Though I’ve been a professional photographer for most of my life, I didn’t seriously think about teaching until 2010. I’m glad I finally did. Here’s why.
A few years ago, I was on a “photo walk” with a group of novice photographers. The walks almost always revealed interesting subjects to shoot, but most of all, they were just good old-fashioned fun. I signed up for them every time I could (and recommend you do too!). On this particular walk, one of the group members quietly approached me for help. I started to explain what I look for and why. Next thing I knew, a second photographer had approached me. Before I knew it, the group had me surrounded! But I was teaching. And I loved it.
That moment was a powerful reminder of how my career “began,” thanks to a commercial artist I got to call dad. One hot summer dad decided to put our basement to good use: He announced he would build a working darkroom. I didn’t know what that meant, but with my dad’s German background I knew it would be a serious undertaking. As the youngest of five, I also knew I had to be persistent to get his attention. That summer’s basement project and my own curiosity were my tickets for the family spotlight. Along with an older brother, I became one of dad’s newest apprentices. That small room changed everything.
My interest grew rapidly. I liked it so much I checked my 10-year old ‘Dennis the Menace’ persona at the door. Inside the darkroom, I was on my best behavior. Dad rewarded my curiosity with my first camera, a Kodak Instamatic. The man was a natural teacher. The more questions I asked him the more he’d teach me. I soon graduated to using his Agfa twin reflex camera.
Sadly, within two short years my dad had lost the fight of his life, succumbing to cancer at 45. But the seeds were planted.
By my teen-age years I was consumed by photography. In my early 20s I found work as a professional photographer shooting at first weddings then school shots, commercial events, fashion shows, portraits, aerial shots, architecture, interiors, products, and more. Fueled by my love of great design, I also worked for many years as a draftsman in architecture.
Beyond that first, special teacher of mine I’ve been privileged to learn from countless mentors, workshops, and even books. I am a lifelong learner. And I want to share what I’ve learned with you.
I’m still offering photography services that’s my bread and butter, the teaching part is my way of giving back. Don’t hesitate to join in on a workshop!
Inspired by the learning potential of holding workshops (vs. seminars or lectures), PhotoFusionUSA offers working laboratories for everyone from casual-interest photographers to seasoned pros seeking new techniques.
Founded in 2010 by professional photographer John Bodensiek, PhotoFusionUSA is connecting with other photographers to teach under the brand PhotoFusionUSA which is employing a fun blend of education, expertise, and humor. John places significant emphasis on teaching through field work. Nothing is better learned than when in the trenches.
PhotoFusionUSA holds smaller, more intimate classes over long stretches of time. As a small, boutique service firm, PhotoFusionUSA combines educational programming with one-on-one mentorship. PhotoFusionUSA specializes in numerous disciplines and techniques of modern photography, including Adobe’s post-processing program Lightroom.
Beginning in the summer of 2012, PhotoFusionUSA began to expand its offerings beyond the greater New York City region. Workshops can be found in coffee shops, parks, beaches, mountain sides, city streets, classrooms, meeting rooms, and professionally equipped studios.