I found Mike’s videos by accident while searching for basic digital photography training videos. Over the past year I’ve taken 4 of Mike’s courses, I’m happy to share my thoughts:
General comments: Great content and an engaging, high energy approach to instruction. I have found these courses to be a very worthwhile investment, I believe I’m a better photographer for having made it.
Ultimate Beginners (UBC): I had participated in other “in person” beginners classes before taking UBC but had always come away frustrated, in my opinion this class was head and shoulders above everything else. Beyond the amazing base of knowledge that I came away with, I gained confidence. Starting with the concept of shooting in manual to make sure you understand what you camera is doing and why its doing it gave me a foundation from which I could experiment with my camera settings and as a result take better pictures. The short videos and Mike’s “No Faff” approach to explaining the subject hit the mark for me, the work sheets and exercise brought it to life. I still go back to the work sheets and videos from time to time, every time I do, I learn something else. Bottom line, this course made the complex understandable, I have recommended it to many friends.
7 Building Blocks: You will frequently hear Mike refer to “Your Brilliant Brain” meaning you as the photographer having the ability to see and control everything you want in your picture, and then using the camera to capture it, welcome to building block #1. After UBC I wanted some structure to help me think more like a photographer rather than rushing to snap the shot and then being disappointed that although I had a nice image, it wasn’t what my eye was seeing, this course gave me what I needed. The same combination of video and work sheets with exercises to allow you to build capability and confidence. For me, this course is a must even if you have some experience and don’t take UBC.
7 Step – Workflow and 7 Steps – Perfect Pictures: Let’s face it Lightroom (Lr) is a beast that requires discipline and practice to get the most from it. I initially questioned the need for the “Workflow Mastery” course and Mike is not apologetic about the need for you to make the commitment upfront to manage your pictures and your investment in Lr. I’m so glad I did this course; it’s saved my skin already and managing my workflow quickly became second nature. “Perfect Pictures” is a real eye opener with a ton on content to help you understand and gain confidence with this very versatile tool, and although Mike is showing you how he prefers to work in Lr he introduces you to all of the tools, tricks and tips so you can make your own artistic choices. More of the same approach of video and work sheets but importantly some of his RAW files that you work on along side him to practice and perfect your skills. I found perfect pictures to be a big investment of time but well worth it.
Beyond Mike’s courses, his website includes a ton of free instructional videos, I found myself up at all hours of the day and night watching them. Be careful they’re addictive, you’ve been warned! Sorry for being a bit long winded, but I hope this helps.