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Learn Photograpy Right!


Van’s Camera warehouse partners with one of America’s most respected and prolific photo educators to bring greater success to more photographers.


Photography and video class announcement:

“We’ve always had a lot of request for more classes and workshops from our customers. We always felt we had to offer something special in the way of who lead those classes. Luckily one of the top industry educators lives nearby and has become available to us.


‘John VanSteenberg has been an industry leading executive, company builder and educator for decades. what he brings in vision and vast experience to our classes will make them the very best, period.


‘So, beginning in the fall of 2014, we will offer a select list of new classes specifically intended to cover a wider variety of photographic situations from camera control, to many different types of scenes from nature, wildlife, portraiture, lighting, using flash, etc.”


Week 1 (Oct. 4th) Exposure

Week 2 (Oct. 11th) Preflight camera set up and Flash Photography

Week 3 (Oct 18th) All about light

Week 4 (Oct 25th) The Path of the Image

Week 5 (Nov. 1st) Photographic Decision Making


Making photography interesting, fun and retainable! That’s the effective way to help people successful learners.


Class Goals:

1. to make the many subtleties of creating photographs understandable and make every participants able to achieve outstanding image results in a very short time.


2. to make it enjoyable.


3. to cover a wide variety of types of photography segments (portraits, nature, wildlife, landscapes, etc.) in detail.


4. to explore, either or both, still and video image making with todays converging technologies.



Class Schedule & Prices:

1. All classes will run Saturdays from 11:00 AM until 1:00 PM.

2. Specific class schedule, click here: CLASS LIST

3. Classes may be added during the week based on demand.

4. So, stay tuned for new information.

5. The price per class is $69.00 per 2 hour class, plus follow-up.

6. Sign up for 4 or more classes for $49.00 each.


Class location:

All classes will be held at:


Van’s Camera Warehouse

4920 Whipple Ave NW

Canton, OH 44718



unless specifically notified of a remote location workshop.



Class Size:

Class size will be limited to no more than 15-20 people (depending on topic) for our in-store classroom instruction.


Workshop (field) classes and off-premises classes may vary but student/instructor ratio will be very similar.


Bring your camera!









Class List


AVAILABLE LIGHT classes (First Series)


The Core Classes

(Regularly $69,00 each now just $49.99 each this summer)

(Saturdays 12:00>2:00PM):


1. Exposure

Mastering image capture! Gain Control of Your Camera and learn how it communicates with you. Learn what can go right and wrong: how to properly expose under a wide variety of different lighting circumstances. Learn: motion control, depth control, histograms, the exposure triad (shutter speed, aperture and ISO) and more.


Registration Fee: $49.99 (Register on line here or in store.)


All on line registration closes 5 days before class date.



2. Preflight camera set-up and Understanding Flash photography

Two topics everyone will face eventually. Learn: color space, file types and storage media; Workflow (including an overview of RAW processing) and the basics of great flash photography. with one or more flash units. This class finishes the camera controls and ambient and flash photo part of the series. The remaining classes put everything into practice.


Registration Fee: $49.99 (Register on line here or in store.)


All on line registration closes 5 days before class date.



3. All About Light

Learn to 'see' the light in photographic terms. Learn ways to measure light and what makes the image "pop. Learn how to communicate your vision to your camera. Subject selection, contrast rations, key lights, color temperature, rim lights, reflectors, background lights, etc., multiple methods to set white balance, focus controls and issues.


Registration Fee: $49.99 (Register on line here or in store.)


All on line registration closes 5 days before class date.



4. The Path of the Image

This overview examines every stage of the process, from the moment you decide to photograph a subject until the final display decisions: understand every "fork in the road" to great images. Gain real-world working perspective and understanding of the artistic and technical issues and processes. Finding the subject, imagining the image in your mind, capturing the image, editing and optimizing the image, preparation for printing/display, display and finish for impact!


Registration Fee: $49.99 (Register on line here or in store.)


All on line registration closes 5 days before class date.



5. Photographic Decision Making Made Easy

Every image has 5 or 6 key elements act must be dealt with to maximize their impact. Learn how to examine and control the 5 or 6 key issues that face EVERY image. You will learn a decision making process that answers the important questions in controlling the key elements that exist in every image you make. What to do when you get on scene.


Registration Fee: $49.99 (Register on line here or in store.)


All on line registration closes 5 days before class date.



**Each class/workshop will include plenty of time for questions and for 'play' will be allotted to insure attendees really connect with the material. A follow-up review of attendees work will provide feedback and suggested alternative choices.




In addition to the above, we also offer camera specific classes once per quarter that are available at no charge, if you purchased your camera at Van's, and at modest cost to all who purchased elsewhere.


The class goals are the same for every topic:

  • to make the many subtleties of photography understandable and make participants able to achieve outstanding image results in a very short time.
  • to make it enjoyable.
  • to cover a wide variety of types of photography segments (portraits, nature, wildlife, landscapes, etc.) in detail.


These classes make great gifts, too.


Making photography interesting, fun and attainable!

That's how we make classes effective and successful for attendees.


Van's new classes will be developed and quality controlled by two highly qualified instructors who will conduct the vast majority of the classes personally. They will be ably assisted by the staff at Van's.


The Instructors:


John VanSteenberg has spent 40 years exploring photography from many directions, and held memberships in the Photographic Society of America, The Professional Photographers of America, Wedding and Portrait International, Photoshop Professionals, and The Photographic Artist Society of Ohio. He has lectured at over 20 major university photo programs and at countless camera clubs, professional and amateur workshops and seminars, and conventions. He has been active in the design and development of photographic equipment. He was a co-founder of one of the first internet based photographic web portals for photo education, in 1999. He has held number management level positions at various photographic equipment makers including Senior Education Manager, National Sales Manger and served on the Board of Directors of the Photographic Manufacturers and Distributors Association, International. He is currently working on detailing and preserving never before possible studies of the greatest surviving cultural heritage objects from the past 3000 years of social development.


Keith Caretta has spend the last 30 years dealing with thousands of customer issues and teaching classes and overseeing staff development at Van's. He has vast experience in individual camera models, lab management, the how and why of the controls and the ways to enhance typical picture taking. Nobody is better able to answer day to day photographic questions.





Periodically, we will run special excursion workshops for limited size groups.


The abundant nature and wildlife resources here in NE Ohio are often overlooked in favor of more far flung locations. We will reverse that. We are lucky enough to have access to some of Ohio’s least known and accessible natural resources.


An example of an advanced class might be to take a group of 20 or so people photographing bird migrations at one of the parks in the flight path along Lake Erie. These expeditions will be lead by experts in each field.


For example: Mike Mainhart might lead what we may call “discovery trips” the birding, boating and kayaking trips. You might learn the best location positions to set up for great images. Learn animal behavior patterns and how to capitalize on them. Learn the best times of the year. the best times of day, etc.


Each workshop will be accompanied by a two-hour evening lecture and preparation session the evening before the field trip.


Another example:

Working in RAW made easy, fast and powerful. Full version with ICC profiling, etc. (TBA)


Different examples might be to invite a Nationally renowned photographer to come and teach something in Photoshop, portraiture, boudoir or forensics.


The possibilities are almost limitless. We want to know what you would want us to create for you. So, let us know ASAP. We might make it happen!


About John

For almost 50 years, John has been an a respected and acknowledged leader in the photographic industry both in the equipment and tools area and in the education area. An accomplished photographer by college, in his career, John has photographed everything from nature and wildlife, to sports in action, to portraiture, glamour, concert images and macro.


He has conducted hundreds of training programs for both professional photographers and weekend hobbyists and enthusiasts all across America. He lead the development of the most wide ranging photographic education programs provided by any equipment manufacturer, benefiting photographers of every intention. His training programs for both photographic retail sales associates and wholesale representatives and dedication to helping others become successful photographers and instructors has lead to nationwide recognition and respect.


Make it interesting, fun and retainable! That’s the goal and the effective way to help people succeed.......


In addition, for 35 years, John represented the world’s leading lens maker (Tamron Group Ltd) via Tamron USA, Inc. as everything from an independent rep, to Regional Sales Manager, To National Sales Manager, to Special Markets and Senior Education Manager.


He has held memberships in:

  • The Photographic Society of America
    (Where he presented “I Challenge You to Print” program at their International Convention.)
  • The Professional Photographers of America
    (Where he took the professional portraiture certification examination and passed in record time. And where he has lectured to many local and regional chapters.)
  • Wedding and Portrait Photographers International
  • The Society of Photoshop Professionals
  • The Photographic Manufacturers and Distributors Association
    (where he spent two years on the International Board of Directors).
  • The Photographic Artists Society of Ohio
    (where he spent 3 years on the Board of Directors)


He has lectured at:

  • Over twenty colleges and universities;
  • Dozens of camera clubs;
  • Hundreds of in store events;
  • Hundreds of photographic excursions.
  • He has been responsible for the development of the industry’s widest ranging photo instruction program run by any manufacturer.


He co-founded:

  • with legendary photographers Monte Zucker and Gary Bernstein (which was the first on-line professional photography learning portal).


  • The Hughes Center for Creative Imaging with Robert Hughes, (M. Photog., MEI, CR, ASP. ALPE, CPP).


  • i Cteate Entertainment, LLC: an audio-video production company and music production company and publisher (see: ).






© JVS (2): Shawn Porter, Welterweight

Champion of the World, March 2014, Las Vegas



©JVS (3): Shawn Porter, Amateur

Championship 2008



About Mike

Mike is freelance outdoor photographer and journalist living in northeast Ohio specializing in wildlife and nature photography. His work is regularly published in the Ohio Outdoor News, Leisure Living Magazine, Virginia Sportsman and several county visitor bureau brochures in Ohio and Pennsylvania. One of his photos was selected for the cover of the 2012 Kentucky fishing regulations. He is a current board member of Outdoor Writers of Ohio (OWO) and a member of the Kentucky Outdoor Press Association. And, he’s received numerous photo awards including the (OWO) 2012 People's Choice Award.


Nobody knows the lakes, rivers and woodlands of Ohio better than Mike. HIs extensive time ‘in the field’ has given him a vast intimate knowledge of both public access and protected state-owned property. His skill at searching out distinct and unique locations and his experience with animal behavior makes him the perfect expedition leader for photo safaris.


Mike will be leading excursion workshops into many totally unique Ohio nature opportunities. Typically, these will be an evening class with an all day excursion to photograph. Topics will vary and delve into all types of outdoor activities, from bird and animal observation to landscape, to nighttime image creation to much more.


Self taught as a photographer, woodsman, kayaker, canoer, camper, this explorer of natural wonders, Mike is friendly, patient and very skilled at helping others enjoy and photograph nature.


Specializes in: nature photography (day or night), wildlife, and outdoor activities.







Van's Camera

4920 Whipple Ave NW

Canton, Ohio, 44718


Phone: (330) 493-3534


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