Is NYIP for Me?

To give you a little bit of a background first, I was presented with probably a not-so-unique problem: There was not a college near-by that offered any good photography courses. The New York Institute of Photography (NYIP) was a good way for me to further my education and also continue to improve my skills as a photographer. I started out by working for a local photographer that was so set in his ways to the point that I felt I was being held back for the two years that I worked for him. I did everything in the shop to learn all I could from him from the technical aspects to the art of photography. I stumbled on an ad in a magazine I picked up on outdoor photography. The ad was for the NYIP.

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So that is my story and how I found them. Now let me tell you what I think about the courses that I ended up taking.

This is a course that when you first get it, it comes in a brown box full of things that you will either have to guess as to the purpose of the contents, or not understand them at all. But, I have to say, even after working through most of the content in the first two sections (which were more technical in nature), I still learned a lot about the art of photography. The first several sections that you go through are probably the most important, but can be tedious. Don’t give up on your dream of learning photography and work through the first couple of sections. You will have to have both interest and motivation to do this course. They do not call you and they don’t care if you finish it or not. They send you the information and will help you anytime you call them, answering any questions you might have.

They start you out very basic in the world of photography. You are told up front that even if you don’t have an SLR camera, you can take the course and learn from it. They are right. The course does not require anything special as far as equipment goes, though the course is generally catered to those who do have access to an SLR camera.

Throughout the course, you will learn things that will help you deal with different lighting situations; you will learn how to deal with different shutter speeds and equipment-related aspects of photography that aid you in creating better photographs. You will also learn how to set up your shots and how to train your eyes to see shots before you take them. If you have a film camera, it is very important to learn you must see your shots before that moment of when you push the button (It’s a good skill to have regardless of your camera as well!).

You will be asked to take photos of different situations, like to recreate an advertisement that you have seen in a magazine and other things that you would not normally think of. All of the projects you are given are completely covered throughout the courses.

Now there are two ways to get the course: either by paying the fee upfront, or pay the cost of the course in smaller payments. I was able to pay the cost of the courses upfront, so I am not familiar with the payment option. If you pay upfront, you get two shipments. One will contain the first few chapters along with the first lessons that you will need to turn in. There are six lessons in all, however, within each of those six lessons, there is anywhere from 1 to 5 projects that you will need to complete to send back in for them to review. They will then send you an audio tape for you to listen to their critiques of your work.

I have not completed mine as of yet, so right now I cant say that I have had the privilege of them looking at my photos. Is NYIP for you? It’s obviously great for those just learning photography, as long as you are self-motivated. A lot of pro’s, however, also take the courses from NYIP to see if it could teach them new techniques, or to learn or relearn new and old techniques. It taught them several things that they had either never understood real well, or never learned. They teach you how to develop your film from B&W negatives and explain how to mix the chemistry. You learn what things to look for in different situations as well as how to use light and reflectors properly to further improve your photographs. Techniques are shown that are useful in regards to posing subjects for situations like family shots (people) or as well as posing of inanimate objects for product shots as well.

All of staff/teachers at NYIP are photographers and they are dedicated to teaching those who whish to learn the art of photography. Also it give those of us that like the study at your own pace an alternative to classroom education, allowing us tolearn on our own. You get a three year period in witch to due the course and if you complete it in that time frame you will get a certificate of completion. In the end, you will walk away from it all with more knowledge and also a sense of confidence in your photography.

Things that you will need to have for the course: A VCR, a camera (point and shoot or a SLR digital or film - All of your photo projects have to be turned in as prints and an audio cassette player (I wish they had them on disk it would have made it nice for those of us who have a CD player in the car).

I hope this will explain what N.Y.I.P can do for you and was not to confusing. If you choose to go through their course, good luck!!