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Mastering Photographic Composition and Visual Storytelling

Lesson 50 of 50

Training the Mind

Chris Weston

Mastering Photographic Composition and Visual Storytelling

Chris Weston

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Lesson Info

50. Training the Mind


Class Trailer

Your 10,001st Photograph


Camera Gear


Piece of Gear We Always Forget


Be a Storyteller


Finding Ideas For Photography - Know Your Subject


Cae Study - Why Are Zebras Black and White Striped


Photograph What You Love


See the Extraordinary in Ordinary Things


Lesson Info

Training the Mind

in 15 20 explorer Ferdinand Magellan landed the tip of South America in a ship not unlike this. On coming ashore, he was greeted by a group of natives who had come to investigate these strange new beings and to wonder it. How they arrived. A legend has it. When Magellan pointed out the three fully rig sailing ships anchored off the coast, none of the natives could see them. The ship's alleged invisibility is thought to be due to the natives, having never conceived such otherworldly contraptions, which meant they had no reference for them in their brains. The inference is, we can only see what our minds are capable of conceiving. Today we're bombarded with information, so it's hard to imagine anything being inconceivable. But in 15 22 a native South American who truly believe the whole world consisted only of their known lands, the coming of these fair skinned, strangely clad stinky sailors was the equivalent of an alien invasion from outer space long before Hollywood and informed us wh...

at aliens might look like. Another word for conceive is one I've referred to already in this course. Visualize visualization is the process of creating a reference point in the brain of the potential image, which enables you to more easily perceive that image when you're out with your camera in the field. On a deeper level, visualization is the key to defining your own personal photographic style. The more we're able to conceive, the more likely it is the images we create our own unique interpretation of the world, rather than simply another record of what is plain for all to see. To conceive then lies at the heart of creativity. The question is, how might we train ourselves to conceive Mawr? Well, it turns out the answer is inside your head. We see so much in the world, so many the lower brain is bombarded with stimuli. You don't want to see that many stimuli. But if you did want to see the stimuli, then you can potentially do that by creating more connections. We do know that these connections are important for creativity on that the more connections that we form the mawr weaken perceive outside our normal perception outside our normal daily life and what we see and what we're trained to see. The brain can break down these connections and form new connections, and that's what we called plasticity. This plasticity will allow you to see things uniquely and ultimately that's going to win hearts, creativity. Our capacity deflects the mind in whatever direction is necessary to find. Result is what leads to true out of this world thinking as a photographer, it helps you make the compelling image and individually to reveal the world not as it seems to the outside world, but how it appears to you. Without creative thinking out images would all look the same, so stimulating the brain, forging new synaptic connections opens the way for a way of seeing that enables us to craft images that are, at once evocative, thought provoking and inspiring images that reflect who we are in any given moment and surely as photographers as artists, this should be our universal. No, I don't know

Class Description



  • Compose a shot consistently and effectively
  • Create artistic, powerful images quickly
  • Gain confidence in building narrative
  • Identify what stories you’re drawn to photograph
  • Brainstorm and develop concepts for creative shots
  • Trust your instincts when approaching a subject


CreativeLive is partnering with Chris Weston to offer you his Complete Photography Master Course. This is the second class in the series.

Today, everybody has a camera, but that doesn’t mean everyone’s a photographer. Chris Weston will show you how to do all the other stuff – how to “see” an image, tap into your creativity, and compose a photograph that makes the subject look as good in print as it does in real life.

This class isn’t about cameras, it’s about you – the photographer. It will break free your creative mind, get you thinking about narrative rather than object, and show you how to apply simple artistic skills that turn that next click into a powerful photograph.

Learn how to approach photography like a pro and start creating great pictures straight away. With in-the-field lessons, case studies and powerful tips and techniques, you’ll quickly unleash your creativity and gain confidence in expressing yourself through your camera.


  • Beginner photographers
  • First time DSLR or mirrorless camera users
  • Any photographer who wants to hone their artistic skills


Named one of the world's most influential wildlife photographers, Chris Weston takes a contemporary approach to photography. After launching his career in 2001, the Fujifilm ambassador's images have graced the pages of top publications like BBC, The Times, Outdoor Photography, Practical Photography, and Digital Photography. As a photography educator, Chris has written over 20 photography books, along with leading photo tours and online workshops.

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

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Edmund Cheung

Perhaps the style of presentation and simple, short, and direct messaging does not "jive" with some; but others may really love this. Yes the production of each episode is stylized and perhaps a bit formal (like a TV Show?), but there is something to be said about it. Perhaps this is not meant for professional photographers? I think of myself as decent amateur / high level photographer. I found lots of great nuggets of wisdom and inspiration from this. Especially when I an in a rut for creativity. Yes I have heard all these concepts and ideas before. BUT it is always great to hear and see a different way of presentation and voice. Please do NOT take the naysayer reviews as the end all. You should judge for yourself and watch a few episodes. If the style and content click for you, I would highly recommend this course.

Kai Atherton

While I am perhaps more advanced in my photography then this course. It is always great to be able to go back to fundamentals and remind ourselves of the basic principles, and even camera function. I thoroughly enjoyed this course and Chris's other. It is a great motivational jumpstart when lacking fresh creative idea's.

Abdullah Alahmari

Thanks a lot to mr. Chris Weston This course is great and It is a 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 course for me. Beside the other course ( mastering the art of photography ) both courses are Complementing to each other and highly recommended.