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Creating a Fine Art Series

Lesson 68 of 70

Live Premiere: Layers of Depth 2


Creating a Fine Art Series

Lesson 68 of 70

Live Premiere: Layers of Depth 2


Lesson Info

Live Premiere: Layers of Depth 2

So that's the Samsara Siri's that I really wanted to show you. And, um, I'm going to stop sharing my screen now so we can go back and I can talk thio you and kinda and everybody a little bit more directly here, So I'm just gonna pop back in. Um, I do want to say a couple more things, but you don't have to stare at my screen while I say it. Um, it is so, so vital, I think, in creating a Siri's that we think a lot about cohesion and about what you're trying to say and all of that. But the most important thing is that you can answer these questions that I have written down here. Okay, it is vital that you think of your work is multilayered as having so many layers that you will never reach the bottom of that depth. And for me, for every image that I make, I answer these questions. What is the theme of the image? What is the story of the image and you'll learn in the class the difference between those two things? Theme and story. Um, and then I started answering three of the same question.

So I go through and I say, What is the first layer of depth with this image? Meaning like if I had to say quickly, what is this image about? That's the first layer of depth, second layer. What's the second layer of depth? What is it that I feel like is like underneath the surface, they have to dig for a little bit? Okay, Now what's the third layer of depth? And I go through as far as I can for every image that I make? And I might find a stopping point in that where I'm like, I just can't find any more depth in this image. Okay, fine. You will always reach that point because, you know, you're never gonna just, like, answer infinitely. But it's important that you do that for every individual image when you're creating a Siri's and then for those syriza's the whole. So when I look at this entire body of work, what is the theme? What is the story of this work? What is the story that you're telling, and then what layers of depth are there and as you watch the class, which I so hope that you will you will learn very quickly that I will refer to the cosmic onion, which is the many infinite layers of depth that will go into your work. So if you are watching and this resonates with you definitely use the hashtag cosmic onion because I'm going to be searching it and responding because I'm really excited about this idea. Um, the last thing that I wanted to share before I talked to Ken and a little bit is just the best advice that I've received personally from professionals in the industry, because I feel like so many people are unwilling to share this. Like if you get a review, you know, you don't want to share somebody doesn't like your work or you know what the advice has been. But to me, I've had the most invaluable advice from professionals in the industry gallery owners, museum owners and directors, all sorts of people. So I wrote down the four most important things that I've been told that I want to pass on to you as pieces of advice because they work for everybody. So the first one is that you have tow, have many layers of depth in your work to compete. And this is something that I learned at my very first portfolio review from a very, very high up gallery owner. And she basically said, If you don't have so many layers to your work with that, people can peel back and peel back and peel back then you're simply not going to compete in the fine art market. And I found that so interesting. Now I don't necessarily agree with all this advice. Let me put it that way. So I don't actually think that any single thing from this list is something that you have to take to heart. If you think well, I just wanna make something beautiful, great, make something beautiful. But then ask yourself, Why is it beautiful? What are the different areas that you can pull meaning from that from that single objective that you have? So, you know, meaning and layers depth doesn't have to be like this really studious, highfalutin way of thinking. It just doesn't. It could be lowbrow. It could be beauty for the sake of beauty. But just think about the why of that. The second piece of advice is that if you are going for a certain look in your work. Push it as much as you can because people see a lot of the same work. And I remember several different gallery owner saying we see so much of the same thing and like one might be technically better. One might be a little bit more innovative, but they want to see the person who's pushing that idea as far as they can, visually and conceptually. So don't be a scared. Don't be scared to push it far as you can, because social media teaches us not. Thio, like social media, teaches us to be safe, and people don't like it if you change and trust me, I've had so many messages I get, like, several a week from people being like hate your work used to be so good and you're so bad now and to you I say, I don't really care at all because I'm creating what I want to create, and I'm pushing myself as far as I can push myself right now, so that will always pay off. In the face of your work is a professional artist. It's going to pay off eventually, and maybe not in that instant, gratification, but eventually you'll find that sort of niche that you're going to fall into you're going to push forward. The third thing is people always say technique has to be perfect if you want to compete in the fine art market, and that makes a lot of sense because we have to create work that's believable, that you can totally get lost in, and it's an obvious one. But I've done a lot of portfolio reviews, and I would say 90% of the time. The thing that's holding somebody back is that they haven't quite perfected that technique that they're trying to go for or found that really sort of fluid visual cohesion in their work. So think about that, refine the skills, and I'm trying to do that all the time. I am for sure, guilty of putting a lot of work out there that could have been technically better. So for the sake of making this point, I think it's really important. I am a big advocate for just putting something out there over focusing on perfection, and I think that yes, when it comes to cobbling together your best work to put out to a gallery or something like that? Yes, make sure that it's as technically as perfect as you can get it. But for creating work in general and pushing yourself. Let go of that perfection, because nobody is going to be judging you that harshly based on every single image. And then finally, um, know your audience. That's the last big piece of advice that I've been told again and again. No, if you are going to sell limited edition prints, open edition prints, original prints understand. If you want to price your work high or low, understand? If you want to sell in a mass market or a limited market, are you going after galleries to sell for you? Are you going to sell for yourself? People will have often said to me that one of the biggest drawbacks of emerging artists and mid career artists is that they're not quite sure who they wanna be selling to and who their work is for. So just get super clear about that. Um, and those were all of my notes for what I wanted to tell you this morning or this afternoon or night, depending on where you are. Um, but I'm so excited

Class Description


  • Beat “creator's block” by practicing exercises to help you overcome it
  • Conceptualize a series that nails story, emotion, and connection
  • Execute a low-budget, high-impact photoshoot for your series
  • Edit your images for series cohesion and seamless compositing
  • Brand yourself and your art into a story that others can connect with


Creating a fine art body of work can be daunting when you consider that a great series has innovative ideas, cohesive editing, and an undeniable connection to an audience. During this class, Brooke will walk through the entire process of creating a fine art series, from conceptualization, shooting, and editing to branding and pricing. The success of a body of work comes from the artist’s ability to go beyond the connection to an audience; it must land in the heart of the viewer and then instill a call to action within them. Brooke will lead you through not only how to make your work relatable, but how to take that extra step to become unforgettable, and ultimately, sellable.


  • Intermediate creators who want to focus on personal work and find a deeper level of creating.
  • Creators who not only want to tighten the cohesion of their work but ensure that the full depth of meaning is communicated.
  • Artists who want to learn simple yet effective ways of creating a body of personal work.


Adobe Photoshop 2020 (v21.2.4) and Adobe Bridge CC 2020 (v10.1.1)


Brooke explores the darkness and light in people, and her work looks at that juxtaposition. As a self-portrait artist, she photographs herself and becomes the characters of dreams inspired by a childhood of intense imagination and fear. Being the creator and the actor, Brooke controls her darkness and confronts those fears.

After studying films for years in college, she realized her love of storytelling was universal. She started photography then in 2008, excited to create in solitude and take on character roles herself. Brooke works from a place of theme, often gravitating toward death and rebirth or beauty and decay.

Ultimately, her process is more discovery than creation. She follows her curiosity into the unknown to see who her characters might become. Brooke believes the greatest gift an artist has is the ability to channel fears, hopes, and experience into a representation of one's potential.

While her images come from a personal place of exploration, the goal in creating is not only to satisfy herself; her greatest wish is to show others a part of themselves. Art is a mirror for the creator and the observer.

Brooke's passion is storytelling, and her life is engulfed in it. From creating self-portraits and writing to international adventures and motivational speeches, she wants to live a thousand lives in one. She keeps her curiosity burning to live a truly interesting story.

*This course contains artistic nudity.


  1. Class Introduction
  2. Overview of Brooke’s Journey

    How Brooke went from creating only for herself to building a multi-faceted career in fine art photography.

  3. Your Timeline is Nonlinear

    How to incorporate the idea of wealth into your journey as an artist.

  4. Using Curiosity and Intention to Build Your Career

    Too many people rely heavily on either intuition or goal setting as a means of propelling their career forward. Brooke believes that there is a blend between the two that sets most professionals apart.

  5. What Factors Dictate Growth

    A look at how improvement in the categories of technique, conceptualization, clarity of voice and vision, and impact all work together to create growth.

  6. Organic Growth vs. Forced Growth

    The most successful artists are able to use inspiration strategically to create innovative works that regularly impress their audience.

  7. Niche Branding

    If you brand yourself into a story, you will be less likely to fall victim to boredom within your branded niche.

  8. Brooke’s Artistic Evolution and Timeline

    Watch as Brooke shares every important event in the past eleven years as an artist to see which were the most helpful in propelling her career forward.

  9. How Can You Get Ahead if You Feel Behind?

    When you learn to celebrate small successes like they are big successes, you will rewire your brain to find optimism in the journey rather than pessimism.

  10. Ideation and Conceptualization to Identify Meaning in Your Art

    Walk through several categories of meaning to figure out how you create and how others perceive your creations. You will learn how to layer the concepts of your art, create controversy in your ideas, how to make viewers feel something, and figure out where you land on the scale of fixation.

  11. Idea Fluency

    Learn abou how your ability to generate many good ideas in a short time is directly influenced by brain science, and then learn how to control your own idea fluency through exercises.

  12. How to Represent an Idea

    Ideas are represented by four elements: visual, symbolic, experiences, and emotions. Learn how to control those elements in your work by figuring them out in your work.

  13. How to Innovate an Idea

    By examining your sense of style, sense of idea, and sense of innovation, we will walk through exercises to not only create what is in your mind, but to take it further to stir yourself and your audience.

  14. Creating a Dialogue With Your Art

    Dialogue comes from provocation and response. Take a look at how to provoke an audience through visual and thematic clues, and then how to issue a definitive call to action.

  15. Conceptualization For a Series vs. a Single Image

    Find out the differences between coming up with ideas for a single image vs. a series and see examples of series Brooke has created to deconstruct how they work.

  16. Transforming a Single Image Into a Series

    A look at how to take a single idea and transform it into a cohesive series by focusing on visuals, theme, and through-line.

  17. How to Tell a Story in a Series

    Storytelling can unfold thematically, abstractly, linearly, and/or concretely. Here you will look at how story structure can help create a more impactful series.

  18. How to Create Costumes From Fabric

    Look at which fabrics work best for costuming, how color plays a role in costume selection, and how to tea dye or coffee stain costumes.

  19. Brooke’s Most Useful Costumes

    See which costumes Brooke uses again and again and how to build a costume wardrobe with a few essentials that won’t break your budget.

  20. Using Paint and Clay as Texture in an Image

    Brooke will demonstrate how creating texture on both skin and costumes can create a more dynamic look in the final image.

  21. Create Physical Elements in an Image

    Brooke will share ideas of how to create sculptural elements in your images, like using wire, paper mache, and more.

  22. Shooting for a Fine Art Series

    How you can create cohesion and conceptual flow across images in a series.

  23. Conceptualization: Flowery Fish Bowl in the Desert

    A description of the image being created and why it is conceptually and visually relevant to the rest of the series.

  24. Wardrobe and Texture

    How to choose wardrobe based on the concept of the image, and how to add texture to make the image more visually appealing.

  25. Posing for the Story

    Brooke will photograph three different poses, each one changing the story of the image, to demonstrate how pose can alter the viewer’s perception of the series.

  26. Choosing an Image

    Brooke will explain why she chose one image over another to demonstrate the need for angles and dynamic movement within an image.

  27. Conceptualization: Rainy Plexiglass

    A description of the image being created and why it is conceptually and visually relevant to the rest of the series.

  28. Posing for the Story

    Brooke walks through poses that become more and more complex, from posing the model behind a Plexiglas sheet, then adding water, then adding syrup.

  29. Creating Backlight

    Using a portable LED light, Brooke moves the light from the side to the back to create a more abstract image.

  30. Photo Shoot #1 - Creating a Simple Composite
  31. Photo Shoot #2 - Creating a Dynamic Composite
  32. Photo Shoot #3 - Creating a Storytelling Composite
  33. Shooting the Background Images
  34. Editing Samsara Shoot #1 - Working With Backgrounds
  35. Editing Samsara Shoot #1 - Retouching the Subject
  36. Editing Samsara Shoot #1 - Color Grading
  37. Editing Samsara Shoot #1 - Floor Replacement Texture
  38. Editing Samsara Shoot #1 - Final Adjustments
  39. Editing Samsara Shoot #2 - Cropping and Editing Backgrounds
  40. Editing Samsara Shoot #2 - Selective Adjustments
  41. Editing Samsara Shoot #2 - Adding Texture + Fine Tuning
  42. Editing Composite Shoot #1 - Compositing Models
  43. Editing Composite Shoot #1 - Expanding Rooms
  44. Editing Composite Shoot #1 - Selective Color
  45. Editing Composite Shoot #1 - Selective Exposure
  46. Editing Composite Shoot #2- Masking Into Backgrounds
  47. Editing Composite Shoot #2- Creating Rooms in Photoshop
  48. Editing Composite Shoot #2- Compositing Hair
  49. Editing Composite Shoot #2- Global Adjustments
  50. Editing Composite Shoot #3- Blending Composite Elements
  51. Editing Composite Shoot #3- Advanced Compositing
  52. Editing Composite Shoot #3- Cleanup
  53. Materials for Alternative Processes

    Brooke shows some materials she uses for alternative processes, or applying texture to an image after it is printed. She shows oil paints, wax, and more.

  54. Oil Painting on Prints

    A look at applying oil paints to canvas prints and how that adds value to original prints.

  55. Encaustic Wax on Prints

    A look at applying encaustic wax to canvas prints and how that adds value to original prints.

  56. Failure vs. Sell Out

    Brooke shares how the most successful artists straddle a line between personal work and consideration of audience.

  57. Create Art You Love and Bring an Audience To You

    When you identify areas of your process and craft that are non-negotiable vs. negotiable, you begin to identify how you can work best with clients and what you need to keep sacred.

  58. Branding Yourself Into a Story

    When you consider that branding is a mixture of personality, art, storytelling, and business, you can feel more at ease with your brand not just being one single thing.

  59. The Artistic Narrative

    Defining what stories you want to tell about yourself directly influences how you tell the story of your brand through your business.

  60. Get People to Care About Your Story

    Your brand must inherently bring interest and value to the people who are viewing it. Take a look at how you can begin down that journey.

  61. Get People to Buy Your Story

    From identifying your clientele to figuring out how you can meet their needs, shifting someone from an admirer of your art to a patron of your business is important in becoming a full time artist.

  62. Getting Galleries and Publishers to Take Notice

    Steps we can take to get representatives to pay attention, like the importance of regular interaction and becoming a resource.

  63. Pricing For Commissions
  64. Original Prints vs. Limited Edition Prints vs. Open Edition Prints

    Brooke goes through the benefits of selling original prints and how they can be done simply to add to your arsenal as an artist.

  65. Class Outro
  66. Live Premiere
  67. Live Premiere: Layers of Depth 1
  68. Live Premiere: Layers of Depth 2
  69. Live Premiere: Q&A
  70. Live Premiere: Photo Critique


a Creativelive Student

Brooke never fails to deliver. I found this course superb from start to finish. From exercising your creative 'muscle', demystifying taking self portraits, and showing that they don't have to be perfect before you begin editing, to walking you through her editing process and how to price your work. Brooke's enthusiastic personality and excitement about the work shines through it all. Definitely recommended!

Søren Nielsen

Thank for fantastic motivating an very inspiring. The story telling and selling module was very helpful - thanks from Denmark

Rebecca Potter

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Brooke for this amazing class. Inspired and so full of practical knowledge, this is the best class I've ever watched. You have given me the confidence to pursue what I've always been afraid to do. Watch this space!