Class Introduction


Lighting Essentials Workshop


Lesson Info

Class Introduction

photography to me is jazz with a camera a jazz musician needs to know his instruments so well that he can improvise you can't be playing along a tune and happen to think where's the f sharp key you just know it and you're thinking three bars ahead four bars ahead of where you're playing here already planning what you're going to play that's photography we've gotta know our instrument or cameras or lights all this so well that while we're thinking about making the shot we're way ahead of actually set setting up stands but just like anything there's a point where beyond the lighting and beyond the camera beyond how many pixels you have uh it just gets backto heart I want to see a picture that moves me and I really don't care if it's hips dramatic picture off of a point shoot off of a hassled glad I don't care if the picture moves me and I think oh that's cool I like the photograph and I think that we deed to take step back sometimes in digital photography and think more about the image a...

nd a little bit less about the tools that we do so we're using some state of the art equipment here today we're also using some non state of the art equipment here today on over the weekend because light is light so whether you're a speed like shooter or your pro photo shooter or you've got a set of breeze well if you have a set of breeze I'd like to be your best friend for a while so we could play with those but whatever you have you can make photographs it's uh a simple case of understanding what light does I'm subject centric so when I think about lighting I think about my subject what do I want the picture to look like ah ansel adams uh once uh castigated someone for using the word pre visualization because he said basically pre visualizations uh you're saying it twice right what's it called redundant it's redundant it's soprano pre visualization visualization is pre so it's just visual ization that being said I call it provisions they should all the time so it's like I have it but we pre visualized because we can see what lights going to do from the subject and that really is what we see when we see a photograph what light you captured coming from a subject we've all been outside on crappy days where the light just isn't really very pretty and we also had those moments where you think oh oh my god I wish I'd brought my camera with me I do carry a camera with me now so now I say gee I wish I could take the time to take the camera out of bag since I already have it with me I'm working on that o r we're almost there think about all the photographs you have those that you should've taken I can remember one I was in denver and the light was coming behind this tree and I was on the freeway that's all right I got it it's up here I'll keep it there forever I started in photography along time ago my dad took me into the dark room and uh I was magical I've gone out taking pictures with him I think it was like eight years old and we were there and he processed that picture I could remember that picture coming up in that bechtel and I thought oh I want to do this I wanted to make pictures so he got me a brownie well he had a zeiss ikon and I had a brownie trust me pictures that coming out of my brownie didn't quite look like the pictures coming out of his ice icon so within about six months I I got this ice icon and he got something else so I've been doing it for a long long time absolutely love it and the reason I love photography is because I think photography is one of the highest art forms there is when I hear these arguments well photography's not heart I beg to disagree and I think it's that way because of the element of time I'm also my my degrees in music theory and composition so I've written music and I've had it played and you can write a piece of music and I can give it to this orchestra or that orchestra new york film are nick I got a couple scores um you can give and they can play it and you can hear it several times and you could go back and hear it with a photograph we have that one instant that will never be replayed ever again and it's our job to catch it so when I see a photograph that's just exquisite both in composition and lighting and how it was produced that was a magic moment that that photographer recognized and captured I love that that's why I think the element of time and you can go back and do it you can't reproduce it it's it's there so our job is to make those moments happened so that we can capture them in the roman days if you go to rome or grease you see the statues of the naked ladies those were the romans senators wives that they would have carved when they were young because they knew they would never looked that beautiful again so that was who those statues were well we can't do that we have photographs so we take photographs and go back you know I'm I love music if you guys follow my block you know talk about music all the time um and if you ever heard a song and just all of a sudden you just kind of kind of wow and it takes you back you know photography doesn't even mohr had a picture on my desk it's a picture of two elderly people and they're laughing and it's a snapshot prime probably flash on a little point ships little snapshot and it's a priceless photograph because it's my mom and dad and they're not with me anymore but they didn't laugh all that much but they did that one moment that one small moment in time and I captured it and so people came in and look at that photograph that say dude it's a snapshot of a couple of old folks yes really precious photograph from a that's what photography khun d'oh I don't think of any other medium khun do it can you I don't think any other medium khun do that can take us back or recall that moment a lifetime in a single picture when I was five or six years old that was in the sixties um uh life magazine used to come through the shoot in the and the doorway like sort of gives it away right there doesn't it well before the sixties but the life magazine would come down I was about five years old when life ran the issue with the photographs from awe sh bits and it and I can remember that was nineteen fifty four I believe and those that came down that magazine terrified me it absolutely terrified me and I realized that black dots of ink on a piece of white paper could have that much emotion I was hooked and have always loved photographs ever since and still dio became a commercial photographer because I figured I like taking pictures a lot and this guy came over who worked for an ad agency next door and he knew I liked to take pictures and he had this little black cylinder need to photograph of it could I do it oh well heck yeah he was going to pay me one hundred fifty dollars so I could definitely do this problem was that really never shot anything other than you know trees landscapes with the grand canyon and shot there took me a week before I finally figured out that if I put something white next to the the cylinder that I could see it so it took me a week of shooting every spare moment I had to make that hundred fifty bucks didn't matter I was hooked that was it so I figured I needed to learn photography so I went to l a um and started assisting and like a sponge show me once I got it I'm really d d j a n e u guys at your photographers come on you know you are really a d d so if it's something I like I got it it's something I don't like like trying to figure out the mileage on my car I don't know look on the sheet that came on the car I have no idea how to figure that out but I figure out photography I've been in business for a long long time I've never had a bank loan I've never had a line of credit I operate as a business I make photographs and I get paid if I'm not going to get paid then I'm making photographs for may now ask me if I do anything for free yes I have and any photographer who tells you that they haven't is either not telling you the truth they're trying to sell you something yeah you shoot for free when you start not you get your stuff out there I shot for free I still shoot for free what I don't do is shoot for cheap so you know I'll work with your non profit organization and bust my butt for it I have a couple of rules by the way when I'm shooting for free for nonprofits and one of the rules is you don't get to art direct me if you're going to art direct me that's a job if you're going to trust me go on make cool photographs so I could do that on this and the other thing is or I get full rate I get competitive compensation because if I cut rate you guys then I've slice my own throat and slice your throat but a gift is a gift you khun do you khun gift your photography all you want just let him know it's a gift just don't cut rate

Class Description

Learn how to light in any situation. This special 3-day workshop will introduce you to lighting by learning the basics. Don helps you start evaluating light from a subject centric approach — teaching you to identify how your light will react to your subject. Don Giannatti’s workshop is perfect for photographers working to find their vision and their own perspective. You'll learn to use this knowledge of light to create perfect photographs. This workshop is a non-stop, hands-on weekend.



I just finished watching this course, and with teary eyes can say, without reserve, this class has been fantastic! Don's last session would be great to watch in the beginning and the end because it helps to understand his thoughts on being a photographer. The rest of the class is full of great information on lighting and Don is able to explain his thoughts and his processes with ease. I hope I will always think ahead and plan how I want my final results and how I want my subject to reflect light. Learning this was one of my "aha" moments during this class. I own over 30 Creative Live photography courses and this class is one of the top classes I own. I already plan on rewatching the whole class. Well worth the investment! I feel it is not a beginner course, but a intermediate to advanced one. Don has set a high standard in lighting...a goal to reach for...a goal that is possible for each person willing to take the time to learn and practice. Thanks Don and thanks CreativeLive!

Joao Alexandre Paulo

Great class, amazing instructor. Don's able to explain it so good that he makes it all look like very simple. I just have one comment and one request for the CreativeLive staff: When Don's commenting and analysing the pictures or explaining some features of them please keep the camera shooting at what he's commenting :) It would also be great if the way how the umbrellas and soft boxes are set up were disclosed, Ex: how the strobes and lights are mounted. Overall an amazing value for the price.