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Perfect Digital Exposure

Become a better photographer today!

Join 's Course: Perfect Digital ExposureWhether you're photographing at the beach, in the snow, or in your own backyard, you can learn how to handle every exposure situation with confidence. Join master photographer and author Jim Zuckerman for an exciting online adventure in Perfect Digital Exposure. Among the specific subjects to be covered: how to meter light, capture creative backlit images, expose for snow and bright sand, photograph in low light, and more. After completing this 8-week course, you'll never again say: I hope my picture turned out. You'll know it turned out!

Key Features

  1. The Built-in Camera Light Meter
  2. Protecting Highlights
  3. Taking Light Readings
  4. Exposing for Backlighting & Shooting into the Sun
  5. How to Expose on Snow and Bright Sand
  6. How to Expose in Low-Light Situations
  7. Exposing in Extreme Contrast
  8. Digital Solutions to Bad Exposures

  • Learn how to expose correctly in normal, as well as difficult, lighting situations.
  • Get inspired to produce awesome images.

$396.00 USD

What You Get


You get direct feedback on your photos from world-acclaimed, professional photographers. You can learn photography in this way from anywhere in the world.  
  • Learn at your pace, with structure.
  • Be guided by a real pro instructor.
  • Get your photos critiqued every week.
  • Join students from around the world.
  • Go far beyond any book or DVD.
  • Make great pictures, again and again!



Photography Instructor: Jim  Zuckerman Jim Zuckerman
Few people are able to spend most of their time pursuing their passion in life. I'm one of them, and I feel blessed to have had a love affair with photography since I began taking pictures.

In 1970, I decided to abort my intended career as a doctor in favor of photography and have never regretted it. Photography has enriched my life more than I can tell you. My career has taken me to over 60 countries, and I've seen and photographed wondrous things.

I specialize in wildlife and nature, international travel, and digital effects. In addition, I also shoot nudes, photo- and electron microscopy, children, and other subjects that stimulate my visual or emotional sensibilities.

For 25 years, I shot a medium format camera, specifically the Mamiya RZ 67, for its superior quality. When I would lecture, Iíd project the large, glass mounted transparencies, and it was really an incredible experience to see the brilliant color saturation and resolution of these slides. However, I went digital in 2004 because the technology finally equaled or surpassed medium format. I now shoot the Canon 1Ds Mark II digital camera with a variety of lenses.

I am the author of 12 books on photography. My work is sold in 30 countries around the world, and my images have appeared on scores of magazine and book covers, calendars, posters, national ads, trade ads, brochures, and corporate promotions.

For many years I've led photography tours to exotic places. These include Papua New Guinea, Thailand, Burma, Greece, The Czech Republic and Slovakia, Spain, Morocco, and Peru.

Sample Photos by the Instructor

© Jim Zuckerman 

© Jim Zuckerman 

Examples of Student Photos


View photos by previous students. You can make pictures like this too!

Robert  Olsen
© Robert Olsen
Robert  Olsen
© Robert Olsen

Course Outline


Lesson 1: The Built-in Camera Light Meter
How meters work and how they are fooled.
Assignment:  Upload 3 to 5 photos taken on Program mode. Make no exposure compensations and show examples of where your in-camera meter was successful and where it failed due to the reasons discussed above. It's perfectly fine to use photos taken before this course began, and Photoshop manipulation is fine, too, as long as you don't alter the exposure.

Lesson 2: Latitude in Digital Picture Taking
Assignment: Upload original digital captures done in RAW mode where you underexpose by -2/3 f/stop. Convert the shots to Photoshop or TIFF files without any tweaking at all. Then convert another version of the same three images where you use the slider bars in the Raw converter to tweak the exposure to make it correct. Pay special attention to the highlights - don't lose detail in them.

Lesson 3: Taking Light Readings
Assignment: Submit  pictures and indicate where the middle gray (or medium toned) area is from which you'd take a spot reading. 

Lesson 4: Extreme Backlighting
Assignment: Upload shots showing compositions that include the sun as well as subjects with strong backlighting. In your caption information, tell me from which part of the images you took your reading. If you let the camera read the light automatically, explain your rationale and tell me if you're happy with the results. It is certainly OK to use Program mode if you wish for any of the pictures, but if you do, justify it.

Lesson 5: How to Expose on Snow and Bright Sand
Assignment: Shoot something white or very light and expose for it correctly. This could be snow, a white on white still life, a bridal portrait in white against a white background, or maybe a shot involving a sunny day at the beach. Explain either with words or with a red circle on the image from which part of the composition you took the light reading.

Lesson 6: How to Expose in Low-Light Situations
Assignment: Upload pictures taken in low light conditions. Any subject and any situation are fine, outside or indoors. Explain briefly in the caption why you used or didn't use a tripod, and note your ISO. If you don't own a tripod, you can improvise by resting your camera on something solid.

Lesson 7: Exposing in Extreme Contrast
Assignment: Submit photos of extreme contrast situations and tell me which of the solutions you used, and tell me whether or not you think the exposure is correct. It may take you a little time to come up with scenarios that are very contrasty, but they are everywhere if you pay attention to light and shadows.

Lesson 8: Recovering Highlights
Photoshop techniques for saving blown highlights and black shadows.
Assignment: Take two images that have lost detail in the highlights and replace the solid white areas with detail and texture. This assignment is not about the quantity of images that you submit, it's about the quality of your work and the attention to detail.

Review: Voting on Best Work

© Jim Zuckerman 

© Jim Zuckerman 



  • Digital or film-based camera
  • The ability to control exposure settings



Who is the course intended for?
Itís intended for photographers of all levels as long as you understand the basic fundamentals of photography: how your camera works and f/stops and shutter speeds.  

Automatic exposure cameras are so good today, so why should I take an exposure class? Why canít I just depend on the camera to determine the correct exposure?
Automatic exposure meters built into cameras are machines that are programmed to handle average lighting situations. There are many situations, however, that fool meters into over and underexposure. This course will enable you to recognize when meters are fooled and what to do about it. Also, youíll learn how to fix bad exposures after the picture has been taken - when youíve assumed itís too late to fix washed-out highlights and black shadows with no detail in them. If they can be fixed, this course will show you how to do it.  

What kind of equipment will I need to complete the photo assignments?
Any kind of camera is fine as long as you can adjust the shutter speeds and lens aperture. Even though the title of the course indicates the focus will be on digital cameras, if you have a film camera and a means to scan your pictures into a computer, you can take the course, too.  

Can we use digital editing software like Photoshop or Elements to alter our photos?

Do you hire an assistant to help you write the critiques, or do you do them all yourself?
Jim is the only one who writes the critiques. You are getting 35 years of experience in the feedback you receive each week.  

© Jim Zuckerman 

© Jim Zuckerman 

Do I have to be online at any specific time?
No, you do not need to be online at any specific time. The lessons are sent to your email and you are also provided the Campus Square - where you interact with your classmates and instructor. This is also where you upload your photos to be critiqued by your instructor. The instructors are very punctual and respond quickly.

Will I have access to the instructor to ask questions during the photo course?
Absolutely! Students can ask questions in the special Q&A forum set up in the course's Campus Square, or can ask the instructor via email.

Do you offer a money back guarantee?
Yes. We are confident that you will fully enjoy our courses. All the same, for our 8-week classes, we offer a 100% money-back guarantee before the Wednesday that Lesson #3 is sent out. If for any reason, you are not satisfied and let us know that you would like to withdraw before the Wednesday that Lesson #3 is sent, you will be promptly refunded.

For our 4-week courses, we offer a 100% money back guarantee before the Wednesday that Lesson #2 is sent out from BetterPhoto. If for any reason you are not satisfied and you let the ordering department know that you would like to withdraw before the Wednesday that Lesson #2 is sent, you will be refunded within 7 days. After the second lesson has been sent out, no refunds will be given.

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