creative research gallery and drawing center
a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization




From Toy Cameras to the 4x5
and Beyond

Taught by Michael Wilson

Sundays, 1:30–4:30pm

4 Class Meetings:
Mar. 6
Mar. 20
Apr. 3
Apr. 17

Registration Deadline: March 3, 2022

[ *** REGISTER HERE *** ]

Description: Join us as we explore the immense range of possibilities that different cameras and film formats can afford a photographer. For the first time ever, students will have structured chance to experiment with the wide variety of cameras that the Drawing Center has been collecting since we launched our photography programming five years ago!

In this course, students will:

  • Consider the distinctive qualities and unique potentials that different cameras and film formats bring to a photograph.
  • Gain insight into advantages/disadvantages, strengths/weaknesses of different cameras and formats.
  • Get hands-on experience using cameras ranging from low-fi “toy” cameras (i.e. Holga, Lomo and Diana cameras) to a large format sheet film camera.
  • Shoot and develop various film formats from 35mm to medium format to sheet film.


Materials List: ( — link to PDF — )


Stu Levy




About the instructor:

Michael Wilson is a life-long resident of Cincinnati residing in Price Hill. He developed his interest in photography while attending Northern Kentucky University where he earned a bachelor of fine arts in 1981. His work has been featured in numerous exhibitions at such local venues as Baker Hunt Foundation (Covington, Ky.); Thomas More Gallery, Thomas More College (Crestview Hills, Ky.); In Situ Gallery (Cincinnati, Ohio); Carnegie Visual & Performing Arts Center (Covington, Ky.); as well as the Cincinnati Art Museum and Contemporary Arts Center. Wilson's photographs have been exhibited regionally at the J. B. Speed Museum (Louisville, Ky.); Rosewood Arts Centre (Kettering, Ohio); and Cleveland Center for Contemporary Art (Cleveland, Ohio). His work is represented in the Cincinnati corporate collections of E. W. Scripps; PNC Bank; Frost & Jacobs; Deloitte & Touche; and Duke Energy. He is also represented in the collections of the Cincinnati Art Museum and the J. B. Speed Museum. In addition, his images have been featured in more than three hundred photographic projects working with musicians and record labels.

Among the many artists Michael has photographed are: Lyle Lovett, B. B. King, Waylon Jennings, Randy Newman, Emmylou Harris, Bill Frisell, David Byrne, Philip Glass, Dawn Upshaw, and Doc Watson. Clients include: Nonesuch Records, Warner Brothers Records, Sony Music, Capitol Records, Alfred A. Knopf, Penguin Putnam, Mother Jones Magazine, Health Magazine, Uncut Magazine, and Pentagram Design. 

Michael also moderates Manifest Drawing Center’s Open Photography Lab on Sunday nights.


LOCATION: Unless otherwise specified, all courses are hosted at Manifest's Drawing Center Studios in Walnut Hills at 656 E. McMillan St. (second floor) (see map and directions below). Manifest's new studio facility provides two studio classrooms, private lesson space, a darkroom, film processing room, and a multi-purpose lecture and class meeting space all totaling over 4000 square-feet. The studios are outfitted with professional equipment, furniture, and study aids.

Map to Manifest's Walnut Hills Studios   |   Studio Calendar   |   Darkroom Calendar

  Season Funder:

Manifest's 18th season is funded in part by a grant from the Josephine S. Russell Charitable Trust, PNC Bank, Trustee. This season's programming is also supported by the generosity of tens of thousands of contributors to the ArtsWave Community Campaign, by a sustainability grant from the Ohio Arts Council, and through the generous direct contributions of individual supporters and private foundations who care deeply about the visual arts.

gallery hours:

tues-fri 12-7pm, sat noon-5pm
(or by appointment)
view calendar

closed Sun and Mon

Contribute to our Annual Fund



gallery map
2727 woodburn avenue
cincinnati, ohio 45206

drawing center map
656 E. McMillan St.
cincinnati, ohio 45206



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