This week I began a six week course on Introduction to Digital Photography at the DeCordova Museum in Lincoln, MA. The class intends to impart technological mastery of digital SLR cameras as well as artistic considerations such as subject, composition, and lighting. Each week we are provided with a shooting assignment to be reviewed collectively in the following class. Look for photo updates with technical commentary soon.

I had used a Nikon N60 film SLR through much of the 90's, and by 1999 I had switched almost entirely to digital photography with various point and click models. Those digital cameras included my first 1 megapixel Casio, a 3mp Kodak DC210, a 3mp CoolPix 900 which I used for its ability to capture images from film negatives with an adaptor, and for the last few years a 5mp Kodak DX4530 with a wide angle attachment. While I like these digital point and click models for their convenience and ease of use, I miss the creative freedom available in an SLR. Finally digital SLRs have improved sufficiently to challenge any film SLR, but have also reached an affordable price for that creativity and quality.

So with the right combination of features and price, I plunged into the digital SLR market with the CNET Editor's Choice for digital SLRs, an 8 mp Canon EOS 20D with the default 18-55mm lens. My first shooting adventure will be this weekend where I'll get to know the camera and apply the lessons learned at DeCordova.