Lumos Studio

South Carolina Wedding Photography Blog

Why We Go to School in the Summer

No, we didn’t flunk Phys-Ed class.

Since Wendy is a teacher and I taught for several years, you’d think that school is the last place we’d want to spend our summer. (Yes, kids, your teachers look forward to summer as much as you, and probably much, much more.) But for the last three years we’ve spent four days of each summer on the campus of USC taking classes. Why would we do this voluntarily? Because we’ve gotten to study the art of image-making with some of the best photographers in the country.

The school is The Lamarr Williamson School of Photography: an annual collection of workshops put on by the Professional Photographers of South Carolina. This year featured an amazing group of instructors including Judy Host, Lou Freeman, and Louis Tonsmeire. Wendy and I studied with Ted and Rachel Linczak of Linczak Photography, who, in addition to being spectacular photographers and educators, are a great couple to hang out with.

Wendy and I keep coming back to the Lamarr School because we truly believe that photography is an art and a craft, and that great art cannot be created consistently without hard work and study. The instructors at the Lamarr School are committed to their craft, and have spent years (usually decades) becoming masters of it–not only learning the rules, but how to obey and to break them in ways that surprise and delight the viewer.

A bride and a groom at USC

The image above is one that Wendy and I created after Ted and Rachel sent us off with our class’s models to put into practice some of what we’d learned during our first two days of study. We were less than half way through the class and already we were seeing new ways to photograph our clients that, hopefully, will knock their friggin’ socks off.

On Wednesday, students submitted our favorite photos taken at the school for the instructors to judge and ours (the one above) won the best image award! [Insert photo of Wendy and me fist-bumping.] That felt pretty amazing, but it’s also humbling, because The Lamarr School is filled with incredibly talented students, and we were up against photos that took my breath away.

That’s the other great thing about the Lamarr School: the students. Everyone in our class was already a truly skilled photographer, but they were committed to excellence–to continual growth and to never being satisfied with “good enough”. They were also really encouraging and a lot of fun to hang around.

Because of all of this, for the foreseeable future, Wendy and I will continue to go to summer school.

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