Skip to main content

Minimalist Photography

Lesson 26 of 27


Curtis Jones

Minimalist Photography

Curtis Jones

Starting under


Get access to this class +2000 more taught by the world's top experts

  • 24/7 access via desktop, mobile, or TV
  • New classes added every month
  • Download lessons for offline viewing
  • Exclusive content for subscribers

Lesson Info

26. Summary
A final review of the important topics we covered in this class that will get you out shooting your own minimalist images in no time at all.

Lesson Info


before we go, I just wanted to recap some of the fundamentals for you guys. We went through a lot. So hopefully this sort of summarizes it nicely, minimalism is essentially just stripping a photo down to what's necessary to tell your story. A single subject or a simple subject in a clean space. What's a minimalist photo for? You might not be the same as it is for someone else, and that doesn't even matter. Just find your zone and hone in. It's really important to remember that what's minimalist for you doesn't necessarily make it minimalist for someone else. And that's not what's important. What's important is that you're working towards a cleaner, simplified version of the vision you had or the anchor you found, and you're trying to portray that subject in its most essential way. We talked about negative space. We talked about that balance of negative space and why the space between our subject and surrounding our subject is not only important for bringing that focus, but also as a ch...

aracter, as a supporting player in the story of your image itself. We talked about clutter that visual clutter that's out there in the world, how to see it so that you can remove it and get that out of your image or whether it's using a telephoto lens cropping, perspective shifts are just changing where you're standing while you're out there. We talked about some of the equipment that can help you create these images, whether it's switching your lens or putting a filter on, there's a couple different ways to kind of hone in on that vision you have for the cleanest version of your subject. We went over how important timing and weather is. A lot of the work that I do, because my minimalist photography is rooted in sort of the outdoor adventure and travel genres. The weather itself plays such an important role in creating my minimalist images, fog and snow are probably To blame for at least 85% of my minimalist portfolio. And so it's really important that you guys start paying attention to that. Get an app on your phone, start checking your local forecasts, colour versus black and white. It's not as easy as black and white winds because it's more minimal. We saw that color actually is a very powerful player in creating strong minimalist images. And a black and white conversion is not always going to be the answer. So there are times for black and white and you're gonna want to learn how to use it intentionally. That's why I said, you know, start using your camera in that mode if you can, you're gonna start seeing the world in shape and form and contrast, but also be aware that color is really, really powerful and you can want to use color from time to time to create the best version of your vision. And the final thing we talked about was post processing and how we could use light room Photoshop or whatever your favorite software is to edit out any of those final distractions or crop out any of those final distractions that we couldn't quite clean up in the field in camera and how we can just elevate those images one more step, whether it's, you know, a little bit of clone stamp work or extending a canvas to give it a little more breathing space. There are some fun tips and tricks that you can do in the editing to help maximize that minimalist concept.

Class Description


  • 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)


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.

Greg Emerson

Excellent course Curtis! This is a great reminder that colour and complexity can often be the very reason you're not nailing that great shot. I particularly enjoyed how you showed us that beautiful images are always there right in front of you, even in crappy weather!