Using Twitter I was able to come across some free courses this summer and as I had been looking into Digital Photography I thought these would be a great way to pick up some new skills. The courses are run by Mike Mcsharry (@mikemcsharry) and are completely free with the hope of sharing knowledge with teachers.
The session started talking about images and the difference between print and screen. The quality of website images don’t need to be such a big size as they take up a large amount of space and can take a long time to load. If you’re using Microsoft Office then there is a free piece of software you can use called Microsoft Office Picture Manager which allows you to resize images.
Some fantastic pieces of software that Mike showed us were Microsoft Research Auto Collage which matches colours in photographs to allow a natural blend between photos. It can make highly professional looking collages simply and easily. My second favourite piece of software was Photosynth which takes a collection of images and recreate a panoramic view with auto-stitching. This software allows you to upload photos taken on any digital camera or to use its app for instant stitching. You can then share creations on a Bing map for the world to see or just link your friends and family to it. There are fantastic educational opportunities with this as there are detailed images of places such as the Sistine Chapel and the Coliseum, not to mention the 100s of National Geographic images.
I found this course to be good fun, I found out about some interesting software and built on existing knowledge. I had a chat with other educators interested in using photography with children and I have some neat tips and software to share with others. It also reminded me of this presentation which I created:
I am now considering running a digital photography club in the near future. I don’t really have any photographic skills but I figure it’ll be the kids and myself learning together.