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april 2016 newsletter
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Hi and welcome to the DPC Newsletter for April 2016

It’s time for me to start planning the courses for June, July and August. I already have request, from Facebook members, for – Portrait, Bird & Landscape, General Portrait, Macro, HDR & RAW, Lightroom and Intermediate. I already have a Macro planned for Sunday 15th May and also a couple of spaces for the Intermediate Course this Sunday 3rd April. The next Intermediate will probably be in August so book below for this Sunday.

The Nik Collection - Lightroom and Photoshop Plug-ins

A few days ago Google announced that it was making its Nik Collection of software free. Previously this collection of Lightroom and Photoshop plugins was $150, so wasn’t high on my list of essential software, despite a couple of the plug-ins being rather good.

Please drop me an email at if you would be interested in one of these courses.


No More Picasa - Could this be your time to switch to Lightroom?

Google has also decided to drop the FREE and brilliant Picasa photo editing program so this new development has changed the way I’m looking at my editing courses. For those that mainly shoot in JPG and are comfortable using Picasa then feeling free to continue as normal. If you don’t already have Picasa then I suggest you download it why you still can from here

If you are an established photographer then I recommending making the switch to using the RAW file format and Lightroom for your editing.  To help you in this transition I’ll be adding some extra midweek HDR & RAW Courses plus some extra Lightroom Courses incorporating the Nix Collection plug-ins.

Midweek 221 Courses

I'm getting an increasing number of people appreciating the extra tuition available on a 221 courses during the week. These cost £199 but obviously it means we can spend a lot more time on subjects than we can on a normal group course with six students. Think of it s private tuition for not much more than the price of a group course. Drop me an email saying which course you would like and when.

Five Day Advanced or Intensive Courses
This course is proving popular so it full for April and May but I will have availability for the Five Day Intensive or Advanced Course after June. This can be taken as five consecutive days or the preferred method of one day per week over five weeks.

Advanced -

Intensive -

Big Cat Course on Sunday 23rd October 2016
This course will show you how to take great images of a variety of wild animals including cheetahs, foxes, maned wolfs and tigers. The day will take place at Hamerton Zoo, near Huntingdon so you can either travel there directly, if it's easier for you or meet at my house and car share. You will need to let me know which option you choose when booking.

2016 Courses and DatesBeginners Camera Courses & Dates

April Project. This month’s project is 50mm.

Congratulations to everyone who picked up a bargain at the Photography Show.  It was a good event, and though I managed to avoid buying any new kit, for a change, I know lots of others did invest in some new toys.  

This spending spree did raise lots of questions about which were the best lenses to buy which prompted me to choose this month’s project which is to use just a 50mm lens.

Everyone should have a 50-55mm somewhere in their lens bag even if it means setting their 18-270mm lens to the 50mm setting. Try using the Big n Blurry and Small and Sharp techniques on the same subject to see how the results differ.

50mm lens

The idea of this exercise is to encourage photographers to use their feet to compose a photograph rather than their zoom lens. Now this will be an especially interesting challenge for me as I probably haven’t used a 50mm lens for about 30 years.

Anyone that knows me well knows that this will be a particularly difficult for me as I’m not a fan of the 50mm as I find it too short for portraits and too long for landscapes. To add to this I will be using a 40 year old manual focus 50mm lens so no auto exposure or auto-focus for me.

Remember to upload your project pictures to the DPC Facebook Group

Tamron AF 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II VC PZD LD

Talking of lenses. It's well known that I'm a great fan of the Tamron AF 18-270mm f/3.5-6.3 superzoom and I use one myself since it was launched. This lens has now been replaced by the new Tamron 16-300mm so prices for the old model have been steadily falling.

Up until recently this lens was £270 and I've just noticed that there has been yet another price drop to £235 on Amazon. It was originally £499 when purchased it, and I suspect this is a stock sell off, so now might be an excellent time to buy before it's discontinued completely in favour of the new 16-300mm lens.

18-270mm Nikon Fit / 18-270mm Canon Fit / 16-300mm Nikon / 16-300mm Canon

Tamron 18-270mm

Universal Filter Kits now available

These kits were made especially for us so they are not available on eBay or Amazon. They have been put together to cover a wide range of photography skills and they will be required for the Intermediate Course and the new Filters for Landscape Photography Course. If you were to buy these filters individually they would cost over £80 but they are now available from just £35 for the 52-62mm set or £48 for the 77-82mm set.

You can order your 52 to 62mm or 77 to 82mm kits here -

Several students have suggested I should sell a filter kit and so that's what I'm going to trial. The 52-62mm set costs £35 for a set of 5 quality filters plus 2 rings which would normally cost about £80.

The “Universal Filter Kit” consist of a UV, a Polariser, an ND8, an ND64 and a close up +2. To keep things simple I’m initially only buying these in a 62mm filter size, to suit my recommended Tamron18-270mm, but the cunning plan is to also include a 52-62mm stepping ring, for Nikon users, and a 58-62mm stepping ring, for Canon users.

Stepping Rings allow each filter to be used on a wide variety of lenses and save money in the long run by not having to buy multiple filter sizes. The UV filter is there for protection while the ND8 and Polariser is required for the Intermediate Course. The Close-up filter will help to prepare people for the Macro Course. The ND64 can also be used on the Intermediate Course and is a six stop filter which will allow you to get great pictures of flowing water. (See below for seaside example)

You can find more details and order your kit below.

PS. Email me if you would like a 67mm Kit

Filter Stack

The cost of the 52-62mm kit is £35 and the individual costs would likely to be about £80.

There is also a 82-77mm option for use with the 10-20mm (or 24mm) wide angle lenses. This costs £45 which contains all the same filters except the Close-up. The individual cost would likely be about £85.

Travel Tripod & Monopod with Ball Head & Bag.

I'm often being asked if I can recommend a stable but lightweight travel tripod. This is a tricky one as the best tripods tend to be big and heavy.

Recently a student showed up on a course with one of these which seemed very good value, at £47. It was pretty stable, folded down very short but still extended to a reasonable height. It also becomes a monopod which could prove useful. Case included.

Amazon Link to tripod

Travel Tripod

Flickr 52 Week Project for 2016
After the success of last years 2014 project we are running the group again this year. All you need to do is to take one picture every week throughout 2016 and post in the group.

NEW! Five Day Advanced Photography Course available in April 2016

This new Five Day Advanced Photography Course is only available to DPC students who have attended at least five group courses including: the Beginners, Intermediate and Portrait courses. It is not intended as a replacement to the pro course and it does not include as many courses or the personal projects with critiques and goals.

This private tuition course continues from where the other group courses leave off and it includes more advanced versions of the Intermediate, Portrait, Flash, Lightroom & Photoshop courses as standard. The last day is reserved for a course to suit your specific requirements.

The Advanced Course differs from our Five Day Intensive which is intended for novices users and includes the Beginners and basic Intermediate Course. My next availability for the Advanced Course is March 2016.

You can find more details here -

We hope you have enjoyed this newsletter.

Glen & Jacqui /
25 Westerby Lane, Smeeton Westerby, Leics, LE8 0RA 0116 2796906


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