PHOTO CAMP | Park Hill

Weeklong 2019 photography camp for beginner to intermediate photographers, ages 10-19. Students can attend either a morning (9a-12p) or afternoon (1:30p-4:30p) class time for the week. LIMIT OF 15 STUDENTS PER CLASS. Students will work alongside a professional photojournalist and be introduced to the secrets of making terrific pictures in any given situation, even if their only camera is a cell phone

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This camp IS A CONSIDERED OFFERING FOR summer 2019. 

If you're thinking of enrolling your son or daughter this year, please follow this link to express interest and you will be given first priority when the new dates are announced. 



>>  Scroll down to see full daily schedule for Life For Real Photo Camps.  << 

A Note From Your Instructor (!)

Thank you for being interested in my Life For Real photo camp

I’m photojournalist Mark Osler. I’ve been a photo editor and photographer for nearly 30 years now. Photojournalism is the professional love of my life, but I didn’t discover it until I was 29 years old. So I am super excited to be working with younger students in this photo camp and maybe sparking in some of them — or you —  the passion for photography I discovered back in the late 1980’s. 

Speaking to you potential students now, this photography camp is designed to be one week of fun - learning about photography — yes — and, hopefully, a little about yourself and what you’re capable of. 

In addition to teaching you a ton about photography, what I love is the sense of possibility that this camp instills in students. You start the week excited, nervous and probably a little self conscious and thru the process of listening, observing, taking chances, making mistakes, getting feedback and being open, students not only learn how to see the world differently and make beautiful pictures with any kind of camera, cell phones included, but you learn that everyone who is good at something/whatever was once just like you at the beginning of the week - unsure if they could really do what it was they were trying to do. 

By putting yourself out there, embracing the power of making mistakes and being open to learn with each step, or misstep, you will become not only a solid, capable photographer, but a more confident person and more tuned in to the world around you. 

Photography teaches you that there is something to appreciate in everything. Making a picture is about being open and patient and believing there is something beautiful and interesting in everything and everyone. That sounds like a big statement but, if you allow yourself to believe that it just might be true, you’ll be amazed at what you’re able to create and how much you’ll learn and progress as a photographer, and as a person, on just one short week. 

So, come join me for this photo camp - a week of fun and art and a personal journey of discovery about just how interesting the world you walk and drive by every day really is. 

I’ll see you there!



LOCATION: TBD, but most likely will be at City Park, gathering each day at the MLK statue, near the pavillion building.

Day 1: 

  • Introduction, Overview, & slideshow to tell and show students what they’ll be able to do by the end of the week

  • A Talk on Failing Fearlessly

  • Camera Basics: The most basic how-to-use-your-camera lesson ever conceived! ;-) Includes handout for later reading

  • Introduction of Day 1 lessons (Handout)

  • Lesson 1: Frame Awareness

  • Exercise 1: Paying attention to what is really going on in your picture with special attention to backgrounds & frame edges

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 1

  • Short Break

  • Lesson 2: Keep It Simple

  • Exercise 2: Looking for ways to clean up and simplify compositions in visually busy environments.

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 1

  • Handout on Composition - overnight reading to prepare for Day 2

Day 2: 

  • Review of Day 1

  • Day 2 Introduction - The Players + The Stage (Handout)

  • Lesson 3: The Most Important Tool in the Photo Toolbox - Composition. 5 approaches to making interesting pictures.

  • Exercise 3: Putting the 5 Approaches into Action

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 3

  • Short Break

  • Lesson 4: People in Compositions.

  • Exercise 4: Photographing people in interesting compositions

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 4

  • Wrap-up + Hand out about Day 3 lessons

Day 3: 

  • Review of Day 2

  • Day 3 Introduction: Seeing Light (Handout)

  • Lesson 5: The direction & quality of light

  • Exercise 5: Pictures of people in different lighting

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 5

  • Short Break

  • Lesson 6: There is no such thing as bad light

  • Exercise 6: Great pictures in “bad light”\

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 6

  • Wrap-up

Day 4: 

  • Review of Day 3

  • Day 4 intro - Lenses & Photographic Seeing (Handout)

  • Lesson 7: The Wonderful Wide Angle lens

  • Exercise 7: Working with wide angle lenses in any situation. Great lesson if your primary camera is your phone.

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 7

  • Short Break

  • Lesson 8: It’s not WHAT you see, it’s HOW you see

  • Exercise 8: Visual anchoring & Abstract seeing

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 8

  • Wrap-up

Day 5: 

  • Review of Day 4

  • Day 5 Intro - Telling Stories (Handout)

  • Lesson 9: The importance of variety in visual storytelling

  • Exercise 9: Making a collection of pictures that tell a story…WELL

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 9

  • Short Break

  • Lesson 10: Editing Your Story for print (books) & slideshows

  • Exercise 10: Reviewing pictures from Exercise 9 and picking the best 5-10 to tell your story

  • Reflection & Comments on Exercise 10

  • Wrap-up


  • My three favorite (cell phone) photo apps and how to use them

  • A brief introduction to Adobe Lightroom

  • Handouts included