Fine Art Photography: The Complete Guide


Lesson Info

Shoot: Wall Paper Image

For this image we're creating a wall paper scene, but the problem is that we don't actually have any wall paper. We don't have any roll of wall paper, we don't have any wall paper on the wall, so what we're going to try to do is make it look like we are in a room that is covered in wall paper, that is also peeling off over the top of our subject. So how do we do that with a bed sheet? The answer is that I'm not sure if I know exactly how to do that with a bed sheet, but we're going to try our best to figure out if it's going to work. So we're going to have our subject standing just like this against the wall and I'm going to put a little bit in post of this texture, this pattern of the wall paper onto her dress so that she really blends in with the scene so that it's almost like the wall that's crumbling around her is taking her into the wall. That's going to be the goal here and it's going to be a fairly simple image to shoot. What I have to get is this wall without any bed sheet on i...

t by itself which I'll get totally separately from our model. I'm going to photograph the wall by itself with this bed sheet on it and then I'm going to photograph our subject standing in here with this bed sheet flopping over top of her so that it looks like there is believable wall paper peeling all around her. I don't know how this one's gonna go, this one's making me a little bit nervous but that's good to try new things, to see if you can work in an environment like this, and try to make it work to your advantage. That's what we're gonna do right now so let's get you over here, barefoot as usual, thank you. And I'm just gonna have you face the wall. Really, really simple, you don't have to do anything. And then I'm going to take a step back, get my settings, and I'm going to shoot this one just as it is to just sorta get a baseline of what my settings need to be, where my focus is. Okay so I'm taking one picture there. I can also go ahead and shoot the floor and images all around the subject. I'm on a 50 millimeter lens, so I'm on a lens right now that allows me to get most of my subject in the shot but not all. So I'm just taking all these extra shots all around just to make sure that I have all the pieces of the floor that I might need to composite later. So now that we've got this image, I'm going to go ahead and pose our model, see if we can get the wall paper to flop over top of her, and this will be quite simple in the end, hopefully. So I want your hands, in fact, actually just down by your sides. And I'm gonna have you lean your head back, that was really good. And aside from that, I'm gonna get one like this, just to make sure that I have the pose and everything, but then I'm just gonna let this bed sheet loose to fall over her head and it's going to seem very, very ridiculous, and it might end up ridiculous, but I have high hopes, so let's get in position. Really simple image to start. Perfect. And now I'm going to let the wall paper down. Oh, we're doing so well. (chuckles) Here, hold that (chuckles). This is good. Okay. Here we go. This is pretty absurd. We'll see how it goes. So I'm just going to drape this here. We'll drape this here. And this is actually what I'm looking for is this line to create a believable shadow where the wall paper might fall as well as to just have some of that texture and the natural shadows of the curve of the fabric. I'm gonna lift this up just a little bit. Okay and I'm just trying to show through some of the dress and the hair so we have a little bit of context. And if you wouldn't mind, you're leaning your head back right? Yeah, okay great, she's leaning her head back. And I'm just making sure that the fabric looks nice, just that it has a nice shape to it. And I like that. So I'm going to shoot that piece. Good. Okay. So that's super simple. We've got our subject with the bed sheet. You can relax, take the bed sheet off your head, and then you can step aside and I'm just going to shoot this blank wall now because that's the one thing that I haven't gotten that I need to get, because this will be my room in the end. Right now it's not looking so good because we have blue pieces of tape, so if I weren't as lazy as I am I would probably come over and remove all these blue pieces of tape, but I know that I can get rid of that later, so I'm going to take a step back, shoot this scene. I'm not changing my focus so I'm just getting back in the same spot that I was. And I'm going to shoot each portion of this wall that I can get in my frame, which is not very much because I'm on that 50 millimeter lens in this space. And then I'm just making sure I have everything. I'm at ISO 250 for this one, I decided to raise it up a little cuz it's dark in here. F 2.5 and 100 for my shutter speed. And that's it, so this one's going to be a lot in post to see if it will come together, if it will not. I'm probably going to have to find an image of actual wall paper just to get a more realistic look, but at least we have the basics of what we need to be able to put it together later.

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.

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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.


Class Introduction
Storytelling & Ideas
Universal Symbols in Stories
Create Interactive Characters
The Story is in The Details
Giving Your Audience Feelings
Guided Daydream Exercise
Elements of Imagery
The Death Scenario
Associations with Objects
Three Writing Exercises
Connection Through Art
Break Through Imposter Syndrome
Layering Inspiration
Creating an Original Narrative
Analyze an Image
Translate Emotion into Images
Finding Parts in Images
Finding Your Target Audience
Where Do You Want Your Images to Live?
Create a Series That Targets Your Audience
Formatting Your Work
Additional Materials to Attract Clients
Which Social Media Platforms Will be Useful?
How to Make Money from Your Target Audience
Circle of Focus
The Pillars of Branding
Planning Your Photoshoot
Choose Every Element for The Series
Write a Descriptive Paragraph
Sketch Your Ideas
Choose Your Gear
How to Utilize Costumes, Props & Locations
What Tells a Story in a Series?
Set Design Overview
Color Theory
Lighting for the Scene
Props, Wardrobe & Time Period for Set Design
Subject Within the Scene
Set Design Arrangement
Fine Art Compositing
Plan The Composite Before Shooting
Checklist for Composite Shooting
Analyze Composite Mistakes
Shoot: Black Backdrop for White Clothing
Shoot: Black Backdrop for Color Clothing
Shoot: Black Backdrop for Accessories
Shoot: Miniature Scene
Editing Workflow Overview
Add Fabric to Make a Big Dress
Edit Details of Images
Add Smoke & Texture
Blend Multiple Images Into One Composite
Put Subject Into a Miniature Scenario
Location Scouting & Test Photoshoot
Self Portrait Test Shoots
Shoot for Edit
Shoot Extra Stock Images
Practice the Shoot
Introduction to Shooting Photo Series
Shoot: Vine Image
Shoot: Sand Image
Shoot: End Table Image
Shoot: Bed Image
Shoot: Wall Paper Image
Shoot: Chair Image
Shoot: Mirror Image
Shoot: Moss Image
Shoot: Tree Image
Shoot: Fish Tank Image
Shoot: Feather Image
View Photo Series for Cohesion & Advanced Compositing
Edit Multiple Images to Show Cohesion
Edit Images with Advanced Compositing
Decide How to Start the Composite
Organize Final Images
Choosing Images for Your Portfolio
Order the Images in Your Portfolio
Why do Some Images Sell More Than Others?
Analyze Student Portfolio Image Order
Framing, Sizing, Editioning & Pricing
Determine Sizes for Prints
How to Choose Paper
How to Choose Editions
Pricing Strategies
How to Present Your Images
Example Pricing Exercise
Print Examples
Licensing, Commissions & Contracts
How to Keep Licensing Organized
How to Prepare Files for Licensing
Pricing Your Licensed Images
Contract Terms for Licensing
Where to Sell Images
Commission Pricing Structure
Contract for Commissions
Questions for a Commission Shoot
Working with Galleries
Benefits of Galleries
Contracts for Galleries
How to Find Galleries
Choose Images to Show
Hanging the Images
Importance of Proofing Prints
Interview with Soren Christensen Gallery
Press Package Overview
Artist Statement for Your Series
Write Your 'About Me' Page
Importance of Your Headshot
Create a Leave Behind & Elevator Pitch
Writing For Fine Art
Define Your Writing Style
Find Your Genre
What Sets You Apart?
Write to Different Audiences
Write for Blogging
Speak About Your Work
Branding for Video
Clearly Define Video Talking Points
Types of Video Content
Interview Practice
Diversifying Social Media Content
Create an Intentional Social Media Persona
Monetize Your Social Media Presence
Social Media Posting Plan
Choose Networks to Use & Invest
Presentation of Final Images
Printing Your Series
How to Work With a Print Lab
Proofing Your Prints
Bad Vs. Good Prints
Find Confidence to Print
Why Critique?
Critiquing Your Own Portfolio
Critique of Brooke's Series
Critique of Student Series
Yours is a Story Worth Telling


  • I tuned in for most of Brooke's lessons in this course and watched some of them more than once as they were rebroadcast. First I want to say that Brooke is a very good instructor. Her easy-going, friendly, down-to-earth, somewhat quirky manner cannot be mistaken for unprofessional. She is very prepared, she speaks well (not a bunch of hemming and hawing), she is thoughtful, she is thorough, she is very relatable and at ease, and she is definitely professional in her presentation. I really thought when I first tuned in that it would mostly be background noise while I was at work, sound to keep me company. Not because I didn't like Brooke but I really didn't think I was into fine art photography nor did I think I cared about the business side of things much. Not now anyhow. I was really wrong. Brooke sparked a deep interest in me to delve into fine art photography, to consider creating images for myself, from my imagination. In fact, I realized that this was something I'd been thinking about for a couple of years though I hadn't put a name to it (the idea of creating pre-conceived images based on my own creative goals). I gleaned many little treasures from her about image sizes, working with printers, different types of paper, selling, interacting with galleries, and so much more. I may not need all of what she taught right now because I'm definitely headed in another direction at the moment, but she planted ideas and information in my head that I know will be useful at some point. Things I may not have thought of on my own, but that seed is in my head now so when the time comes, I'll know. I'd really like to buy her course but at the moment, with the holidays right around the corner, it's not in my personal budget. I'm grateful to have caught the live and rebroadcast lessons though, and her course is on my list to own. I think it's a great reference to be consulted over and over again, not watched once and forgotten. Kudos Brooke for really putting together an excellent course.
  • I'm retired now, but spent decades in the people and training business. Brooke is extraordinary! Even though this course is extremely well organized and she's left nothing unattended, she moves through it with friendly conversational manners and without a sense of it being stilted. It's as though we are all her friends, not students, as she shares her heart and passion with us. What a joy it is to listen to her. And what a clear, unambiguous command of her subject. Wow! She explains it with such ease using explanations and techniques that won't overwhelm artists just starting their portfolio or the Photoshop-squeamish among us; but despite its simplicity her resulting art is breathtaking and beyond original. I wish more of my professors at school were as engaging. This was by far my best buy at Creative Live yet.
  • What an amazing 20 days this is going to be! Brooke is so enthusiastic and has such a lovely manner. What a bargain for all of the information Brooke will be sharing with us. So excited. Thanks Brooke and Creative Live. :)