Fine Art Photography: The Complete Guide


Fine Art Photography: The Complete Guide


Lesson Info

Find Your Genre

Then think about your genre of writing. So how do you like to write? What do you like to talk about? Are you trying to inspire people, are you trying to show people how things are done? How do you like to write? You don't have to assume any specific tone. You don't have to be somebody that you're not. If your favorite person online is posting all these motivational things and you love it, that doesn't mean that you have to be that person that posts inspiring quotes and gives advice and stuff like that. Maybe you just love talking about technique. So talk about technique. If you love talking about your gear, talk about your gear. There is an audience for all of these things. It's just about choosing the one that you love talking about and then polishing the way that you talk about it to such an extent that you seem to know exactly what you're doing. This is a funny point that I'm making, because I'm not saying lie to anybody. Let me make this clear. Don't talk about something that you j...

ust hope to know a lot about one day and try to be an authority if you're not, but, the more you can write and rewrite and polish what you're saying, the more professional it will look and the more trust you'll build with your audience because you seem to know what you're talking about. Sort of an abstract point, hope it made sense. There's this quote that isn't properly attributed to anybody, but most popularly attributed to Blaise Pascal which says, "If I had more time, "I would have written a shorter letter." I love this quote. Because it really defines almost everybody's writing issue. Which is that it's so hard to use a few poignant words to describe something that feels so big to us, and what is bigger in our lives than our art? To try to describe what we're creating with the shortest words possible is so difficult, but it's so necessary for the world that we live in. We live in this world where nobody wants to read anything long, so how can we write short, descript sentences that pull people in and is engaging but also that describes properly what you're trying to say. So let me explain different ways that you might need to write for fine art and how long those pieces of writing need to be. We've got the biography, which is like your about me. One paragraph is good. You don't need to go on and on and on. Have you ever been to somebody's about page and it's like two pages of text and you're just like, oh man, I'm sure that you're a great person, but I gave up after like paragraph two. It happens. So keep it short for the biography. The artist statement is generally one paragraph up to a page is quite appropriate for your artist statement when you're writing for fine art. If you're writing about a series, a paragraph to a page is appropriate, so if you've created a new series, maybe you're going to debut that series in a gallery. They'll often ask you to write something about this new series, that's an appropriate length. If you're writing a grant about a page or more is probably appropriate, so if you're trying to get money for a project that you're working on, you're writing a grant proposal, it's good to really go into detail because this is somebody who's giving up a lot of money just for the betterment of your project, so you're gonna wanna convince people of every little detail of why it's so important that you get that money. And then a juried submission. I would say two different things here. One is that you're probably going to have to write about your individual images but also about the series as a whole, and this is where I would say, one sentence per image is very appropriate in those situations, but also one paragraph or more for your series, depending on how much space they give you to write about it. This is my Wingdings example. I have never in my life had an excuse to use Wingdings and now I have and I feel like I've reached the height of a mountain. I've used Wingdings. We speak in Wingdings, as you can see. But really what I mean is that we use symbols for everything. And I have never felt older than joining Instagram and realizing that I have no idea what people are trying to say to me. First of all, I'm like, I can't even see it. What does this say? And then it's like, a person holding a book or something and I'm like, "What does that mean?" And I can't figure it out. So we speak in these weird symbols now and that's just how life is, and our tolerance for reading has become incredibly diminished because of this, because we're finding shorter and shorter and shorter ways of saying things that emotes, hence the word emoticon, emoji and whatnot, what we're trying to convey with our long sentences that we used to use. And throughout history this has been a trend. We used to speak in very long, eloquent sentences and now we simply don't. So how do we battle this? How do we express ourselves eloquently in the written language without losing people? And I have some answers to this and you might have your own answers or you might be totally lost and that's okay too. We're gonna go over ways to do that. An example is when you get a long e-mail. How many of you guys have gotten a long e-mail and you're just like, nope, and you just won't even look at it right then cuz you're just like, whoa, that's a wall of text that I don't wanna read right now. That is the biggest pain to me. When I get an e-mail, now sometimes I get an e-mail that's super, super long and it should be where there is just so much good information in there. But how many times do you think that happens in a week where you get an e-mail that's really long and it should be really long? I get those e-mails and after like two sentences, I'm like, I know exactly what this person's gonna say, and then for five more paragraphs they elaborate on something that's important to them and they feel they need all those words to get it out, but you don't. Brevity is so important these days, because I don't have time to read long e-mails. You don't have time to read long e-mails, we just don't have time to do it, depending on the volume that you get. So that is my biggest pet peeve right now is that not that we shouldn't be speaking in long form or writing long form e-mails and things like that, but that if you are, there should be a point to it, a really clear point. And there usually isn't.

Class Description

Creating a great photo for a client is one thing - but turning your passion and ideas into a series that is shared, shown, and sold is a whole different business. If you do it right, you’ll be shooting what you love all the time. Learn how to choose which ideas to create, how to turn your concept into a production, and steps to getting your work seen and even sold in Fine Art Photography: A Complete Guide with Award-Winning Photographer, Brooke Shaden.

This is an all-inclusive workshop that provides the tools you need to run a successful and creative business as a fine art photographer. You’ll learn creative exercises to find and develop your ideas, how to create an original narrative, how to produce your own photo series, post production techniques and skills for compositing and retouching, how to write about your work, ways to pitch to galleries and agents, and how to print your pieces so they look like art.

This workshop will take you on location with Brooke as she creates a photo series from scratch. She’ll walk through every step for her photo shoots including set design and location scouting, she’ll cover techniques in the field for capturing your artistic vision, post-production and compositing techniques, as well as printing and framing essentials.

She’ll round out this experience by discussing all of the details that will help make your career a success like licensing, commissions, artists statements, social media plans, gallery prep, and pricing your work.

This comprehensive course is a powerful look into the world of fine art photography led by one of the world’s most talented photographers, Brooke Shaden. Included with purchase is exclusive access to bonus material that gives exercises and downloads for all of the lessons.


1Class Introduction
2Storytelling & Ideas
3Universal Symbols in Stories
4Create Interactive Characters
5The Story is in The Details
6Giving Your Audience Feelings
7Guided Daydream Exercise
8Elements of Imagery
9The Death Scenario
10Associations with Objects
11Three Writing Exercises
12Connection Through Art
13Break Through Imposter Syndrome
14Layering Inspiration
15Creating an Original Narrative
16Analyze an Image
17Translate Emotion into Images
18Finding Parts in Images
19Finding Your Target Audience
20Where Do You Want Your Images to Live?
21Create a Series That Targets Your Audience
22Formatting Your Work
23Additional Materials to Attract Clients
24Which Social Media Platforms Will be Useful?
25How to Make Money from Your Target Audience
26Circle of Focus
27The Pillars of Branding
28Planning Your Photoshoot
29Choose Every Element for The Series
30Write a Descriptive Paragraph
31Sketch Your Ideas
32Choose Your Gear
33How to Utilize Costumes, Props & Locations
34What Tells a Story in a Series?
35Set Design Overview
36Color Theory
37Lighting for the Scene
38Props, Wardrobe & Time Period for Set Design
40Subject Within the Scene
41Set Design Arrangement
42Fine Art Compositing
43Plan The Composite Before Shooting
44Checklist for Composite Shooting
45Analyze Composite Mistakes
46Shoot: Black Backdrop for White Clothing
47Shoot: Black Backdrop for Color Clothing
48Shoot: Black Backdrop for Accessories
49Shoot: Miniature Scene
50Editing Workflow Overview
51Add Fabric to Make a Big Dress
52Edit Details of Images
53Add Smoke & Texture
54Blend Multiple Images Into One Composite
55Put Subject Into a Miniature Scenario
56Location Scouting & Test Photoshoot
57Self Portrait Test Shoots
58Shoot for Edit
59Shoot Extra Stock Images
60Practice the Shoot
61Introduction to Shooting Photo Series
62Shoot: Vine Image
63Shoot: Sand Image
64Shoot: End Table Image
65Shoot: Bed Image
66Shoot: Wall Paper Image
67Shoot: Chair Image
68Shoot: Mirror Image
69Shoot: Moss Image
70Shoot: Tree Image
71Shoot: Fish Tank Image
72Shoot: Feather Image
73View Photo Series for Cohesion & Advanced Compositing
74Edit Multiple Images to Show Cohesion
75Edit Images with Advanced Compositing
76Decide How to Start the Composite
77Organize Final Images
78Choosing Images for Your Portfolio
79Order the Images in Your Portfolio
80Why do Some Images Sell More Than Others?
81Analyze Student Portfolio Image Order
82Framing, Sizing, Editioning & Pricing
83Determine Sizes for Prints
84How to Choose Paper
85How to Choose Editions
86Pricing Strategies
87How to Present Your Images
88Example Pricing Exercise
89Print Examples
90Licensing, Commissions & Contracts
91How to Keep Licensing Organized
92How to Prepare Files for Licensing
93Pricing Your Licensed Images
94Contract Terms for Licensing
95Where to Sell Images
96Commission Pricing Structure
97Contract for Commissions
98Questions for a Commission Shoot
99Working with Galleries
100Benefits of Galleries
101Contracts for Galleries
102How to Find Galleries
103Choose Images to Show
104Hanging the Images
105Importance of Proofing Prints
106Interview with Soren Christensen Gallery
107Press Package Overview
108Artist Statement for Your Series
109Write Your 'About Me' Page
110Importance of Your Headshot
111Create a Leave Behind & Elevator Pitch
112Writing For Fine Art
113Define Your Writing Style
114Find Your Genre
115What Sets You Apart?
116Write to Different Audiences
117Write for Blogging
118Speak About Your Work
119Branding for Video
120Clearly Define Video Talking Points
121Types of Video Content
122Interview Practice
123Diversifying Social Media Content
124Create an Intentional Social Media Persona
125Monetize Your Social Media Presence
126Social Media Posting Plan
127Choose Networks to Use & Invest
128Presentation of Final Images
129Printing Your Series
130How to Work With a Print Lab
131Proofing Your Prints
132Bad Vs. Good Prints
133Find Confidence to Print
134Why Critique?
135Critiquing Your Own Portfolio
136Critique of Brooke's Series
137Critique of Student Series
138Yours is a Story Worth Telling