Why I Launched Digital Camera Academy

Digital Camera Academy logo

So if you’ve been reading your emails or following along on social media, then you may have noticed that I launched something big out into the world last week. I opened the doors to my first ever online course, Digital Camera Academy. And I’ll tell you, it wasn’t easy and it definitely felt scary. 

It wasn’t easy because there are a lot of moving parts to pulling a course curriculum together and getting it to the people who really want and need it. It felt scary because, well, it meant putting myself out there. What if nobody showed up? What if nobody wanted it or needed it after all? What if all of this time and energy I poured into creating this course was for nothing? 

But in the end I decided that the only time I’ve really made strides was when taking some sort of risk. Taking a chance…and working hard. So I did it. I put my heart and voice into every piece of an online course and I launched it out into the world. And I have to say, I feel proud. 

This course is for moms, moms who want to know how to confidently use their DSLR cameras to take photos they love. It’s especially for moms because I am one, because being a new mom with a new camera is exactly how I got started with photography 8 years ago and I’ve learned a lot. There’s so, so much that I wanted to pass on to you. 

People often ask me questions about photography…how did I get started? What kind of camera do I use? How’s the photography business going? But the one question that leaves me with spinning wheels is, “Can you teach me how to use my camera real quick?” It bothers me because I so badly want to drop everything I’m doing and teach that person how to use their camera. 

Emily sitting on steps

I’m a teacher at heart, after all. It’s all I ever wanted to be when I grew up and I went on to earn two degrees in education and teach elementary school for 10 years.  So not being able to stop and teach someone who wants to learn kind of kills me. 

See, the problem is, I can teach you how to use your camera. But it’s not going to be quick. 

It’s not going to be me leaning over and helping you adjust a few knobs or showing you the ropes in a single conversation. No, it’s going to take a little bit of time. It’s going to take consistent practice on your part and thoughtful lessons that build on each other. 

So after letting this question nag at me for years now…I decided to do something about it. After all, I’m a teacher. I know how to write a curriculum. I know how to teach in a way that makes sense and builds on what my student already knows. I’m also a photographer with a thriving photography business. I know how to work my camera. I know how to teach you how to work yours. 

More than all that, though, I’m a mother. I know what it’s like to see your children growing quickly, relentlessly in front of your eyes and wanting desperately to save these moments, to collect them like worry stones in your pocket. Because if becoming a parent teaches you anything, it teaches you how fleeting these days and years are. They come and go in a blur of sleepless nights and carpool pickups. The days, indeed, are long. But the years? Where did they go? 

Emily holding coffee cup

Yes, I get it. I get why photos are so very important to you as a mom and why you want to be able to catch your own family moments in photos that you love and are proud of. 

I also get that being a mom means having a lot less time, zero personal space, and even less space to think. Learning something new like your camera can seem daunting. Finding time to take an in-person class, traveling there each week, sitting in a classroom with strangers and hoping they don’t realize that you just blanked out on the last 35 minutes of class because your mind wandered to your to do list…well, it’s all too much. Maybe later. Maybe when the kids have grown. 

But then..that’s the problem, right? They will have already grown.

So more than anything, I wrote this course for moms like me who want to learn on their own terms. Moms who are smart and capable, but just don’t have the time to travel somewhere and sit in a classroom these days. 

I wrote this course to give you the tools and ability to tell your family’s story with your camera. And I’m confident that when you finish the last lesson, you won’t just be able to tell your family’s story, but you’ll be able to tell it well.

I hope you’ll join me. The doors are open now, but will close on February 17th. 

Until Next Time,


Click here to read more about the course or click reply with any questions you might have. I’d love to answer them for you!

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