Digital Camera Fundamentals Photography Class

digital camera fundamentals - capturing a poppy head

Poppy Head

Our Digital Camera Fundamentals Photography Class is offered in either a two-day weekend or four-weekday evening format.  This class is aimed at photographers who have just started using a Digital Camera (with manual controls) and who would like to learn more about their camera and its features and functions.  Your camera MUST have a removable lens in order to take this class. If it doesn’t, our Digital Photography for Beginners Class is perfect for you.

If you have been taking photographs with your Digital Camera on the automatic setting, and want to gain greater control over your camera and the photographs you create, then this class is for you.  
To get the most out of the investment you’ve made in your new Digital Camera you need to get your camera off of the automatic setting.  By completing this course, you will gain the confidence you need to best utilize your camera and make the creative photographs you desire.

The Digital Camera Fundamentals Photography Class is all about the fundamentals of digital camera operation and is completely hands-on.  We’ll do a numerous practical exercises throughout the course that will allow you to put the concepts covered in class into practice for yourself. 

If your camera DOES have a removable lens and you’re not sure whether to take this class or our Digital Photography for Beginners Class, please see below under ‘Prerequisites’ for more information.

This class has been selling out months in advance. 

If a class is sold-out, you do have the option of putting your name on a wait list and if a spot opens up you may be able to get in. Unfortunately we also have long wait-lists of people waiting for a cancellation. At this time, we’re offering as many classes as we can, and to provide the best quality we’re keeping our class sizes small.  For these reasons, please sign up soon if you’re interested in taking a class.

Students are currently booking about 2-3 months in advance for this class.

If you are wondering what all those buttons on your camera are all about, don’t miss the opportunity to spend two days in this class. I fell into a love for photography (as opposed to taking pictures) quite by accident when I won my DSLR camera. Unlike most photographers who have moved from film photography to digital photography, I had absolutely no knowledge or aperture, shutter speed, ISO, etc. and when I started reading my camera manual, it was like reading a foreign language. So I started using my DSLR camera in its auto mode and the built in “scene” modes, with great success (I think). But then I became frustrated with not knowing how to use the camera. This 2-day class has given me a whole new outlook on my camera … I now understand how it works and how to make it work for me. Thanks BSOP. I look forward to attending more classes and to continue growing as a photographer.

Event Venue Date
Digital Camera Fundamentals Class | November 10 - 11, 2018 Providence Renewal Centre
  • November 10, 2018 9:00 am
Digital Camera Fundamentals Class | December 8 - 9, 2018 Providence Renewal Centre
  • December 8, 2018 9:00 am

Please read above and if the class you are interested in sold out, please click here to add your name to the wait list

Your Instructor for the Digital Camera Fundamentals Class

Chris is the former president of the Professional Photographer’s of Canada and has been a professional photographer for over two decades.

Chris holds the designations of “Master of Photographic Arts” and “Honorary Lifetime Member” by the PPOC and has won numerous awards for his work including being a finalist in the Alberta and Canadian Portrait Photographer of the Year.

Chris runs his own photography business Imagine That Photographics where he specializes in portrait photography, commercial and school photos / graduation photography as well as teaching photography at NAIT and the U of A Faculty of Extension.

Chris teaches 5 classes at our photography school – the Photographic Composition class, the Posing Families and Children class, and both of our schools portrait photography classes, the Weekend Portrait Photography class, and our extended 4 day Portrait Photography workshop as well as this introductory Digital Camera Fundamentals class.

© Paul Burwell Photography | Burwell School of Photography

Pocket Watch Macro

What You Will Learn

(these topics may sound complex but rest assured, by the end of the class, you’ll understand them!)

Introduction to Digital Cameras

  • Adjusting the clarity of your viewfinder using the diopter
  • Tips, tricks and techniques for making sharper images
  • Guidelines to selecting and using interchangeable lenses
  • Using the different auto-focus and drive modes on your camera
  • Using image stabilisation and mirror lock-up functions (where applicable)
  • Using manual hyper-focus techniques and the depth of field preview

Aperture and Shutter Priority Modes (Creative Exposure Modes)

  • How to use aperture priority to control the depth-of-field of a scene
  • Using shutter priority to control movement of objects in the frame
  • Reading and interpreting the exposure histogram

Manual Exposure Modes and Useful Custom Settings

  • Working the Manual (M) and Bulb (B) exposure modes on your digital camera
  • Using manual white balance for mixed lighting situations
  • Useful custom settings and user-defined shooting modes
  • Performing camera firmware updates
  • Techniques for cleaning your digital sensor

Using your Electronic Flash

  • Using flash synchronisation (slow sync, first-curtain sync and second-curtain sync)
  • Using dedicated external flash – features and functions
  • Using flash exposure compensation (FEC)
  • Useful bounce-flash techniques
  • Creating balanced exposures

What a great weekend spent at the Burwell School of Photography. Walking in on Saturday with a new DSLR camera, that I knew very little about and leaving on Sunday afternoon with the ability and confidence to use the camera in manual mode, making custom adjustments etc. was a very uplifting experience. Chris is an excellent instructor, and his approach to teaching this class made it very easy for even the beginner to leave feeling more confident. I thoroughly enjoyed this weekend and I am looking forward to attending next weeks class on Photography Fundamentals.

Sunset Portrait

Sunset Portrait

River in the Canadian Rockies

River in the Canadian Rockies

What to Expect

  • 12 hours of classroom instruction
  • Personalized instruction by professional photographer Chris Stambaugh
  • Digital Camera Fundamentals course book
  • Certificate of Completion
  • Delicious snacks during coffee breaks
  • Hot lunch on both days
  • Small group size, limited to 14 participants

Prerequisites for the Class

  • As a prerequisite for the Edmonton Digital Camera Fundamentals Photography Class, you should have taken your camera out of its box and played with it a bit.  It makes things much easier for all!
  • Are you unsure if you should take Digital Camera Fundamentals (this class) or Digital Photography for Beginners (our other introductory class)? If you have a camera with no removable/interchangeable lenses, you cannot take this class. You must take Digital Photography for Beginners.
  • If you have a camera with removable/interchangeable lenses you can take this class or our Digital Photography for Beginners Class, depending on your comfort zone. This class (Digital Camera Fundamentals)  is longer (12 hours vs. 6 in Digital Photography for Beginners Class), so topics are covered in greater detail. Digital Camera Fundamentals is also our prerequisite class for many of our other, more advanced classes.  Some students who have cameras with removable lenses choose to start with Digital Photography for Beginners  and then progress to this class. If you choose to do this then there will be some review, but in our opinion, that’s not a bad thing!   If you are a scared beginner, and/or appreciative lots of review, we’d recommend starting with our Digital Photography for Beginners Class and then taking this class. If you’re ready to dive in and get started, then please sign up for this class!
  • If you are in doubt as to which class to take, contact us (contact info is at the bottom of the page).
  • Students must be at least 18 years of age to attend; we will also accept students 16-17 years of age, but they must be accompanied by an adult who is also taking the class.

Equipment Required

At a minimum, you’ll want to have…

  • A Digital Camera with interchangeable lenses that supports Aperture Priority Mode, Shutter Priority Mode and Manual Mode
  • If you are not sure if your camera is suitable for this class, please contact us and let us know the make and model of your camera and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible
  • Your camera instruction manual.  Make sure you bring the manual which will be at least several hundred pages and is sometimes only provided on a CD that the manufacturer requires you to print for yourself. Please do not just bring the ‘getting started’ guide. If you only received a CD copy of the manual you can have it printed at a print shop such as Staples etc.
  • Memory card and freshly charged battery(s) and a battery charger
  • External flash unit (if you have one, if you don’t please don’t worry about it)
  • A notebook, pen and a highlighter
  • A great attitude with a willingness to relax, experiment and learn
© Paul Burwell Photography | Burwell School of Photography

Cowboys at Sunset

Class Location


  • $250 Canadian Dollars (plus tax) which includes lunch on both days

Please click on the link for a map. Our classes are taught at the Providence Renewal Centre, located in SW Edmonton, within city limits. It’s a beautiful retreat centre, situated on over 20 acres of park like grounds, and it also has a cafeteria for meals (for the weekend class). There are numerous hotels and shopping located very close by for those of you that are travelling.

More Information

Policies and payment information are available here.

For additional information, please contact us at:
E-Mail: Contact us Electronically
Phone 780-669-1261

Event Venue Date
Digital Camera Fundamentals Class | November 10 - 11, 2018 Providence Renewal Centre
  • November 10, 2018 9:00 am
Digital Camera Fundamentals Class | December 8 - 9, 2018 Providence Renewal Centre
  • December 8, 2018 9:00 am

Please read above and if the class you are interested in sold out, please click here to add your name to the wait list