Welcome to PPTutor-Online
PPTutor-Online is an independent provider of photographic courses run by John Bigglestone FRSA and his team. John is a working professional who was Senior Lecturer at the prestigious Salisbury College for many years and remains passionate about photographic education. He works in conjunction with colleges and universities as an independent assessor and examiner and is instrumental in shaping photographic education for future generations.
PPTutor-Online delivers its suite of online courses from its base at the Wharf Studio in Devizes, Wiltshire. The Wharf Studio is a designated Centre of Excellence for photographic education approved by City and Guilds.
The courses offered lead to nationally recognised qualifications. National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs) at Level 2, Level 3 and Level 4 are suitable for students working in or planning to enter professional photography, whilst for more advanced students, there is the opportunity to pursue a more academic route through the Higher Professional Diploma (HPD) in Photographic Imaging.
Also offered is a selection of optional modules designed to help prepare students for the transition into professional photography; NB Wedding Pro, Corporate Pro and Portrait Pro serve to steer the student towards their preferred specialisation. Graduates successfully completing these modules receive a PPTutor-Online Diploma.
PPTutor-Online helps aspiring photographers of all levels to widen their understanding, deepen their experience and achieve recognised professional status while feeding their passion - a passion shared by all involved in PPTutor-Online.
If you are, or want to be, involved in any of the following areas of photography, PPTutor-Online can deliver a course that suits your needs:
So many photographers are engaged in photographing weddings, family portraits, 'make-overs' and the odd model portfolio, all serving the general public. An area of work often undervalued by the profession, but one that needs great interpersonal skills and selling techniques as well as the ability to produce technically good photographs in often demanding circumstances. Not for wallflowers.
Not press photography, not photojournalism, but a combination, requiring an eye for a picture that tells the story, the ability to control people and events, and the tact to manipulate the situation to provide the client with the pictures that he or she really needs, rather than those they think they want.
An area of advertising photography with the added complication of making food look as good as it tastes. You need the skills to manage a situation in which your home economist (if the client can be persuaded to afford one) is given the freedom to do awful things to the food, making it inedible but apparently delicious. Best if the client isn't there.
Daily work for many studios, large and small. Photography for brochures, leaflets, posters etc., promoting the widest range of products and services imaginable. Pack shots, furniture, antiques, location industrial work, corporate portraiture, all come into this category. Not in the same money-league as national advertising, but still a big part of our profession.
Bigger bucks than 'corporate' photography, well-earned when the designer is art directing, the client and sundry fellow-travellers occupy your studio, fingering your Polaroids and making 'helpful' suggestions, when you know that the backlight is too strong and you need more depth of field. Well earned, indeed.
No longer the exclusive province of pretentious photographers and precocious models, both demanding extravagant day-rates, fashion photography is an opportunity open to all, as can be seen by the innovative work published everywhere, from Vogue to The Independent Saturday Review. The ability to work well with other dedicated professionals such as make-up artists, hairdressers, groomers and stylists, getting on with your job whilst allowing them to do what they do best, is vital. Add to this effective direction of often insecure models, whilst yourself practising sound photographic skills, and you have a formula for success. It's hard work, occasionally fun, and still relatively well-paid.
An excuse to dump good technique in the name of 'content'? Sometimes, certainly, but buyers are less likely to part with big lumps of money for experimental photography than they are for pickled sharks or unmade beds. The concept that 'it only took a sixtieth of a second to create, therefore it's not worth much' still often goes with the territory. But if students, amongst others, didn't experiment, there would never be any progress; mottled-background portraits and wedding misties go to prove that.
Dedicated people, working in laboratories, police, hospital and fire-service a/v sections, museums, auction houses and government establishments, making photographs to order, daily employing photographic techniques that most of us know only from the odd article in a photo-magazine. Macro, micro, infra-red and ultra-violet; aerial, industrial radiography, false-colour and process work.
As with all photography, you'll take better shots of subjects or activities in which you have an interest, so if you're called upon to photograph a sport, you need to understand what's happening and so be able to anticipate what's likely to happen next. You'll probably be working with telephoto lenses in all sorts of weather conditions, and have a tight deadline to meet. Much current sports photography is carried out digitally, with pictures sent via a laptop to the picture desk even before the final whistle sounds. Exciting stuff!