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Create Stunning Digital Photographs (PD-CSD01)


Course Description

As a new photographer you’ve got to start somewhere and our Create Stunning Digital Photographs course is great place to start! The goal of this fun and informative course is to provide you with an introduction to digital photography and get you started on the path to becoming a great photographer. You’ll begin by learning the fundamentals of digital photography including composition, lighting, exposure and using your camera’s manual mode. Next the course will focus on teaching you the basics of contemporary portrait photography including how to pose your subject and working with children and pets. We will also cover photographing the great outdoors including animals, natural and man-made landscapes, as well as wedding and event photography and night shooting. Finally macro photography and underwater portraits complete the digital photography curriculum.


Create Stunning Digital Photographs Module 1
The Fundamentals

In Module 1, students will begin by building a strong foundation in basic digital photography. Composition, lighting, manual camera controls, exposure and file types are the beginning topics covered in this module. These foundational topics will prepare the student to begin shooting subject matter in Module 2.

Quick Tips for Improvement
Composition Tools
Different Types of Lighting
Controlling Your Camera
Understanding Exposure
Create Stunning Digital Photographs Module 2
Portraits, Weddings & Animals

In Module 2, students will start shooting subject matter that builds on the skills learned in the first module. We will begin with portrait photography, learning to pose men and women and best practices for working with children during a portrait session. Next we progress to an overview of wedding photography from the planning stages through the actual wedding day. Lastly we will cover photographing animals in the wild, learning techniques for shooting creatures in their natural habitat.

Introduction to Portrait Photography
Learning to Pose Men
Learning to Pose Women
Working with Children
Wedding Photography
Create Stunning Digital Photographs Module 3
The Great Outdoors & Night Photography

Module 3 focuses on landscapes and cityscapes, nature photography, night photography and the creative practice of light painting. We will begin by learning how composition, planning and certain camera settings produce visually stunning photographs. Landscape, cityscape and nature photography discuss capturing the beauty in the natural world and shooting and processing night photography will teach the student how to effectively take photos in low light conditions and of the stars and moon. Light painting is the last topic covered – it’s a fun way to enhance your night photography and is a great outlet for creative expression in your images.

Composition, Planning, & Camera Settings
Landscapes & Cityscapes
Nature Photography
Shooting & Processing Night Photography
Light Painting
Create Stunning Digital Photographs Module 4
HDR, Macro & Underwater Photography

Module 4 begins by providing students with an overview of HDR (high dynamic range) photography and how to achieve the HDR process on your own. Next we will discuss macro photography, learning to shoot up-close and personal photos of textures, plants, and animals. Lastly we will learn about the challenges and rewards of shooting images underwater, taking time to learn about both proper gear and the portrait process.

High Dynamic Range (HDR) Overview
The HDR Process
Macro Settings & Equipment
Macro Techniques
Underwater Photography Gear


1 month




There are no specific prerequisites for this class. It is designed for anyone desiring to enhance their skills or learn the topics covered in the class.





This class is an independent-study course.  Students will have all the resources needed to successfully complete the course within the online material.  A student helpdesk is available for technical support during the course enrollment.


Internet Access

Broadband or high-speed internet access is required. Broadband includes DSL, cable, and wireless connections.
Dial-Up internet connections will result in a diminished online experience. Moodle pages may load slowly and viewing large audio and video files may not be possible.

Windows hardware configurations and processors are acceptable
Mac computers MUST have Microsoft Window Operating Systems over Bootcamp (Bootcamp is a free download from Apple's website)
1 GB RAM minimum recommended
Operating Systems
Windows XP, Vista or 7 and Mac OS X 10 or higher with Windows
Web Browsers
Google Chrome is highly recommended
Internet Explorer is not recommended as it may not display certain menus and links
Cookies MUST be enabled
Pop-ups MUST be allowed (Pop-up Blocker disabled)
Kindle Reader App is needed for many of our courses (No special equipment needed. This can be downloaded onto your computer.)
Adobe PDF Reader
Media Plug-ins (These may be required depending on your course media.)
Adobe Flash Player (Required for many of our career courses and ALL of our IT courses.)
Adobe Acrobat Reader, Apple Quicktime, Windows Media Player, &/or Real Player
PowerPoint Viewer (Use this if you don't have PowerPoint)

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