"Learn from a master of his craft": Ray Wells, picture editor of The Sunday Times.
Well, if you have been on a Philip Dunn Photography Course, Holiday, Weekend or Workshop, it's pretty certain you will have had a good time and learned a great deal. So please tell other photographers how much you have enjoyed yourself so that they might share the benefits of learning in a relaxed and informal way.
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One of the great joys of running the courses and holidays is the response from the photographers I teach. Many become personal friends. Here is a small selection of some of the hundreds of emails and notes I have received – all these comments are perfectly genuine and I am proud to show them here.
Vikki Butler – Photography Weekend Break
"Thank you both for your hospitality, good humour and some great photography tuition which seems to have gone in by osmosis – I haven't referred to my notes once yet!"
Roger Heesterman – Carlisle Cathedral Photography Workshop
"A truly wonderful day with excellent company. The Cathedral was far more interesting than even it's website suggested, with enough detail for numerous visits – no wonder you keep going back! It was a very good opportunity to try out new ideas, knowing that help was at hand with straight forward advice kept uncomplicated."
Ronald Whiteley – Photography Workshop
"Thank you Philip, I certainly enjoyed my trip to Carlisle Cathedral especially your enthusiastic tuition which I hope to put into practice. Some of it reminded me of a saying that I used to mutter to myself when playing golf i.e. K.I.S.S. keep it simple stupid! You have persuaded me to use the big 'M' more often."
Start Barkworth – Photography Weekend Break
"Such a worthwhile weekend with Philip and Norene. They were both so welcoming and took care of us from Friday evening through to Sunday afternoon.
Roddy Mungall – Photography Workshop
John Smith with Pat Ireson – Photography Weekend Break
Ruth Reddenr – One-to-One Photography Course
Graham Duncan – One-to-One Photography Course
“Thank you for a wonderful days teaching. It was a pleasure to meet you both, and my thanks for welcoming me into your home and for lunch.”
Elaine Barnes – Photography Weekend Break
"Thanks to Philip and Norene – and fellow participants- for a wonderful weekend. Every aspect of it was great (except the weather!), from the very warm and friendly welcome at the Selkirk Arms Hotel, the professional instruction from Philip which de-mystified those numbers and dials on the camera in a clear and entertaining manner, fellow photographers who each had strengths that we all learned from, and Norene’s care and attention, including making sure no-one was left behind on the quayside or Colin’s shed. All of this took place within a relaxed and very enjoyable social setting, and was well worth the long drive to Kirkcudbright.
Janys Lomax – Photography Weekend Break / Photography Workshops
"Thank you for your zen-like teaching. Sometimes I think I learn from what you don't say, as well as what you tell me. It all takes time and what a pleasure it is to learn." After Photography Workshop Carlisle Cathedral
"Many thanks indeed for all your hard work and energy in making the weekend a great success. It was certainly worth the long journey up to Scotland and I now have plenty to work with. It was great to have so much varied practice with the camera in such a lovely setting (especially for a 'townie' like me), and in good company." After Photography Weekend Break
John Smith – Photography Workshop Carlisle Cathedral:
Andrea Lingwood-Owen – one day Photography Workshop
"I attended the recent Kirkcudbright workshop and what a fantastic, fun day it was. The tuition was first class – clear and concise. The science of it all, soon became a language I comprehend. No questions were left unanswered. Philip's passion for photography is apparent and an inspiration to improve. My 'light monkey' will remain with me – always!! Looking forward to joining you on one of your holidays in the not too distant future."
Peter Ranscome, of The Scotsman Newspaper, Weekend Photography Course:
"Thanks for a great weekend – I learned more from you over the two days than I did in the previous four years of reading photography books and manuals."
Meg Young came to Weekend Photography Break:
"Just a quick note to say an enormous thank you for an inspiring and very enjoyable weekend. I fully intend to be back one way or another before too long. Thanks too to Norene for her excellent organising skills. Good company, good food and great teaching!"
Artist Effie Galletly – One-to-One Photography Training:
I am having fun putting all I learned into practice. That 121 was a good day for me and I am really appreciating all the connections I think I finally made – at least with the beginnings of photography!
Juilette Wiles came for a Photography Weekend:
Thanks so much to you both for a super weekend ! I had a great time and have come away with stacks of new knowledge that I will be putting to good use from now on ! Thanks again so much. I'm really pleased with the photos I took over the weekend.
I had no idea the course was going to be so rewarding. I will recommend you to everyone and wish you continued success with the courses and holidays.
Ann Clayton came on a Photography Workshop:
Thank you very much for a great weekend – learning while having fun. I had a good journey back. I admired all the light and shadows of the side light and the fantastic colours of the front light on the hills. It was just a bit of a problem driving into the back light of the low sun!
Please tell Norene I’m sorry I didn’t see her to say goodbye and that I think she is a class supporting act.
Dermot O'Reilly – Photography Workshop:
Thanks to you and Norene for an enjoyable weekend, I learned a lot, and it felt like I was among friends which made it all more relaxed.
As an aside, I was walking the dogs this evening, with the setting sun through the trees and reflecting off the water in the pools. I was actually thinking about the light, where it was coming from, it's quality and what it was exactly that caught my eye. I was thinking which part of this vista is the picture?
So it would appear that the light and rectangle monkeys have brainwashed me already! Thank you again
Lesley O'Brien – One-to-One photography course:
Just to say many thanks to you and Norene for an excellent day. Having come back and downloaded to the computer I cannot believe the difference from most of my pictures before. And that is before Photoshop!!!!!!
Seriously the difference is unbelievable. Automatic will not be used in the future.
Harvey Ellis – Photography Training:
…thank you again for Saturday it has really changed my outlook on my pictures, spent today at the coast in Northumberland using the magic 'M'! Photos are much sharper , stronger colour and just different class your easy to listen to, methodical style has stuck! Can't thank you enough hope to see you soon.
Kelly Toms – Photography Training:
A long journey but well worth the trip! Extremely tired but I couldn’t wait to come back and get today’s snaps on the computer.
The pleasure was all mine today, honestly, I have had such a fantastic day and it was great to meet you. I would like to thank you for what has been a massive learning curve for me and today’s experience with you has just made me even more enthusiastic about photography. I no longer feel so odd about the fact I enjoy photographing decay! I greatly appreciated your feedback and honesty and will take onboard everything you have told me to help me develop.
I’m truly honoured by your comments and to be on your website.
Please pass on my thanks once more to Noreen for making me feel so welcome in your home.
Sally-Jane Shepherd – Photography Training plus Photography Holiday:
I'd like to thank both of you for a super day on Easter Monday, despite the atrocious weather during the morning. Even though my brain started to melt (!) towards the end of the day, I came away full of enthusiasm to put my newly acquired knowledge into practice and I thoroughly enjoyed the trip down to the river in the afternoon. Thanks also to Norene for the excellent hospitality, the regular supply of nourishment throughout the day was very welcome indeed. I'm also keen to build on the knowledge that I picked up and so I think that a week devoted to photography would be the ideal next step. I'm seriously interested in the September trip…
Harj Gill – One-to-One Photography Coaching:
I wanted to provide you with my feedback to the one-to-one workshop day. I found it a great experience, it really was for me the best way to begin to learn the art of photography.
I have found myself looking at a variety of images since and commenting on the photograpers use of light. I have also begun to notice a potential image in everyday things I might see.
I really value your knowledge skill and experience and highly recommend your workshops to anyone seriously wanting to learn the art of photography. I hope to see you again, maybe in Menorca(?). Many thanks. Harj
Mike Traynor – Photography Course:
Thanks for a most memorable day in Kirkcudbright. You certainly helped to open my eyes further in the field of photography and I now hope to consolidate all your advice and tips over the coming days back here in and around Edinburgh (with Monkeys in tow – my wife thinks I've joined some secret society!).
I hadn't fully appreciated your considerable background but would complement you in your teaching ability and delivery style. When presenting or teaching I know from personal experience it really helps to pepper your tuition with anecdotes to ensure you retain the attention of your students and ensure key learning points are fully understood. I think you really excelled at this yesterday.
No need to apologise for the weather, this is Scotland after all and I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to explore and photograph both Broughton House and 'The `Shed'.
My time with you yesterday has certainly inspired me to do better and has whetted my appetite to return to Kirkcudbright and surrounding area in the not too distant future.
Thanks again to you and your wife for a most enjoyable day and your warm hospitality.
Paul Lipman – Photography Holiday:
Well, you have changed my concept of a holiday for ever. Every so often I let out a little giggle. Jan no longer has to ask me what I am laughing at. She knows it will be something about, that holiday!
Your tuition, enthusiasm and encouragement were without doubt brilliant, Norene's organisation faultless and the hotel excellent. And what about them others? A better group of chums I could not have wished for. I miss you all.
Irene Dunton – Photography Workshop Carlisle Cathedral
Thanks for a great day at the cathedral, it was my first chance to do really long exposures in dark nooks and crannies and the results look pretty good.
Choitila Guha – Photography Weekend:
Thanks again for all your help and attention at Kirkcudbright. We had a fabulous weekend and learnt loads!!
We've been trying to put it all into practice – we're going to Cambodia and Vietnam for our honeymoon in April and are looking forward to getting some great photos.
Guy Pyetan – Photography Training:
Both Cathy and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute. We came back from our little break totally fired up and certainly with a massively increased understanding of composition and light. The course was worth every penny and then some – thank you. Lastly please thank you for your relaxed hospitality :-> you made is feel right at home.
Robert Thomson – Photography Weekend:
Just like to say thank you for a terrific photography weekend. I have learned so much. Hope you are both well and thanks again.
Dr Jill Gregory – Photography Weekend:
"I would like to thank you very much indeed for a superb weekend. Your care and kindness was to the fore of all you did. It was so good to have your excellent teaching: positive feedback and understanding. It was exciting in terms of opening up many new ideas for taking photographs: giving a thirst for further knowledge. Plus the really comfortable hotel and lovely food."
Euan Sandilands, who came with his Dad, Tony Photography Weekend:
Just wanted to say a big thank you to you and Norene for a wonderful day last week. Once again you managed to teach me so much and inspire me to get out there more with the camera. Dad came away so enthusiastic as well – talked non-stop about it all the way home!
You both manage to create such a welcoming, relaxed and encouraging learning environment, it is hardly any wonder the days are so popular.
Duncan Gough – One-to-One Photography Training:
Thank you for a really wonderful and exhilarating day on Monday. You have opened my eyes so that, hopefully, I can capture those special images photographically to share with others. The photos I took with you seem to have added another dimension to the images – I should have been to see you years ago.
Phil Hallam – Photography Training then Photography Holiday:
Just a quick word to say thank you for an amazing day. I learnt more in one day with you than I have reading books or instruction manuals over the last 10 months.
After his 1-2-1 day, Phil booked for a week on the Menorca photography holiday
Eddie Dewhurst – One-to-One then Photography Weekend:
Just to say thanks again for a wonderful day. It was great to acquire so much knowledge in such a short time.
Janet Brotherton – Photography Workshop
I just wanted to say thanks for your hospitality and patience yesterday. I really enjoyed the day and now feel full of enthusiasm to go out and have even more fun and with greater confidence and hopefully improved results. Thanks for sharing your experience & knowledge.
Peter Frisby – One-to-One Tuition and 3 times on Photography Holiday with his wife Mary
First and foremost many thanks for the 2 days. I looked forward to coming and was not disappointed.
I've been on this photography holiday three times now and every time I come I learn something new. Especially this week we've had a super group of peolle and Philip has interacted with people absolutely fantastically. I'd heartily recommend anyone to come on one of Philip's holidays.
Michael Groom – One-to-One Photography Tuition
I just wanted to drop you a quick line to thank you for a very informative day. I got much more out of it than I had hoped and the methodology was spot on. You were right about the photos they do look much better on the computer and was pleasantly surprised, despite the weather. Please pass on my thanks to Norene for a lovely lunch.
Les and Anne Bothwell – One-to-One Tuition
I just wanted to say thank you for a great weekend, for making me think more about my photography and for making the whole experience such a pleasant one. I've just been printing some of the shots I took over the weekend and I have some very pleasing results. My motivation to "get out there" and use what I learned may be getting on Anne's nerves already. The damned monkeys really work.
Thanks again to both of you for an instructive and memorable weekend.
Cathy Roberston – all courses and Photography Holidays
Thanks again for a really enjoyable two days. It was a great learning experience, and you were very patient with me when I got frustrated about things!
Cathy is now a regular student and has been to several photography weekends and also to Menorca. After one of her weekends, she wrote:
Well, Philip, you did it again! Worked your magic on a group of (almost) total strangers, so that we all had a wonderful weekend of learning and fun. Thank you!! And thanks also to Norene for the organisation and patient posing. See you in May – can't wait!
Jenny Hellawell – One-to-One Photography Tuition
"…I can see things differently now – many thanks for your most relaxed way of teaching – I was dreading the 'school master' kind of approach – but thank goodness that was not the way!
John Rooke-Keene – One-to-One
"Thank you ever so much for two wonderful days in Kirkcudbright. You both made me feel very welcome and get the best out of the course. Back home I am making good use of the winter light on the old farm machinery and coming up with some fantastic results. Many thanks again."
Andy Dent – One-to-One Training
"It was great fun and has opened up a whole new approach to taking photographs. I feel that I have taken control of the camera at long last (having discovered the manual program!) and am looking forward to experimenting with all the techniques that we discussed. My understanding of light and composition has really improved, which was a key thing I wanted to take away from the course.
I hadn't anticipated taking away a couple of monkeys as well! – but I feel confident that between them they are going to improve my photography no end."
Chris Young – One-to-One Photography Course
Thanks again for last week, it was more helpful and instructive than I could have hoped for, and I promise to put it to as good use as I can.
Jo Bostock – One-to-One Photography Course
"… thank you for the most wonderful 2 days. I am still buzzing with enthusiasm 2 weeks later and the monkeys are alive and well (if a little rabid at times.) Even in a Monday morning stupor I find myself wandering through Waterloo Station, on the way to work, and noticing the light – thinking about how I could put a good shot together."
Mike Gove – Photography Lessons
"The course was much more akin to friendly banter about photography than a series of lessons, and all the better for it. I now feel both more capable of exploring photography and more confident that I can attempt to capture images otherwise beyond my skill".
John Washington – 2 days One-to-One Photography Tuition
"…thanks for the amount of knowledge you were able to give over the the course of just 2 days. Your enthusiasm, professional manner and humour made for a wonderful learning experience which I will never forget."
Fiona and Paul Macintosh – Pne-to-One Photography Course
"Just a quick note from us both to say how much we enjoyed last weekend. We both found it very useful and great fun. I've offered my first photo to the paper so we will see what happens. Thank you both for making it such an enjoyable day. Paul got his pics back, but of course none of them are as good as mine!!!"
Hannah from Berkshire – One-to-One Photography Tuition
"… The Light monkey was working overtime and is as exhausted as his owner. Thank you again for all your expertise and teaching; I thoroughly enjoyed myself."
Russell Turner – several Photography Weekend Breaks
Thanks to both of you for a great weekend. It's even inspired me to get active on the forum! I learned a lot and hope to put it to use as soon as possible.
Nicola Mitchell – One-toOne Photography Tuition
"Just a wee note to say thank you so much for your time last Monday, for all the imparted wisdom and advice, and for making me feel so very welcome. I enjoyed the day tremendously…"
Cliff Saran – Photography Holiday and Photography Weekend
I had a really wonderful weekend and learnt so much. Thanks so much for showing me how to expose correctly with my Metz and the tips on using reflectors and walls.
John Brierley – Photography Holiday and Photography Weekend
Great to meet you and Norene and thanks for a wonderful photography course. I can hardly believe how much I learned in such a short time. Above all, you gave me the confidence to just go out there and do it!
John Hamshaw – One-to One and Photography Holiday Menorca
"I appreciate so much the two days and especially thanks to Norene for her hospitality and the delicious home-made quiche. Thanks to you I now know how to take a stunning picture with just a flat, dry river bed as a subject on a lifeless, dull, overcast day; a wide angle lens and a simple flash. Most of all Philip, I have learnt how to see. Brilliantly!! My life has changed."
Christine and James – One-to-One Photography Course
"We both feel that our photos have improved hugely even after such a short space of time spent with Philip. The course struck the right balance between theory, practical advice and tips and getting out there and having a go – all offered under the relaxed and encouraging tuition and atmosphere created by Philip and Norene. It took me 2 hours to take down the Christmas tree because I had to keep picking up the camera to take photos with the changing light. The light, by the way, is a constant source of discussion between us and accompanies us everywhere we go. We both really enjoyed our time with you.
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