Photography Workshops

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Big Bright Lights Workshop – Monday, December 5, 2022
Monday, December 5, 2022 | 7-10 PM | Rochester Studio and Main Street

    To Register for Monday, December 5, 2022 workshop, CLICK HERE.  Click on “7PM” to begin registration process.

    This workshop is expected to run from 7 pm to 10 pm. The workshop fee is $40. Please click on the 17Hats link above to register.

    For several years now Downtown Rochester has draped itself in an amazing light show. People across metro-Detroit come every night during the Christmas season to see and photograph the show.

    This workshop is intended to teaching you how to take properly exposed night images. We will start in the classroom and discuss proper camera settings and technique for capturing beautiful images after dark. Once the lecture wraps up we will hit the streets and capture the magic of The Big Bright Light Show!

    Minimal Equipment Requirements:

    You will need a digital camera, sturdy tripod. It will be very helpful if you also bring along , a remote release, and a flashlight or headlamp, the manual for your camera so I can help you get it configured properly for the best night exposures. We sell the remote releases and tripods in the studio. Remote releases run $15.95 – $17.95. Tripods vary in price. Please call if you plan to buy a remote release or tripod. As with many things these days selection is limited due to supply chain issues.

    Additional Recommended Equipment:

    An assortment of lenses. Just like photographing during the day, a variety of lenses will afford you the ability to compose a mixture of different looks. I sell “Storm Jacket” rain covers in the studio in case of wet weather. You can also purchase disposable rain covers on-line. This workshop will only be cancelled/ rescheduled in the event of heavy rain. Misty rain or snow actually makes for amazing images, so plan accordingly. You want to keep warm and dry.

    Clothing Recommendations:

    It will be cold and dark. I strongly recommend a hat, gloves (fingerless if you have them), wear multiple layers so you have the ability to adjust with the weather.

    Class size is restricted to 12 persons so I will be able to give everyone 1 on 1 help once we start shooting. The lecture/training will be at our Studio – 426 West University Drive, Rochester, MI 48307.

    The lights are amazing! Come and experience this annual workshop with Bob! Misty rain or snow will not deter us, so plan accordingly. Wet streets make for AWESOME reflections. You will want to be there – even if it is wet!

    The workshop fee is $40. To REGISTER & PAY for this workshop, please use the following link / then click on the “7 pm” to start the registration process:  CLICK HERE

    If you have payment questions, please contact us: or 248-495-1845 (Juliann).

    NOTE: Your RSVP alone will not reserve your place. Please contact us to finalize your reservation with payment.

    What Workshops Interest You!

      We are hoping to restart photography workshops and Photo Safari trips in 2021!  We are looking for your input on what interests you!  Photo Workshops are generally 2-3 hour workshops in our studio or in the Rochester / Metro Detroit area.  Photo Safaris are longer workshops – lasting 1-day to 7-10 days.  A 1-Day workshop in Metro Detroit is an awesome adventure that keeps the cost and time-investment very reasonable!  A slightly farther afield trip – say Northern Michigan fall color or Hocking Hills in Southern Ohio in Springtime – are generally a 3-Day Photo Safari.  7-10 Day trips involve flying, renting a vehicle, overnight stays, etc.  The Photo Safaris are an opportunity to immerse yourself in the Art of Photography.  They include one-on-one and group instruction.  Bob is there to help guide you throughout the experience.  The trips are all planned by Julie and Bob – hotel arrangements are all made, etc.  We make the experience a fun adventure!

      We are interested in creating a list of people interested in these types of Photo Adventures!  Please follow the link below to fill out our survey.  Please call us if you would like to discuss your ideas and suggestions.  Juliann – 248-495-1845.  Bob – 248-941-4859.  Here’s to Happy Photography Adventures in 2021 and beyond!


      Gift Certificates!
      Great Gift Ideas!

        Gift your family or friends with a Photography Workshop gift certificate!  It can be class specific or you can select any amount and the recipient can use it to attend workshops, private lessons or purchase photography gear!  Call us to learn more!

        Gift Certificates never expire.  Your receipt can determine how to use them – workshops, lessons or photo equipment.


        Juliann & Bob DiTommaso


        Peak Design Cross Body Straps

          Peak Design creates innovative products.  Cross body straps, camera hand clutches and other options make carrying your equipment easier and better for your body!

          Bob sells the full line of Peak Design straps and bags.  Schedule an appointment to purchase these innovative products and make hauling your gear a little less stressful.


            Induro is a premium tripod made with carbon fiber.  If you are looking for a light-weight solution for carrying your tripod, you may find the Induro products are for you!

            Schedule an appointment in the studio to “try on” the variety of tripods Bob has available for sale.  Like every other piece of camera equipment, your tripod will impact your photography results.  The carbon fiber Induro products was well made and light weight.  Come in and learn if this is the right tripod for you!

            Vü Filters

              Vu filters are made with high quality German schott glass.  They offer a wide variety of filters to meet your needs.  From UV filters that protect your camera lens through elaborate filter systems that can dramatically impact your image, the Vu Filter system helps you become your creative best!

              Schedule an appointment to learn which filters would help you most.  Bob also offers a photography workshop on Filters periodically throughout the year.


                I am an authorized Benro and Induro retailer. Contact me to schedule a no-charge personal tripod consultation. We price match on-line retailers like Amazon and B&H!

                I learned to shoot from a tripod. To this day, I shoot a significant portion of my work using a tripod. There are several benefits. Working from a tripod feels more purposeful, it requires that you slow down, and it affords you the opportunity to step back consider the scene, and determine if you are crafting the best possible image.

                Tripods come in a dizzying array of, sizes, materials, and price points.
                How do you begin to wade through all the choices? I would start by considering your budget. A good tripod will most likely outlast even the most active photographer, so think about this being a once-and-done type of purchase.

                When you start to research tripods you will find all serious brands provide load rating data as part of their specifications. You want to buy a tripod with sufficient design to properly hold your valuable equipment. The load ratings typically start around 15lbs and can range upwards of 80lbs. They are best viewed in relationship to each other, rather than as absolutes. If you have a consumer DSLR like a Canon Rebel or Nikon 3000/5000 series camera with the kit lenses then your gear is relatively light. An entry level tripod will most likely meet your needs. But, do you have your eye on that next level camera and a few more lenses? If you think you are eventually liable to move up to a larger camera and lenses I would buy more tripod than you need today, and plan to grow into it.

                Once you decide on a load range that you feel is right for you, the next consideration is material. Aluminum is most common. I have owned several wonderful aluminum tripods over the years. On the plus side, aluminum is relatively light weight and inexpensive. On the down side, it transmits vibration more readily than other materials, and it can get quite cold in winter climates. Conversely, carbon fiber is superior at dampening vibration, is extremely light weight, doesn’t get as cold if you will be working outdoors in winter conditions, but it can run 3 times the cost of a comparable aluminum tripod.

                A properly fit tripod should be a comfortable working height without having to raise the center column. A significant part of the benefit of using a tripod stems from the stability provide by those three legs. As soon as you raise that center column you lose much of that stability. Just like load rating data, most tripod manufacturers provide specifications on their websites. Be sure you are reading the information correctly. Often the maximum height specification is with the column UP. Look for the height with the column in the down position. The other two considerations to keep in mind when reviewing height data is the closed height, and the minimum height. Closed height can be important if you plan to travel by plane and want to know if it will fit in your luggage. The minimum height specification will let you know how close to the ground you would be able to work.