netherlands with instagram will probably know here. She started the Dutch Photo Academy and along with 6 other photographers they give all kinds of photography workshops online and on location. Their website is all in Dutch but I thought I would share my experience anyway.
The workshop I took is called “Lange sluitertijden in Zeeland“, which means Long exposure in Zeeland. I made a reservation on the website in February already for the month of May (so this was a year ago) because their workshops fill very easily and I wanted to be sure of a spot. They have a minimum of 4 students and a maximum of 7, which I think is ideal because that will guarantee you enough time with the instructor.
On Sunday may 15th I drove from my place (Den Hague area) to the Zeelandbrug in Zeeland.
I was so excited as I don’t get to do this often! (okay almost never). Once all the participants arrived under the bridge (except one), Ellen guided us up to the first photo location and started the course.
She let us all introduce ourselves and then she gave a brief explanation about her own journey in photography and then gave some overall information about long exposure, filters, histogram, lenses, etc. Some people already owned filters and knew quite a lot but others (like me) didn’t have any experience with it and didn’t know much about it. So different experience levels together. We also received 2 documents about a week before the course with information about landscape photography and the other document specifically about filters. At this moment I felt a little overwhelmed with so much information but that all changed once we dived in and started practicing.
The course took place at 3 different locations and at each location we got an assignment.
At the first location for me it was all about figuring out how to attach the system, what filter to use and how long to expose. Ellen helped me and explained that with my camera (old Nikon) I needed to use an app to figure out how long to expose. So right there and then I bought the photopills app (great investment guys, not a monthly subscription but just one payment) and then I finally got an idea how to do this. Things started to fall into place. Slowly, I still didn’t get the minus exposure right.
By then we were ready to go to the next location, which was Den Osse. We all followed Ellen, and I must say it was a nice drive with a lovely scenery.
Once there we had a lunch break and the option to use the restroom before continuing with the rest of the course. I was staring to get a better idea how to do this thing, and use 2 filters. This was my best photo (just starting to get a hang of it).
At the last location we got to put it all together and practice with 2 filters.
I had such a great day. Ellen knows what she is talking about, she is very professional but also very kind and helpful. I loved the fact that there were not many participants so you got enough time and attention. The 3 different locations were perfect and not too far from each other. I didn’t expect to get beautiful photos, my goal was to learn about long exposure and how to work with filters. I highly recommend this course of the Dutch Photo Academy. I hope to do another course this year too.
Let me know in the comments if this review was helpful to you or you enjoyed reading it! Until next time!