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Capturing Story in Portrait Photography

Lesson 33 of 49

Editing In Photoshop® CC: New Born Portrait


Capturing Story in Portrait Photography

Lesson 33 of 49

Editing In Photoshop® CC: New Born Portrait


Lesson Info

Editing In Photoshop® CC: New Born Portrait

Now we can go ahead and open all of these images in Photoshop. I'm not gonna make any other global adjustments. So when it comes to making global adjustments on a photograph, you really have to consider the overall look and feel of that. If I lighten an image just because some of those shadows are dark, I'm gonna lighten the highlights, whereas I want those highlights to stay exactly where they are. That's why I just come straight into Photoshop because I know that I can lighten certain areas and mask off other areas, using layers and masks. And that's where I can be a little bit more accurate and direct in terms of the results that I want to achieve. So I just change the background there to medium gray. And we'll bring her full screen there. So we'll start with our little baby. Where is she? There we go. Because she was our fist shoot of the day. I do work with a lot of actions. I'm not necessarily going to use those, but when it comes to speeding up your workflow, if you've got a way...

of doing something, record those steps, create actions, that's gonna speed it up so much. I also work with a lot of shortcut keys. So you'll probably hear me say, you know, command this, command that. Obviously, I'm working on a Mac, but if you're working on PC, then it's control. So shortcut keys are my life savior. When it comes to looking at this image, and all of my images to begin with, I start to look at any structural changes that need to be made. Do I need to fill in background, do I need to crop this image, do I need to make any sort of changes like that? And with my original concept being that the cranes were more coming down in a sort of a tail-on effect, and then I, when I was doing it, I said, I went, ooo, I like how they're kinda sweeping around. So I'm gonna look at that and then possibly redirect those a little more. But I'm gonna look at, is my perspective correct, in terms of shooting directly from above, like is it, is that plane level? And I can sort of start to see here that the top part of the photograph is going down a little bit. It's only ever so slight, but I wanna bring that back up again in terms of that perspective. And there's a few different ways you can do it, but I'm gonna show you a really quick way. And then I'm gonna crop it. Once I've done that and I've got my background exactly where I need it to be, that's when I come in and I start working on the baby and the skin and all of those things. So I have a system with every image I open. I look for all the structural changes that I need to make in terms of fixing background, cropping, all of that kind of stuff, and then I come in and start to work on the actual subject. Okay, so, for this image, I really wanted to make this a more of an eight by 10 ratio, in terms of composition. I'm not going to crop it just yet because I do want to change that perspective. So I'm gonna create a copy layer, command J, and then I'm gonna take it into transform, command T. So we've got our little bars up here. Now, if I hold the shift key in, I can change the size of that frame. If I just move it without holding anything in, obviously it's gonna change it terribly. But if I hold the command key in, what I can do is slightly change the perspective. So what I'm gonna do is just bring up those top corners there. And then I'm going to push in the bottom corners down here. So that's just a really quick way of changing that perspective. So you can see, just bringing that baby up a little bit there. And I'm just gonna turn that background layer off and bring that layer down a little bit so it's all together there. So I don't need to work on that again. It's not a layer I need to keep open. So I'm gonna flatten that. I don't like to keep a million layers open. When I am working with highlights and shadows and things like that, I, and color tones, I will keep those layers open in case I need to go back and adjust them later on. But for something like this, this is my base image and I don't need to go back and adjust this. So I'm gonna flatten that, which is command, shift, E. Okay, so now when I start to look at the base down here and my potential crop, do I want to make this a portrait or a landscape? And you can see, with an eight by 10 ratio here, at a landscape I've still got a little bit of negative space over here and here. And the direction of this crane up here is flying off over there. So if we change it to a portrait, I'm gonna start to constrain that. So I'm gonna keep it as a landscape option. And you can see, this is where I'm starting to kind of see where that background needs to be adjusted. But what I want to do is, when I took this shot, I mentioned that that baby is going through the center of those top two thirds, in terms of composition. So that's exactly where I wanna keep it. And that was purposely shot like that in terms of creating the, that detail that's coming down underneath the baby. So I might just kinda come in here a little bit on the side. And you can see, I'm starting to bring the baby towards the center there. But I'm not gonna bring it exactly into the center because then I'm going to start to really kind of lose a lot of that distance around the bottom of the cranes there. Okay, so I'll crop that. Whenever you do crop an image, I try to get my crop as correct as possible in camera because when you are cropping an image, you're removing information. When I crop, I always go to the ratio crops. If you go to width, height, and resolution and you select how many pixels per inch you wanna crop that by, you're going to drastically reduce the amount of information that's in that file. So you always wanna work with the maximum amount of pixels. And so when you crop within this ratio over here, Photoshop is going to leave as many pixels as it possibly can inside that crop. It's probably the easiest way for me to explain it. Okay, so over here with the background, there's a few different ways I can do it. I'm not a fan of the clone tool when it comes to background, especially a background that has texture and detail. So I'm simply going to grab the square marquee tool here and just select as close as I possibly can to that little crane. And I'm gonna feather that selection by about 55 pixels and create a copy layer, command J, command T. So I can start to kind of stretch that area, I can bring it across even more, and cover that area. So we've got before and after. And when you're doing that, you wanna make sure that you are not creating any repetition in terms of the pattern. So I can start to kinda see a little bit there. Can see, that's, that there and that there. So that's that repetition that I'm talking about. So I wanna be really careful. Whenever I'm on a judging panel at a competition, I can guarantee you that if there is a, if there is cloning in there that has created repetition, there is a judge on that panel that will pick it up. It's really noticeable in print and under lighting conditions that judges look at. So I always wanna make sure, when I'm creating my photographs, that I'm not doing anything like that. Okay, so I'm happy with that. I'm gonna merge those two layers, command, shift, E. So now I wanna have a look at the placement of those little birds down here. And there's a few different ways you can do it. I'm gonna have a little bit of a play here with the warp tool. So I'm just going to come in and lasso around the bottom here, feather that, and create a copy layer, command J and command T. And then I'm going to right click and go down to warp. So what I'm going to do is just push them up a little bit and into that space so they're not so close to the edge there. So when you are using the warp tool, you do have to be careful because you are gonna change the shape of some of those so it's kind of a matter of going in, coming out, and having a look and seeing, oh, did I really distort that? Is it noticeable? So down and up. And it just kind of gives them a little bit more shape there. So what I need to do over here is kind of fix up that background. And you can see, where it's feathered, you can start to see underneath that top layer there. So what I've got to do is I want to lighten this area first to blend it, and then I'm just gonna use the patch tool to bring those two layers down. So I'm gonna create a copy layer of what I've just done. Command J. I'm gonna go up into curves. I'm going to use the little hand tool down here and just click where it's darker, where that lens vignette was, or that light falloff, and just bring it up a little bit to where it kind of matches there. So being able to use that hand tool means that I'm more accurately selecting the area that I'm working on. Okay, so I don't want it to lighten up here. You can see where it's changing closer up. So I wanna add a mask to that, a layer mask, and then invert that layer mask, command I, and now I'm gonna go to my brush tool and on the, on white, I'm gonna bring the opacity down to about 50%, nice big brush, right click, make sure the hardness of your brush is really soft for this kind of thing. And then I'm just going to lighten down lower here towards the edge where it is a little darker. And that's gonna make it easier for me to blend that area in. Much better? Okay, so now what I can do is, I can actually flatten that and then I can come in with the patch tool and correct it. But, yeah, which is what I'm gonna do. Command shift, command J. So I'm trying not to create any repetition here. Oops, oops. So a pretty quick way to kinda remove that. And you can see, as I'm using that patch tool, I'm kinda sampling different areas so that I'm not getting that repetition. And with a textured backdrop like this it's actually quite easy. So what I would do then is go around the image, having a look to see if there's any kind of lines, wrinkles that I need to fix elsewhere in that backdrop. Really quick. And obviously we don't have enough time for me to sort of edit these images from start to finish, but I wanna show you like in terms of that, those structural changes, how I get it into that shape. So I just go in quite close with all of my images and have a look at any areas that are a little more distracting than others. Up here where there's a shadow, I can even come in and I can select that shadow and go up and sort of spread it out a little further. I do love the patch tool. Okay. So now I've got that background where I want it to be, we'll flatten that. I'm gonna take a snapshot. I do this with all of my images so that I can go back to any step. And, obviously, making sure that you save on a regular basis and take those snapshots so that if you do get to a point and you go, you know what, I don't like that, but you've gone way further, you can come back at any time. So the next thing that I wanna do is go up into liquefy. When it comes to liquefy, I always wanna use this tool in a way that no one would probably know that I've used it. I do wanna bring this area here, but I'm gonna use the warp tool to do that. But before I do that, I actually wanna just tuck in the baby's bottom a little bit. See how it's just a little bit of too much white material there? So I'm gonna make my liquefy brush a little bigger. And I'm just going to, and you can see that I've got the cross over the middle of the area where I'm moving. I'm just gonna tuck in that bottom. And changing the size of your brush is really important so that it's appropriate for the area that you're moving. Okay, so giving that bottom a little tuck there. Okay, so not much of a tuck, but I've created now this really, really kind of bowl shape. And prior to not knowing the size of the baby, when you're making a prop like this, pretty hard to gauge how big to make that space or how small to make that space because you don't really know how big that baby's going to go. Or, when you're wrapping a baby, you also don't know how tight you can wrap that baby into a ball. Some, even big babies can wrap up into small balls, but some prefer to stretch out. So it all depends on that baby. So things like this, you kinda have to kind of work on. Right, so, like I mentioned, bringing this area here up. I'm gonna select quite a large area around this space. I'm gonna feather it. Maybe about at 22 pixels because it's a much smaller selection. Command J, command T. And I'm going to kind of turn it a little bit. I'm gonna bring the opacity of that layer down so I can see underneath. Start to line it up a little better. And now I'm gonna start to warp it and curl it around towards, now I can see where that baby's bottom is underneath. So the warp tool can take a little bit of practice. I mean, and I am still getting the hang of it. But it's all about playing and realizing that you can't break an image in Photoshop. And how I do it might not be how somebody else does it, but that's okay, I'm showing you how I would quickly kinda go in and do things like this. So now I've added a layer mask. And I've inverted it, command I, to take that layer off. And I'm going to paint that layer in where I need it to be. Bring that opacity up to 100%. So I'm painting it on zoomed out and this is where we can kinda come in now and be a bit more particular with the size of our brush, taking it off some areas. But you could spend quite a bit of time kind of perfecting these sort of things in terms of getting it perfectly shaped around the baby. I've kind of gone from out there to in there. So you could have a bit of a play with that and reshape it in a way. I'm trying to get through it quite quickly because we don't have all day to go through all of the images. But just to show you that I would sit and play with that and continually try to kind of mold those paper cranes around the baby and create some really pretty shapes there. So just bringing the opacity back there so I can see where I can have to take it off there. So I'm gonna bring the opacity of that black brush down to about 50%, bring that back, and just taking it off there. You can see that little crane guy coming through because I've used a big brush with a soft edge. So I can come back with a smaller brush now and come in over him. So we do have some shadows from all the different lights that were on yesterday. Which is fine, we can lighten those, but I'm okay with some shadows. But, obviously, when you are shooting this in your studio, you wanna be really precise with the direction of that light and make sure all of those shadows have a beautiful, soft falloff. Okay, so in terms of the rest of the background, I kinda wanna make that nice and even. I've got the light quite high coming down, so it's not low and coming across the baby, creating those shadows. If it was, then I'd stick with that. But what I wanna do is just kinda lighten up this side over here to match the other side. So I can do this in an adjustment layer. And I, you can use levels or curves. And I'm, bit of a habit here, using my curves. And again, you can use the hand tool or, knowing where that information sits within the file, you can kinda come in and just lift those shadows. So we've got our highlights and our shadows. So I can just lift that curve and invert that layer mask and now paint that on. And I always paint it on at a lower opacity with a nice big brush. So just lightening those shadows and evening that out. All right, so I'm gonna go back into liquefy very quickly, and that's probably the last thing I'm gonna do structurally. And with a big brush, I'm just gonna bring this out a little bit to match this curve over here. And then down at the bottom, I can just bring that down. Whenever you are using liquefy, it is stretching pixels and moving them so you gotta be careful that it's not noticeable. All right, so little kind of adjustments like that just creates that balance. All right, so to go from here, this is where I would start to look at the baby's face, the baby's skin tones, and start to draw my eye in to exactly where I want it to be, which is always going to be that baby's face. So again, I would lighten the baby's face and probably keep the arms and legs exactly where they are. Because if the legs and the arms were brighter than the face when I come up from, because if you zoom out, let me explain this a bit better, if we zoom out and look at that, the one thing that stands out in that image the most is those white cranes because it's the brightest part of the image. So then once we're, our eye is led up into that baby, we want it to go to the face first. So it needs to be brighter than the legs. So again, with an adjustment layer, we'll go straight into those curves. And they're a mid-tone, so we can lift those, invert that layer mask, and now paint that on to the baby's face. So the way that I paint that on, oh, she was so pretty, is following the highlights that are already there without over-exposing them. Usually the nose is, got like a, a nice bright spot there because it's higher. So I'm having a look at some of these little shadows here. Coming around, underneath the nose and around that chin. So now you can see the face is just that little bit brighter than the body. So I would go on then to do some skin softening. There's not a lot, really, I would do to this other than kind of going in and, you know, removing some of those sort of shadows that shouldn't be there, from the different light directions, from the video lights. But that's pretty much where I would kind of take it from, from there. In terms of the background, I'm really happy with that. I love the texture. I'm not gonna remove that from this image. But yeah, it's kind of exactly how I visualized it. So if we take another snapshot and we go back to our before, not a lot of changes, but now it's starting to really come to life. So there's, in terms of highlights and shadows, I'm not going to use them here like I would, say, with an adult or a senior, because the babies, like I mentioned when I was photographing them, I want the light to be beautiful and soft. There are already shadows there highlighting the features so they're perfect, I don't need to increase those at all and I certainly don't want to increase any of those highlights. If there were some really kind of distracting highlights down here, then I would come in, I would bring those highlights down, and I would just paint that into some of those areas to remove that distraction.

Class Description


  • Brainstorm and develop concepts for creative portraiture
  • Turn a client's story into a unique portrait
  • Design and build your own props and sets
  • Take great portraits of subjects at any age
  • Shoot and edit portraits with confidence
  • Increase the odds of success in photography contests
  • Move beyond traditional portrait photography


Tired of the traditional, overdone portraits? Dive into creative portrait photography by turning a client's story into stunning portraits with substance. Learn how to brainstorm concepts for a unique image based on a client's story and personality. Explore options for building your own unique set and props. Working with techniques like Photoshop composting and in-camera double exposures, learn how to turn abstract ideas into portraits with meaning.

Join Kelly Brown, a nationally recognized portrait photographer that's captured several awards for her storytelling abilities, and go behind the scenes for five live portrait shoots. Create portraits that span multiple age groups, with a behind-the-scenes look at portrait photography for newborns, children, teenagers, adults, and senior citizens. From brainstorming to editing, weave a meaningful story in front of the camera.

Following the live shoots and editing, Kelly shares insight into photography contests, from the submission process to tips for wowing the judges. Learn how to prepare an image for a print or digital competition.

This isn't the beginner's class on creating a good portrait with basics like depth of field and properly lighting the subject's face -- this is the portrait photography class for photographers ready to go beyond the basics to capture their best portraits yet using creative storytelling techniques. Stop regurgitating the same tired traditional portraits you've seen hundreds of time and capture creative portrait photography that inspires.


  • Intermediate photographers looking to break out of the norm
  • Professional photographers in a creative rut
  • Environmental portrait photographers


Adobe Photoshop CC, Adobe Camera RAW


As one of the most awarded portrait photographers, Kelly Brown is known for her knack for capturing creative portraiture. The owner of Little Pieces Photography in Brisbane, Australia, Kelly is most known for her work in the newborn genre, though her portraiture spans all ages. With a straight-forward, easy-to-follow teaching style, she's taught newborn photography and posing classes in more than 20 countries. As the judge for international print competitions and the winner of highly reputable contests such as the WPPI Photographer of the Year, Kelly also shares insight into photo contests with her students.


  1. Class Introduction

    Dive into storytelling portraiture with the why behind this type of photograph. Gain an overview of the course and see the story behind inspiring portraits.

  2. The Power of Portrait Photography

    Photography is powerful -- build the tools to unlock that power by using your own experience, challenges, and limitations to bring them to your portrait photography.

  3. Introduction to Newborn Portrait

    See the inspiration behind the newborn portrait and the props involved. Learn why Kelly designed the shoot the way that she did -- and how her creative storytelling grew her business. Touch on the elements that are different when photographing a newborn, including safety concerns.

  4. Find Inspiration for Newborn Portrait

    How do you find the inspiration for a storytelling portrait? In this lesson, Kelly discusses researching the subject -- the newborn -- digging into relevant topics, and finding inspiration for the shoot. See other samples of storytelling newborn photography and learn the story behind the images.

  5. Create The Scene for Newborn Portrait

    Take storytelling ideas for newborns and turn them into reality with handmade props. In this lesson, Kelly walks through different props she's created and how she went from the original inspiration to crafting a unique prop.

  6. Prepare & Pose Newborn for Portrait

    Kelly preps for the live shoot by checking the props and making sure everything is within easy reach. Gain tips for working with babies, including wrapping and posing.

  7. Shoot: Techniques for Photographing Newborn

    In the first live shoot, go behind the scenes as the story comes to life. Watch Kelly work with getting the baby settled and in position and gain shooting tips when working with newborns.

  8. Newborn Image Review

    While reviewing the images from the shoot, Kelly shares tips on composition, camera settings, and why she framed the image the way that she did. Gain additional insight into the shoot from student questions.

  9. Introduction & Find Inspiration For Child Portrait

    Dive into storytelling portraiture for children, starting with tips for finding inspiration. Build the ability to research and brainstorm ways to represent a child's story visually.

  10. Create The Scene for Child Portrait

    Building the setting for the story is an essential part of capturing a story online. Delve into creating a set -- or working with a composite -- for a portrait of a child. Learn tips on matching the lighting to the set during the photo shoot.

  11. Prepare Set for Child Portrait

    Build a set that creates an illusion while keeping the child safe. See the inspiration behind the set, then gain insight into tricks for creating special effects like fog and wind indoors.

  12. Shoot: Capture Child Portrait

    With behind the scenes access, see how Kelly created an imaginative shoot with minimal Photoshop work. Gain insight into posing and working with kids. When shooting portraits and a prop or element to the shoot doesn't work exactly as you thought, learn to tackle unexpected challenges.

  13. Image Review for Child Portrait

    See the results from the live shoot, including the exposure settings like shutter speed and focal length. As she reviews the images, Kelly further explains elements of the shot that she didn't detail during the live shoot.

  14. Introduction & Inspiration For Teenager Portrait

    The teen years can be a tough age -- so where do you find inspiration to create a storytelling portrait for a teenager? Kelly shares tips on finding inspiration for these portraits, as well as portraits that she's created in the past and where the ideas stemmed from.

  15. Create The Scene for Teenager Portrait

    Go behind the scenes for Kelly's prop designs for teen portraits. Learn how to build a unique wardrobe piece and craft unique props with a built-in light source. See a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the lighting and studio set-up.

  16. Building Set for Teenager Portrait

    On a limited budget? Learn how to create a crown prop with about $15 in craft supplies. Then, see how easy it is to create a "dress" from backdrops that you already have on hand.

  17. Shoot: Portrait with Teenager

    Craft a story for a portrait featuring a teenager, a technique that's great for high school senior portraits as well as any youth portraits. In this live shoot, see the lighting settings, the pose, the camera settings and more involved in the teen portrait.

  18. Shoot: Pose Teenager for Multiple Looks

    Introduce variety into the stylized portrait session by building in a variety of poses. Using the same props and set, go behind the scenes as Kelly builds several different shots into the same session.

  19. Image Review for Teenage Portrait

    See the results of the live shoot, including the camera settings for each shot. In this lesson, Kelly shares the shots and how she plans to continue the vision during photo editing. Gain additional insight from student questions.

  20. Introduction & Inspiration For Adult Portrait

    The more years a portrait subject has, the more stories they have to tell. Learn how to find inspiration, develop the ideas, create a storyboard, and work to bring a story to life for adults.

  21. Creating The Scene for Adult Portrait

    Go behind the scenes for an elaborate prop set-up for an adult breastfeeding portrait. See how Kelly turned the idea into a custom prop set.

  22. Lighting for Adult Portrait

    Lighting evokes the emotion of the story. See how lighting is essential to creating the mood for the image. Walk through the lighting set-up, including the modifiers, used for the next live shoot.

  23. Tell Your Subject's Story

    Meet the subject for the live shoot and learn his story. In this lesson, Kelly discusses the inspiration for the shoot and where the idea for the double exposure came from.

  24. Shoot: Lighting for Double Exposure

    In the live shoot, learn how to capture a double exposure portrait in camera. From framing each shot to working with lighting, watch the concept of the double life come to life in a portrait.

  25. Introduction to Senior Portrait

    The older generation often has the most incredible stories. In this lesson, Kelly shares tips for creating portraits of senior citizens that tell a story. Develop the ability to find and build inspiration in this lesson.

  26. Create Storyboard & The Scene For Senior Portrait

    From the subject's story, build a storyboard and scene to capture a portrait. See how Kelly assembled the set for the live shoot, and why each element went into the set.

  27. Connect With Client to Create Portrait

    Building a connection with the client is essential to learn their story in order to capture a true representation of the client. Watch Kelly work to build that connection, live on set.

  28. Shoot: Lighting for Senior Portrait

    Behind-the-scenes in this live shoot, perfect the set, composition, and lighting before taking the shot. Work with the light source modified by a softbox. Put it all together with the final shot and the perfect expression.

  29. Shoot: Be Creative on Set

    Add variety and creativity to the senior portrait by building in different poses. Gain insight into working with the older generation, including posing with a subject that likely won't be able to sit in one position or stand for long periods of time. Work to imitate the look of natural light, window light and even a curtain using studio lights when a window isn't available.

  30. Image Review for Senior Portrait

    Take a look at the RAW, unedited results of the live portrait session. Work through Kelly's thought process to improve each shot, taking better portraits with just minor tweaks.

  31. Portrait Shoots Recap

    Review all the images from the live shoots during the culling process. Kelly explains why planning the shoot helps to prevent overshooting, and what she looks for when selecting images.

  32. Global Adjustments in Camera Raw®

    With the shooting finished, jump into editing inside Adobe Camera RAW. Work with color temperature, get started adjusting skin tones, and work to keep composite edits consistent.

  33. Editing In Photoshop® CC: New Born Portrait

    Starting with the newborn portrait, develop a workflow for editing stunning portraits. Work with tools to correct perspective, apply a crop, fix the background, adjust props, perfect the skin tone and more.

  34. Editing In Photoshop® CC: Child Portrait

    When the expression on your favorite photo isn't quite perfect, learn how to swap faces inside Photoshop. Perfect the child portrait from the live shoot, including removing the safety clamps from the props and extending the background.

  35. Editing In Photoshop® CC: Adult Portrait

    Tweak the double exposure adult portrait from the live shoot. Learn how to remove a tattoo, fix highlights and shadows and more in this behind-the-scenes edit.

  36. Editing In Photoshop® CC: Teenager Portrait

    Work to perfect the teen portrait from the live shoot. Learn how to adjust the color of your props if you couldn't quite get it right when assembling them. Draw the eye to the portrait subject with a few editing tricks.

  37. Editing In Photoshop® CC: Senior Portrait

    Fine-tune the senior citizen portrait inside Photoshop. Work to draw the eye to the subject using a gradient tool and layer mask. Dodge and burn with a layer mask to continue to draw the eye when working with a busy environmental portrait.

  38. Introduction to Entering Print Competitions

    Photographs that tell a story are great for entering into competitions -- but how do you get an image noticed by the judges? In this lesson, Kelly discusses why you should enter photography competitions.

  39. Process of Print Competitions

    Photography contests follow a specific pattern. Pinpoint the difference between print and digital competitions, then walk through the process of preparing an image for a print competition.

  40. What to Consider For Print Competitions

    Sure, you probably considered factors like composition and sharpness as you shoot, but there's much more to consider when it comes to print competitions. Even the paper type that you choose for your photo plays a role in how that final image looks. In this lesson, Kelly walks through the different factors to consider for print.

  41. What Judges Look For Overview

    Understanding what the judges are looking for allows you to make the best choices when submitting to competitions. Dig into all the different elements that judges look for in a competition.

  42. Image Impact

    Creating an impact is essential to winning a photography competition and getting the judges attention. In this lesson, Kelly shares tips for making an impact on the judges.

  43. Creativity, Style & Composition in Images

    Composition meshes with creativity and style to tell a story. In this lesson, see a selection of images demonstrating how each element plays a role in the image as a whole -- and how that image performs in competitions.

  44. Entering Photography Competitions Q&A

    Gain additional insight into photography competitions with questions from students during the live class.

  45. Image Lighting

    Lighting helps create a mood in the image, from the source to the direction. In this lesson, Kelly expands on the portrait lighting tips from the live sessions with details on natural light, lighting direction, shadows, and more.

  46. Image Color Balance

    Color balance ties together creativity and style and keeps the image cohesive. Discuss using different colors to create emotions and tie together elements in a photograph.

  47. Technical Excellence in Images

    Technical excellence is essential to success in photography competitions. In this lesson, Kelly explains the technical details that the judges look for in a competition, and what photographers should consider before entering the image.

  48. Photographic Technique

    Gain insight into different tricks and techniques involved in creating an image. From building a connection with clients to demonstrate poses, pick up additional portrait photography tips using different techniques with a photography contest in mind.

  49. Storytelling & Subject Matter

    A story and subject that wows is key to getting a judge to look closer at a photograph. In the final lesson, gain final insight into capturing that story and choosing the subject.



Among a sea of wonderful teachers here at CL, Kelly is the cream of the crop. All of her classes are outstanding and this one is no exception. Amazing teacher. Amazing class. Amazing education. If you are hoping to stretch yourself to create deeper more meaningful stories in your images, or are feeling the pull of print competition but need some direction, this is definitely the class for you. Thank you Kelly!

Melissa Soto

Kelly Brown is a true inspiration. She has been my idol in this industry since I began. This class was amazing. I love how honest, authentic and genuine she was. But most importantly I loved her wise direction and teaching style. Kelly brown thank you for this gem. You helped light a fire in me. I’m so excited to start telling amazing stories with the skills I have learned from this class.

Marjorie Stevenson

Just loving this class! Kelly is one of my favorite instructors. She is very good at articulating her ideas and carrying them to an absolutely wonderful end product. Her images are always stunning. I love that she always puts safety first with her models. Thank you Kelly for sharing your creative visions with us.