zero-to-hero-helenpothecary Zero to Hero Story from Helen Pothecary
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Helen Pothecary

 13th Dec 2019

I have always loved taking photographs on my travels and then made them into albums, but I needed more understanding on how to use my camera in a way that I was in control - to get the image I saw in my mind. Then I saw this bloke on a video tutorial opening and closing doors and telling me that was "shutter speed"! No messing with words I thought, I like that!

man standing

And when he said just because you have a fantastic oven, it does not mean you are going to be able to cook fantastic meals, it rang a big bell with me (I am a retired chef). I looked at some more of his videos and thought this was the right guy to teach me, although I am definitely not normally an ‘online course person’. Ever since I have recommended this course to anybody who wanted to listen!

flower from helen

I did all of my homework and finally started understanding camera lingo! I studied very intensely as I was going on a trip of a lifetime to Argentina with a new camera, I needed to get this right. One of the very first days, after taking 100s of tango shots in Buenos Aeros,I was confronted with this world phenomenon, I call it "the ice cube" - Perito Moreno glacier... I was running around like a headless chicken as this glacier was enormous, 7km wide and 47km deep, what was I to do!?

misty landscape

This was a white/blue mass on a sunny day. There was so much brightness, but - time of day - to be at a certain location - can most of the time NOT be dictated on a traveling holiday... I applied all I had in my "camera brain store" and started using my camera, thinking about everything I had learnt.... Ok, stay calm. This was the moment for me, I actually knew what I was doing, it was amazing, I was actually in control of my camera!

I have since done another course with a group and this has taken me totally out of my comfort zone of landscapes and wildlife, taking street photography, portraits, Windows etc...what a great eye opener that was. I was able to put all I learnt into use - Wow, juppy!

The world had unfolded, I am 69 and it is never too late to learn something new! Thank you Mike for everything.