Photo Footsteps: How to Photograph Reflections Inspired by Women Photographers | Hester Jones | Skillshare

Playback Speed

  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

Photo Footsteps: How to Photograph Reflections Inspired by Women Photographers

teacher avatar Hester Jones, Artist, Photographer, Film-Maker & Yogi

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

7 Lessons (26m)
    • 1. Photographing Reflections Introduction

    • 2. Lisette Model's Window Reflections

    • 3. Vivian Maier's Self Reflections

    • 4. Sally Mann's Nature Reflections

    • 5. Helen Levitt's Street Reflections

    • 6. How to Photograph Reflections Creative Techniques

    • 7. Photographing Reflections Final Project

  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels
  • Beg/Int level
  • Int/Adv level

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class


This class is the first in a series of tutorials in which students will go on a photowalk to explore creative photography techniques and processes; inspired by important contemporary and historical women photographers, who were largely omitted from the history of photography.

In this first class students will therefore look at ‘Herstory’ in the work of four important female photographers: Lisette Model, Sally Mann, Vivian Maier and Helen Levitt; who have all incorporated reflections in their photographs in some shape or form.

As we develop a curious and creative approach to Photography, students will walk mindfully in their local neighborhood, hometown, or while travelling, to experiment with different ways of seeing and photographing reflections, for example, in mirrors, metal, water, or in shop windows. 

Students can use any camera, such as a DSLR, a Mirrorless, Phone Camera or simple Point & Shoot: to create the final project in which students will produce a series of images inspired by the creative techniques and approaches of these famous women photographers.

The class is suitable for complete beginners as well as those wishing to further explore and develop their creative approach using a variety of photography techniques. Moreover, it is geared towards those who wish to be inspired and/or learn more about important contemporary and historical female artists who have photographed reflections and street photography.

The class aim is to inspire students to explore and employ a variety of creative techniques and resources; and a new way of seeing and exploring the world through the camera lens.


Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Hester Jones

Artist, Photographer, Film-Maker & Yogi


Hello! I'm Hester a Visual Artist based in London and I'm so happy to be part of the Skillshare community! I'm passionate about teaching art, photo collage, photography and film-making. I first became hooked on photography while living in Italy for 5 years around 15 years ago!

After my adventures in Italy I studied Pg Cert Photography at Central St Martins and MA Photography at London College of Communication. 

I certified as a Yoga Teacher in The Himalayas so I'm also creating classes on Skillshare to incorporate Yoga & Meditation with Photomontage, Photography & Film-Making: to help boost creative productivity with a mindful approach.

My experience includes leading a photography course at The Photographers' Gallery and I'm trained and dedicated to t... See full profile

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • Exceeded!
  • Yes
  • Somewhat
  • Not really
Reviews Archive

In October 2018, we updated our review system to improve the way we collect feedback. Below are the reviews written before that update.

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.


1. Photographing Reflections Introduction: This class is the first in a series of tutorials called Photo Footsteps, in which students will go on photo walks to explore creative and technical photography techniques and processes. This class reflections on Women photographers is inspired by important contemporary and historical women photographers who were largely omitted from the history of photography, which was male dominated in this first photo, footsteps tutorial students will therefore look at her story in the work of the following four important female photographers in the history of photography, who have all incorporated reflections in their photographs in some shape or form Moto, Sally Mann, Viv, You, Maya and Helen Levitt. As we develop a curious and creative approach to photography, students will walk mindfully in their local neighborhood, sit your hometown to experiment with a variety of ways of seeing and photographing reflections. For example, in mirrors in water in shop windows, students could use any camera such as a DSLR, a mirror lists, a phone camera or simple point and shoot to produce the final project, in which you will create a Siris of images inspired by the creative techniques and approaches of these famous women photographers. This class is suitable for complete beginners, as well as those wishing to further explore and develop their creative approach using a variety of photography techniques and processes. Moreover, it is geared towards those who'd like to gain inspiration from important contemporary and historical artists who have photograph reflections and street photography. The class aim is to inspire students to explore an employ, a variety of creative techniques and resources on a new way of seeing and exploring the world through the camera lens. 2. Lisette Model's Window Reflections: is that model is an American photographer who was born in Vienna, Austria, in 1901 and died in 1983. She is known for her documentary photography and her I for urban life. The main subject of her work was a social and psychological landscape of New York City during the forties, shooting close ups of people on the street speeds. The fundamental condition of the activities of our day is the power of photography. Indeed, the modern art of Today The Art of the Split. Second, her work appeared in Harper's Bazaar, amongst other publications. Model relate to influence the direction of post war photography. As a teacher at the New School for Social Research, her subjective approach inspired her students to maintain their unique voices while working in the mass media. One of those students was a photographer, Diane Arbus Models. Photography demonstrates the influence of the European photographic tradition of modern American photography. Cutting edge techniques at the time, such as low angles, movement and window reflections, are demonstrated in her approach. She sometimes took clipboard traits without the viewers permission. At other times, her subjects seem not to be aware or even care about being photographed, as we see in many of her photographs of old and homeless people on the New York streets, her photo glass often show the faces of people who might otherwise be invisible, her apparent able to reveal the true characters off her subjects for the purpose. Off this tutorial, we will focus on model series of photographs, window reflections. But she made around the 19 forties in the crowded streets of New York. I have often been asked what I want to prove with my photographs. The answer is, I don't want to prove anything. The camera is an instrument of detection. We photograph not only what we know, but also what we don't know. A moment is caught that Waas and never will be again on lives on in the picture. Here we see what appears to be a human female hand at first glance, or perhaps it's the hand of a mannequin in a shop window. Beyond is a mannequin's face, with gays looking down behind the hand on the passes. By the reflection alongside city buildings, the hand almost appears to be begging the viewer force to look into the drum of the image this image is a good example of storytelling in documentary photography, a cold or shivering boys, the main subject. But beyond the street, we conceive a gathering of people and inside the window wedding similar celebration on the road in the center of the image, we are confronted with more disturbing rectums to emergency. This photograph shows another female mannequin posing seductively in the window as people passed by. This could represent the objectification of women in society. Here. The photo seems to be darker, perhaps taken at night. Silly, wet, reflected in the glass evoke a mysterious toe. The juxtaposition of the female mannequin again posing seductively in the window with a smartly dressed man reading his newspaper, oblivious to the post behind is a good example of the objectification of women in a patriarchal society. How about you incorporate Lizette models creative techniques into your own photographs? Capture movement, get down low. But why not go window shopping 3. Vivian Maier's Self Reflections: Vivian Maier was born in 1926 and died in 2000 and nine. She was an unknown American Amateur Street photographer born in New York City but grew up in France. She returned to the U. S. A. And work for about 40 years as a nanny in Chicago. In a nutshell, she was a nanny with the secret life of a photographer. During those years, she took around 150,000 photo walls, mainly of street life on the urban landscape in Chicago. She also traveled and photographed worldwide. Vivian also documented her life and the world around her with documentary films and audio recordings. Most of these images she never actually developed from the original negatives. She saw the photographs only when she had pressed the shutter on the camera. As she looked through the viewfinder, Vivienne was said to have been a closed and private person. She eventually became four in old age, was taken care of by the Children she had cared for. However, they were unaware that one of Vivian storage lockers was auctioned off due to unpaid debts . In the storage lockers layer treasure trove, a massive board of negatives that Maya had secretly hidden away throughout her life. Myers massive body of work would be revealed to the world when her work was discovered in 2007 at a local thrift auction house in Chicago. Eventually, it would impact the world over, thanks to the man who championed her work and brought it to the world's attention. John Maloof way have to make room for other people. It's a wheel, you get caught, you go to the end and someone else has the same opportunity to go to the end and so on, and somebody else takes their place. For the purpose of this tutorial, we will focus on Maya's photographs, in which he photographs reflections where she took as part of her black on White Street photography repertoire. Several of these are self portrait reflections. In this image we can see she's using an old fashioned analog Rowley flex camera, which produces a square six by six image to take the photograph. In this camera, she must look down to focus on composed image. But Meyer is looking up on a fist, beholding the light above her head. Her reflection appears several times in the mirror, so Mayer is no engaging her gaze with viewer or with herself in a mirror reflection. In this photograph, Vivian is again looking up a bit solemn, but this time into a shop window in the city, a man is crossing the street behind her. Here, Maier appears to be more jovial and light hearted than her other, more melancholic, self portrayed. A man seems to be holding the mirror for her while she shoots her reflection as her gaze and smiling dangers of you. This is a very interesting, candid portrait of two people caught off guard inside the shop field in Myers, now looking down into her camera to compose and shoot this image. The composition is interesting as she has spraying the twos subjects in her torso. Reflection on. We can see the buildings and street left behind. Here, Meyer is on public transport. This shows you can't take photographs anywhere, and everywhere it's appears to be a reflection in a mirror or glass at the back of a bus or train. Again, she's looking down into her camera. In this photograph, Vivian is observing herself in the mirror about some magazines in newsagents toe store. She's looking up at the view and her own reflection in this image, she seems to have stumbled upon a mirror laying on the floor when she's looking down to compose another self. Ports with foliage and the skies about, perhaps you place the mirror there herself. This image shows that is good to be mindful, curious and playful in your approach. When photographing reflections, this photograph off family taking a walk after a rain shower shows a little girl looking back at the camera on a beautifully shot reflection off the three figures in a puddle. How might you incorporate Vivian Maier's techniques and processes into your own photography ? On reflections, You could experiment with self portrait. It's using mirrors or shop windows. All use water to create atmosphere and mystery in your images. Maybe you could even become a secret photographer like Vivian Maier to see more about the admires extraordinary life you confined the documentary Finding Vivian Online or Neutral 4. Sally Mann's Nature Reflections: Sally Mann is an American photographer, born in 1951 known for her intimate and controversial black and white portrait of her Children, often photographed naked as in immediate family. 1984 to 1994. She is also known for her photograph of the American South landscape as a family. Lazar footprints were in the sand along the river. So also were those moments of childhood caught in the photographs she reflected. And so would be our family itself. Marriage, Children who enriched it on the love that has carried us through so much. All this will be gone. What we hope will remain are these pictures tell in our brief story. After her master's degree at Holland College in Virginia, she worked as an architectural photographer for Washington and Lee University during the mid seventies. Books. The photography that she has produced include at 12 poor traits of young women, 1980. A man currently lives and works in her hometown of Lexington. Her work is in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D. C. On the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. This photograph shows a portrait of Man's three Children in a lake it's appears to be at night on the reflection of their three torsos is quite magical. This image also shows the landscape in which man lived and photographed her Children again on a lake, which is ideal for photographing reflections. This photo shows a landscape picture without any human subjects. A portrait of man's daughter, immersed in Lake in a circular light, is also quite magical, as her hair and the ripples of the water frame her face. Do you think this was opposed image? Or did the photographer shoot this candidly, perhaps used alive? It's good to ask yourself. Questions like these were reading and looking at the images of famous photographers how much you use Sally Mann's techniques to inspire your own photographs off Reflections in water. Why not experiment with the natural landscape in your neighborhood, such as a lake or puddles on a rainy day? But why not take a day trip to a place of nature? If you live in the concrete jungle 5. Helen Levitt's Street Reflections: Helen Levitt was born in 1913 in Brooklyn, New York, and died in 2000 and nine. She's an American street photographer filmmaker whose work captures the hustle and bustle of everyday life in New York City. Levitt started a career and photography aged 80 working in a fortunate studio in the Bronx . Inspired by the works of French photographer Henri Cartier Bresson, she bought 2 35 millimeter like a camera started to shoot the poor neighborhoods of her hometown, New York. Around 1938 she took her portfolio to show for Topper for Walker. Evans on would then occasionally accompany him on his photo shoots in the city. Levitz main subjects were often Children, especially the underprivileged. Her first show, Photographs of Children, was held at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1943 and included photo glass of street life from her trip to 1941 to Mexico City. There are several books have love. It's photography, including industry chalk drawings and messages. New York City, 1938 to 1948 and Mexico City, 1997. Although reflections are not the main focus of Levitz work, it will be interesting to look at her photograph to see her reflections work in various ways at mean into her visual aesthetic. In this image, a seemingly cold child walks towards the mother after being drenched by what appears to be a leaking firehose on the street. Subtle reflections in the water on the street, at the atmosphere and tone of the photograph. A crying child by a car window shows how you might use car windows or mirrors for your reflection. Photography. If the photographer had got down lower, she might have put in the face of the other child with a striped T shirt more into the image. The girl in the window with an orange reflection shows how reflection photos could work differently were photographed in color. Where does the orange light come from? If we look closely, the curtains appeared to be orange green frame off the window, complements the origin and accentuates the young girl, who also appears to be for reflecting on life. This photograph by Levitt shows how a bubble can be an interest in subject producing reflections. Why not blow some bubbles and see what you can photograph, get out and about on the street like 11 and see how reflections in cars or building windows can create story in your images. 6. How to Photograph Reflections Creative Techniques: reflective surfaces are everywhere. Look around you and explore the photographic possibilities as you go about. Look up, Look down. Get down Low surfaces that are good for reflection. Photography include mirrors, glass windows, metal pools of water such as this image I took often infinity swimming pool at sunset on an island near Bali in Indonesia. I took this with an iPhone camera. Light at this time of day is perfect for getting a mirror image of the trees on accentuating silhouette on the glass like pool of water. Splitting the image in the medal or thereabouts is a great way to get symmetrical. Reflections in your photo Lakes are also great for reflection for top, such as thes photos. My husband took me a mom in les leg, although not necessarily in the main focus of her photographs. Sally Mann incorporates reflections Well. You could photograph highly polished surfaces such as this photo took a Mandalay hill in Myanmar in a Buddhist temple. The tiles were at world to reflect both the subject and the architecture on the back. Lighting off the sunset creates a magical, silly red defect. Focus on debt fulfilled, focus in and depth of field can make an incredible difference in the effect of the recollection. If you focus on the plane of the reflective surface, the reflected image won't always be sharp. Try to focus on the subject and then try focusing on the reflection. This will produce different results. Your favorite photo will depend on your own visual style and preference. If you are using a DSLR camera, select a high F number such as F 11 or higher to help the I see the subject in closer relation and enhance the reflection. This image of the Taj Mahal in India, my husband it with his iPhone camera. He made the image more vibrant with a snap seed edit in. But that's for another tutorial. In contrast, here's the same image taken with the Canon five D camera. Good light is important. Consider the angle of lights and how it effects the reflection. If you are in a natural setting, explore different viewpoints to find the angle at which the reflection is most visible. If you are photographing a building reflected in a street window or a mirror on a sunny sky that illuminates the building will help it stand out against the sky and subsequently, in the reflection, walking along a local shopping street. Have a look in shop. Windows are passing bus. See what reflections merge on the street with the action happening inside the first or the display in a shop window and how they come work together. You may even catch the attention of someone inside a shop window who may or may not want to be photographed, as I did in this barber shop in my local community, be patient as these climbs with emerald juxtapositions can create compelling composition or a chance image like Henan Levins of a person in a window. It's important to be mindful of photographing Children without parents. Permission in today's overly protective climate will take a leaf out of Lizette Models book and switched to black and white. Load on your camera to photograph reflections in shop windows of mannequins. Look out for mirrors inside and outside the home. Dump along cars, see what you can position in the reflection or by repositioning yourself. Take a walk in the city, which is a great place for photographing buildings and the reflection of clouds and sky on the glass, which is often mirror clouds in the blue sky often create some of the best reflection photograph. The best time to shoot is again in the golden hour. Zooming in on architecture can help create more abstract geometric reflections. Again, it's helpful to look for war to, such as puddles of wet pavements or shiny surfaces to play around with reflection compositions on city architecture, water and landscapes. If you are photographing a scenic landscape of the mounting or trees reflected into a leg, ideally, it's better to shoot again in the golden hours, either early morning or ice. The sun sets later in the day. The tripod will be advantageous, but it's not always absolutely essential. If you don't have a try for, be sure to keep a steady hand. Try to balance your camera on a wall or something else. Steady. You can experiment with longer shutter speeds than normal to make the water looks smoother and take into account the depth of field an angle of light. Try focusing in on the water or the trees or mountains, and vice versa to see which effect you prefer. Decorative recollections can be created in water dependent on how still it is glass like liquid surfaces will create perfect images, while softly moving and rippled. Water can give a more abstract filled with reflection. Fathers are perfect for reflection photography, so be ready with your camera to go on a photo war right after or during a rain shower. Look down on the puzzle of focus in on any interesting reflections. Crouched down the puddle. Maybe still or more reports where streets at night can create a magical effect, such as this short of the bird's nest in Beijing, China Street and other lights are very helpful to take good night shot reflections such as this shot. So how, after a rain shower in London, sometimes if you are lucky enough to experience a beautiful sunset, you can catch a magical in vibrant reflections from the surface of a calm ocean like this photograph in barley, self reflection photograph yourself or others checking themselves out in mirrors. Carmaker Stage photograph of a friend looking in the mirror. Big creative create multiple reflections like Vivian Maier. Abstract. You can experiment with framing and composition to make abstract photographs in reflective surfaces, carefully composing, zooming in a framing, an image on a city building or a lake, for example, could make interesting artistic images topsy turvy. Reflections off course reflected images are back to front and or upside down. If you choose, you can be play for news, cropping or depth field in order to hide the fact that it's a reflection. Why not play around and try to turn in your finished photo upside down, for instance, to see how that changes the visual and creative effect? Experiment and be playful. You may be inspired to shoot your own self portrait, or you may like to go out on the street and photograph mannequins in shop windows. You may decide to experiment with water in the natural environment in your local park, such as in a lake or in part with after a range. You can even find reflective surfaces in your own home, such as in a kitchen in a kettle. The important thing is to work mindfully and intuitively have fun being playful. Look up, look down and get down now if you need. And if you want more visual inspiration, you can always head to interest or Google and type in reflection photos, which I have saved here on my reflections board 7. Photographing Reflections Final Project: for the final project. Your task is to go out on a photo walk in your local neighborhood to photograph reflections . This could be in a town or city or in the natural environment. Photograph in the following mirror. Reflections shop windows, water, for example. Puddles or legs. City buildings. When you have finished your photo war, your task is to choose your three favorite images off one. A self portrait shot in a mirror or window to an image shot in water, for example, a lake or a puddle. Sorry, a reflection on mannequins in shop windows. And don't forget to share your chosen photographs in the final project gallery. I can't wait to see them.