Well, Hey There — Did You See the News Yesterday?

Well, hey there!

Well, hey there Nicole’s Classes readers! We wanted to double, triple check that you heard all of our exciting announcements yesterday. In case you missed it:

Meet our New Illustrator and Photoshop Teacher Holly!
More Extended Access and More Start Dates!

And we have a 30% off discount code good now through 4/30 on any online class purchase — just use the code ALLNEW30 at checkout to save!

We have lots of big, exciting things in the works for Nicole’s Classes this year. A big thanks to all of our loyal students and readers for your excitement yesterday,  and stay tuned via our newsletter for more announcements as they come!

You Talked, We Listened — More Access and More Start Dates!


We have more exciting news to share with you today… we’re extending access to classes and starting classes more often!

Starting in May, our Illustrator 101, Photoshop 101 and all photography classes will be starting every 2 weeks! Now you won’t have to wait a full month to join a class if you miss one, one will just start in another week or so.

And also starting for all classes in May and beyond, we’ll be extending access to our classes for as long as you need! While only the first 4 or 2 weeks will still be instructor led, if you don’t finish in time, don’t sweat it! You can access your classes after those 4 or 2 weeks indefinitely, for as long as you need! Stay tuned for more details on this in a coming blog post.

Thanks for all your feedback and for encouraging us to make these exciting new changes! These are just 2 more reasons Nicole’s Classes gives you the best online education around!

Introducing Our Newest Teacher!

I am so thrilled to introduce our wickedly talented (and professional teacher), Holly Hucklesby! We feel really lucky to have her at Nicole’s Classes and we know you’ll love her teaching style and you’ll learn so much from all of her experience. Read more about Holly below (don’t miss the discount code either!) and check out her brand spanking new Illustrator class here!


Spring Floral Arranging Student Work

The skies are clearing and the flowers are finally starting to bloom, so we thought it was the perfect time to share some of our recent Floral Arranging 101 student work. Read on to see some of their amazing pieces!

Our first arrangement is from Linnette Lau. We love the romantic color and feel of the bouquet and she chose so many great accompaniments to her main floral. Great job!

Floral Arranging Student Work

Next we have a floral headwreath from student Ashly Laker. We love her choice of delicate florals and it looks so great on. Way to go!

Floral Arranging Student Work

Floral Arranging Student Work

And our last piece is from McKenzie O’Grady. Her arrangement is so beautifully wild and fun and she styled her photo so nicely as well. Awesome work!
Floral Arranging Student Work

Thanks to all our students for their amazing work this session! Do we want to create your own florals? Let Chelsea teach you how in our next Floral Arranging 101 class!

Photoshop Book Closeout Sale!

Photoshop Textbook Sale

They’re going, going… almost gone! Our Photoshop 101 book inventory is running low, so we wanted to let you know that this is your last chance to get one before they’re sold out forever. And for a limited time, they’re only $10!

This little 7″x7″ book is packed full of information on how to use Photoshop to edit and enhance your images, and will be a great addition to your bookshelf. So don’t miss out, grab your copy of the Photoshop 101 book today!

Floral Arranging 101: How to Care for Peonies

how to care for peonies

Peony season is just around the corner! Here are some shopping/harvesting tips for getting the most out of your peony stems.

  • If harvesting from your own garden, clip them early in the morning or late in the evening when they are the most hydrated.
  • Clip as the buds are still closed but just beginning to loosen up, you might start to see color from the petals.
  • If shopping, look for stems that are in bud, but beginning to open. The buds should be firm and the leaves should be firm and green.
  • Re-cut stems when you get them inside.
  • Put into a bucket of cool water and let them soak for a few hours.
  • Re-cut stems at a 45 degree angle. This allows the stems to absorb as much water as possible.
  • Arrange as you wish!
  • Keep out of bright sun light and away from heaters, vents, and air-conditioners.
  • Peonies dry beautifully! Hang upside down as soon as they’ve opened, if you wish to dry them.


Photo 101 is 36% Off on Groopdealz!


Have you been waiting to purchase the Photo 101 class? Don’t wait any longer, or you’ll miss our 36% off sale on Groopdealz!

We rarely discount our classes this much (our biggest sale of the year is 40% off), so you’ll want to take advantage of this offer before it expires end of day Wednesday, April 9th!

Click here to see our Photo 101 deal!

We Love Our Students — Share Your Story with Us!


Has Nicole’s Classes helped you on our creative journey? Did you learn to use your camera or your Adobe software and build it into a new business? Have you used our classes as a springboard to something new and cool?

If that sounds like you, we want to hear your story!

We’re looking for Nicole’s Classes students, both current and former, with inspiring stories to feature on our site. And if your story is picked, we’d like to grant you a Nicole’s Classes scholarship! What if you’ve already taken all of our classes? Well, we have some other interesting opportunities we’d like to explore with you!

Send us an email at with a short write up about your Nicole’s Classes experience and what you’re doing with your skills now.

We can’t wait to hear where Nicole’s Classes has taken all of you!

… And We’re Back!


Hello Nicole’s Classes readers! Our scheduled server maintenance took longer than expected so we apologize if you’ve haven’t been able to visit us or drop us a line this week. But we’re finally back and should be fully up and running and better than ever!

If you’re still having issues viewing or checking out on our site, please email

Lightroom 101: RAW vs JPEG


Now that so many cameras offer the option to shoot both RAW and JPEG, I receive many questions about the two file types: what makes them different, why should one be used instead of the other, etc. I love a good analogy, so here goes…

Chef + Ingredients, or Microwave Dinner
For dinner, we could choose a microwave meal, or we could get all of the ingredients and cook a similar dinner. In my opinion, the home-cooked meal is superior for various reasons. The main reason being that it is customized to exactly how we like it. The microwave dinner is simple, you know what you are getting, but it is what it is, you can’t change it. The home cooked meal takes longer to cook than the microwave meal. If you don’t know how to cook, then the microwave dinner will probably turn out better. The microwave dinner is always the same; you take it out of the box, cut the plastic, press the button and close the door. For a home cooked meal, your skills will always be growing, you’ll find tricks that speed up the preparation, spices and cooking methods that make it taste better and exactly how you want, and after a year of cooking, your skill level will be far beyond where you started. After a year of microwave dinners your skill level for cooking hasn’t changed.