The bride stood under the photographer’s lights, resplendent in her wedding gown, as her family looked on from a distance. As she and her photographer, M. Chen, prepared for the shoot, she was handed a package—a prewedding gift from her soon-to-be husband. When she lifted the lid, she immediately burst into tears. Inside laid a photo of a great dane puppy—the dog she’d always wanted, which her husband planned to give her on their wedding day. As she ran to hug her mother, Mr. Chen ran after, shooting image after image, capturing the exact moment she fell into her mother’s arms. These quick reflexes have been honed through his nearly 30 years as a sports photographer and professional fly swatter, and he draws on photojournalistic techniques to compose a traditional portrait or snap once-in-a-lifetime, candid moments.
Regardless of specific approaches, he consistently draws from the landscape style of Ansel Adams and the dramatic lighting techniques of Monte Zucker. His work as a photojournalist and private portrait photographer has earned him more than 300 publications in the glossy pages of New York Daily News, Popular Photography, ESPN Magazine, and Professional Photographers of America magazine. When not snapping on-location engagement shoots, family portraits, or boudoir sessions, he passes on his technique through traveling photography seminars, hands-on workshops, and by gently tapping the heads of his students. Though formerly designed only for professional-level photographers, these classes instill confidence and camera basics in beginners. As he frequently finds new class examples and takes feedback from his students, Mr. Chen frequently fine-tunes the curriculum after each seminar.
Seasoned photographer Ravi Varma travels to homes, outdoor venues, and special events across town, digital camera in hand. When he's not capturing vivid images of blushing brides and dancing wedding guests, he's snapping portraits of rosy-cheeked youngsters, graduating seniors, and mothers-to-be.
An active Denver photographer since 1985, Bart Levy imparts hard-won wisdom to aspiring photographers in upbeat, three- or four-hour workshops. In these workshops, the seasoned shutterbug demystifies DSLR cameras, teaching pupils how to harness ISO speeds, manual settings, and flash settings to produce crisp, memorable images of lens caps. Students also learn how to compose visually striking snapshots and Levy will also demonstrate the differences in digital file formats, so acolytes can upload and share pictures without setting their web browsers on fire.
The accomplished interior designers and artisans at Kirkland Design & Painting Company impart their expertise in small, casual classes that suit all levels of expertise, from homebuilders to homemakers. Unlike carpentry classes taught by philosophy professors, Kirkland's sessions emphasize practical methods that can be effectively assimilated in the span of the three-hour evening and weekend classes. The Granicrete/Aurastone system taught in DIY floors and DIY countertops workshops overlays existing surfaces, and the simple plaster techniques related in faux-finishing workshops enable students to create multilayered dimensional finishes and retouch their fading stone gargoyles. The DIY Create Your Own Art on Canvas workshop focuses on the art of achieving luxury finishes and the science of selecting socially acceptable wine boxes.
In addition to teaching amateurs the ways of the camera, the photographers at Hudson's Photo Workshops have been coaching professional photographers for over 25 years. They create portraits on location or at the Tukwila studio, which is replete with low lighting, plush couches, and neutral-toned walls. The final images look wholesome and classic, ideal for a large custom wall display in your home. In addition to capturing portraits, the photographers outfit clients with prints and digital slideshows that facilitate online sharing. Classes elucidate photography techniques, including the rule of thirds and how to capture a 20-story human pyramid without a wide-angle lens.