Those classes are usually a good place to start. If it’s organized by the right people you should be pretty safe. No one in one of those is going to start acting like a douchebag because they’ll get called out and ostracized pretty quickly.
Don’t worry about the shy part, no one’s going to judge you if you go and watch but don’t interact.
Even better would be for you to try to find a munch in your area, those don’t have the class format but you’ll be able to talk to people in the lifestyle and make some friends.
Person is too general anon. Interested as a submissive or a dominant?
In general though be careful out there, make sure your needs are satisfied and you feel safe before you jump into any kind of relationship. Discuss and talk about limits and needs, safe words, dynamics, etc.
Most important though have fun and find someone you can learn with and enjoy other things besides the D/s lifestyle.
And check out this post: http://quantumsatis.tumblr.com/post/69096818250