Gifted Students

Finding Your Voice_8Me and my 12 students are well underway in the first eWorkshop of mine, «Finding Your Photographic Voice», which I launched earlier this year. It’s been a really fun process working with this concept. I have simply enjoyed looking at a whole range of excellent photos by the participants. I think it’s safe to say that photographically they are quite different and their skills are spread through all levels. But all of them have been able to show interesting and engaging work. More importantly I see a strong progression in all their work – of course more for some and a little less for some, particularly those already starting out as more accomplished photographers in the first place.

The workshop runs over eight weeks and we have already passed more than half way through it. At the moment each participant is working on her or his personal project which they will continue with until the end of the workshop. I really look forward to seeing how they will pull their projects together as coherent photo essays. As mentioned I have really taken pleasure in seeing so much good work, and I have surely spend more time that I should have in the picture critique of each participant’s work each week. But what can I say? When you enjoy doing something, why not do it? That is the fundamental in the creative process, no matter what we do. Giving constructive and useful critique is in itself of great value to me.

For me, personally, it was also very encouraging to notice that after I had launched the workshop it was fully booked within two days. On the other hand it was of course less satisfying for those who tried to apply for the workshop after it was indeed full. In the end I opened up for more participants than I had first intended, but still quite a few was left out of this first workshop. I can only reassure you with saying that more workshops will come. Having 12 students in this kind of eWorkshop turned out to be a little more than preferable, simply because I have had to allocate too much of my time needed for other work. I have used late evenings and sometimes nights to get through with the picture critique. Again when it’s fun it doesn’t really matter. But for future workshops I think I will limit them to eight participants. That seems to be an ideal number of students.

Under here I showcase examples of work from the participants of this first eWorkshop. I hope you enjoy the images as much as I have.

© Dalia Daud
© Dalia Daud
© Can Ozdemir
© Can Ozdemir
© Lynne Hayes
© Lynne Hayes
© Regine Lord
© Regine Lord
© Linda Paul
© Linda Paul
© Christopher O'Keefe
© Christopher O’Keefe
© Susan Judd
© Susan Judd
© Angeline Munoz
© Angeline Munoz
© Andrea Cochran-Pastel
© Andrea Cochran-Pastel
© Phil Vaughn
© Phil Vaughn
© Anita Otrebski
© Anita Otrebski
© Monica Engell
© Monica Engell

86 thoughts on “Gifted Students

  1. Nice.

    I’ve always found satisfaction in helping others develop their own skills in things.

    . . . of course, in my case it’s a tremendous bother as most people don’t want to be told what they should do. I suppose it’s easier when they volunteer, and want to be shown.

    1. I think your last argument is a good point. Yes, at lot of people will be thankful of help, but sometimes it’s not being accepted so well when help is imposed upon us. And I think that is understandable. Thanks for your comment.

  2. every image is outstanding, and you presented them to us in a very fluid way! i love the drama and energy in Dalia’s light/shadow/person. there’s also a calming tone to it…  – it’s preps us for the rest of the show!

    great work, everyone! z


  3. These photographs are beautiful! Are most of these shot with similar camera’s? I’m thinking about investing in a beginner SLR digital Camera. Any suggestions?

    1. No, I really don’t know what cameras have been used, but I think the range from cell phones to DSLR’s. Any suggestion for a camera have to be based on how it’s going to be used and what kind of photography you want to pursue. It’s really not possible to give a fits-everybody suggestion.

  4. Absolutely wonderful…
    Among all other artisans of human soul, teachers have a moral duty: to inspire! I’m glad to witness your satisfaction and invite you to witness mine.
    Take care,

  5. When I signed up, I had no idea if I would be able to keep up. As a very new person to picture taking, I felt very intimidated by my meager skills & vision. You are a great teacher and I have already learned so much and will continue to develop as a photographer due to some of the skills taught.
    Thank you for allowing me to learn & grow with this group. I shall miss it when it’s finished .

    1. I am very happy to read that you feel the way you do about the workshop. I of course I am happy you feel you have developed, Lynne. Thank you for the wonderful words.

  6. I, also like Lynne a relative newcomer to photography, have learned a tremendous amount in the workshop and am so happy that I jumped in even though I was a bit scared of taking this on. Thank you for some great lessons and the time you have put in to this. I would recommend this e-workshop to everyone.

  7. Wonderful photos, I think when people are new to this sort of thing they tend to underestimate themselves, then with the constructive feedback and your trained eye, they come out of their shells and gain the confidence to continue. Looking forward to seeing more!

  8. Some great images there, Otto.

    I’m sure your students will have well & truly appreciated all the late evenings you had to put in to critique & teach an eWorkshop (for so many students).

    I agree with Martina too. Constructive criticism is always helpful. Sometimes it can ‘sting’ a little at first, but if one is really serious about learning from an experienced professional such as yourself, then the ‘sting’ will only be momentary at the first touch and they start to get more and more out of the workshop as time progresses.

    The Feather in the Shaft of Light image is a real winner in my view. I love it.

    1. Yes, I guess there will always be a feeling that sting your are describing, but hopefully participants see it the same way as you, as a possibility to improve and progress.

  9. Wonderful, Otto! It must be confirming to you as the instructor to see such variety and creativity in your students’ work. How exciting to see your words of instruction become interpreted into life-images. Well done, indeed.

  10. My commendations to you, Otto, on a finely crafted workshop (I’m still looking forward to completing it) and to the participants who certainly show a lot of talent and individuality. (Thanks for the comment on my website and for your thoughts, Otto.)

  11. what a thoughtful idea and generosity to moot and run such a project foc. the output is looking great.
    btw, i have just put in a request for critique in your critique corner. look forward to hearing from you if you have the time.

        1. The reason is that for the time being I have closed the picture critique. The workshop is taken my the time, but when I am done with it I will once again open up for another round of open picture critiquing. So stay in tune. 🙂

          1. aha! noted.
            I was hoping you could offer some critique/comments in how i am approaching my photography from the last 10 or so posts i have posted in my blog, like what i am getting right (if any) and where i am going wrong. would be interesting and most appreciated to hear from you in that respect.

  12. The presented works of your students look very impressive!
    It’s most inspiring to see what the right tutoring und guidance can do for the individuals in the group – and make it appear so distinct and yet so homogeneous. A group of 12 sounds like fulltime job! Puuh. 😊
    Ha en fin helg, Otto.
    Solhilsen fra Norfolk,

  13. Hi Otto
    Thank you again for taking the time to guide and provide the necessary feedback for all of us in this workshop. Its been great! I can relate to your previous post ‘confined in freedom’ , by asking us to focus on a certain project, that’s where our voices and creativity blooms. You also push us, and at the right amount, I really appreciate it, make me think about my own works

  14. I’m sure that with online teaching, your critiquing may be primarily written, although oral critiquing is possible, too. That is time consuming but it sharpens our skills in communicating to the student. I agree, why not give detailed critiques if you enjoy it? Your students obviously appreciate them, judging by their feedback in the comments. Some of my students comment they feel the level of engagement between student and instructor is higher online.

    1. Your last comment is really interesting, because that’s really what I miss in an online workshop like this – the direct communication. But otherwise you are right, having to write definitely sharpens our skills in communications. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Georgette.

      1. Re: last comment. Level of engagement between student and instructor is higher online because fewer general comments and instruction is going on, and more customized interaction.

  15. Nice images. Particularly striking to me is Anita’s inquisitive baby photograph.

  16. Otto, thanks so much for taking the time to let us know how the workshop is working out and for sharing the images with us. It looks like you have quite a wealth of talent in your group of students. Enjoy the rest of the time you have with them.

  17. Very fine collection of photos – it seems that the teacher and students have a fine and productive cooperation! Looking forward to see more …..

  18. Hej Otto, underbart att få ta del av den glädje du förmedlar över den pågående e-workshopen. Övertygad om att dina kunskaper och engagemang gör gott och inspirerar deltagarna.
    Tack för att du tar dig tid att kommentera på min blogg. Sätter stort värde på det och suger i mig dina ord. Ha en god fortsättning på workshopen.

  19. These are wonderful, Otto. I can tell you must be a wonderful teacher by the way you express your joy in what you are doing. 🙂

  20. I really enjoyed hearing more about your e-course, Otto, and seeing the talented group of photographers you are mentoring. Continued success to them, and to you as well, in your very busy schedule. It seems to be going well. How wonderful!

  21. A very diverse collection of pictures. Clearly standards vary according to skill level and amount of experience but the important point is that the ‘students’ generally feel they are making progress. Both you and your photographers should be well pleased.

  22. it’s exciting and wonderful to see your project unfolding so beautifully. i enjoyed the images from your talented group!

  23. Great to see some of the work of your students. I hope one day to be able to participate in one of your online workshops.

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