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Education, Training, Workshops and Shoot Opportunities. Photography & Printing: Articles, Books, Training, Seminars & Travel. Approx 12 lines per post. Combine your items in one thread per member.

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Old March 2nd, 2007, 06:55 AM
Ray West Ray West is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: UK - Somerset
Posts: 1,703
Default Study Photography with Ben Lifson

This was posted by Sue Butler elsewhere -


I was asked by Asher to write my thoughts and feelings about studying with a mentor. And an overseas one at that and via the internet.

So, here are my thoughts on the subject.

Months ago I came across a message on a mailing list which talked about studying photography and it's relation to art and there was a website given to look at.
www.benlifson.com
The writer of the message was most impressed by Ben, his work and his attitude toward photography as art.
I read right through the website and was almost (but not quite) intimidated by what I needed to submit to Ben to become one of his students. At no time did I ever expect to become a student and I was very surprised that a few days after submitting my application Ben replied and said I could study with him.

Studying with Ben involves submitting all your pictures (including ones you would normally throw away) for him to study and comment on.
Once or twice a month I talk to Ben via Skype, he has my pictures tagged and we go through them together studying why they work or don't work and he offers suggestions to improve or try different things.
He always is kind, encouraging and even with his criticisms I can see what he is saying and how that particular picture doesn't work.
Always he gives names of particular artists for me to look at, books to read, links to read on the web, or the photographers to look at on the 2 CD's he sent me originally when I first started with him.
Most definitely my photography has improved since studying with Ben. I look back at my old pictures and wonder how he sat through looking at some of them!!!

I would certainly recommend studying with a mentor such as Ben who is so widely well-read and knows so much about art and artists and photographers.

It's opened my eyes to a whole new world and I'm learning more and more as I slowly work through the essays, articles and books that Ben suggests I read.

I read that Ben says that to become a good photographer you need to take 200 + pictures a day. Unfortunately at the moment I can't take that many a day, but I'm doing my best to get out and take many as often as I can.
Most importantly ...... when I got 'stuck' photographically the first time, I emailed Ben and he wrote back saying ........"photograph anything and everything"!!!

It works and you'll never ever be bored for a subject.

So thank you Ben for allowing me the privilege to be your student and thank you Asher for encouraging me to write about it.

regards,
Sue


(I have copied the above review, (with Sue butler's agreement) to this section, since it specifically relates to training. Ben often contributes to this forum, and if you are serious about photography and art, I know of no better tutor than Ben. The wonders of technology allows Sue in Australia to study with Ben in USA, http://www.benlifson.com explains how)
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Last edited by Ray West; March 2nd, 2007 at 07:02 AM. Reason: (I have copied the above review, (with Sue butler's agreement) to this section, since it specifically relates to training.
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Old September 12th, 2007, 07:32 AM
Rachel Foster Rachel Foster is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Michigan, USA
Posts: 3,574
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray West View Post
I read that Ben says that to become a good photographer you need to take 200 + pictures a day. Unfortunately at the moment I can't take that many a day, but I'm doing my best to get out and take many as often as I can.

My first thought was "Only 200?" I think I'm addicted. I can shoot 200 in a half hour. I suspect this is newbie's over-enthusiasm and probably a frustration with shots that come out blurred or whatever because I shoot multiples of any one scene I'm trying to get. Ray, I think you must be far more discriminating about pushing the button than I.
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