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The Outdoor Photography Experience

Lesson 11 of 29

Timeless Images at Glacier Point Shoot

Chris Burkard

The Outdoor Photography Experience

Chris Burkard

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Lesson Info

11. Timeless Images at Glacier Point Shoot

Lesson Info

Timeless Images at Glacier Point Shoot

I'm gonna play this yosemite video um and talk which talks about a lot of the same kind of things and then we'll we'll go here it's uh we're here yosemite california were at glacier point most you guys know this location writes really beautiful pride I'd say one of the most you know epic you know spots for stargazing are getting kind of a clear you know amazing sky in the sierras like is about as good as it gets so my goal coming here was really just to kind of come to a location that I knew we could we could work a couple different angles perspectives throughout the day and you're somebody's always been sort of that that place right um just you know huge disclaimer obviously we're we're hearing or no you know commercial or editorial obligations just basically purely speck and one of my one of my favorite things really is to kind of transform these these assignments that aren't really assignments in to work right so I'd say a lot of the best injury that I've been able to shoot has been...

kind of born out of just going out and shooting photos on a road trip and that's kind of exactly what I'm doing right now I road tripped up here with my friends and brought you know a variety of different stuff between like climbing gear and kayak and this and that so we could just have a good weekend you know have a good day basically in the park and documented experience is obviously what I love to do so I think trying to figure out ways to you know approach a location like this and melded into photography you know that really makes sense and works and brings kind of an elevated method to it is is sort of my goal so I would say this location first and foremost as far as the sun rises as good as it gets there's a there's a super um a finite amount of time during the year when the sun rises directly behind half dome it's actually like on ly happens for maybe like a month out of the year I think it's like right now between now and the beauty of august or something like that so I would love to come up here this time of year and shoot that from glacier point and on glacier point road just kind of getting these you know amazing leading lines of this road and it's one of my favorite things do shooting skateboarding here is well as anything else and I traveled up here if my friends super classic vintage van again and volkswagen bus and I wanted to shoot it driving up because I thought you know what I lost some kind of marriage of timeless epic location with a timeless epic vehicle so one of the one of the big kind of key elements that I really loved to dress is this idea of creating images that feel more timeless and feel you know and we're gonna last it's not dated nineteen you know seventy four thousand fifteen it's it's universal it's universally unique universally cool universally liked road trip like we said all those ascetics so for me that is like the most important thing you know it's one of those aspects that just you know it's it's what we resonate with as photographers and we tried to kind of bring their audience to also we have a lot of other factors like amazing you know leading lines your epic just leading line that weaves into our frame we also have one of the most greatest monolithic faces of rock in the world probably the most recognizable face of rock in the world so how could we take this incredible landscape that stands alone by itself and kind of add in another perspective well there's a lot of things you could do you know you could I don't know shoot somebody motorcycling down this road shoot someone skateboarding other stroeder forget the road altogether and just take a picture of the beautiful rock face and for me adding in this vehicle is just one of those elements that kind of gives a little bit more right so trying to consider timelessness you know that's something I'm gonna dress throughout the day quite a bit sorry I'm like freezing right now some like jittering bit just walk up to it so I'm like yeah it's mostly my my teeth that are just like chattering but that's something I want to address quite a bit throughout the days like timeless this hawk we address that how can we consider creating imagery that's that's meant to last I guess a lot longer than us you know because I think that's the ultimate goal right is shooting photographs they're going to be around longer than we are shooting photographs that anyone who picks them up is going to appreciate them on a universal scale and kind of resonate with them be like wow you know like I traveled yosemite and you know the forties like though this is amazing this photo like sums up that experience not like weird that's so two thousand eleven like that alexis you know driving on that road you know maybe yeah exactly yeah so it's it's so important to kind of think think in that regard you know and and really approach it and this is the coolest assignment for me this this opportunity to teach with creative lives because really that's all I'm here to do is just take you guys on sort of the problem I process my mental process of how they would approach a location like this what I would shoot you know what are some of the aspects that I think make me really inspired to like get up and go and do and a lot of times it's super simple a lot of times it's kind of a well thought out conceived plan most of it all house it was just like who you're with what you're doing what's the energy and the sort of the method of how you're traveling right and kind of putting that into an experience right and and who knows what these photos could be used for you know like I have no plans or intentions that's kind of the beauty of it is that for me a lot of times I think our best work comes from when were our most creatively like available you know to do what we want to do we don't have some agenda or something we have to shoot or I'm up here shooting for this from appears shooting for that you know and what it does it helps us to kind of train ourselves to think ok when I do have a commercial assignment or when I am shooting an automotive thing for that for that brand how can I take elements of this infuse it into that right because that's something that for me that I've been able to do is I've shot a lot of stuff like this in places like iceland and in norway alaska and chili and you know all these locations these awesome vehicles driving on these amazing roads and just documenting the road trip and I've really used that to kind of build my automotive portfolio and then do jobs for toyota land cruiser and you know yada yada so considering how this can sort of evolved our work into commercial work is really important to write cool so I'm gonna grab my camera bag um I got this little side couch right here and I'm going teo do a quick pass I'm gonna probably move out into the middle of the road and you guys are welcome to do the same as long as we like just get jump out you know when the cars come um but I'm gonna probably approach this a couple different ways you know there's a lot of from lenses I think you could shoot with ease this like point from one of it would be like obviously a traditional just wide angle sort of capturing like this s curve in the road on another would be like standing back further compressing the whole scene in right getting half don't to be a bit bigger but the hardest part really is just I think preparing for the light change right and the light shift um so right now I'm putting my camera right around like a one hundred um kind of just preparing for what I know is going to be um a really intense dynamic range right now it's like super intense dynamic range because it's sky a super bright and the ground is really dark but assumes that sun comes out it's gonna light up the ground even things out a little more hey james control your lights thanks you just go ahead and flip it and we'll uh we'll give it another go because the sun's about to rise yeah bro my skates too if you want brad he should grab it yeah I could push it and stand on this I don't know if I can do the curve on this on scare I do americans like six hundred fifty feet right now really yeah I mean grab it dude honestly between this this is what that was you shooting ah stay left doesn't get any for me it doesn't get any better than the hat you know the whole scene go ahead and go ahead and uh shifted around and let's give it a couple more goes so like this the whole light the way it's lighting up the road now now you have this really awesome even exposure right and I think one thing two approaches like think about this road and how it can work for your frame like another element they really want to talk about discusses this idea of like creating three dimensional images right always thinking about how we can make images go from being flat to being three dimensional and this little curve in the road is probably one of the coolest things way have working for us here go and just flip it again so right now I'm shooting emmanuelle I'm shooting uh got to give it another go I'm shooting um basically just kind of messing with the lights changing so much that some of them I'm like putting the sun into kind of like a star you know what I'm shooting like f sixteen or higher uh and then some of it I'm I'm sort of just working with uh I'm just working with like differentiate between like some wide angle and some so I'd say you could just run up and just cruise down let's do let's see no hands first and see this little this little curve right here this little bank try and like try and try and turn right here and then come into this little pool of light over here okay and then you want to lower high just like lo no not just like normal like don't try and overdo it then it looks because it's not steep enough to look supernatural but I'd go through really quick just before he comes down so thinking about you guys like just this the scene how it like I said one that's nice is a lot of elements what you could do that to give things all right he's coming up but should be that should be driving it yeah james is pretty pretty all time moving up tio thiss curve kind of becomes a little mark century and I feel like and actually makes that makes the whole scene a little more interesting as well and then just kind of working this relationship and how weaken I guess you give it a little more death you know take it away and it's as as minuscule is ah is minuscule was a lot of these things seem and and they're actually like they make it like an immense difference in the shot all together every time you know by moving up ten feet by moving down by crouching you know probably the least interesting photo that any of us are going take is the one we're just standing like right here with a camera face but by elevating by getting lower by getting higher we allow ourselves to basically create different dimensions than our photos right every time you look at a photograph nowadays it's pretty much typically on a device right or online or in some digital format you know printed books and stuff like that as well but it's it's just always in a flat format so considering what we can do to sort of give ourselves a more three dimensional field and look is super important and this is one of those great things were right now were elevated so our entire scene kind of falls around before us but if we were to get on the same level as half dome and kind of get low and compressing it would feel lot more flat it would feel lot more kind of one dimensional right but by using these lines lead into our frame by stacking the things we have going we have really amazing quality of color here we'll talk about the color scenario on a second this is a really big aspect of what I love teaches well s o many considered like a taco for relationships the colors that way work with this super important okay one of the number one photographs I think that we see all the time is what is in the evening you look on your phone after yeah exactly why did we shoot sunsets why've you will really drawn the sunset says it brings death right brings the death why did you do that though it's it's because you have two primary colors you're working with you have cool tones and you have warm tones and those tones contrast ing that pushing in there pulling and by doing that what happens is cool tones received warm tones push you forward right so these two things really work together too bring you and they give you death immediately any time you see a usually a really engaging image it's because of those two elements working kind of simultaneously right and it's super important um it's super important to understand the relationship goes and how they really work so right now too we have the same thing right what we have we have a sunrise we have amazing warm tones right down here we have all these cool tones up here we have a lot of shadow a lot of death and all these things we're good right now man thank you um all these things really really helped play into this idea that we are going to be creating and an emotional trigger within our photographs to give people some sort of ah depth to our images right it's it's it's kind of a hard one to calm him but if you think about it you know these air these air cognitive responses that we have two images it's not it's not even I have to do with any type of like photography trickery or cameras or technology or anything it's just straight up you put somebody in a blue shirt against you know an orange sky they're going to stand out or vice versa you know because those two those two colors they complement each other in the fact that they are kind of pushing away from one another right and so that is really what is super helpful you know you have a yellow bus right if this was a you know a bright blue day this wood thing would just really pop against that right you have the opportunity to shoot it sunrise which is really the optimal window that time of day where the light is just the most unique right so I think for me understanding that relationship was one of the only things I really studied in school is this this idea of three dimensional art I took a class in it and I did quite a few art classes and that was one of the really important things I learned and I try to apply that to I think everything that I've shot you know and this idea of really shooting in those this is kind of why we're drawn to shoot good light you know because of what is good like do well it's not just pretty to look at but it's also really engaging you know one thing that's nice as well and in kind of furthering this idea of creating timeless imagery is shooting silhouettes you guys have any ideas on maybe why that's that would be helpful are kind of important anything could be behind this right but as as a viewer say your viewing an image right you're viewing a photograph of a of a surfer mountain biker and they're like you know they're writing at a place you've ridden before you know yeah right you don't identify yeah right that's super important that such a that's spot on it's such an important aspect because they're not dated by logo's and sponsors and all this other kind of crap that goes into the typical front let image right by shooting a strong silhouette you've enabled your viewer to feel like they could be a part of it you actually opened up this opportunity to really create all of a sudden and amazing like engaging kind of image by just allowing them to inviting them to feel like they're a part of it right so another thing too I mean this is obviously it's already a timeless vehicle but if I was gonna shoot another vehicle here you know that wasn't as nostalgic you know I think shooting a silhouette would be nice because it wouldn't be as easily identifiable it'd be a little more moving a little more kind of you know unique as to that shapes and that the tones and that's really what you're looking at right now it's kind of like shooting in black and white you cut out all the b s and you just have to colors right and so you're forced kind of look at lions and subtleties and all these things about it so does that kind of make sense to you guys I know a lot of these ideas that I'm I'm sort of teaching on here not so much like stop this and opportunities but it's more about camera psychology and the psychology of taking pictures and how it kind of really suits on a on a human level and I think it's kind of an important approach to think about so um you know like like stocked up for you know you you work your seventy val you know you know how beautiful it is and you see these amazing you know granted structures all david I guess the hardest thing I'm guessing you have to is when you when you go to shoot here you think about how can I infused this place into my images you know it's like all the stuff I love to do whether it's like climbing or riding your bike or you know hiking around it's like trying to you know meld kind of these scenes together yeah it's a tough one and yeah I think what you're saying really about the silhouettes is like super true especially and like today's society where I'll like the photos that were taken like you're saying not so much seen so much in print is there seeming like the digital world and having the ability to have more people relate to those images by keeping on you know it's not this specific person this could be anyone I think that's huge especially when with the open share space that photo's air going into is totally and I can't stress enough you guys like this idea that it's it's super funny but you know obviously um you know we're not here like shooting photos for so we could get more likes it's not really the purpose but we can learn a lot from those images that do have good engagement right and a lot of times the image they do have good engagement on any platform whether it's social whether it's editorial whether it's ah commercial client you know it's typically the photographs that have some of these elements they're they're really tuned up and having grilli good composition right good light obviously and usually a strong silhouette or a strong subject matter right that kind of is I guess you know really a powerful aspect of the image so I think that taking all these into consideration every time we take a picture is important now I'm the worst because like all have all these things kind of ingrained but I'll come to a spot of something called the lights so good fricking she I'll just do whatever just click the shutter and even care s o ten thousand doesn't matter you know and I've been that person all the time but I think it's nice when we slow down we kind of we take some time we have something special to us a photo you have in mind right now okay how can I elevate this photograph how can I make it that much better or photo you've taken before I've shot here hundreds of times you know like my entire life coming to yosemite and especially this little rad s turn in the road it's beautiful but always thinking like how could I shoot old differently how could I elevate it out but what could I do you know I mean like you know hiking up here and she's looking down or is it a totally different scenario that I haven't even thought of for you know so I think there's a lot of elements to it that khun it can really help you know uh I just I just approaching your images in a little more like a psychological method rather than just like a technological method you know because sometimes it's really easy to get caught up in the tech side of things and I see a lot of young professionals nowadays kind of mohr gravitating towards that right like okay like I got the gear I got this at that got you know when it's like you know some of the best photos I'm seeing and you guys will probably shot with iphone why because you know somebody was there they had a good eye they weren't encumbered by all this technology and they just kind of cool well this is great I'm just going to pop down like this and snap a photo and you're like why didn't I think of that you know it's probably because you have this big cameron all this craft next to you you know on and it wasn't as much of like a seamless you know fun experience right and so another kind of lesson that I love to talk about is this idea of the less we have you know the more we know the less we need you know it's that famous coupon shin are quote right and I think that it really applies to cameras too you know we the smaller the body the more intimate our experience right the smaller the camera in the less gear we have the more intimate our experience is going to be with that scene I don't care if it's a mountain ranger if you're working like face to face with like a model or something like that you know it's really about that engagement so that kind of makes sense to you guys a little bit cool yes yeah especially somewhere here like you some of you I mean it's kind of hard to take a bad quote unquote picturing because you're surrounded by the cliffs and so that's the biggest thing that I've struggled with here taking photos is that every photo is one of those quote unquote great photos but how do you elevate that to that next marks it's a great foot of it everyone's taking and it's not just like you like you make it different how do you add those engaging aspects of it and I think it's just like you know a lot of times too I think that you take this method where you all come to a place like this and I'll be like awesome you know I know what I want to shoot I know the angle right all kind of planet out I had a time my mind and so I'll do my research I don't care from going to iceland russia for twenty days or if I'm just like shooting my house it's nice to have a concept in mind and do a little bit of research before you go so you have some like a shot list kind of built out but then at the same time leaving yourself open for new experiences so that when you get there and things happen you're not just like I got to stick to my shot list you know you're very much allowing yourself to be open in the moment as things occurred happened you are available and ready just to kind of shoot you know and you're available toe teo sort of bring new experiences on because ah lot of times the best photograph probably this week it too excuse me that's photograph all take we will not be one that I planned out our thought always be something happened along the way you know it'll be like oh wow you see that cloud that came over it looked like this it was crazy in that lino the sun just hit half don't like that ten seconds you like being a veil ready and willing to take those shots is really important maybe coming to it a little lower and kind of be like more like cruising through that turn yeah it's always fun because you have this idea in mind right you're like great this is the shot this really cool turner here but then him walking up with his board might be like a better shot maybe like um or engaging moment you know and that's kind of like what you have to play with I find that you come to a scene like this right and you want to look at it from every perspective like I said before that the worst angle you're going to choose just the one where your camera's drive we'll discuss a second kind of so what are some of these ways to approach this place and find a new way to look at it you know go ahead when you're ready oh my god that was rob give it a couple give it a couple more goes yeah I love it it's really cool yeah so sweet I just want to see you get some exercise but when they come to a place like this like you know maybe it's a say it's a new spot right um especially if it's an old spot to meet one of the hardest things photographers come to a place we get a shot and we're like oh it's so easy for us to go back that same angle every time right so it's so important that we like mix it up we try something new and my favorite nephew is really to come to a place and if I have the time to scout jesus makes the world of difference right but look at it from every perspective don't pick up your camera to start snapping pictures but walk around three hundred sixty degrees if your objective is to shoot this feature you know half tone right here on this curve of this road man you better be up in the trees you better be up they're on your belly looking around three hundred sixty degrees yeah don't roll the window down and snap a photo it's like you need to look at it from every perspective because on a commercial assignment would be the same way you'd want to really give yourself this whole gamut of like and what does it look like from the ground from above from everything and really so you should you know intimately kind of know that location right good yeah ah yeah you mind you mind opening up a little bit I'll show you the photo so you can kind of get it feels like what it looks like but since you're such a silhouette see it's kind of like the shape like the shape they have the shape like that is like it feels a little like yeah b rad if you could like almost I mean you don't think even you go nearly his eyes it's like because because we can't really tell how fast you're going and it might be righteous like house somewhere like you're cruising through and you just kind of almost like open up a little bit you know go back yeah like you'd be right if you're a little more a little more relaxed and like opening up sort of it's sort of like that I think is is a little more like um easy to read yeah sweet give it give it yeah let's do a little trying it'll tiny bit more speed and come through that sandal section it's pretty sick just thinking you could you really could I've like we've tried to go pretty far but you definitely get like a lot of speed in some spots you know the point where it's like kind of scary yeah good try hansen you two hands dan you want my answer well yeah just coming through that same section will be rad yeah yeah yeah yeah honestly whatever is obviously the most safe yeah yeah perfect yeah the closer you are to that to the ad is gonna be a lot more contrast for your body yeah I'm really valuable to see how it's gonna go like a shot you don't need to be like on on that you could be like a foot off or something yeah don't worry it's not like a clip for anything why I just creative life just like yeah lola well stephen having that's sick it's crazy getting getting out of it looks look so gnarly was crazy yeah you overtime you see that dude that just made everything you could do look not school it was rad together yeah yeah yeah I can't leave you khun turn like that isn't gnarly getting out of getting out of it yeah but when you start getting speed what is yeah yeah that's like the scary lady doesn't know we're going down that like super iconic row dude that we went so far and so scared source which where we have you know I was out there like money yeah and on the road going into it yeah we went straight down and like doing handsome so that be the worst of it is the scariest thing even when you bailed it all you do is you just pop off yeah but I've talked up a lot of things going fast it's not always like yeah that was so crazy so I got what you wanted oh same thing just I just want to get a little I want to shoot wider with that body you think like this now I think it's cool straight so as you can see like communicating with like talent athlete model whatever you want to call it is so crucial obviously showing them photos a lot of times to helps a little bit too like yeah this is what I want different as best as we could describe it sometimes if they could see it it just helps to kind of like get and see what they want but well like you said unexpected thing is usually like one of the coolest things you might photograph while your place go ahead same distance was rather look looked awesome oh my god it's so crazy that's like the new standard in my book it's like oh but can you can you skateboard on your hands for like like you're a good that was rather my have you do it like a couple of minutes but that was pretty epic that was so crazy no you dance on board while the bus is like going on here well you know I didn't hands on the diving board like someone you really and I was pretty insane so it looks like uh it looks like they are going to launch the what they call the paragliders today which is super rare because like I know they do it it's always every every day that you see him launch off place your point but I think we should maybe try and head over there and shoot him when they go do you know what time they usually goes like nine a m or so yeah but I'll be be right shoot be pretty epic so um super super lucky I think but it's like like I said kind of those random moments you don't lean are gonna happen could always kind of turned out to be the best I just really quickly wanted just a couple more quick things about you know this location and sort of what what what makes it great you know I think that um in terms of I guess you know we talked about the iconic you know figure in the background it's it's really a no brainer here but I think looking at the different ways you can you can shoot it you know you have the ability to to really put a a subject or a person into this amazing skyline right which which gives you the ability to instantly have like a silhouette or a subject in a very prominent feature so rather than them being hidden by trees and all this other stuff it's not super busy it's just very very very like easy to read either digest I think that's one of the key things to look forward when trying to create great imagery just this idea of images that easy to decipher you know easy to kind of like look out and understand really quickly and easily in my mind that's like kind of an awesome way to look for stuff um we also have the ability to frame with these trees right such an amazing natural way to kind of you know put your image in a box right the road also killer leading line and I think the elevation these air just all things I look forward like a perfect location was like hey I have to do a shoot you know where is a great spot to dio I'd be like this spot it's got all these things got this framing of this big features you have you know it's really iconic california you know us it's very you know this and that so a lot of times when I'm you know pitching to a brand new I'm working with seventy to kind of pick a spot like these kind of places I put it back my mind to think wow this is a great spot I shot some personal work here by a year ago and I think that it be great to come back here and try x y and z right so kind always considering that way like how can you take this place that you've shot before places that were really cool or whatever and shoot them again you know do them again I've I've been to some of my favorite places and I've been so many times I saw him in their seventeen times and I'm still finding new stuff a shoot there you know there's no there's no like oh I've been there seen that yeah it was cool it's like I love this place every time I go I surprise myself and try to shoot something different right so I think that you know constantly being able to sort of reinvent the way we look at things is a super important part of of our craft is photographers storytellers as well so yeah all right now we're like you're beautiful weather carpathians but in a place like super nice but in a place like ice and ice is known for its fogginess its dreariness and it's kind of like cold murkiness what what's your approach to shoot you know places that are necessarily stunning you know weather wise well it's kind of one of those things where you we'll make dio because the reality is like you know you'll be on assignment for somebody and and a lot of times you don't really have the ability to like you know add a couple extra days and you have to make do with what with what you're given so what I find is that I what I'm going to a place like that trying to educate yourself on his much as you possibly can you have you know you have your plan a but I have a plan b have a plan see if plan d g's like there's going to be somewhere in that entire island it's going to be nice weather so if this location this idea doesn't work out what's your backup plan okay also it's a matter of like you know sleep is really the least important thing when it comes to like getting the job done right so if I know that there might be a weather window you know between one and two a m like and that's it that's when I got to go shoot it you know and I don't care if that means using you know strobes doing this for long exposures or whatever that's really the time that I got to go but I was just in iceland for like fifteen days and for ten of those days we had like supposedly epic weather and it was just crappy and iranian following I mean it was crazy because it was like clear tomorrow perfect and it was dense pea soup fog the worst I'd ever seen and it was so brutal because we had all this talent there and all the stuff and all these ideas and kind of delusions of grandeur but it just didn't work out so we decided okay we got a road trip two to three hours to get this one spot you know shoot some stuff and kind of salvage our day and I find that for me at least I tend to be you know uh taipei want to go and get it on it with like the weather and on it with a lot of these things really helping to kind of be my own leader in terms of what I know I need to get and so would people go to places like that it's kind of easy back well the weather sucks you know bummer but I think if you're if you're dialed in you know you know what your objectives are you're researching and you're doing everything you can to kind of plan out the trip the best you can there's no way you're ever going to go some like that and walk away with nothing you know and that's because I've never been on a trip there and been like oh just weather sucked you know set my hotel on time so artistically you don't stop because it's bad weather and you just have other options no you just get more cold and life sucks more that's just you would still shoot it's like unlike a technical level with cameras like how would you shoot that still looks super stuff I think that's the hardest thing is like you know you you lay out your kind of objectives like all want to shoot this beach with this going on this whole thing you have this like shot listen your mind right before you go on the location and then you get there and you're like wait I just need to be open to whatever happens because you know that might not happen like great I can't even see these peaks on the speech and now it's not that interesting you know what do I do well you've improvised you know and this is a big part of what I want to talk to you about it's enough for any of us just to come here and take a photograph of this road it's beautiful right it's enough it's a killer spot we don't have to add all this other crap in there you know this is just for fun right but how do we elevate our shots okay how do we how do we go there and you you convinced somebody like hey you know a client for example we're going to go to this location and we're gonna shoot this thing and good weather or not we're going to get epic stuff well sometimes it might be like well way went to the ice lake in iceland and you know it wasn't sunny and beautiful but it didn't matter because we had a kayaker in a yellow cock going through there well that pop of color made all the difference you know like you don't know what I'm saying so it's like you're kind of you're not forcing the situations but you're just you're you're sort of imposing your own creative juice is on them and that's really important especially if you want to work in the commercial or editorial world you know if you're purely landscape photographer and you're a purist no people in your your subjects you know you're really just waiting for good beautiful light but that's really not what I'm I'm here to do at least my goal is always to infuse subjects into my landscapes show people attainable adventure show people ways that they could interact with nature in new ways and this for me is like this is it like geez how cool you know like warn yosemite this is a road trip a photo of a guy escape warning or riding a bus down this road is way more interesting to me that any other just perfect lip you know photo of half dome because everybody's got that right you know thousands of thousands of people have been seeking out you have been seeking out having come here to shoot that same photo for years but people haven't been coming here to shoot this you know shoot someone skippering on their hands you know passing laser pointer that's something that nobody else has or nobody else has done yet you know so setting trends in that regard is really is really a fun thing to do I guess yes you always wanna augment your photos by with human element and adventures I mean sometimes you know it works a lot with your photos with the surf yeah I also think it's just you know my my work was kind of born and bred from editorial you know going to these places for magazines shooting on assignment for service assignments or character this for that and so it's just always been natural to be like we're in these beautiful locations and this is where people are going out and doing their sports so it just made sense now the landscape photographer and me also appreciates just know people and they're always so I will always be going out taking my own time with nobody else just shooting photos and those are some of my favorite images are just the ones with no one you know but for those of us with a solo statue versus like a hundred people in the show yeah e I seek out places where there's not a person around and that's why we're here at first light you know you got a five in the morning and we're here there isn't another person around right because we have this little pristine environment to ourselves and we're not here doing anything illegal we're not doing here doing anything that's gonna you know you know ruin it for other people we're here just experiencing in her own way most people's way of experiencing this might just be rolling down the window and snap in a photo with their phone and driving on you know but for us it's a little different than that you know and I think that's kind of a group of people that I always seem to speak to people that want to be out experiencing the world and documenting it but maybe the experiencing part of it is almost more important and that's kind of how it is for me you know what wasn't teaching this class I'd probably be skateboarding right now or I'd be like you know sleeping or something like that that's good right yeah yeah I'll probably fall on my ass and break this lock so cool you guys I think we'll wrap it up and maybe we can go jump two different location maybe go check out the the paragliders whatever there and and see what that looks like so sweet all right I know it was a long time sitting there watching that so thanks guys for bearing with me and I'm sorry that I know we went over kind of a lot of that stuff was a reiteration of what we talked about before but I guess uh those are some of my prime most important concepts you know it is ice idea of timeless imagery that resonates with people and stuff so do you your favourite images are really the ones without people um it depends you know my favorite images probably aren't any any photographs that you've ever seen you know think the favorite ones or the ones that means something to me you know and um and I think resonate with with me personally you know my favorite image isn't necessary the photo that um I made the most money from or whatever it's probably the photograph that I knew I invested the most time and energy into to get and that image might have been a culmination of all of that energy you know like the volcano image of the surfer I knew how much planning and execution went into that you know two three years of of trying to put this thing together and um and that's I mean for me that's that's really where I feel like the value in an image comes from you know it's the it's the personal value it's the emotional value that you put in the stake in something you know it's the night you know that you stay up all night trying to shoot a photo and maybe you get one usable one or you you mission somewhere to do something it's always like that you know value of what you give of yourself to create it that I think means a lot and I can't stress enough you know this idea and concept of you know when we share our work it's so important to have something to share right if you're on social media or anywhere talking to friends teach no workshop I don't care where it is and you're just like yeah I shot this one for this client I shot this one for this one you know it's like that's great but people are looking to you to be a storyteller you know and you have to be able to say that you know just in a caption or in person or whatever and that's really important to have a story to tell about the photographs and that's why for me smaller equipment smaller equipment mohr experience value you know I think it comes through in the work sometimes so any other questions there's some local stars in here thanks for doing that one thing you'll notice my favorite phrases one more time I can't stress enough like that's like photographer's own lingo you know it just it just happens I don't know how to explain it but there's always another thing yeah there's always like ok well more time more time this angle this single crouched down different cheddar speed but you know that's always the hard thing is the wheels start turning your like thinking of all these in perspectives of how you could shoot something right you guys have any questions on this that makes sense you know the kind of the applications of why we went there and all that stuff cool bringing get yeah so do you ever meet her your light you ever meet her my life all the time I was shooting manual in every single one of those shots okay yeah if I'm if I'm not shooting in a water housing I'm shooting manual always um but I'll tell you what um exposure is probably the least important a lot of times of my of my worries I think I place and not say that my you know I really try to be on point without but I would say the most important thing I consider is composition first before exposure you know there are a lot of moments that just like happened like that you know it might be shoving a camera at the window firing off photo and one of the things I actually love about you know a camera it has that was battery um about a camera that has uh a merely sensor is that you're shooting like a live view format right you know what I mean like you're seeing what the censors seeing right so um it's really nice when I'm you know holding holding this thing up shooting and I'm just I'm scrolling the shutter right and I'm like if I'm kind of framing something up I'm really more worried about the composition and if I could just you know sometimes like I could care less if it's a f you know f or f eleven you know as long as the photo sharp and compositions right that's what matters to me and there's moments like that that happened where you don't have the ability to set everything up so I love the fact that a camera like this you know any kind of camera and lively is really reactionary you know you can kind of like look at it you could see exactly shooting explosions right perfect you know I just glance at my glance at my you know as opposed to a black screen you know where you have to look through like I end up not chipping as much you know not looking back at the screen you know preview my photos and know exactly what I shot you know it's the exposure's there so that helps a lot I feel like for these and like I said I'm always shooting in manual because I'll just set my f stop it kind of what I want just scroll back and forth in my shutter speed you know it's pretty user friendly like that

Class Description

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

Shooting outdoor photography is a powerful way to commune with nature and experience the fullness of life. Learn how to train your eye on incredible shots and convey the energy of the outdoors in The Outdoor Photography Experience with Chris Burkard.

Chris’s beloved images of life on the world’s coasts are alive with action and emotion. In this class, he’ll share the tools and techniques he uses to capture the photographs he sells to magazines, brands, collectors, and publishers.

You’ll learn about his shooting style and the gear he brings on his global adventures. He’ll also talk about the business of photography and share tips on marketing and selling your work.

If you want insights on how to create rich, dramatic images that let you enjoy more time outdoors, don’t miss your chance to learn from Chris Burkard in The Outdoor Photography Experience.



I've been staying up all night to watch the live broadcast. As somebody else here mentioned (latsok), it's emphasizes on the non-technical aspects (emotion, engagement, colour and composition) rather than the technical stuff like shutter speeds, iso and f-stop. Although I can use some help in both, the technical aspects are not only camera specific but fairly objective as well. The non-technical aspects however are something much harder to grasp. Getting help in this by no-one less than Chris Burkard is just amazing. I bought this class so I can re-watch certain parts of the broadcast again whenever I need it. But also to show my appreciation for Chris Burkard and Creative Live for providing this great online course!

Matt Redfern

This class was packed full of amazing knowledge. I really enjoyed the topics covered and have found it super helpful for my work. I have had so many takeaways ranging anywhere from how to put myself out there, finding my style that stands out, practical applications, etc. I would highly recommend this class to everyone interested in photography! Big thanks to Chris and CreativeLive for putting this together.


This was a phenomenal class. I highly recommend it to anyone. Chris is not only a sensational photographer, he is a wonderful teacher. He provides such detailed information and freely gives same to his students. He is really really available and eager to answer questions and so easy to understand. I learned so much and I was thrilled. I am very very grateful I found this particular class.