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Minimalist Photography

Lesson 22 of 27

Arctic Drone Flight Key Takeaways

Curtis Jones

Minimalist Photography

Curtis Jones

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Lesson Info

22. Arctic Drone Flight Key Takeaways
Let’s review the choices and planning that lead to getting our strongest, high angle minimalist images of the evening.

Lesson Info

Arctic Drone Flight Key Takeaways

we've covered a few different techniques here on this drone outing and I'm gonna go over them one last time, just so they stick with you the first and the biggest thing, we really changed our perspective by getting that drone up in the air. Taking advantage of getting this very extreme perspective is a great way to open your scene up and get rid of visual clutter just like a telephoto lens shooting past clutter. It's the same thing if you get you know, top down perspectives like that, all of these things that are like blocking, you know, and overlapping and intersecting with the horizon all of a sudden become less of an issue because you're shooting down, you still have to look out for things overlapping and you still have to look out for uh crossing of shadows and patterns and stuff like that. But it is like a really quick and a simple way to see how changing your perspective in an extreme way like that can really clean up clean up a space and clean up your composition also by getting...

the drone up in the air, we were able to really leverage the power of negative space. We we got this tiny little dog team, this massive sea ice expansive situation and by getting the drone up like that and really embracing negative space and making the dog team looks so small in the frame, we can really tell that story about, you know, the human in the big open space and how the environment itself and that visual mass that weight that the landscape and the environment of their carries really comes in and tells really helps tell the story of that image. So it becomes part of the subject. Another thing that we covered here was the use of a repeating pattern or a sequence of shapes and forms that when put together and looked at in this top down perspective, they don't look like visual noise, It's not distracting because they're all going in a similar direction. They all have that repetitive shape. The difference of putting uh creating a shot like this where those patterns are different. It's gonna be very jarring for the eye to go from triangle square circle octagon. Whatever the patterns happen to be abstract or otherwise, especially if you're changing color that becomes cluttered and visually distracting. You can look for things like rocks, repeating patterns and rocks. You can look for in big open grassy fields where it's the same type of soil or grass texture. So look for those shapes and patterns where everything looks similar and unified. And the final thing I wanted to talk about was just timing and whether it was really important with this shot in particular to go out at sunset. So I could get those long shadows. Get that nice contrast the light to really highlight the patterns in the snow. If you're going to try to create these shots with intention, really start looking at the weather. What's on the horizon, you know, is it gonna be fog? Is it gonna be snow? Are you gonna get low light, flat light, overcast days? You can create minimal shots and all those conditions, but if you know before you go out what you can expect, then you can make photos intentionally instead of just like stumbling upon them a pack, I'm blah, blah, blah. Yeah, another point that I wanted to talk about, another thing I wanted to like and the third thing that I wanted to leave with you guys is forget.

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.