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Masters of Photography

Lesson 24 of 34

How To See When You Travel

Joel Meyerowitz

Masters of Photography

Joel Meyerowitz

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Lesson Info

24. How To See When You Travel

Lesson Info

How To See When You Travel

(dramatic violin music) We're on a road in Tuscany, filled with these incredible Cypress trees like a cathedral outside. Really easy to make an interesting photograph here. It's like a gift and a given. They're here, you're here, you can make a picture of it. It's as simple as this. (camera clicks) Good vertical gives you that height and the magic but really, the question is, is that all there is to making a landscape photograph, just walking on a road? A picture like this exists for everybody. It doesn't take any brains to see this photograph. You just take it. But my feeling is that it's our pleasure and the demands of photography for us to make a photograph and making it means that we have to put things together and see things in a way that it's not the familiar, same old stuff that everybody else does. You wanna separate yourself from everyone else because you've been on a search for your identity this whole course and here we are in a place that's offering us this. So when I loo...

k at this and I see the shadows crossing the road and the curve of the trees, I think how beautiful, but then out of the corner of my eye, I see the same shadows are now leaping over the road and down into a valley and crossing the valley and coming up the other side and I'm thinking, hey I wanna go there. I wanna make a picture that allows me to feel the movement of the land, the beauty of the light, the strength of the shadows. So I'm gonna work over here for a few minutes to see if I can't make a photograph that is much more interesting than this simple, familiar, obvious picture. (dramatic violin music) (camera clicks) Oh, oh, it's important to step off the road. The road is the given for everybody but as soon as you step 10 feet off the road, here are all these lines and all these shadows. One of the things about Tuscany is that it's so beautiful everywhere you look. I call it Tuscan wallpaper. It's as if anybody could take their camera and look out there at these rolling hills and chop off a couple of feet of it in the camera and you get a picture of Tuscany but it's a generalized picture. It belongs to everybody and it doesn't say anything about you, your creative impulse, your sense of what's important. It's just general, anybody could make that picture but look at at this. Here these shadows go racing down and they add an incredible energy and you still get the picture of the distance. It's part of the scene but it's no longer by itself. It's now interacting with all of these incredible shadows. So I'm gonna work here for a minute or two because this is beautiful. (camera clicks) Whoa, the golden, rolling hills and the dark fingers rolling down. But then, then it's important to actually look the other way, too. I mean, the world is 360 degrees. Things are happening everywhere. When I look out here and I see the sweep of these Cypress trees curving around, ending in a castle and the lines of the trees making a kind of topographic map of the land. It's an incredible gift, so it's important to keep on opening yourself up so that the more you see, the more you embrace. Photography's very generous. (camera clicks) There's a beautiful move where the trees swing around and then there's a little island of trees down here that I really love. (camera clicks) Wow, the lens is so sensual. You know, it's like corrugated hay made out of light and shadow. That's what photography is made of, light and shadow and color. So use all of these elements to make the response absolutely your own. It's your identity that you're creating with these photographs and I think it's there waiting for you. (dramatic violin music)

Class Description

Internationally renowned and award winning photographer Joel Meyerowitz is known for his iconic images that encompass decades of capturing all genres of photographs. Masters of Photography is bringing Joel’s class to CreativeLive to share the learnings from his vast career.

You’ll learn:

  • How to find a subject to photograph
  • How to improve your compositional skills
  • How to determine correct lighting
  • How to print your images and also create a photo book

Walk with Joel through picturesque Tuscany, bustling Siena and the vibrant streets of New York as he shows you how he creates his photographs. He will shares ideas, experiences, and his secrets on how to make great images. Joel will also suggest ideas for projects to try yourself. You can use any device from camera phone to DSLR, but in the end it’s all about you and your photography.

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I have an all access pass and thought oh no, I have to pay for this one? I bit the bullet and I am so glad I did. Joel has a great deal of wisdom and experience because of his age. BUT, despite his age, he exudes a fountain of enthusiasm, playfulness, curiousity and constant wonder surrounding his subjects. He opened within me the possibilities of exploring different photographic subjects and allowing myself to experience the fun in pursuit of those subjects. I love the way he shows how someone can take the same ho hum scene, but then look around for a different point of view. He is indeed a Master and I thank Joel for the class.


This is a absulutely fantastic class. Joel Meyerowitz takes you on an journey of little but important advices. In each short video you got some jewels to improve your approach, your view and your art. I own a lot of classes here on CL, but this one is one of my favourits! Gentle and human. Thank you Joel Meyerowitz, you helped me a lot on my journey to develop my photography.

Cosmin Dolha

What do you do after you learn all the mechanics, the technical stuff, exposure triangle, lights, where do you start? Because I am starting, now! You will find encouragement and guidance, and real applicable wisdom. If you are new to photography as I am, this course will point you in the right direction. What a treasure! Thank you CreativeLive for this and thank you Joel Meyerowitz for taking such a gentle approach to such a complicated subject, that is photography.