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Minimalist Photography

Lesson 11 of 27

Apex Beach - Wrap Up

Curtis Jones

Minimalist Photography

Curtis Jones

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Lesson Info

11. Apex Beach - Wrap Up
Review the final image from our outdoor session and discover the reasons why color helps create a stronger story than the same image in black and white.

Lesson Info

Apex Beach - Wrap Up

I wanted to take a moment to quickly point out why I think the colour version of this image works better than the black and white version and it's not always the case that black and white is going to be the best way to process your minimalist images. And in this example in particular, there are two good reasons why I prefer color. The first reason being that this image tells a story, there's history in this image and I think that the color is what makes that angle more compelling. The Hudson's Bay company, which is the building that's represented here. Uh, they have a pretty varied history and a long history in the north and a big part of that company's brand was that bold red color. So if you take that read out, it's not exactly recognisable. That building, you know, is not as easily distinguished as any other building you might find on a snowy landscape. There's a very particular um, connection to that red. So I wanted to include that read. It was important for me to keep it in there...

to create that more interesting image. Secondly, I think that the red in this situation helps us focus our attention on the main subject, which is the boat. It really pops off the screen and you're gonna see with the black and white image that if you take the color out, you still can see that there's a shape there and you will you will see that it's a boat if you look closely enough, but it's not instantly recognizable. So if I show you the black and white, you'll see that there's just sort of a dark shape in the lower right and then there's, you know, that building off to the side on the left also kind of shaded and dark, but you know, even though the weight and the balance of the composition is all pretty much the same as the colour version, there just seems to be less focus and attention moving to the boat. It's not instantly recognizable. And and with these minimal images, that's one of the things you do want to shoot for the color version of this, I feel because of that pop of color really has the advantage over the black and white. And those are the two biggest reasons why I would use color in this situation. Mhm. Mhm. Yeah.

Class Description

Short on time? This class is available HERE as a Fast Class, exclusively for Creator Pass subscribers. 


  • Understand and apply the fundamentals of creating strong minimalist compositions.
  • Use negative space with intention. Establish mood, control balance in your frame, and elevate your subject from the visual clutter.
  • Avoid common traps that can lead to flat or boring minimalist images.
  • Explore how much information to keep and how much to take away from the image before it loses impact.
  • Understand common gear and technique choices that complement the minimalist style.


Do you ever wonder why certain photographs linger with the viewer long after they see them? Why sometimes the smallest point of interest makes the biggest impression? How so much “nothing” can feel so compelling in a scene? Minimalism photography techniques can add a powerful storytelling element to any genre, they can evoke emotion, and bring balance to your frame. Using Baffin Island in the Canadian Arctic as his backdrop, this class will outline Curtis’s approach to creating stronger images with a minimalist mindset.

Learn to use the creative techniques of minimalism to intentionally account for every inch of your frame. Discover how to minimize clutter, work with negative space, and master visual balance to boost the overall impact of your compositions. Working in a clean visual style students will learn to look for strong anchors, shapes, and lines while eliminating visual distractions. Curtis will share his experiences and images from some of the world’s most remote destinations to help kick-start your journey toward simplified, cleaner photographs that capture the essence of our world.


  • Beginner and intermediate photographers interested in outdoor and landscape photography.
  • Photographers who want to understand and create with elements of minimalism to help capture the strength and essence of your subject.
  • Photographers looking to create cleaner, simplified images that leave an impact on the viewer.


Adobe Lightroom Classic (8.4.1)
Adobe Photoshop CC (20.0.8)

Ratings and Reviews

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This is a brilliant course which I can highly recommend. I have done some Minimalist photography but still found the lessons very interesting. I enjoyed the discussion on colour vs. B&W. My favourite part was to learn how long it takes to plan a shoot, wait for the right conditions, even change the subject if the initial idea doesn't work and see the other images taken during the shoot before (or after) the final image. The presentation is excellent - love the cat :-).

Bradley Wari

Great Job! Great course! loved the bloopers, had a few laughs. I really enjoyed how he showed a little of how he worked the scene of a few of his images. showing multiple images and how he got to THE shot.

Deb Williams

Great class, good length and easy to follow along. A fantastic way to challenge yourself to look at composition differently and a course full of useful tips to try out.