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One Hour Photo - Sandra Coan

Lesson 121 from: Fundamentals of Photography 2016

John Greengo

One Hour Photo - Sandra Coan

Lesson 121 from: Fundamentals of Photography 2016

John Greengo

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Lesson Info

121. One Hour Photo - Sandra Coan


Class Trailer

Class Introduction


Welcome to Photography


Camera Types Overview


Viewing Systems


Viewing Systems Q&A


Lens Systems


Shutter Systems


Shutter Speeds


Choosing a Shutter Speed


Shutter Speeds for Handholding


Shutter Speed Pop Quiz


Camera Settings


General Camera Q&A


Sensor Sizes: The Basics


Sensor Sizes: Compared






Sensor Q&A


Focal Length: Overview


Focal Length: Angle of View


Wide Angle Lenses


Telephoto Lenses


Angle of View Q&A


Fish Eye Lenses


Tilt & Shift Lenses


Subject Zone


Lens Speed


Aperture Basics


Depth of Field


Aperture Pop Quiz


Lens Quality


Photo Equipment Life Cycle


Light Meter Basics




Histogram Pop Quiz and Q&A


Dynamic Range


Exposure Modes


Manual Exposure


Sunny 16 Rule


Exposure Bracketing


Exposure Values


Exposure Pop Quiz


Focus Overview


Focusing Systems


Autofocus Controls


Focus Points


Autofocusing on Subjects


Manual Focus


Digital Focusing Assistance


Focus Options: DSLR and Mirrorless


Shutter Speeds for Sharpness and DoF


Depth of Field Pop Quiz


Depth of Field Camera Features


Lens Sharpness


Camera Movement


Handheld and Tripod Focusing


Advanced Techniques


Hyperfocal Distance


Hyperfocal Quiz and Focusing Formula


Micro adjust and AF Fine Tune


Focus Stacking and Post Sharpening


Focus Problem Pop Quiz


The Gadget Bag: Camera Accessories


The Gadget Bag: Lens Accessories


The Gadget Bag: Neutral Density Filter


The Gadget Bag: Lens Hood and Teleconverters


The Gadget Bag: Lens Adapters


The Gadget Bag: Lens Cleaning Supplies


The Gadget Bag: Macro Lenses and Accessories


The Gadget Bag: Flash and Lighting


The Gadget Bag: Tripods and Accessories


The Gadget Bag: Custom Cases


10 Thoughts on Being a Photographer


Direct Sunlight


Indirect Sunlight


Sunrise and Sunset


Cloud Light


Golden Hour


Light Pop Quiz


Light Management


Artificial Light




Off-Camera Flash


Advanced Flash Techniques


Editing Overview


Editing Set-up


Importing Images


Best Use of Files and Folders




Develop: Fixing in Lightroom


Develop: Treating Your Images


Develop: Optimizing in Lightroom


Art of Editing Q&A


Composition Overview


Photographic Intrusions


Mystery and Working the Scene


Point of View


Better Backgrounds


Unique Perspective


Angle of View


Subject Placement


Subject Placement Q&A




Multishot Techniques




Human Vision vs The Camera


Visual Perception


Visual Balance Test


Visual Drama


Elements of Design


The Photographic Process


Working the Shot


The Moment


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One Hour Photo - Sandra Coan


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Lesson Info

One Hour Photo - Sandra Coan

Hello and welcome, everybody, to One Hour Photo. My name is John Greengo, and we have another good episode in store for you today. As always, I'm gonna start off with a few of your questions that you've submitted about cameras and photograph, gear and photography in general, and see if I can answer those. And then we're gonna have Sandra Coan come on, and she is a portrait photographer who does a lot of newborn work, and we're gonna take a look at some of her photos, and talk to her how she creates them. She's got a couple of classes here at CreativeLive. And then the two of us are gonna take a look at your photos in our image review section, and see what you've submitted and talk about what we like, what we don't like, or how we would try to make those even better than they already are. So let's go ahead and get started with your questions. And so, you can ask your questions here at CreativeLive in this little package called the One Hour Photo Bundle with John Greengo, which is a coll...

ection of all the videos that we've been doing in this One Hour Photo. And if you'll notice, there is a... Well, actually I should mention finding this may be a little challenging, and find it easiest to do a little search in the CreativeLive heading up there at the top for Greengo one. And you'll find the photo of me photographing out there on the sand dunes. Click on that, and that is the homepage for all of the classes. You can find any of the individual classes by typing in my name or the guest name in there. And right on this page is a click here to ask questions. And so if you wanna ask questions, you can click on that, you'll get a submission form. Fill that out, ask us your photography camera related question, and I will try to include it in a upcoming episode of One Hour Photo. All right, our first question. Which company makes the best tripod and tripod head that money can buy? All right, Sanjay, it appears that you have won the lottery, and you're willing to spare no expense when it comes to the tripod. So, it depends on a little bit on what you wanna do with that tripod as to what type of tripod you're gonna get, and actually which company has the best tripod. I'll admit, right off the bat that I don't know a lot about the companies that specialize in video tripods. There are a number of companies that make special video heads in tripods for video equipment. But when it comes to photographic, still photographic gear, Bogen, which is now Manfrotto, used to be known as Bogen, but that's kinda how I grew up with the name. But Manfrotto and Gitzo tripods are traditionally two of the top name brands out there. Another company that has been making photographic products for a while is Really Right Stuff. And at first, they were just using Gitzo tripods, and then they started making their own tripods. And so, when I see somebody that has kind of an unlimited budget, it's quite often they have a Really Right Stuff tripod and head. And so, I prefer the Gitzo ones. I think they're just a little bit better value. They may not be better, but I think they're very good value. They're still very expensive tripods to start with. But as far as the heads that go on the tripods, it depends on what type of head you're doing, whether you want a ball head or you want a tilt-shift head that's got a three-way pan tilt access. It really depends on what you're doing. For a lot of the work that I do, I do like the simplicity of a ball head, and Really Right Stuff, as well Kirk Enterprises seem to make the best quality heads out there. Having said that, working in a studio, and I'm doing some product photography, I found that they just move around too much when loosen them up, and I needed to be more precise about movements. And so, going back Manfrotto, Manfrotto made a geared head that fit my need very exclusively. And so, Manfrotto, Gitzo, Really Right Stuff, and Kirk Enterprises are all different companies that you should check out to see what type of products they make for the type of photography you're most interested in. So thank you for that question. Next up, Mary, another CreativeLive student. I will be shooting portraits/newborns in studio. Can I get started with a Nikon D3000 entry-level DSLR with 10.2 megapixels? My concerns are the 10.2 mega pixels and the lens options. Thanks for your time. Thank you, Mary, for your question. So, the D3000 is not the internet's favorite camera, because it's not the newest one out there. It is a perfectly fine camera for taking good quality photographs. 10.2 megapixels, by today's standards, is a little bit on the low side. A 10.2 megapixels is what I remember figuring out, close to 20 years ago, was the equivalent of film photography. So, it is a good camera. It's not top of the line. It's not the best. You could get a 24 megapixel camera. For still pretty modest money in the current, I think it's the D3400 that they make. So if you were looking to buy a new one, you can double the megapixels for not too much money. It depends on what you're doing with your photos. If you're gonna be printing them, how big do you wanna print them? If you wanna print an eight by 10, which is gonna be sufficient for a lot of people's desire for newborn portrait photos it's gonna be totally fine for that. If you wanted to go 24 by 36, or 16 by 20, or something, a much larger size, that's when you're gonna wanna start looking for those higher megapixel cameras, but you're definitely fine starting out there. As far as the lens options, I think there's plenty of lens options that you can get. You can get your standard 50-millimeter 1.4 lens, which is gonna make for a very nice portrait lens. There's macro lenses that are gonna work totally fine, because remember, with the D3000, that's the DX series of crop frame cameras from Nikon. You can use all their full-frame lenses as well. And so, if you happen to be doing portraits outside, you could use the 85 1.8 or 1.4 millimeter lens, 85 1.4 lens. And that's gonna get you some very, very shallow depth of field. Is it the shallowest depth of field that you can get of anything on the market? No, but it's gonna get you good enough. It's not going to be the item that holds you back in any sort of business or artistic ambitions that you might have. And so, it is a fine starting area. There are areas that you can grow. Alright, next up, from Janet. If you have a zoom lens with a range of apertures, how much control do you actually have in setting the aperture you want with the aperture changing with the zoom? And so I think you're referring to a lot of the variable aperture zoom lenses that go from, say 3.5 to 5.6, and then they zoom over in 18 to or 100 to 400 millimeter range. There's quite a few of these out on the market, and they're often the standard kit lenses. They're often the more affordable lenses, because they're less expensive to make, because they're not trying to maintain that aperture opening throughout the entire range. And so, what's kind of interesting is that if you stop these lenses down to something like F/8, you'll be able to zoom back and forth, and that F/8 never changes on you, which is very, very handy. And so, if it's three five to 5.6 lens, what's gonna happen is it has a maximum aperture of 3. at the widest setting. Let's say 18 on an 18 to 55. And then at 55, its maximum aperture would be 5.6. And so, only if you are setting the maximum aperture on the lens will it restrict where you can set that when you're zooming it back and forth. Once you stop it down just a little bit, it's gonna stay consistent with you as you go back and forth. I prefer a fixed maximum aperture and 2. or an F/4 lens. That way if I set 2.8 or F/4, it stays exactly there as I zoom back and forth. And so the only time that you really need to worry about it on those variable aperture zooms is when you are at the maximum opening. And so, if you do set your camera manually in manual exposure, that's the concern. If you set your camera in aperture priority, the camera is automatically gonna take care of thing for you. I know this can be a confusing issue, and I hope I've clarified it at least a little bit. So thank you, Janet. Next up, from Mussa. My hobby is photography, and I wanna start my own business, specializing in newborn photography. What do you recommend, a Canon 5D Mark III or 6D Mark II, or another camera? What lens would be best for newborn photography? All right. Well, portrait photography and newborn photography can be done with a lot of different cameras, and you're thinking about a 5D Mark III or a 6D Mark II. 5D Mark III is gonna be 21 megapixel, 6D Mark II is 24 megapixels, so there is no real difference there. The 5D Mark III is gonna have better focusing if you are gonna be doing action outside of this. They're gonna be very similar cameras. There's not gonna be much difference between the two of them there. You can check out a lot of the reviews that are online, and there are just gonna be people picking part one or another thing. Either one of them, I think they're gonna be totally fine for this type of photography. It gets you into a full-frame camera, which gets you access to a lot of really good lenses that Canon has, which is your next question. What lens would be best for newborn photography? Well, if you're shooting newborns, which are about this big, you kinda wan think about how close do you wanna be with them. Are you photographing them in the studio? Are you photographing them in their home with their natural environment? And so, one 24 to 70 millimeter lens might do the job totally fine. You probably don't need anything much wider than 35. I think a lot of people are gonna be using the 50 millimeter and the 85 millimeter if you wanna get a fixed focal length lenses. And so, probably a lot of people would be totally fine with just the 50 and the 85. It depends on how you want your images to look, but I think those would be a couple of the safest all-around best options when it comes to lenses. So thank you, Mussa for that question. One more here. I love my Fuji X-T2, but I'm having problems in post processing. The JPEGs look awesome from camera, which Fuji is known for, but when I take them into Lightroom to crop or straighten, the exported photos are losing quality. Any suggestions on post processing software and workflow? Okay, this could be a whole bunch of stuff, and I'm gonna try to go through this rather quickly, and I don't think I could be able to full untangle the mess here. Fujis are known for very good JPEGs. The exported photos not looking good are of concern to me. I don't know if you have something in Lightroom turned on that isn't suppose to be on, as far as a development export or a development on the import. But you should be getting good images from the raw or JPEGs from the camera. Let me read through anything else in here. One of the things to note is that if you shoot raw plus JPEG in Fujis, which I do recommend, because their JPEGs have a very nice look to them, and sometimes you wanna use that as a reference to go back to the raw image. And you can make some adjustments. And in fact, in camera profiles, there's usually a little preset to get it back to the type of film setting that you were looking at or you shot your JPEGs in. So look down on the development side of Lightroom. For you guys over here, it's down there on the bottom under, I think it's Process, and look for the type of film simulation that you were shooting to get your raws looking like that, but you should be able to export your raws, which for Fuji is a .RAF, and you should get those to looking good. And so what I do when I shoot with Fuji is I shoot raw plus JPEG. I shoot with JPEGs. I wanna see what that's gonna look like. And then I adjust the raw to look a little bit like the JPEG, and then I tweak it os that it looks right to me. And then I export it, and it seems to be fine, and I'm not sure. So just make sure you go through your Lightroom and make sure there's nothing being added or changed in the development process. And the whole other little thing that it could be is calibration on your monitor. So make sure that your monitor is calibrated properly. That's a whole class into itself. Unfortunately, I don't have any more time here. But hopefully, that gets you started on figuring out that problem. So, thank you, Vicki, for that question. Remember, if you have a question, you can ask the question right here on our homepage with One Hour Photo Bundle with John Greengo. And if you wanna find that page, just do a search on the CreativeLive tab for Greengo one, and you should find all of our One Hour Photos available there for free. All right, it is still to bring on our special guest, Sandra Coan. Sandra, come on out. Thanks for joining me here. Great to have you hear. Pull up a chair, let's have a chat. Let's do it. We'll look at some photos. So you are a portrait photographer who specializes in newborn, is that correct? That's true. How long have you been doing this? Forever. (both laughs) So, I started my business kind of my accident really, about 17 years ago. 1999, 2000 is when I started, and yeah, it just kinda took off, and I've been doing it every since, and I love it. Was it a hobby before that? It was always a hobby. I always grew up with a camera in my hands. My dad was a big photography enthusiast. We had a darkroom in our house. So I remembered going in the basement as a little kid, and developing, and doing all that. So, it's something I always had done. I just never considered it a career option or that was even a possibility. And so, what happened was I was teaching kindergarten, and king of struggling as a first year teacher on a teaching income. That's a whole nother story. How sad that is? And one of my best friends had gotten pregnant. She was our first one in our group of friends to have a baby, and it was the '90s. And so I was like, "Oh, we should do some of those "maternity photos like Demi Moore." So she said okay. I took a bunch of photos for her, and she was the one that... She was like, "I love my pictures. "Nobody is really doing this." You should offer this as a way to bring in a little extra income. And I was like, "Okay." So I took my one picture that I like, and I turned it into a post card, and went around Seattle and putting them in every coffee shop, like I'm gonna turn this to like old school marketing. And people start calling, and I started getting clients, and then maternity work went to newborns. And within six months, I went to part-time teaching, and then... Yeah, and then I did part-time for about three years, and then I quit my teaching job and did photography full-time. It's really interesting to hear people's story about how they get started and how they get successful because there's a lot of ways that you can use photography, and you could be shooting many things, you could be shooting landscape, all sorts of things. (both laughs) But it's one of the things that I have found is that when people are good at something, they seem to hit like, "Yeah, this hit really quickly, "and it kinda came on quickly." Did you feel like that for you? I did, but I didn't realize it at the time. I think that that's completely true. I think when you're kind of on the right path, the path will rise up to meet you. It just seems easy. Yeah. And for me, that was portrait work. So, maternity, newborns, family, that all came really easy to me. I've always been drawn to portrait work. I use to travel a lot. And even in my travel, I'd be at the Louvre, and I everybody else would be taking picture of the Louvre, and I would be taking pictures of the people in front of it. So I was always drawn to portrait work. But early in my career, I decided that if I was going to become a full-time photographer, I was gonna have to shoot weddings, which made zero sense, because I never shot a wedding at all. That's what everyone wants to do in some of the bootcamp for photographers. Exactly, so I was like, "Okay, I guess I'll do this." And then I did that for a few years. I was like, "This is crazy." and I went back to portrait work. So, there was a little bit of wiggle room in the beginning, and I think that, that happens with a lot of photographers when you're trying to figure out what your voice is. But at the end of the day, I've been a portrait photographer. I've always been a portrait photographer, even when I was shooting weddings. I was just known for my portraits. I would be hired because I was really good at doing those big family group photos that all photographers hate. I loved that. I was like, give me the family, and we'll sit everybody in chairs, and they'll all look in the camera. I love doing the big group shots. I love it. I mean it's the one few time that I get to be in charge of everybody. No matter what you say, they have to do it. Oh yeah, and all that training as a kindergarten teacher come in handy, because you're working with a group of rowdy grooms. Whenever you snap and get your teacher voice, then people listen. Look at me, put that down. Yes Hey, friend... Yeah, it's amazing. So that's my story. Let's take a look at some of your photos and continue the conversation as we go through this. I love that baby. (laughs) This one I think made it into a lot of your shots here. Yeah. Talk generally about some of the photos that you've brought us here today. Sure. So, I always tell people, like I just said, I consider myself a portrait photographer. And I know that in this field, a lot of people say I'm a newborn photographer or I'm a family photographer. For me, I'm a portrait photographer, and I just happen to specialize in newborns and kids, and that's an important distinction for me, because I feel as portrait photographer, it's my job to tell somebody's story in a frame, to give a little piece of their personality in a frame. And I aim to do that if my person is five days old, or five months old, or 50 years old. That's why I love pictures like this, because I feel like this kinda tells me a little bit of this little person's personality. Happy baby. Yeah, like kinda easy going, like just sitting there. I feel like I know who this little person is or who is going to be, and that's what I try to do in my work. So, I have actually zero photos of babies in my photo archive. And so, nothing against me. No, you have to be cold to do it. Not everybody wants to do it. One of the questions I'm curious is, how much good time do you get with a baby when you're photographing? How much time can you expect to photograph? Well, it depends on the age of the baby. And I've actually gotten quite good at this. This age, like six to 18 months, probably good shooting time where they're gonna be engage and with you, you're like 20, 25 minutes. And I tell my clients this. Because I say, "Okay, plan an hour. "We're not gonna shoot that whole time." But we're gonna come in. I'm gonna go really fast. I'm really good with kids/ it's kind of like a super power that I have, right, where I can get them to engage with me, and enjoy them and they enjoy me, and we work well together. But we're like all business for 20, 25 minutes, and then we play, take a little break. And then if they still have it in them, we'll do a little bit more, but most kids don't. And I think that that's important too. I know in your questions, you had some people who were wanting to start baby newborn stuff, and I think what I see a lot of newborn photographers do is say, "Well, I'll come in "and we'll have a four-hour session." Right, you know, like you see that. On adults, you could see doing that. Yeah, but I'm just like, "That is bananas." (both laughs) Those babies are gonna be exhausted. I really try to respect... I mean just developmentally, most kids have 20 to 40 minutes in them, and so you have to use your time wisely and efficiently, and just go in and know what you're doing and know what you're trying to get. So for me, I'm always trying to get engagement. And that doesn't necessarily mean that baby is looking at the camera, but it means that baby is engaged and is happy. I never want kids to be crying or uncomfortable or that kind of thing. Right. Excellent shot. I love that one there. All right, so very different category there. Very different category. So, again, I'm portrait photographer. And this is a photo, this photo actually means a lot to me that I took of my mother-in-law who just recently passed away. She had dementia. And she would have really good days, and she'd have really bad days, and this was on one of her bad days. And she would do this thing where she would wear multiple coats, and she'd kinda curl up in a ball, and just kind of fold into herself, but we knew we wanted to get pictures of here. I was there with my husband, and his twin sister, and my boys, so we're trying to get some photos. And what was amazing I didn't know it was gonna go. Was she willing? Was she interested? She was. She was not interested. She wanted to sit on the couch with all of her coats on. So we brought her into the studio, and I put a table for her to lean on, because I thought maybe that was part of why she was like folding on herself, and we let her keep one of her coats on. But what's so fascinating about this is I started talking to her, and talking, "I have twins." And so, one common thing that happens with people with dementia is they get caught in this loop of conversation. And so, we started having this conversation where she saw my kids and she's like, "Oh, I have twins." which I'm married to one of her twins. And I was like, "Yeah, I know, I have twins too." And then she'd laugh. And then she's like, "Well, you know, I have twins." And we kept having this conversation. But it was so amazing because, this woman, I mean she'd literally just folded in on herself moments ago, and she lit up. And this thing she did with her hand, she was like singing songs. I get kind of emotional talking about it. But it's the same thing that I think about when I photograph babies to work with somebody at the opposite end of the story. They still have something to say. They still have something to share. It's your job as the portrait photographer to help them tell that story. So, this has actually started for me, a personal project where I wanna work, sorry, I wanna work with, with older people, with the elderly. I wanna tell their story too, in a way. They make great photos of them as well. And their families do. These pictures, we cherish. Oh yeah, absolutely. Now, you don't just bring someone in through the front door, into the studio, sit down, sit, and take your photo. Talk about that interaction time, and communication, and building a relationship. Sometimes I actually do bring them in through the front door and sit them in front of the... (both laughs) Sit them. And then I start building that relationship while they're there in front of my camera. So this kind of portrait, a lot of the portraits I do, I shoot with a Rolleiflex, an old Rolleiflex camera. So it's on a tripod, and it's the kind where you look into. And what's great about those cameras is that you can focus. And when my subject is on a stool, once it' focused, I really don't have to touch the camera, except to release the-- So you're done technically. Yeah, so I can just sit there and talk and have a conversation, and hit the shutter when I see the moment. And so, there's a different level of engagement that happens, which is one of the things I love about that camera. And lets people's guards down. It's got two lenses. People don't know where to look. It's confusing. And so, you can just sit and talk to people. It produces beautiful portraits I think because of that. And it's interesting, because I use that camera when I'm working. I started this project working with older individuals and their adult children. But then I also use that camera when I'm working with toddlers or little kids, and it's the same kind of effect. Because the camera is so weird, and it's not what they're used to seeing, and because you're not hidden behind it, it just becomes a conversation, and you're able to capture them in I think a really different way. That's amazing. I use to sell those Rollei Twin Lens Reflexes cameras since I was... I've not met many people who still are using them. And so, that's a whole interesting story there. All right, so going back to the young ones here. So there again, babies. So, are most of these shot with film, as opposed to digital? They're all shot with film All shot with film. Yeah. So this one was shot with my Hasselblad H2 and Fujifilm. And again, there's a lot of reasons why I shoot film. I just taught a whole-day class out of it, why I shoot it. But again, part of it for me is also about the connection. Because what happens when there's no way for you to look at the back of your camera and check, that is just a non-issue. It's like you learn to trust the process, and it's that technology takes over, and then again it becomes about you just doing what you're supposed to be do as a portrait photographer, which is connecting with the person you're taking a photo of, again, regardless of how old they are, and telling that story. And this is actually one of my favorite kinds of photo. There's this kind of interesting trend I think in newborn photography where often times babies are used as props almost. Yes. And I don't do that in my work. I was gonna ask about that, because the first image that we saw and this one, it's very plain, it's very simple. There's no big bold colors. There's no shiny props there. Nobody is in a basket, nobody is.. Which is great, if that's your calling and that's what you wanna do, that's great. It's a different thing. It's a different thing. I don't like to use my babies as props. But what happens is I often end up using the adults and their life as props. (laughs) And so, like, I love this. I love the story behind it. There's the protection, the big hands, the small baby, again, I love that connection with the newborn for some reason. It fascinates me. Like, these little tiny people,,, Every time I take a picture like this, I think, "This person is gonna grow up to be somebody's parent "or aunt or uncle, or grand parent." They have a whole story, and I went them to be able to look back at photos like this or people in their lives look back at photos like this, and be like, "Oh, I still see you in that. "You still look like that." or "You still make that." or "I wonder what you were thinking." That's the fun of it for me. So, I always get kinda goose bumps making these great eye contact shots with babies, because I wonder what they're thinking, like what's going on in there. Right, because they're clearly interested. They're engaged, yeah. They're trying to figure out what's going on. I told you babies are my people. It's my super power. And you'll notice this with a lot of my work. You're gonna see a lot of eye contact at some point. So again, this is with the Rolleiflex. I could see the square image. Yeah. A little bit of that. So do you keep that square on most of them? I always keep it. I love it. I think it's beautiful. And it's also a different way of seeing, a different way of cropping, which I think is interesting. But again this is, people talk about... I always say that I am a studio portrait photographer, and I know it's not cool, and I don't care. I love it. I know it's not on trend. I don't care, I love it. And this is the kind of thing. It's like you can have a family in studio, you can have them sitting in front of a gray backdrop on a couple of stools, and it doesn't have to be stiffen. It still can be about that family and that connection. And this is the beauty, too, of the Rolleiflex, is we had everybody looking at the camera, everything was perfect, and then mom and the older boy had this moment-- Suddenly got engaged, yeah. And you can get it, because I'm not caught up in the camera. I'm talking to my people, I'm looking at them. Now, you're working in a studio. How much is your lighting setup vary from image to image? It doesn't it all. Do you keep it pretty simple? (laughs) I always laugh and say I'm a one trick pony. Yeah, I have, I have a big seven-foot OctoDome that just stays, and I love big-- Bit old soft box. Right there, and then that way, little kids can be running around, and I can get that, or it's a beautiful light-- It gives you a little bit of room to work with. If you move two feet back, it doesn't change everything. Exactly, or if somebody is running around. So yeah, you don't need seven lights, and everything. I always tell people everything I do, I do with one light, a one light modifier. Beautiful. Yeah. Again, that's the Rolleiflex. Going into the-- Maternity. Maternity Phase. And so, were you often engaged with a customer for kind of a couple years? Oh, yeah. This woman in particular, this is her fourth pregnancy, and I've literally watched her family grow up, which is amazing. Or I'll have people... I have people whose photos I tool like this, started with maternity, and I'm photographing their kid's portraits who are high school seniors. This makes me feel like I'm the oldest person ever. The business side of my brain says this is a lot better when you have six-month intervals that you see these people as opposed to, "Well, that was a great wedding you had there. "If you have one again..." Yeah, bye. Yeah, which we don't really say because that would be awkward. No, it's actually wonderful. I feel, I always tell people I have the greatest clients in the world. And because you are with them at these really wonderful points in their lives, and then you see them as your family grows and you get to know them, they become friends, which is really great. I have some clients who I adore. We've been working together like 12 years now, 13 years now. And when it was our 10-year anniversary, we are in the middle of the shoot, and the mom said, she's like, "You know, this our 10-year anniversary." And I was like, "It didn't." So we all just went out to dinner afterwards. I called up my family, we went out to dinner. That's really nice and special. I love that. Excellent. I could obviously talk about this stuff all day. (laughs) Now we have somebody in the middle of the spectrum. This is the senior portrait. Okay, okay. This is a little boy. I mean a little boy who I watch grow up. And this was my take on a senior portrait. He didn't want in the field with the guitar kind of picture. On the train tracks. On the train tracks, no we didn't want that. He just wanted... And he's a really neat kid, really unique, really smart, very sweet, and I think that this kinda captures his personality, a little shy. How much will shoot as far as number of shots, length of time with a senior? Or with anybody. So, for example, on the Rolleiflex, I have 12 frames on a roll of 120 film. So it's not a lot. No. So again, it's a whole different process. It's a whole different way of seeing. It's a whole different way of shooting. I think at his session, I shot I think three rolls. Not a ton, but we're still taking up that hour. Yeah, I mean 36 shots, I mean that's couple of little megabytes of information. For some people there, they would blow by that in a few seconds, but that becomes the entire shoot. Yeah. And it's also different too because the process is so much slower. So, and I talk about this in my intro to film class. That was actually a big selling point for me coming back to film, because I started in film, went to digital, and then made the choice to coma back. And part of it was I actually like the slowness, and people think I'm crazy because they're like, "But you work with two-year-olds and three-year-olds, "and they run all over the place." And I'm like, "Yeah, and I'm shooting them "with the Rolleiflex." I like the slowness. It changes the energy in a shoot. Instead of being frantic and like, "I gotta capture everything, "and I hope I caught something." It's like, "No, we're all in control here." I can see from the photographer's point of view becomes much more about anticipation. It's like you can see a moment. Yes, totally. Okay, as soon as they look at me, click that. That's the one. And I didn't need 40 other shots from the other three seconds. It's that one moment. Yeah, I actually have a photo that I share all the time that was just that. It was right when I was first transitioning back into film, and I was scared about it. You know how you could feel this moment coming. Things are coming into line, they're starting to align. Yeah, it's like, "It's gonna happen, it's gonna happen." and I got the shot, and it was this little baby and she's laughing, and it was just like that perfect shot, and it was one frame. And I know that if I had shot it with digital camera, I probably would've caught it, but it would've been 40 frames before or 40 frames after, or whatever, because I would've been like, "Oh, baby is laughing and having fun. "I gotta take every single moment, every single one." But here, we just capture it, and there's a lot of directing too. It's not like these things just happen. So do parents bring their kids back at periodic intervals to get their shots? Yeah. Usually in the first year, three or fours times in a year, and then like once every year. I love this picture so much, because mom came in with a new born, and she's like, "I would love it "if you could get a picture of her." And this little girl was like, "I am having none of it." like, "I hate you, I hate your camera. "I hate this whole process." which is weird because I'm usually really good with kids, but we ended up getting this. And this again is the beautify of that giant seven-foot soft boxes. She was running around and we were able to get it. And if you look in her eyes, you can see that reflection of the soft box. If you wanted to kind of check out what portrait photographers are doing, look a the reflection in the eyes. You'll get a hint unless they've done something funny afterwards. And I love this picture too, because, again, it's that eye contacts, it's that personality, it's telling me who she is. So just from a geeky, "I'm a film photographer" point of view, I love the tones of it. And I think that when people hear that you shoot film, people think of, "Oh, everything has to be light and airy, "and super blown out looking." because that's what all the film is in the wedding industry that we're seeing like that. But I'm like, "No, it can be anything you want it to be." This is a little of moodier shot than I normally do with little kids, but I felt like... I think it suits her personality, and certainly suits her mood at the time, and it's beautiful, it's gorgeous. So it doesn't have to be light and airy. It can really be anything. So with the films that you're using, do you have one favorite film or do you kinda bounce back and forth depending on what you're doing? No, I have a favorite. I told you I'm a one trick pony. Let's here it. My color film, I'm always Fuji 400H, and the I did shop around. So in the beginning, I always talk about how different film stocks have different personalities, like there's no universal standard. They all have their own way of seeing and color profile is not a kind of step. So I did shop around and try to figure out what worked for me, but I'm obsessed with Fujifilm and the skin tones, and she's so pretty. So, I'm sure we've got some people out there who wanna do newborn photography, but they're not trained, there isn't accreditation for that. What are some precautions for people doing newborn photography just to be careful of? Yeah, well, they're people, right? These are tiny little people. And again, I say really look at... I know there's , we said, that trend of using babies as the prop and setting them up. And when you're trained and you do it well, there's some actually fantastic classes on how to do that well on CreativeLive. That's beautiful if that's your style, but it scares me. I've heard horror stories of babies being injured. Let's wrap and something. I mean just keep in mind these are little tiny human beings. This mean the world-- They're relatively fragile. Yeah, they don't have neck control. Treat them like they are the fragile precious things they are. And actually, it's great to be talking about this with this frame. So, I always have a parent or a spotter just out of frame, even when I'm on big bed, when baby is completely safe. I have somebody right there. This an image where mom had been kind of patting baby. We were getting baby ready. She kept trying to crawl off the bed, and I just caught her hand in the frame. But I actually love it, because again, it has this kind of feeling of safety to me, but also it's just an interesting story, and I love the little baby space, again that connection. But year, safety first. These are children. These are little tiny babies. They're not props, they're not toys. That's good. So by safe. Excellent. And this is really what I do. So like I said, I don't pose babies in my work. I don't do props. This is a very young one here. Yeah, this is brand new. And I just like babies to be babies. I just want them to do what they do, and again part of that is I'm a portrait photographer. I wanna be seeing who they are. These kind of pictures, inevitably, I'll take something like this, and the parents will get it, and like, "Oh, we have an ultra sound photo "with the baby, always had her hand up here." or "Her dad sleeps like this." or whatever. They can recognize something in their baby. They are funny. Which I love, and it's safe. Now this said, I always tell people I don't pose babies, I also don't throw a baby on the bed and see what happens. (both laughs) Well, the whole throw part, yeah. There's a little like I don't pose babies. I'm not gonna wrap them up and put them in things or whatever. I'm gonna let them stretch do what they ana do. But they also really take a lot of time to make sure the babies I work with are comfortable. So they're warm. I don't wanna see babies and they'd startle. It's a thing that newborns do when they look like... They feel like they're falling, and it will... They'll startle, and it'll wake them up. I wanna make sure that they're comfortable and they feel safe. And so then, any time you're taking a portrait of somebody, if they're comfortable and they feel safe, you're gonna get a better picture of them. So I try to do that with my babies too. So, this looks like a challenging photo for me to take. And why I'm saying that is because with a Rolleiflex, if you're not used to waist-level viewfinder, you usually hold the camera down here. And getting the camera tilted to shoot straight down, how did you do that? Well, this one was with my Hasselblad. Okay. So, yeah. So that one you have a viewfinder on? Yes. Okay. But what you can do with the Rolleiflex is you can... And so, instead of here-- You turn it upside down. You can turn it upside down. Which is a little awkward. Which is a little awkward. But it's already awkward to start with, so you're not traveling that far. So you can do that and you can look at it here, and shoot down. Okay, but did you put the bedding on the floor, so you could more easily stand above. I have a little bed in my studio, and it's a little lower, and I'm tall, so I can usually just stand up, and get over top. But yeah, either that or I'll put... I have big bean bag that I'll put babies on. I always warn people, again, safety. If you are working over a newborn baby, either they're on a bed or they're on a bean bag, just make sure that you always have that strap around your neck. And nothing that can fall off, lens caps, hoods. Glasses. Just even little things. I do this all the time when I'm shooting because wear I glasses. No, just nothing, because they're babies. You gotta be very smart with that. Yeah. This is so fun. (both laughs) so again, so this is just a baby being a baby, and this is... Every once in a while, I'll pose a picture like this on social media, and I'll be like, "You know, I don't pose babies." And people said, "Well, you posed this baby." And I'm like, "No, "babies naturally sleep on their stomachs, "like that's a natural position for a baby to be in." And sometimes newborns, okay, so they'll startle like I was just saying, and so we swaddle them, and that gives them the pressure. But laying a baby on their stomach is the equivalent of swaddling, because it'll give them that pressure on their belly that they like, and that pressure on their hands and they're feet, and they'll sleep really well like this, but of course not through the night. You're not supposed to do that. Okay, I never thought I would ask this question, but do you have a recommended diaper that you prefer? (laughs) Because it doesn't have the colors, or just simple. It turns out I do. How about that? Isn't this just so crazy, the things that you learn? The Honest Company makes really great diapers. They have like really-- (mumbles) I know, but you can get just plain white ones. It's just really nice, and I have a bunch at my studio. And then they also make some that are kind of fun, like little skulls and cross bones, or rainbows, whatever. They're fun. You like the clean one, Sandra. You know, that's kind of my whole thing. I like simple, simple, simple, simple, but yeah. Nice. Yeah. I really like that one. That's a great one. Thank you. And that's a good one to end on. So let's talk real briefly about some of your other classes here at CreativeLive. You got Introduction to film photography, and then you got another at Strobes. Talk to us a little bit about difference between these and what's going on. So, the intro film, it's just that it's an intro to film. It's an everything you could possible need to know to get going, get started. We talk about, gosh, metering, because it's so important. We talk about film stocks, the differences between film stocks. We talk about professional film stocks and consumer grade film stocks, black and white, color, how you meter for all of them, the difference and that. We talk about the cameras, the kind of film, 35 millimeter, it was hard, versus 120, what goes in what cameras, how many frames you get on a roll. We talk about pushing, pushing film and the effects that you can get with that. We talk about lab relations. I always say to be a good film photographer, you just need to know your film, know your light, know your lab. And so, we basically go over those three things. It's a really good class if I do say so. (laughs) And then you have strobe photography, so working in the studio with film, which you seem to know quite a bit about. That's what I do. Well, it's interesting because when I did make the choice to come back to film photography, I shoot inside. I live in Seattle. I knew light was gonna be an issue, and I knew nothing about studio lighting, and so I was like, "Okay, well ,that's why we have the Google." Right? Like, "I'll just figure this out." and there were no resources for film photographers. I mean there's a lot of resources out there that's really geared towards shooting with strobes digitally, but there are some inherent differences between the mediums, but also between the cameras obviously, like I couldn't find anything on how to get my Rolleiflex to work with my PocketWizards. Even now, all these phone cameras out there were make to work with lights, right? Because people were using studio lighting long before. They have VC syncs and-- Yeah, all of that. Those things on. But it was intimidating and scary because there were no resources. And so, I kinda taught myself a lot of stuff, and that's why I was so excited to be able to put this class together, because I know film photography is coming back. It's on the rise. It's not just of wedding photographers anymore, like everybody is doing it. I would love to see more film photography being shot in studio. I think it's classic and it's beautiful. And if you're gonna do that, you're gonna have to know and understand light. So, now there's a great resources. Yes, excellent, perfect. All right, so what we're gonna do now is we're gonna open up Lightroom and take a look at some of our viewers' photographs. This is fun. And so, let's see if we can get this full frame, and get rid of all this other stuff. So this is image review. And so, if you haven't been through an image review, we don't know what you were encountering and experiencing when you shot the photo, and so if we say "Move to your left five feet, it would've been better." We don't know that there was a brick wall there or not, but we're just gonna have to review it on what we see. And so, let's go ahead and take a look at our first image here, and this is CretiveLiveStudent, and a couple of sea lions having a moment out there. So obviously we've got a very good moment there. So, excellent on the timing part of it, no doubt about it. I wanna know if they're in the water. That would scare me. (laughs) In the water with them. Yeah, or if they had a big old lens, probably a big old lens. This is one of those areas where it's really hard to tell what lens they were using unless I can dive into the metadata, which... Is this mean for me to go into the metadata. I'll get that closed out. It's an 85 millimeter 1.4 lens. In any case, they're not far away from that at all. That's amazing Now, if you could've told that third seal in the background to just duck behind. Or just scoot down. I'm sure it was going fast. Yeah, just scoot down or get out of there. Yeah, there's really nothing you can do about that. Any additional thoughts? No, I mean that's what I would say too. I know it's going fast. You wanna get that moment. Almost if you get down sometimes you can block things in the back, but I mean, that's a great capture. I'm sure that went really fast. Yeah. Actually, we didn't have the name there, but I can see the name down in the bottom left. That's Gail Goldstein. So you put your name on there, you get good credit because you did a good job on that. So, very good timing on that. It's hard to say because if you watch this behavior, this may happen every two minutes. If you stay there and you stick around and you see what's going on, you can get yourself really lined up, yet there's nothing you can do about a wild animal in the background. No, photo bombing. If it's a one time thing, excellent. If it happened again and again, stick around and see what you can do. Yeah. All right, thank you. All right, this one comes from Ali Sahil. And so, you do much macro photography? Do you details in portraits? Little stuff. I do have a macro lens for my contacts that I'll use, and I'll get those little tiny baby toes and that kind of stuff that I love, but I never do stuff like this. In a way, it's kind of interesting to me to take something and turn it into an abstract image. And so, working with that macro lens, you often do get really shallow depth of field. If had to guess, I'm not gonna pull up the metadata here, but I'm guessing they shot it pretty wide open to get that shallow depth of field, because you do end up with that nice beautiful soft foreground and background in there. Do you have any thoughts on that as far as what you like or what could be better? No, I don't know. I mean I think it's kind of interesting. I guess I would've... I always like maybe the point of the leaf. I mean it's hard to say if you're not there though. Do you know what I mean, like that kinda, like a line, and taking the line a little bit. So it's a little too straight up and down, and so maybe tilting the camera or moving your position so it's more of a diagonal line maybe. What do you think? This is hard. (laughs) If I'm just grasping at things to make it better, that big drop is kind of interesting, because it is so big compared to all the other. If there was more of a reflection in there. That would've been amazing. If there was a tree that it was shaped to. But I mean, of course, I'm just wishing on things at this point. It kinda and drama though because you're waiting for it to fall off. Yeah, there's a bit of tension in it. And so, yeah, I think possibly as you're talking about, just angling so that the leaf is going more down to the bottom left hand corner, and so... Because then you have this really beautiful tones to, like we're kinda cut up. Now what do you think about including the tip of the leaf, the front tip? I would've been pro tip of the leaf. Bring that in. Because the back end kind of just disappears into the oblivion. So if if it was brought down to like here, and then you bring the tip then. Let's do that. This is why we have this in Lightroom, and so, let's... I mean how, stop that. This is so fun. I wanna get that on Manual. I should've had this set up ahead of time. So let's get rid of that. We don't need that. And so, where are you suggesting, we bring the top down a little bit? Yeah. Okay. And then, yeah, in your right. And then if it was rotated. Well, let's just rotate it by itself. And then if we have... Yeah, yeah. Okay. Now it's really gonna fall off. Yeah. That's really makes you think. Now you get this kind of like... (grunts) Yeah, and then-- We just rotate it. But if you actually rotated your positioning, it would still be... The leaf would be angled to the corner, but wouldn't be tilting as much. And so, you get a more natural look from it. But then it becomes, like I said, it's not leaf at the bubble of water on it. It becomes almost like an abstract painting, which I think is the cool part of macro. And so I think they've started out on really solid ground with the photograph. Yeah, totally. And there's just a few different versions to play with it. And so, get your clean good shot to start with, and then play around, because that's what coming out at the time. And that's the beauty of digital photography, honestly, is that you can look at something in real time, and think about how can I change that, how can I change my perspective. Yeah. Okay, excellent job. Let's go to the next one. That's beautiful. Look at those colors. Where oh where could we be at? This is Moraine Lake. Have you ever been up to Banff and Jasper? Oh yeah. I grew up in Alberta. Oh really? So you know all about this place on here. I'm sure you've been there. Oh yeah. Oh yeah, we spent a lot of time in Banff and Waterton, and all of that area. It's gorgeous. And my dad is a big canoer. This is speaking to me. Well, this is some of the most ridiculous rates you'll ever be charged for a half hour. It was Like $40 for a half an hour-- Oh you're kidding. In the canoe. We always had our own. If you're a photographer, and you really wanted a red canoe out there, it would be totally worth the $40. Absolutely. For the average person, let's go canoeing for half an hour, it was very strange. Obviously, you're in a very good environment, so that part is great. The time of day with that white sky, that white sky is what's bothering me there. All your serious photography, is it in the studio? Yeah. And so you don't go out to the field. I don't like to leave and go on the outdoors. But I will say what's great about film photography is you really don't get the white sky. You don't lose your cloud detail, which is nice. That does something. Yeah, I mean unless it's actually a legit white sky. And so they got a beautiful reflection but I think that would be enhanced, so... Like with a little further over-- So you're not fond of the gravel pit on the left. I'm not loving the gravel pit. You're not loving the gravel pit. You know what, if we're gonna do this, let's make it a true square. I tend not to like things that are just almost square but not quite. And so, that may not be the perfect crop there, but let's get that little magnifier out of there. And so, yeah, I think that losing the left side, the left side was not strong. Just in case... It was taking... My eye was going to that gravel pit when there's all those other really beautiful stuff going. And so let's just reset this so people can see. We're losing those dark uninteresting areas over on the left. I mean I could see how it might be like a cool arrow, maybe that's what they're going for. Yeah. I think you're gonna have to work another part of it. And so, it's just not as strong over there. And so, having obviously that spot color in that big environment is... That's a tasty tid bit for photographer because you got that color in it. It's relatively bland environment with this lighting on it. And so potentially coming back, I went up here to go shoot, specifically landscape type shots. Oh how fun. And I searched, I walked over to the canoes. I walked in the water. I know exactly where they're standing at, there's some big rocks up there-- What's over here? On the right hand side, well, there's the place where they rent the canoes. So it's like an ugly shack or something there? Yeah, there's a shack over there. Because I wonder why it was cut right there. Yeah, and so I don't think that you can move too far over the right, but then there's another hill way off to the left. And I went back there probably four times on afternoons, mornings, evenings, to figure out right weather, or the right lighting. And if you're doing that type of landscape photography you have to have the time built in to come back because... And then you can study how it changes, like Monet did that. He would paint the same cathedral over and over and over again, and do it in different seasons, and different times a day just to study the way the light would hit it. But that's fun, that it becomes a study, I'm totally geeky like that. And so whether it's babies or nature, you need to learn your subject. You gotta figure out when they're at their best, when they're not at their best. Excellent, all right. That's grainy. This is Donald Munn. This looks like Central Park to me. I love the choice of black and white. Do you shoot with much black and white? I'm obsessed with black and white. I shoot super grainy. I love it. This does have a film filter. Yeah, it does. I knew that, so I was like, "Oh, now I wanna listen to Simon and Garfunkel." (laughs) Exactly. It does seem a little on the dark side to me. It could be the monitor. This is a hard thing to meter to because you have that bright snow and the dark here. I think they did a good job kinda capturing the snow falling because that can be rather challenging. It's not the most exciting photograph in the world, but it's not intended to be. No, but it's definitely gives you a feeling that-- Now, I could see this is an album cover. Totally, it's insane. Like a moody, Simon and Garfunkel in their early years. Okay, so, if you had to improve this, how would you improve this? It's always so hard to do this because like you said you don't know what's going on in the scene. My instinct, looking at this picture, is I wanna walk to the edge here, and maybe get a little more of this, and maybe a little less of that bright, bright white. Yeah. Just so you have a large area of white which attracts your attention, and there's not a lot of interesting details going on in there. And so, my thoughts were kind of somewhere I was thinking maybe going more vertical, and see if you could find some element of the edge that is more interesting. So like you, I wanted to walk closer up to the edge to see if there's something-- And again, I guess maybe I've gotten too used to shooting square. Okay, let me-- I'm just... I'm most curious now, what does that look like? Let's do the Sandra crop here. All right, we're gonna go into a do one by one So then you can kinda play around with like-- Let's get rid of some of this. Now, do you want to get rid of all of it? No. I think a little bit is fine. But it's heavy in that corner, don't you think? Yes, I believe so. Something in there is another version of this. I mean you could play-- I say that to be kind because it was like once you shoot one... In photography, we accumulate more and more photos. It's like we can have several versions of the same photo, that work for different reasons. And so I'll have horizontal panoramic square versions black and white color versions of the same image that work on different levels for different reasons. And again, if you're shooting digitally I mean that's kind of the beauty of it. Yeah. Whereas like a film photographer, you would walk around the scene for an hour looking at it. You don't have to do it. I like it square. It was just my way. I'm gonna do my change. I often like not vertical. No, I'm not going to vertical in this one. But I do like the 16 by 9 aspect. I do like panoramic. See, that's pretty. And so... And see, just taking out a little of that, of that heavy white, you still want a little of it. Right. I'm always unsure as to exactly how far up to crop that to get... I like your crop better than my crop. Well, thank you. Yeah, you're welcome. And now you notice the ducks. I'll get that right back in there, so I do that. And so yeah, we do have ducks in there and so it's amazing how different crops will just really change the subject, even if that was the same subject. But I mean, obviously, the bridge is good. Those trees are good, the snow on it. The feeling is really good. Yeah, and this is why if you do wanna photograph snow, my big tip on photographing snow in Seattle where it snows once a year, every year, except on some years, is that you gotta get out early in the morning. It was like before everyone else, when everyone else is at home, freaking out watching the news, you are out with your camera while the snow is still on the trees, it's not melted, and there's not thousands of footprints and tire of tracks everywhere. This looks to me like an afternoon, like a late afternoon. Nice, all right, next up. So let's get to CreativeLive Student number two here. And so I think they're getting creative with the angles on this. Yeah, and they colors and the shapes. That's interesting. I think they've done a good job, of finding a snippet of where something looks good. Now, staircases are kind of gimmies as good locations. Oh it's a staircase? Yeah. I thought maybe there were-- And to be honest with you, I wasn't sure at first if we were looking up or down, but obviously with lights were looking down at multiple chandeliers going through a... It's not a circular but it's kind of a half circular staircase. And so it's kind of gimmie for a repetitive pattern shot, which I always love. Those shots are just so easy. But the colors, don't you think-- The colors are cool. This is what I love about photography and about photographers, is that you can take something that's just your ordinary world and look at it differently. I mean we all do that, Do you do that? Oh yeah. Like I'll be sitting in a restaurant and my husband will be in the booth behind me, and I have to like move my body around a little until I'm like-- He probably goes, "What are you doing?" He knows what I'm doing now. He's like, "You're totally like Composing me, aren't you?" But you know like where you can see the lines, and you see these things. Things start lining up. Yeah, it's fun. I think that's like... Not everybody can do that. I always appreciate things like that. Clearly this person seeing something differently. It looks like it's probably a pretty beautiful building to start with, but this is something that most people aren't recognize. And then the whole concept of "What would you do to improve this?" There's a little bit of camera positioning you may wanna play with. I've kinda wanna move the camera up into the left. That's what I was thinking. I was like kinda up on your toes. You kinda wanna see a little bit more down there but then there's chains right there that are holding it there that looks like are kinda blocking it. So they're using that as framing, and so they might have been boxed into this position, you might say. I like the light too, the way that the light is playing. But I will do the old square crop on this. Let's just try it. We're gonna square crop everything today. Doesn't that sound fun? See, square crop. Not just for Instagram. See, it's interesting. And so, maybe just wanna get a little bit more on the right. Just a little, there you go. Yeah, get in all of that curve in. Yeah, and so, I kinda wanna go a little bit wider than straight square but square-- Do you like a six, seven, like a six by seven? Okay, let's see if I have that. Like we'll pretend we're shooting a-- How about five by seven? Five, there we go. Five by seven, and let's get that connect, there we go. Moving up there. Yeah, because were... There's a little bit of extra space over on the right hand side that we don't need. Yeah, we can even bring in there, and just do a wonky crop. Yeah, we'll do our own custom crop here. You tell me when to stop. Right there. Right about there. Okay, Sandra crop right there. I think that that looks awesome. We got nice stark border on the right hand side, natural framing. And then you get that really beautiful, little bit of light. Then I want this printed and I want it hanging in the staircase. That would be cool. They would love that. All right, thank you. Very good photograph. And let's see, Heather Folse? All right, so you don't go out and do abandon building? I went through an abandon building phase (laughs) in my teenagers. We all have to. Everybody does. Like I said earlier, I'm such a portrait photographer, so I look at a pictures like this, and I'm like, "Okay, what is the story? "What are you telling me here?" And so, one thing I'm gonna say is over on the left, there's just a smidget of mountain over there that just doesn't help us out. So let's just crop it down to the clouds right there. And then after taking this shot, the whole telephone pole there, cropping that out is gonna be really tough. I'm turning this off, Manual there. And so the other thought for me is, "Oh my gosh, there's a gigantic puddle, "perfect for reflections." That would've been cool. Like if you go up and-- Getting that camera up close with a wide angle lens, there maybe some really good options in there. As it stands right now, I mean it's a very stark photograph. I think there's just too much foreground. I would definitely crop out most of it up to the mud puddle. But I agree, I would go up there. I'm a big fan of puddle reflections. Yeah, get your camera up there, hopefully if you have one of those little flip screens, or a waist level camera. See. There's your Rolleiflex in use right there. Everybody needs a Rolleiflex. There you go, that would be perfect on that. That would be really cool, and yeah, and then just get down there. Get down there and then get some reflections with the graffiti, and there might be some interesting pattern that comes out. Okay, so thank you, Heather, for that. Next stop we're gonna go to Lulu. Okay, so we do have some kids shots, and I believe that her name is Lily. But Lulu is the photographer. Okay. My niece is named Lulu. So, it's a cute name. All right, so kid photography, what is your tips for this photographer? Okay, so this is my thing. So, kid photography is hard. It's like being a wildlife photographer. Like sometimes you have to go, go, go and sometimes you have to sit and wait. And so I'm betting that they, that Lily or Lulu, Lulu took this shot because she had eye contact, and so I get that. Some things you wanna notice or look out when you are photographing people is if you are getting that really tight face shot and she's looking at you, and that's what you want, then make sure that's what you're taking a picture of, so even change your perspective a little so you're not coming of her knuckles here or-- So vertical would be better than horizontal in this case? Yes or go wide enough so you get the end of her hand. Because we're cropping the hand off. I've certainly cropped many hand. I've cropped feet at the ankles, I've done everything wrong too, like I get it, (laughs) but that's what I recommend. And then I would probably retake this again, I would ask her to take the toothbrush or whatever that is in her mouth out, and then I would sing her song or tell her a story, or do something so I could still get that connection. Get the eye contact, that sounds like some good tips from the expert there. All right. Kids are hard, you definitely have to work it. Thank you Lulu and Lily. Next up, Ankit Mishra. And I love these kind of stark environments, I love that. But that post-- The post is driving me crazy too. I was gonna say because of the post I was like... It's really closed. It has the potential for a really nice design element. I think if they want to keep the post in, you crop out clouds Okay, let's give this a try. In the back. It probably didn't help on converging that. Then you can keep the post in. It's just too far to the left, and so if we bring it in... Because then you lose that gorgeous cloud detail. Yeah, but even now it's still seems tight on the left side. It's just a little cramped in there. Now, I don't know how far the reflection goes down in the water of that post, but it might be good to kinda tilt down so that we could see the top of the reflection of that post, so it's one continuous element, rather than one that comes out of the bottom. I don't know that it's better, but I would wanna see it before I decide. Yeah. I like things really simple and clean, so my inclination is to crop the other way and take that post out and just get the boat, the water, and those beautiful clouds. Right. And so, we can do something like this, and that is really nice right there. That, I like that a lot. And those clouds are beautiful. One thing I wanna do is... Exactly. I'm just gonna go to that. I like the clouds, I wanna see a little bit more, so what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna darken it just a smidge in here, we'll say a half stop, but I wanna add some more contrast into the sky. Let's get that right there, and then we can play around, obviously go away too much, comeback to nothing, just add a little bit there, comeback to the contrast, go back to nothing, just see what happens as we play that around with that. And so, add that there. And so there's the before, there's the after. It's not much, it's just a little bit of tone. And then at this point, it's that stick coming out of the back of the boat that's almost... It's a little too close to horizon line. It's where I just wanna get up on my trippy toes. Yeah, me too. Or take step up and get that, but I think there's something really nice. And if you knew that this is what you wanted to get, you could start playing around, moving left and right, getting the cloud formation so that it kinda match to-- And again like kind of sitting and waiting, because you know those clouds are moving. Yeah, yeah. And see what you wanna do. I was just thinking like it must be really funny to watch a bunch of photographers look at art or something. I wonder if we all do that. We go like moving our bodies and like It's a two dimensional and you're moving around. It looks the same to you. I know, but I wanna do that too. I wanna get up in my tippy toes, and just bring that down a little bit. Yeah. Well, I think it's very good. I think there's a couple of different good versions. Yeah, I think too. So, keep shooting on that. Thank you, Ankit. And Rupam Konar, and so on this, we are getting some spectacular color on it. I can see it feels... I get that colors stuff, it still feels like the blacks feel a little dark, little collapsed. I think we've got strong color but we don't have much else that's strong in the photograph. Maybe that's what's going on. Maybe getting a tighter shot, just for instance. Maybe it's really all on the city, and so maybe there is... This is a terrible version of this, but maybe there is these houses along the lake with this just red fire sky which is really nice. I think there's maybe another version where you have something in the foreground right here. And let's just pretend that there is an interesting shape in the foreground. The layer. And things were lined up a little bit better than that. And then just the horizon is just a little... Yeah, that horizon. let's see if I can do it from the side, fix that horizon. Did I make it worse? Yeah, I'll fixed that, yeah. You gotta watch those horizons. Anytime you're around water, you're gonna be really careful about the horizon. And it's hard. You know this is one of those situations that... I'm just gonna reset this whole thing. I straighten stuff all the time. People always think, because I'm film photographer, I don't touch my photos, it's not true. I shoot just a little cricket. You know I get it, you're going. You're in the heat of the moment. And then you get it back and you're like, "Baby is gonna fall off the bed." I have to do that all the time myself. I do too, a little the time It's not much, it's like one degree, or two degrees, or something like that. Yeah, just a little, little bit but... And so, it's good lighting, but I think we need more than lighting. I do like the gradation and the colors. I can totally see where you're going. And so, that's where you see the light coming, you go this is gonna get good in the next five, 10, 20 minutes, I need to get myself into the right position. It's not the worst position but I would be still trying to find something better. All those rocks over there on the left, there might be a really interesting long exposure shot with those rocks as a really solid silhouette with the water moving around it. Yeah, or even playing on this stripey colors in the water. Oh yeah, right It could be interesting too. From the reflections. So, good potential. Very good potential. Thank you for sending that in. These is our last one, Steve Cross. So this is kinda completely different. Is that like a double exposure? Yes, I'm hoping it's a double exposure. And so, I don't know if I can zoom in just. Yeah, it's pretty good. And so, this looks like it's a quick double shot with... And I don't know if this is in camera or... Get this on Manual, so I get this out of here, because I don't think we're gonna be doing much cropping on this one. No. No, good crop. Yeah. Nice and tight. Okay. I have very strong opinions about double exposures. Let's hear it, let's hear it. (laughs) They can be very cool. And I think if you're gonna do double exposure, you just have to really really, think it through. And I can see where you're going with this, and like the thought behind it, but that nose with the pinkies is bothering me. It's a striking image. Well, I said whoa like when you first got it, like I get that. But you know what I mean? My eye is going to right there. I'm almost wondering... Moving the hands up and down a little bit? Yeah, or something. Okay. I don't know. Maybe it's the knuckles in relation to the eye. I mean the knuckles of the pinkie finger look like an Avatar type character. Like a cat face with that crease along it. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I think with what they were going for, they nailed it. They nailed it. Okay, now, it's not totally my type of photography but I appreciate this. I mean this-- I appreciate too, and I think that this part of this is cool too. And so you're just moving towards the knuckles and to the eyes, or-- There's something right here that is just... Right in the middle. Right in the middle. Yeah, and so, I think it's an excellent execution. I think it's a very striking photo. Yeah, well, it certainly took my breath away. Thank you Steve for sending that in. And thanks to all of you for sending your photos in here to One Hour Photo. This is so fun. Sandra, thanks for coming in, seeing your photographs and giving your opinion on all of these. Once again, tune in next time when we have another special guest, and we'll talk about more photos and answer your questions, and have an all around good time. Yeah. So thanks a lot, and we'll see you later.

Class Materials

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Fundamentals of Photography Outline

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Learning Project Videos
Learning Projects PDF
Slides for The Camera Lessons 1-13
Slides for The Sensor Lessons 14-18
Slides for The Lens Lessons 19-31
Slides for The Exposure Lessons 32-42
Slides for Focus Lessons 43-62
Slides for The Gadget Bag Lessons 63-72
Slides for Light Lesson 73-84
Slides for the Art of Edit Lessons 85-93
Slides for Composition Lesson 94-105
Slides for Photographic Vision Lessons 106-113

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

Love love all John Greengo classes! Wish to have had him decades ago with this info, but no internet then!! John is the greatest photography teacher I have seen out there, and I watch a lot of Creative Live classes and folks on YouTube too. John is so detailed and there are a ton of ah ha moments for me and I know lots of others. I think I own 4 John Greengo classes so far and want to add this one and Travel Photography!! I just drop everything to watch John on Creative Live. I wish sometime soon he would teach a Lightroom class and his knowledge on photography post editing.!!! That would probably take a LOT OF TIME but I know John would explain it soooooo good, like he does all his Photography classes!! Thank you Creative Live for having such a wonderful instructor with John Greengo!! Make more classes John, for just love them and soak it up! There is soooo much to learn and sometimes just so overwhelming. Is there anyway you might do a Motivation class!!?? Like do this button for this day, and try this technique for a week, or post this subject for this week, etc. Motivation and inspiration, and playing around with what you teach, needed so much and would be so fun.!! Just saying??? Awaiting gadgets class now, while waiting for lunch break to be over. All the filters and gadgets, oh my. Thank you thank you for all you teach John, You are truly a wonderful wonderful instructor and I would highly recommend folks listening and buying your classes.


I don't think that adjectives like beautiful, fantastic or excellent can describe the course and classes with John Greengo well enough. I've just bought my first camera and I am a total amateur but I fell in love with photography while watching the classes with John. It is fun, clear, understandable, entertaining, informative and and and. He is not only a fabulous photographer but a great teacher as well. Easy to follow, clear explanations and fantastic visuals. The only disadvantage I can list here that he is sooooo good that keeps me from going out to shoot as I am just glued to the screen. :-) Don't miss it and well worth the money invested! Thank you John!

Vlad Chiriacescu

Wow! John is THE best teacher I have ever had the pleasure of learning from, and this is the most comprehensive, eloquent and fun course I have ever taken (online or off). If you're even / / interested in photography, take this course as soon as possible! You might find out that taking great photos requires much more work than you're willing to invest, or you might get so excited learning from John that you'll start taking your camera with you EVERYWHERE. At the very least, you'll learn the fundamental inner workings and techniques that WILL help you get a better photo. Worried about the cost? Well, I've taken courses that are twice as expensive that offer less than maybe a tenth of the value. You'll be much better off investing in this course than a new camera or a new lens. I cannot reccomend John and this course enough!

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