Teaching for Fox Chapel Area Adult Education

A lot of people ask me what I do during the off-season. Well, this business owner has a ton of things happening! First, wedding season doesn’t really end until mid-November and then there are tons of Christmas orders to fill. When those things slow at the next calendar year, I make some improvements and plans for my business and get to work on client albums. I definitely take a lot of time to relax and catch up with family and friends and even do a bit of traveling. By the time I finish those and get ready for the next wedding season, it’s here!

But sometimes the low season can be a bit too lonely. I thought that teaching photography would be something I might want to do in the future, so I decided to give it a try at the community level. I had taken some language learning classes through Fox Chapel Area Adult Education and I thought this was the perfect venue for me to give it a try.

It has been a joy to instruct this class. The program director for Fox Chapel Area Adult Education, Sue Goodwin, is a great resource and such a hard worker. She handles student registration, payment, liability waivers, organization and even helps me by making the photocopies I handout in class.

We are half way through our semester and I am enjoying sharing my knowledge about photography. I like to think about photography in two ways–as a technical craft and an art form. Sometimes a photographer’s job is to make decisions about what is happening in the camera on a technical level to communicate an artistic vision. It’s silly to say “my camera takes good pictures” when you should be saying “I take great photographs!” It has been gratifying to hear student comments like “I didn’t know my camera could do that!” I like to remind them that the camera has a computer for a brain. Preparing for the classes has also solidified a few finer points for me–I’m always learning!

Below are three photos from class. Wearing a sombrero is normal behavior for the first lecture, right? Photo by Rich Dembski.

The photo below was used with permission from Jaqi Conomikes

And this final photo was taken during the lecture portion of the class by Ryan Voss.


  • Rich DembskiApril 2, 2013 - 21:19

    Sorry that I couldn’t take the full course and only attended the first class but God for saken Wyoming had called. I enjoyed myself and learned a few things in the lecture. You do understand that having owned the camera for 8 years and never having opened the owners manual could not possibly be a reason for not knowing what some of the butons and dials are for. Tomorrow is Wednesday and I dread missing class.

  • Rich DembskiApril 2, 2013 - 21:28

    Ps I was honored to have made one of three photos having only attended only one class. Sure doesn’t hurt to be a dad either. Also the photo of you was direct lighting on the left with soft lighting on the right achieved by takeing the photo from stage left of center.

  • JillApril 12, 2013 - 23:31

    Hey Randi! Great post. I love the shot of you in the sombrero! I am sure your students are benefiting from your vast knowledge and unique perspective.

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