This is an interesting topic, since it used to be something photographers dealt with when ordering prints. You could get them with glossy or matte paper (shiny or less-reflective). Now the question rears up with computer screens.
Most Macintosh computers now come with a glossy screen. It provides more vibrant colors and richer blacks, to many users. The biggest shortcoming with the glossy screen is that when you are in bright light, like outdoors on a sunny day, the screen becomes a mirror, with the glare making it almost impossible to see text or the image on the screen.
But most photographers prefer a matte screen. The colors and blacks on the glossy screen can be misleading, and the matte screen provides you with a closer look to what you will get on the prints that many users consider the final output for their photography.
So our recommendation is: matte screens on your Mac Plus. But ...
Our recommendation is only that. A recommendation. You don’t have to have a matte screen. Or even a Mac Plus. You need a computer you can bring to class (sorry, an iPad won’t cut it). A PC is acceptable. We recommend the Mac because most pro photographers use them, but not all. If you want to go with a PC, this is okay. You just have to know that the course will deal with Mac key commands and instructions, and you will have to convert (it isn’t that hard). Don’t think you need to buy a new laptop just to take the program.
The same applies to the recommended cameras. You can substitute other makers. Canon is every bit as good as Nikon, and is favoured by just as many pros. We chose Nikon arbitrarily, since we want to build our collection of loaner lenses as quickly as possible, and thus can only offer one make. Nikon lenses will not fit on a Canon. But so long as you don’t need to borrow school lenses, the Canon is fine. As are many other makes. The camera must be a DSLR, and you need to be able to access a manual mode, and shoot 10 minutes of video. (And if you can’t do video, you can buy, rent or borrow a video camera for those second year courses).
If you want to know if a particular camera or computer will be sufficient for the program, feel free to post a response to this blog below, or email either Richard or Don to get an opinion.