When I became a professional U.S. Navy Journalist in 1981, part of my training was in basic photojournalism as well as writing, editing, layout and design, broadcasting, and public affairs. It was a grueling six months of fast-pace training at the Defense Information School where one had to retain a 3.5 GPA (or better) to graduate. The average attrition rate was over 85%.
In 1984, the ship I was assigned to, USS NIMITZ (CVN 68), went into drydock for a year in order to upgrade the ship. I was offered the opportunity to go to advance Photojournalism training and took the intense three-month course. It was from that point on that my camera, a Nikon F, never left my side.
After serving 10 years in the Navy, I started my collegic education at the young age of 30. It took another 10 years at both Carroll Community College (where I earned an AA degree in Computer Graphic Design) and at The Maryland Institute College of Art (where I earned a BFA in Publication Design). I took no less than five different photograph courses including portraiture, product photography, and abstract.
Although I value my photographic experience more than my education, the classes did open my eyes to to ways of looking at everyday objects and how to capture them with artistic flair. The truth is, you're looking for a photographer who knows what he's doing and why. . . in other words, you're looking for Vulpes Noir.