Advance Your Photography: Start Taking Better Photos Today | Phil Ebiner | Skillshare

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Advance Your Photography: Start Taking Better Photos Today

teacher avatar Phil Ebiner, Video | Photo | Design

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

    • 1.

      Welcome to the Advance Your Photography Course


    • 2.

      Why Start with Composition, Not Lighting?


    • 3.

      Rule of Thirds | Photography Composition Refresher


    • 4.

      Centering | Photography Composition Refresher


    • 5.

      Leading Lines | Photography Composition Refresher


    • 6.

      Symmetry & Balance | Photography Composition Refresher


    • 7.

      Negative Space | Photography Composition Refresher


    • 8.

      Framing within a Frame | Photography Composition Refresher


    • 9.

      Introduction to Pro Composition Tips Section


    • 10.

      Clean Up Your Frame | Pro Photography Tip


    • 11.

      Add Layers | Pro Photography Tip


    • 12.

      Capture Textures & Pattenrs | Pro Photography Tip


    • 13.

      Look for Spot Color | Pro Photography Tip


    • 14.

      Juxtapose Elements | Pro Photography Tip


    • 15.

      Shoot Diagonal Lines | Pro Photography Tip


    • 16.

      Find a Unique Vantage Point | Pro Photography Tip


    • 17.

      Leave Space for Motion | Pro Photography Tip


    • 18.

      Spot Reflections | Pro Photography Tip


    • 19.

      Break the Pattern | Pro Photography Tip


    • 20.

      The Rule of Odds | Pro Photography Tip


    • 21.

      Fill the Frame | Pro Photography Tip


    • 22.

      Left to Right Theory | Pro Photography Tip


    • 23.

      Solo Color | Pro Photography Tip


    • 24.

      Wait for the Decisive Moment | Pro Photography Tip


    • 25.

      Introduction to the Photography Lighting Section


    • 26.

      Types of Light


    • 27.

      Light Direction


    • 28.

      Hard vs. Soft Light


    • 29.

      Light Temperature


    • 30.

      Natural Lighting Tips


    • 31.

      Artificial Lighting Tips


    • 32.

      Introduction to the Storytelling Section


    • 33.

      Storytelling with People


    • 34.

      Storytelling with Objects


    • 35.

      Improve Your Stories with Color, Photo Series, Decisive Moment


    • 36.

      Feeling Stuck? Getting Inspiration as a Photographer


    • 37.

      Improve Your Photography with Editing


    • 38.

      Improve Your Photography with Equipment & Tools


    • 39.

      Thank You & Conclusiuon


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About This Class

Are you a photographer who knows how to use your camera to take decent photos BUT you aren't completely satisfied with your photos?


You want your photography to wow people (and to be something you're proud of).

This advanced photography course will help you improve your photography by understanding exactly what makes a great photo... well, great.

You'll learn how lighting, composition, storytelling and editing improve your photography.

The goal with this photography course is to not just teach you, but also inspire you. You'll see hundreds of beautiful photos, and understand on a deeper level why they are beautiful so that you can go capture similar photos yourself.

Take better photos. It's as simple as that.

This photography course is NOT going to teach you how to use your camera. You should already know what things like aperture, shutter speed and ISO are. You should know how to compose & expose your photo properly. You should also know how to do basic photo editing. The application doesn't matter (Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop, Affinity Photo, your favorite smartphone editing app).

This photography course WILL teach you practical and easy steps to improving your photography. We start with photography lighting, then photography composition, then storytelling, and end on photo editing. In each section we showcase dozens of practical and easy-to-replicate ways to take better photos.

Who is your photography instructor?

Hi! I'm Phil Ebiner. I've been teaching people photography skills for over a decade. Perhaps you've already taken one of my top-rated photography courses that has helped you master your camera or photo editing.

I'm so excited to teach you this course on developing your own photography style because I often hear beginner photographers wondering how to improve their photography. I look at their photos and think, you're almost there. To get to that next level, you just have to be a little more thoughtful in what you're photographing, how you're photographing it, and what photographs you share.

This course will help you create your own photography style! And I've included a bunch of fun activities and practical demonstrations that make it easy to learn.

What are you waiting for?

If you want to become a better photographer start watching the lessons now!


Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Phil Ebiner

Video | Photo | Design


Can I help you learn a new skill?

Since 2012 have been teaching people like you everything I know. I create courses that teach you how to creatively share your story through photography, video, design, and marketing.

I pride myself on creating high quality courses from real world experience.


I've always tried to live life presently and to the fullest. Some of the things I love to do in my spare time include mountain biking, nerding out on personal finance, traveling to new places, watching sports (huge baseball fan here!), and sharing meals with friends and family. Most days you can find me spending quality time with my lovely wife, twin boys and a baby girl, and dog Ashby.

In 2011, I graduated with my Bachelor of Arts in Film and Tele... See full profile

Level: Intermediate

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1. Welcome to the Advance Your Photography Course: Welcome to this course on advancing your photography. This course will include inspiration and steps to help you take better photos. First off, thank you so much for being here. I'm excited to help you on your photography journey. What is this course all about? Simply put, this course is here to help you take better photos. I have lots of students who have taken a lot of my courses that teach you how to use a camera, how to understand things like exposure and composition and editing to get good photos. But many of my students get to a point where they can take a good photo. But how can they take great one? And that's what this course is all about. What should you expect from this course? This is not a course where you're learning how to use your camera, how to use settings and things like that. You shouldn't have a good understanding of that sort of thing. What this course is, is a deep dive into the theory and practical techniques used to take better photos. So throughout this course, we'll be looking at photos for professional photographers. Photos that I've taken into some rate historical photographers who worked as well. We'll be analyzing what it is that makes these photos great ones. Then you'll be able to come away with tips, steps to do it yourself. The way this course is structured is in steps that we can use to improve our photography. We'll start with composition. Move to lighting, storytelling, talk about editing, and also how the tools and technology can improve automotive as well. Hopefully this sounds good to you. This is a little bit of a different style, of course, that I've taught before. But I think it's the best way for you to really understand what makes a great photo. So with that, we're gonna move onto composition in the next section. So we'll see you over there shortly. 2. Why Start with Composition, Not Lighting?: In this section, we are tackling composition and how it can improve your photography. A question that I want to answer quickly though is, why not start with lighting? When we think about photography, in essence, we are capturing light. And I debated on starting this course out with lighting because I think that being able to capture light and really understand how to use light, whether it's natural lighting or artificial lighting. If you can learn these concepts, I actually think it's the easiest way to quickly improve your photography. And I think when we're looking through the stream of photos on Instagram or whatever photo app you prefer. Lighting is what makes a photo stand out. But I think for a lot of people who are a little bit getting started out, lighting can be confusing and composition is the thing that you have ultimate control of with the placement of your camera, changing your perspective, changing how far zoomed in or zoomed. Now you are really what you're putting in your frame. And I think this is something that's at the end of the day, easier to grasp than lighting. And so that's why we're going to start with composition. In the next slide videos, we're going to have a little refresher on some basic composition techniques and really see why these work to make our photos better. I do think this might be a little bit of a repetition for those of you who have learned about photography and the basics. But I also think it's good and worthwhile to go through these next lessons because it's a building block that will help us get to the more pro level of composition techniques that we'll look at later on in the course. 3. Rule of Thirds | Photography Composition Refresher: In this first composition of refresher, we're going to look at the rule of thirds. Something that if you took my photography courses five years ago, this would be the standard first method to improve your photo. Now, we've gone through as societal shift in terms of our preferences of composition and photography and actually centering our subjects is something that is a compositional technique many photographers are using now, there's something to do with how we see our photos on our phone that actually centring a subject in the middle of the frame is an aesthetically pleasing option. Something that typically we wouldn't do before. We've always been told that having your subject on 1 third of the photo, rather than directly in the middle, can be more aesthetically pleasing. And it's still a rule that I would suggest looking into and practicing to improve your photography. Here we see this image, these monks that are walking down the street, instead of just cropping in to this photo and having them right in the middle of the frame. This photographer has chosen to put them in the bottom. Third, if we break these photos down into a grid, if you imagine two vertical lines and two horizontal lines, the subject is placed in that bottom intersection of those lines. And this is often a very pleasing setup. We're going to continue looking at many examples throughout this course like this. Many of these photos are taken by professional photographers. Share it on websites like Unsplash. Some are historical photographers, and some are photos that I've shot. Here's a couple of examples, again of using the rule of thirds, this one on the left, we have this farmer in the top left quadrant. Again, if you break this photo into thirds, the subject is on that intersection of that horizontal and vertical line. The one on the bottom is using the rule of thirds in a different way. They've placed the horizon line of this photo on the bottom third line. This is often a technique that works well too. Instead of putting the horizon line right in the middle of the frame, we put it either on the top third or the bottom third of even though the subject of this photo, the motorcycle is centered in the frame, we're still using that rule if there's technique for that horizon line. As we move on to this next set of photos, I just want to warn you or give you a sense of my goal with the style of this class. And I want it to be a very relaxing class for you. I want it to be a class where you're focused on what I'm teaching. You're not just having this in the background. While you're doing something else on your computer, put it full screen, you're going to get the best experience if you've watched these lessons fullscreen and take the time out of your day to just a little extra time analyzing these photos. That's what it's all about. This whole class is meant to take some time to analyze photos and see what makes them good. What makes some photos not so good and how to use the techniques yourself. So as we look at this next set of photos, we can see one using the rule of thirds, one using centering. Both great photos. It's just different styles. So the one on the left, the subject is placed in the bottom right, a little bit further than that exact intersection of the third line. The horizon line is placed at the third line as well. This photo on the right, the subject is centered. This is not using the rule of thirds, other than maybe you could argue that the placement of the subject and these lines are at that bottom third. The lines up here are at the top third. And there is some nice balance. Having a third of the photo be the sky, a third be the plants in the background, and the third being a subject down below. Something to think about. This photo would be a lot different if it was cropped in and we didn't see the sky. Here's a photo taken from the New York Public Library. This classic Sphinx and pyramid in Egypt. The photographer uses the rule of thirds in this photo. The pyramid and this beings are both at those intersections. Here the horizon line is a little bit centered. But because of the placement of the pyramid, the Sphinx, where they're standing, it would have been harder to get that line in the middle while also getting this pyramid in that top third intersection. Here I want you to look at these two photos. It's the same photo but cropped. What do you notice about the placement of our subject, the Sphinx. The one in the On the left, the Sphinx is centered. On the right. It's crops so that it's using more of the rule of thirds with the Sphinx on the bottom right, the pyramid, you can see the whole pyramid. Now aside from the pyramid being cropped and cut off in the left photo, I still think that the photo on the right is a more visually balanced photo. And that's for this instance because it's using the rule of thirds. I don't think centering works as well from this photo. Here's another example of this camel. This is the original photo and the camel is just awkwardly in the center of the frame. Here is one where another camel shot. The camel is in the rule of thirds intersection. Over in the bottom left quadrant. Here we see both of these photos. And even though they're completely different photos, I still think the one that's more balanced and visually pleasing is the one on the bottom or is on the left. You may disagree. I'm sure that throughout this class, there's going to be times where you don't agree with what I'm saying. And that's totally fine. Us. We are all personal belongings with our own preferences. But I think the one on the left is more visually balanced. Now, if we crop the one on the right in this, we see the before and the after. I actually think this is a better balanced photo. It's more using the rule of thirds. The subject and especially the thing that's, our eyes are drawn to our eyes. And even for this camel are, our eyes are drawn to the face and specifically to the eye. Being at that intersection of the rule of thirds, I think really helps. Here's another example of using the rule of thirds. We've got this subject on the vertical third line on the right side of the frame, rather than centered, we have the horizon line on that top cent, top line. We have this leading line, which we'll talk about leading lines in a second, but this fence down on the bottom third as well, it would be a lot different if this subject was centered. Here. Again, we have another subject in the bottom-left. They chose not to center the subject. And the reason being, I think for this photo is that now we can see more of the landscape. She is not the main, the only subject of this photo. She is a subject placed in this framing. And we want to be able to see these epic mountains in the background, this village or town on the water down in the bottom right. And if she was centered, she would block some of that view. And it wouldn't be as interesting of a photo overall. Here we have a fisherman. Again using the rule of thirds. Even though there's other people here, because the focus is on this man right here. And it's fairly sharp focus on him. And the focus falls off rather quickly. Our eye is not distracted by what's out-of-focus. And it goes to this man. And the balance is nice with him being at the bottom third, and also at that intersection of that vertical and horizontal lines. So that's what the rule of thirds is and how we use that as photographers. In the next lesson we're going to look at centering, which is breaking the rule of thirds. But going out there, as you probably know, if you've taken our other courses. One of the first things you can do to improve the composition is instead of just simply placing your subject in the center, try incorporating the rule of thirds, especially not just with your subjects, but where you place horizon lines or horizontal lines within your frame. 4. Centering | Photography Composition Refresher: This next composition refresher, we're going to look at centering. Sometimes centering your subject is the right thing to do. Here you can see an example of these headphones kind of like a product shot. And if these weren't centered, I don't think it would be as powerful of an image. It is the subject, it deserves to be front and center. Here's a photograph of this tree. Uses a lot of negative space, meaning it's the tree is the positive space. Everything else is negative space. There's no detail. Your eyes aren't drawn to that space, it's drawn to the subject, the positive space. But in these different crops we have one on the left where it's centered, one on the right, using the rule of thirds, sort of what do you prefer? I'll let you look at this photo for just a second. Both, I think are actually really interesting photos. I think the one on the left works better on Instagram, on posting to social media when you're looking at it on a mobile device, especially a vertical mobile device. The one on the right, I think, would work better if it was printed out and framed. So there's different ways that you can compose an image for different mediums as well. Example of a product shot of a watch. One on the left, centered the one on the right using the rule of thirds. And here's an example of where I think the one on the left centering the subject works better. Sometimes you're going to want a shot where you're using the rule of thirds are putting the subject in a corner or on the side of the photo. For some kind of advertising photography, maybe you need some text or graphics on the other side of the frame. But if it's just a hero shot of your subject of your product, I think the one on the left works a lot better. Here's a shot of a palm tree, one using, so the rural third kind of one centering. Here. I think centering works better for this subject. Not always going to work better, but if I compare these two photos, I think the centering one works better. Here we have this tree centered in the middle of the frame. Also a nice balance in this photo of the grass on the bottom in the sky at the top. Kind of balancing right in the center. And I think it works for this photo. This photo could also be composed differently. Here we have it on the right with the tree in the bottom third, the horizon line on the bottom third line as well, compared to the trees, 100, right in the middle of the frame. They give different feelings, right? I don't know. What do you prefer? Here we have the moon centered in the frame. Centered not directly, vertically, but centered in the bottom third of the frame. I think what's special about this is it shows that a little bit more about the moon having, being just in space rather than being a tight crop shot, right with the square, the moon in the middle of a square or middle of the frame. I think centering it is a good choice. And having it at the bottom of the frame adds to this composition. Stuck centered Bird Center. I think when we have a clear subject is singular person or animal or product. Oftentimes centering works well. Here we have a flower, another subject that works centering, we get a lot of symmetry with this photo having that subject centered. Here we have the same photo cropped, one centered and one using the rule of thirds. Both interesting photos. I think I like the centering one better. Here we have the subject of the car centered centered in the middle of this road. I think it works. Chair centered, similar to that tree shot that we saw previously. This is one where I think I prefer if it was cropped using more of the rule of thirds thing, it's just a little bit more balanced. The one on the left here, compared to the one on the right. Here we have our subject centered. This is a very common composition you'll see on social media with a vertical photo where the subject is centered. Now this is different to the other landscape photo we saw in the rule of thirds lesson, where the landscape itself, the mountains and the water and the boats and the village was part of the story more than this photo, this is the story of this person sitting here in this beautiful landscape. Not so much the mountains and the flowers. The photographer decided not to focus on the flowers in the foreground. Not just have this subject. With the mountains in the background. It looks like there's a beautiful valley with maybe a river or something down in the background. And so this photographer decided to not capture that, but to really focus on the subject in the center. Now if this was cropped tight a little bit, I think this one works with it centered. Compared to using the rule of thirds. It might have worked better using the rule of thirds of the photographer was sort of in a different spot, maybe to the left a little bit. And the focus was a little bit deeper so you can see and the exposure a little bit better on what was on the background. But this is a case where I think centering works well and that centering, and now you hopefully understand what this course is all about. These are just ways of composing an image. And there's multiple ways to compose the same image. And sometimes it works better one way or the other. It's really up to you to decide which one you prefer. And sometimes it's the way that most people will prefer. Other times you might choose a way to compose an image that not so many people prefer, but you do as the artist. And that's totally fine. Next up we're going to look at leading lines. 5. Leading Lines | Photography Composition Refresher: In this composition refresher, we're looking at leading lines. Leading lines are naturally occurring lines in your photos that often lead the viewer's eye to a subject or help lead the viewer's eyes naturally to a spot in your frame. Here's an example of how we have these horizontal lines of this fence that sort of frame our subject and lead us to it. The diagonal lines, there's so many and they are all going towards our subject. And it just naturally allows our eye if our eye sees this photo. But the first place that our eye lands is maybe in the bottom-left area. It's just going to draw our eye to our subject. This brings up an interesting question that I get from students and it's due photographer is really think about these concepts while you are photographing. Whether it's centering are leading lines are using the rule of thirds. I think as you advance in your photography, you'll just start to compose images naturally using these methods because it just naturally occurs to you to be a pleasing composition. But when you're getting started out, I do think it's a good idea to have in mind. I am going to capture this photo using a leader, leading lines, or I'm just going to go out today and try to see fine leading lines that I can capture in my photography. I think it is important to consciously be thinking about these techniques. And later on, I think that it will just come naturally. Here are some examples of where there are lines in the photo. Some are leading, some aren't. So we have these prayer flags. On the left. We have a line of the flags. They don't really lead to anything. It's just going across the frame. Whereas on the photo on the right, all of these lines end up at the peak of the mountain. We have the subjects, the mountain climbers and the distance. I believe this might be an Everest. I'm not sure. But we have our subjects in the distance that these lines lead to. It would be a much different photo if there weren't these prayer flags or any of these lines leading to the subject. It would just be sort of a silhouette of this rock formation with the subjects on top. Could have been interesting. But I think a little bit more powerful and interesting having these lines go to our subject. Here we have a similar combination of photos, the one on the left, not really leading anywhere. Right. And that's okay. It doesn't mean you have to have leading lines in your photo or if you see this lineup of prayer flags that you have to compose it with them leading to something. I think this photo is a little bit more interesting than this previous one. Just because of the layering, the editing, the lighting, There's lots of other things that make it more interesting to me anyways, on the right-hand side we have the lines leading us to this little rock formation. Here is a great use of leading lines and a common way to use leading lines, going down a street, a pathway. We have the lines of the street itself or the outside of the path leading you to the horizon. And this is an example of where if we didn't have subjects in the distance, this one on the right, we have this person walking down this path. We have these cars in the distance. But this one is, there's no real singular subject on the one on the left. But still, these photos and the lines of drawing our eyes to that horizon point is pleasing. They've done some other things in these photos, editing wise to vignette the outer edge of the photos that our eye is not drawn to what's on the outside of the frame, but rather going for the distance to where the light is. So bringing in these other concepts, lighting, editing, everything ties together to make these photos very interesting. But the thing, the composition technique that I think is mastered with these photos is the line leading lines that lead our eyes to that horizon point in the center of the frame. Here's an example of a photo that does not have leading lines here. I was sitting on this bench outside of bookstore. And you got all this IV on the wall. Nothing really spectacular about this photo. There's no lines that are leading your vision to me, the subject. But in reality, this is not what this photo look like. This is what this photo look like. Here. I think the lines, naturally occurring lines of this IV or this vine that's on the wall lead us down to this spot. Bench where I was sitting and I told my wife, Hello, Go take a photo. This is a perfect example of leading lines and using the environment and setting myself up there, the subject. To use those leading lines in a good way. In here we have the before and after and now you can see that I didn't spend a ton of time. Maybe I was able to trick you when you first saw this photo, but I didn't spend a ton of time to make this look perfect. But if you just glance at it, this photo, you probably maybe wouldn't have noticed that there's some issues with the editing. But I think it's a good example of how a photo can be improved when there are leading lines. Here's another example that I played around editing with. What does your eye go to when you look at this photo? There's lots of lines going all over the place. My eye ends up in this group of people. And it's because we have these lines of the sidewalk or the crosswalk, the edge of the crosswalk sort of converging here at this point. But this is not the original photo. This is the photo. I think here we have now this subduct crossing the street. And to me now my eye is drawn to this subject partially because of these leading lines right here that go across the street. And sort of contrast with all of these other lines. Here it is without that subject, here it is with that subject. I think the one with the subject is more interesting. And the photographer, either it was a happy accident or they decided to wait until this person was crossing right at this point where we have these lines. So to leading to the subject that works. Here's a classic old photo where the leading lines of the road and just the building, the front of the building all lead us to this bridge that you can see in-between these buildings in the horizon. Lots of lines in this photo leading us to that subject. This is another great example. The lighting is awesome. We get these shadows that create lines from this railing. And then we have the railing over on the left side too. We have all these lines going down from this bridge, all converging to this point right here. And we have these subjects here as well. I think this photo wouldn't have worked as well. If the subjects weren't here. Closer would've been more interesting to, but if they weren't there at all, still would be an interesting photo with the contrast, with all the lines. But I liked that the photographer chose to snap this photo when the subjects were right there where all the lines converge. Here's a photo where there's not really a specific subject at the convergence of the leading lines. But we still have these leading lines, leading as to the center of the frame. It's nicely balanced, nice colors, nice lighting in the sky. Naturally our eyes are drawn to the center. And sometimes these compositional techniques, the reason they make a photo more pleasing to look at are more interesting is just because the elements and the way that is was composed keeps the viewer's attention longer. And because we have these leading lines that are just naturally making a stay with this photo a little bit longer. This see where it draws our attention. It just keeps our attention on this photo. And that's ultimately could be one person's argument for what makes a great photo. Photo that keeps the attention of someone the longest. We've seen a couple of photos like this where we have the lot leading lines converging on both sides equally weighted. Here's an example of using leading lines, but not symmetrical. So we have these lines over here leading us to this point in the middle of converging, we have our subjects walking. Very cool use of lines in this frame. Here we have a leading line of the hand. That again, if your eye, when you first see this photo starts here in the left-hand of the frame. It's actually visually drawn to the center of the frame. Down these lines, down the arm, down the hand, down the fingers. To this moment. A great decisive moment. Something we'll talk about later on. This person grabbing the hand of the lady, trying to help her across the stream. Here's a great use of sort of leading lines and converging lines, I believe was shot during World War One. In this trench, you have the natural lines of the trends going towards the horizon, but also just this line of people, line of men, Soldiers. And it just makes you want to stick with this photo. See this person, this person, this next one, this next one. And just kinda go down the line seeing what these people are doing sitting here. This photo has so much detail. Did you notice the dog down here? Very interesting photo. Here we have another great use of the lines of this ladies dress or bail or something that she's wearing. And the lines of draws from the foreground all the way to her. It would be a much different photo. We didn't have this scarf flying towards the camera if it was just the person, still could have been an interesting photo. But I think this works really well, leading our eye to her. So this is a case where the photographer probably knew that would be an interesting composition and decided to make that happen. Sometimes like this previous photo, There's just lines in the frame naturally that you capture it. Sometimes you force it and make it happen. We saw a little bit of symmetry in these photos, and in the next lesson we'll dive a little bit deeper into symmetry. 6. Symmetry & Balance | Photography Composition Refresher: Our next compositional refresher is capturing symmetry in our images. Symmetry just means a balanced photo, sometimes with similar visual elements on the left and right or the top and bottom, or just similar weight to the photo from left to right, top to bottom. And just having this balance is visually pleasing. Here we have this statue with the arch over it, very symmetrical. And it's not just that it's centered, but that we have the similar visual weight of what's on the left and the right side of the frame. That makes this a balanced photo. Here we have a photo on the left that is symmetrical. On the right. Not symmetrical. Both are great photos. Both have different feelings. Oftentimes, a non symmetrical photo will feel a little bit more jarring for the viewer. And sometimes that's good. Sometimes you want to jar your viewer, you want them to pause and not have a little bit of an unsettling feeling to them when they see your photo. Other times you want to just create a nice, pleasing visual experience. Here we have two photos, both symmetrical of this palm and then the succulent on the right-hand side. The one on the right, I think, is more balanced, symmetrical because it's exactly centered on the one on the left. Still symmetrical. But composing a way that is not centered and therefore doesn't feel as balanced, but still an interesting photo. Here we have a window on the left that's not symmetrical. One window using the rule of thirds. On the right, we have two windows. Here. I actually prefer the one on the left with the one photo. The way the one on the right is composed, almost just feels a little bit to balance. A little bit too boring in the sense that if there was just one of these windows, they might look a little bit more appealing. Personally, that's what I think. Here we have the similar succulent I love this photo. I have a photo that I shot just like this, hanging in our bathroom. Here we have visual equal weight on the left and right hand side, even though it's not, the subject isn't as symmetrical as this previous plant with all the little leaves that are coming out. This is one leaf, lots of different detailed, but still visually balanced on the left and right of the frame. Here we have a photo where the symmetry is broken up by a subject in the middle of the frame. Without this subject, the photo would simply be of these lines, which could have been an interesting abstract photo. I like that the subject was right in the middle. Again, the decisive moment captured here. The photographer must have waited a bit to find a subject walking exactly in this place without any other people walking as well, this photo wouldn't work as well if there were people sprinkled throughout by having the subject centered with visual balance on the top and bottom really works. This is a nice symmetrical photo, leading lines and this one as well. We of course can combine different compositional techniques, such as leading lines. Lead us up to the roof. Ceiling. Looks like a glass window at the top. There's no subject up there, but still a nice balanced photo. Here we have the Taj Mahal, a very symmetrical building captured from the center, which works perfectly for this type of building. In this next shot, you'll see another photo on the left, captured with the building symmetrical. On the right you see the same building, but not captured as symmetrically. This building lends itself to be captured symmetrical. The one on the right just doesn't work. It feels a little off to me. And maybe that's what you're going for. Maybe you're just here as a tourist and you're just snapping photos as you walk by. But if you're trying to capture this building and the most artistic way and visually pleasing way, the one on the left works so much better. You even get a little bit of symmetry with the reflection down below the balance of the building. The reflection, but I like how they captured using a little bit of negative space at the top with the building centered and the reflection on the bottom. Third, rather than putting this line of the horizon perfectly centered in the frame, I don t think that would work as well. With the power of a couple of clicks, I was able to do that. And it's actually an interesting photo on the right to I don't know. What do you prefer? Initially, my gut said that I would prefer the one on the left, but the one on the right, very visually balanced. Top and bottom, as well as left and right. Both are really great photos. Looking at a zebra, head-on. Great symmetry on the left and right of the frame. Perfect use of centering the subject, because now you have a symmetrical photo left to right. Here we have this brand model who shared their photos on Unsplash using symmetry in posing their subjects. This photo wouldn't feel as balanced if there was just one surfer with one surfboard on the left or paddle board. But instead they chose to have the symmetry of the board on the left. The board on the right. For subjects very symmetrical in their positioning. And this is something that you can consider doing if you are taking photos, is think about how you can make your photos symmetric, about how your subjects can be posed to get a symmetrical, balanced feeling. Here is the use of these two buildings on the left and right to create symmetrical balance on the left and right of the frame. Even though the building or this tower in the middle is not necessarily as interesting as the Taj Mahal per se in itself being symmetrical. But they've composed this photo symmetrically with the foreground buildings. Nice balanced, symmetrical photo, left and right. And again, this wouldn't work as well if there was more detail or if there was more visual way on left-hand side with trees or other background elements. But because the background is relatively similar with rocks on the left and the right side of the waterfall, centering your subject in front of that waterfall. Now we have equal balance on the left and right, and it works well. And finally here we're using reflection to create symmetry. In this photo, top-down, bottom half, and top half. That's symmetry. And hopefully now you can understand that sometimes there's naturally occurring symmetry. Other times you have to position your subjects to be symmetrical. Or it can be simply moving your body to make sure that your photo is symmetrical in how you compose your shot. Next up, we will talk about negative space. 7. Negative Space | Photography Composition Refresher: Our next composition refresher is the use of negative space. I briefly mentioned this earlier where the positive space of your photo is oftentimes your subject or is something with a lot of visual details that your eye is drawn to. The negative space is often the abstract space around your subject, around a positive space. That doesn't have a lot of detail. And the use of negative space in a photo or a photo composed with negative space will be one where the negative space is a lot more than the positive space. Here you see this example of this loan person and maybe even an animal with them, dog or something walking across. I believe this is a snowy landscape. Around them, is just the top half is just like this overexposed, maybe foggy, cloudy, negative space down below. You still have details of round. But it's not really visually interesting. Sent that your eye is drawn to one part of this landscape. Your eye is drawn to the subject because they're the only thing in this frame with so much data space around them. Here you'll see a similar subject composed with more negative space than the other one. So the one on the left, not using as much negative space, the Ferris wheel takes up about half of the frame. The one on the right, lots more negative space with the Ferris wheel compose in the very bottom left, not even the rule of thirds, but beyond the rule of thirds, crushing that stuff in the bottom left of the frame. Both are interesting photos. I actually tend to really enjoy capturing photos with negative space. It's something about the simplicity of the photo, but also just sort of the, the balance of having just a little bit of positive space. That to me is visually pleasing. Here we have the Big Ben clock tower and England, London, England that on the left capture not using negative space. One on the right, really negative space. And some people might be like, Why would you capture that photo like that? You also have this plane flying above which decisive moment, great photo captured with this plane right, centered in the frame. If this plan was to the left or the right, it wouldn't work as well. I don't think. Sometimes you might want a photo like the one on the left, the one where the clock tower is easy to see. You can see the details. It's closer up on it so you can see all those details. The one on the right is just a more artistic framing of the same subject. At least some people would say that here we have these fighter jets, lots of negative space in this photo. This photo is not about the details of what these jets look like. It's about the details of these jets in their space in the sky. Here's a photo I shot and Hawaii, long exposure at the beach in white key key. I chose this rock as my subject. And because I shot with a long exposure, the details of the ocean sort of get blurred. And the colors of the sky and the ocean all blend together. And I just thought this was a very nicely balanced photo. I actually have it framed right behind me. Here we have another photo, this silhouette of a person climbing and on top of these rocks with a valley behind. And the way that this photo has been edited so that the blacks and the shadows are not very contrasty. It's a very flat photo in terms of contrast, you don't see a lot of detail in these rocks or in the background. And so it becomes negative space. So here's an example of how you can actually edit a photo to increase the negative space. To decrease the positive space. I think it works really well so that our eye focuses on that subject. And that's what negative space really does is it allows us to focus on a singular subject rather than being distracted by other elements of the photo. We have a beautiful photo. This building edited, likely to look like. It's covered with clouds down below. Everything else falls into the white, except for this tower in the center of the frame. Here's the very cool reflection shot. That magic moment works for this photo with the reflection, the water blending into the sky composed so that there's a lot of negative space. Could have been completely different to have composed with a tight shot right on this face. So you can see the details of the eyes and things like that. But composed using negative space. It's very artistic that way. Here's a photo, historical photo of some flooding that took place. And there's more positive space in this photo. We see these buildings in the background, the power lines. If that was all gone, if it was all just water and there's one car in the middle of the water. It would be a different story than this photo where we can see clearly the road. We can see that this looks like a road that's been flooded, but still a lot of negative space surrounding this car. And that's because this moment was flooded. If it wasn't flooded, if it wasn't just sort of negative space without detail, this photo would be different. Here's one of my favorite negative space shots that I've taken this with in Australia on a trip to visit some family. And one where the sky just sort of blends into the horizon. We have subjects, these sailboats out in the water that just give a little bit of detail and interest to this photo compared to without them. But I just like the simplicity of it. This is a case where I likely didn't have a telephoto lens where I could get closer to the cell votes to get a more detailed shot. But I've decided to just pan up, stick with my wide angle lens and get this shot with all kinds of negative space. I like the simplicity of a negative space shot. I like that. Leaves are subjects alone. Sometimes it can make our subjects feel lonely and add that emotion to our photos. Other times, it just gives the viewer the chance to focus solely on whatever your subject or positive space is without distraction. When you're out photographing next time, try to capture your subject using negative space. In the next lesson and we'll get a refresher on framing within a frame. 8. Framing within a Frame | Photography Composition Refresher: In this composition refresher, we're looking at framing within a frame. What this means is binding visual frames in your photo that actually frame our subject or frame something within our photo itself. Here you can see an example of how these trees and flowers create a frame around the subject. That's the person walking through this beautiful garden. They've used the trees themselves in the open space behind the subject to create a nice naturally occurring brain. Here we see two of the Washington Monument, DC. And on the left, it's just the monument itself. On the right, it's framed by the columns of the building across the way. I think the one on the right, just a little bit more visually interesting to look at. The lighting is also better. So there's other things that make the photo on the right better in my opinion. You see that on the one on the left, the face of the monument is in the shadow because the light from the sky, it looks like it's behind it right now. I think it's one on the right where you can see the monument lit up against the darker background of the sky. It works better. And that's just taking this photo at a different time. That makes this way. Here we can see another way that the cherry blossom of these trees are used to frame the subject, the same Washington Monument, the one on the left. I'm not sure why. I think I would have tried to compose this image with the entire monument in the negative space of the sky or the open space of the spring. So what they could have done, maybe crouched down a little bit, still had these flowers framing the monument, but not being cut off at the top. Now, the one on the right is interesting because they've decided to focus on the flowers with the background out of focus. But still these flowers frame that subject, which is out-of-focus. And because it's such an iconic building or structure, you know what it is, even though it's out-of-focus. And that's an interesting way to use these flowers in the foreground and focus on them while still framing the background itself. Here's a couple of photos I took. This is a Lake Reservoir near my house. And it was on a day where it had previously snowed and it was during sunset. The one on the left. I wasn't using framing. On the right. I backed up and I used the trees on top of this mountain to frame the lake and the mountains? I'm not sure which one I prefer. I don't know. What do you prefer? I like that. I can see more details of the mountains in the Lake on the left-hand side. But I like the visual creativeness over the one on the right, with the framing of the foreground, trees and even the grasses on the hillside down on the bottom. Here's the one without. Here's the one with the framing. Without with the framing. Here we have a photo to photos of a Ford Mustang steering wheel. The one on the right, I thought was interesting because they shot this with the window rolled up. Maybe they're at a car show or something where this isn't their car and they're just taking the photo as it is. And they didn't have the choice to roll up the window or not. But I actually think that have seen the edge of the window frame. And having the edge of this window here creates sort of an interesting look. You have some reflections and things that I think is a better photo than the one on the left. The one on the left Silicon photo. I love seeing the details of this car, the dashboard, the steering wheel. But visually interesting. I think the one on the right takes the cake by using the framing of the window itself. Here we have two photos of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. One using the framing of this broken chain link fence on the left to frame the subject, the Golden Gate Bridge, one of the arches, one on the right, without that framing. Both interesting photos. The one on the right, interesting in its own right because it was a long exposure shot at night. The lining is really interesting. The one on the left though, I think, is very creative to you that framing. And here's an example of the photographer actually consciously thinking in their environment. How can I frame this subject? And this is a popular shot. I think there's a lot of people who have seen the shot of the Golden Gate Bridge with this specific chain link fence being opened like that. So maybe they already knew of this location and they just wanted to try to capture themselves. Other times, you're out there as a photographer. You see your subject, but then you think, how can I back up? Can I put some foreground elements in my frame or something to frame my subject. You have to actually be thinking about that when you're out shooting. Here's a great historical photo. I believe during World War one as well, with this building being the natural frame to our soldiers here. And just again, it's not something here where the photographer was like, I need to frame them in the foreground with something. But just because of this building, creates this natural frame around them. It makes it very visually interesting and it draws our attention into what's in the middle of that frame. Here's another great historical photo. We have this arch of this tunnel or building framing the subject. I just think it's a much more visually interesting photo than if it was a tight crop photo zoomed in. Or if the photographer step forward to take a snap a photo of the subjects. Now this is a photo where maybe you could see the details of subjects a little bit better. But artistically, I think this one works better. Here's another great example, backing up, finding this tree, positioning yourself as the photographer to frame this subject in the middle of the leaves. If this tree wasn't here, if the photographer was just snapping a picture of this person sitting on the concrete bench, it just wouldn't be that interesting of a photo. I don't think there's nothing really special about it. So they found a way to make it special with the foreground element of the trees and the subject. Sitting there in the middle of the frame leaves. A great photo. These books that is bookstore with our subject in the middle of the frame. This is one where if there wasn't a person here, you would still have the framing of these books. But what is it framing? Your frames have to frame something. It has to frame a subject or something in your photo that's interesting to look at. Otherwise, it's not really as interesting of a photo than the subject of the photo just becomes the frame itself. And that might or might not work. Here we have a couple of photos where lighting plays a real role in creating a frame. So here in this cave we have the silhouetted edge of the cliff or the cave surrounding this mid point where the light is shining down. And that natural silhouetted edge works really well to create a visually interesting photo with our eye drawn to the middle. Here we have literally eyes. And our eye is drawn to the one I being framed by the spot of light. The use of lighting as framing is also something you can do. And then a couple more examples. Castle ruins in the background. Just wouldn't be as interesting of a photo without this archway surrounding it. Here we have these mountains in the background framed by the arch of this tunnel. Here we have the frame of a literal frame, a window pane, and the boat that's perfectly centered in these frames. Without that boat, there might be an interesting, more abstract photo. With the boat there. It tells a different story. More visually interesting. Here we have a person framed by this. I don't know what this is. Some sort of window frame, just some structure. I'm not exactly sure what it is, but it works really well to frame our subject. Then here we have a person themselves creating a frame around their face. Kind of an interesting way to take a portrait. So that is framing with it in a frame, and that is the end of our composition refresher. These are all things that you've probably known about ways to compose a photo from your first photography classes that you take in or the basic videos that you've watched on composing photos. But hopefully going through them again helps you understand what they are and also inspires you to go out and try to capture photos using these different photographic techniques. You can take a photo of the same subject using all of these different compositional techniques. And it's going to change whether that photo is great, not so great. More visually interesting to look at or not. So now we're done with that section and we're going to move on to some more pro level compositional techniques to start thinking about. And using in your photography. 9. Introduction to Pro Composition Tips Section: Welcome to this new section of the course on advanced composition tips. So far, maybe you've learned a couple of things to start putting into practice with your photography. In this section, we're going to learn a little bit more on the creative side of how you can use composition to improve your photography. So stay tuned. We're gonna go through each style of composition and see lots of examples. So that when you go out, you know exactly what to do. 10. Clean Up Your Frame | Pro Photography Tip: My first tip is to clean up your frame. If you scroll through the most liked, most popular photos on Instagram and other photo sharing apps. One thing that you'll find in common with a lot of them is that the framing itself is actually fairly simple. The photo, the subject matter, the background. It generally is a simpler photo without distractions. And that's why this works. When we have a subject composing a way without a lot of distracting elements. It often is a just more visually pleasing photo, and it allows us to interact with the photo and just spend time with the subject of the photo without being distracted. So here's a great example where visually it's simple. Frame is simple. We're still being framed by this. These leaves around the edge of the frame. Frame within a frame. The lighting is nice. The silhouette is nice. That is from the lighting and the editing. But it's just a simple photo and it works. Here's a photo of some Joshua tree that is not simple. This is a desert shot showing Joshua trees. And in some instances this photo might work for something. But if we're trying to focus on the Joshua Tree and take a photo of that subject, cleaning up our frame, finding a Joshua tree that is not in the middle of all of these other ones with mountains and rocks in the background that are distracting foreground plants that are distracting the horizon, That's distracting. Here this composition is a lot better cleaning up, simplifying. Here's another example. Again, out in the desert. Both are really interesting photos. The one on the right though, I think works a little bit better in the sense of being a more visually pleasing image. Alleys, I think maybe you disagree, maybe you like the one on the left, but there's just less going on, making it more visually interesting. Why do you think the one on the left and the one on the right? Here we have these flowers. Again. The one on the right, that's not visually simple or clean, might be a good photo for certain things. The one on the left really allows us to focus and spend time with our subject. If they clean simple frame. And this is something that I see with a lot of my students who are beginners when they're photographing plants and flowers and things like this. They'll often frame a flower, but in the background will be other flowers that are the same color and maybe not out-of-focus enough so that it's distracting or not as easy to look at or pleasing as something like this with one flower. So you might be saying, well, how do you get that photo? Well, sometimes it means just changing the angle. You're taking the photo out so that the background is more visually clean. It doesn't have competing elements with bright colors in the background. Other times it means going to another flower bush, trying to find a subject that doesn't have that distracting background. Sometimes it could mean editing. You could desaturate things that are in the background that are competing for your attention. Here's a very busy shot for breakfast. And what I want you to imagine as say you were chosen to photograph for a waffle company, waffle maker. And they've tasked you with tagging waffles. This photo has waffles in it, but that's not the star of the show. It's an interesting photo. There's a lot going on. I love seeing this beautiful breakfast that has been created. But the task of capturing a beautiful waffle to showcase the power of this new waffle maker is not, it wasn't really done here. This one's better. We have one waffle. But there's still a lot going on. We've got these flowers that were added just to add some textures to this frame. Sometimes that works. Sometimes you just want to keep cleaning it up. Here. We've cleaned up the shot even more. We've used a dark background so that the lighter waffle actually stands out a bit more. We have a few fruits, we've got the powdered sugar that creates some interesting texture as well. But really we're focused on the simplicity and beauty of a waffle. So you can see going from busy to somewhat busy to more simplified. How simplifying and cleaning up your frame can make a more attractive photo. Doesn't mean these other ones are bad. Just means that the one on the right focuses and showcases the subject. Better. Clean up your frame. And it doesn't mean using negative space and only having your subject with nothing around it. But when you're looking through your viewfinder, is there a way to move your camera, zoom in or zoom out, position your subject where there's not competing elements around your subject that will take the attention away from that subject. Clean up your frame. 11. Add Layers | Pro Photography Tip: Our next pro composition tip is to add layers. Here we see this photo of the building in front of these majestic mountains. And the photographer decided to add an extra layer in the foreground of these pink flowers. They did not need to do this. They could have zoomed in, tilted up, stood up, so they weren't as close to the flowers and just had a higher perspective. And you would just see the mountain in the background when this building in the foreground. But by adding another layer in the foreground and they balanced it. This is often a nice balance that you've seen before, where the bottom third is one element. The middle third of the photo is another element. The top third is another element. It's a nice visual weight to this photo. Here we have an example of a yogurt parfait. The one on the left does not have as many layers. The one on the right has more layers. It has some berries in the foreground and background it has another parfait in the background. It has a bowl of berries in the background. And even though shot from above and they're not really layered like one in front of each other in this photo. Because the focus is so shallow, it does create that sense of layering. And this is an example for food photography where I think it works to add these other elements and makes the photo more interesting. Another more clear example on the left we have a cake. Just by itself. On the right we have the cake, but in the foreground we have a fork and then the background we have some cream or milk or something like that. And I just think that the layers add to this photo on the right here is visual leering to a T spot on. And I like the repetition of these people holding up these lamps, of these Fire torches, whatever they are at this, it looks like it's ceremony. And having the visual layers and the repetition of them works really well. Here's a great old photo of these buildings with these billboards, Coca-Cola, all the advertisements. And you can see that the silhouette of this billboard is a layer in the foreground. Works really well to make this a more complicated, more interesting photos. So this is almost the opposite of cleaning up your frame, but you're adding elements to the frame. Not necessarily to be distracting, but just to add something else that makes your photo interesting to look at. Here, the photographer chose to put some plants as a layer in front of our subject's face. It's framing her. So this is tied to framing within a frame as well. It's framing her one eye or nose or her mouth in a interesting way. But I think it also just having those foreground layers makes it more visually interesting. Here is another portrait using the hands as a visual layer. You might think, why would you take that photo with blocking her face that way? Interesting, right? That's pretty much it. It's interesting. It would be a lot different in her hands were down and you just saw a picture of her face. Still would look good. But I think this is very interesting the way they did this. Again, here is another photo with lots of layers. And you'll see this often in landscape photos. And it's one way that I think can quickly take a basic landscape photo to a more pro level is adding foreground elements, adding foreground layers at the bottom of the frame. And having an, a focus to be able to focus from the foreground to the background. Here we have the front layer of these flowers, the middle layer of the lake, and that's peer in the Background layer of the mountains silhouetted in the distance. And greet leading lines of this path go into the peer or the doc with our subject, you could say sitting on that doc. But in this photo, the whole landscape I would say is the subject. But it's not distracting, it's not messy, it's clean layers. We got to clean layer of flowers and clean. It's still a rather simple photo. And that's what makes this very nice to look at. Here is another photo of Big Ben, one without visual layers. Just the building, the tower. You've got this bridge here as well, but there's no real leering here. Here's another example of Big Ben shot with some flowers in the foreground, creating more adept creating that layering. Both are great photos. The one on the right, I think, is just a little bit more visually interesting, more creative of a shot. If you're tasked with just taking a photo of Big Ben, the one on the left works. But if you're creating art, the one on the right, I think works better. Here's how layering can contribute to the story of your photo. To photos of these seabirds. The one on the left. The focus is so shallow, the location is unknown. You don't know what the background is. Great picture of this bird, but storytelling wise, nothing incredible. The one on the right, we have Big Ben in the background. It's an out-of-focus layer. But because it's such an iconic location and structure, you know that this was shot in London with this seabirds in focus in the foreground. So sometimes that background or foreground layer, even if it's out-of-focus, can help tell a better story. Here's an example of a shot that I did with some foreground elements. This is a cove up in Big Sur, just a typical landscape photo. But the one on the right, I chose to frame with some of the succulent and plants on this hillside as a foreground layer, which I just thought made it a little bit more interesting of a photo. Here's another photo that I did where it's very subtle. But the one on the left of this bird on this rock and the lake. A nice photo, but on the right, I got behind some plants. And even though the plants are you not able to see them. They're so close, they're out-of-focus. They just create this sort of visual leering other element that frames our subject. And I think just makes it an interesting photo. I like both of these photos. I think I liked the position of the burden, this one because you can see it's phase a little bit better than this one. But the added elements make this one kind of special. Similar to framing within a frame, but not just strictly framing a subject. Try to add layers to your photos. Had foreground elements change the background element change the background so that it makes him more visually interesting. Photo helps tell your story about where that photo is taken, what the setting is, what's going on. That's something that you can do to make your photos even better. 12. Capture Textures & Pattenrs | Pro Photography Tip: Our next pro composition tip is to capture textures and patterns. So this is both a prompt in terms of looking out for a specific type of subject matter or a type of photo, but also how you capture the photo itself. So here we have this plant with leaves or fronds that just create this nice, they have this nice texture to it. And it's a pattern of them laid out this way. Here we have a photo of some tires, not really anything special the way that these tires are captured. And then here we have another stack of photos that is composed in a different way, partially because the way that the tires are just stacked, it creates this nice repeating texture and pattern to them. I think the one on the right is a more interesting photo, the way that it's shot. And also I like the black and white, the one on the left, it's it's a case where having shallow depth of field doesn't really mean it's a better photo or isn't the best way to capture a subject? I don't know. Let me think. Here's a great architectural pattern or texture that's captured. This is something that you can do when you're out doing street photography. Look for ways that buildings are parts of a building, Have a nice pattern or texture. This is a great shot of these lineup of park bikes creating this great pattern. Other than the fact that there's just this see spikes that are all parked the same way. There's nothing really that interesting about this photo. It's the fact that it is a repeating pattern that creates a nice texture that makes this an interesting photo to look at. Here's just a photo where the flowers themselves create a nice combination of textures of the green leaves, the yellow petals. This isn't a photo of a singular sunflower that stands out. It's just a nice photo of the textures that are created by these flowers. Sometimes I love the simplicity of a texture and this is a great example. Bark of the tree just creates a nice texture to look at. Here we have the repeating pattern of the building with all of the balconies in this photo probably wouldn't be interesting if it was zoomed out just to see this sort of standard building. But because it's cropped or zoomed in just so that we are seeing the repeating lines and pattern of the balconies and the windows makes it more interesting. Here we see the lapping waves on a shoreline and the repeating texture and pattern of the waves. And because it was edited in black and white, darken so that you have some silhouetted and just a lot of contrast to make these lines show up. It's a more interesting photo than if everything was exposed properly. And you weren't able to see that repeating texture of the waves lapping up onto the shoreline, like you do in this photo. So here we have an example of how editing has helped create that pattern. Capturing patterns and textures is something that I like to do when I'm feeling uninspired. Go out even down the street that you walk every day, go to your downtown which you probably photographed a thousand times. But start thinking about what textures are there. What can I capture? What patterns and textures can I capture here in the places that I've already been? If you're like me, it's hard to find interesting subjects in these places that I've photographed so many times. But I can still find interesting photos to capture by focusing in and just looking for interesting patterns and textures that I might not have noticed before. So go out and capture some textures. 13. Look for Spot Color | Pro Photography Tip: Our next composition tip is to look for spot color. What this means is a composition or a photo where a singular color stands out from the background, often because it is a contrast in color. So here we have an example of this ice climber who is wearing this bright orangeish red jacket that stands out from the light blue of the ice in the sky. This works really well compared to if the subject was wearing a similar white or light blue jacket. Here's an example of this, where on the left you see this person wearing a brown jacket on the right wearing a yellow jacket, which one stands out more, which is more interesting. I think most people are going to agree that the one on the right with the yellow jacket stands out. The one on the left, I actually edited to have had jacket be just a neutral brown and it just doesn't work that well. Here's an example of an apple tree where on the left, it's not really spot color, it's just a combination of reds and greens. And it's a nice contrast between the reds and greens of the frame. But on the right, the singular Apple really stands out from the background because it's red on the green background and there's no other competing red element. Even though these are two different locations shot by two different photographers. I think the one on the right is a more interesting photo of an apple itself, more artistic. And so if I was in a location with a big apple tree like the one on the left, I would try to compose an image and move around, zoom in, zoom out, so that I could get that singular Apple with the green background rather than the competing red apples as well. Here's an example of where on the left we have a lemon. On the right. That is either a lime or her an unripe lemon. But the one on the left lemon surely stands out. We're going to talk about capturing photos where there's just one sort of Color Range. And the one on the right is interesting in that sense. But when we're trying to get a subject to stand out from the background, you want those colors to contrast. The red telephone booths of the UK really stand out from this gray drab background. Here we have the neon yellow tennis ball standing out from the blue tennis court. Here we have a banana photographed on a pink background, centering, cleaning up frame, but also contrasting solo colors. Here we have the yellow window and plantar box on this blue wall. Stands out a lot more and makes this photo more interesting than if everything was painted in that same blue. Here we have a couple of shots of butterflies, monarch butterflies. The one on the left, you see the orange butterfly does not stand out as much as the one on the right. Because the colors of the flowers in the background more similarly match the color of the butterfly. And I think the one on the right just works better. Here's another example of the monarch butterfly on just a more green background, which works really well too. So this is spot color. You can find this naturally in your environment. Or you can dress your subjects to have spot color if you're taking people out to do portraits in the middle of a forest, make sure they wear contrasting colors to the greens and browns that you'll naturally fine. This is something you have control over. Alright, I hope you enjoyed this tip and we'll see you in the next one. 14. Juxtapose Elements | Pro Photography Tip: Our next composition tip is to juxtapose elements. This can mean a lot of different things, as you'll see in these examples. This could be a juxtaposition of storytelling elements in your photo, here we see a literal representation of life versus death. In this photo. This was a photo from one of the wars. And you have, it looks like these soldiers who are alive standing next to the grave of someone that probably fighting alongside them. So in this juxtaposition was literally seeing life versus death. Other times, the way that you juxtapose the weight of elements in your photos, the way that you juxtapose light and color, Old and New. And let's look at some more examples. Here we have this gigantic waterfall with our subject, a person underneath. And you can really see the scale of this waterfall with this juxtaposition. Without this person, it's still looks like a great big waterfall. With this person, you can really see how powerful and big this waterfall is. And it tells a different story. Old versus new. This is always going to be and interesting story of photography is to see old and new items buildings. Here we have old leaves that are dying. We have one leaf that is more recently green and fading into the brown of a decomposed leaf. Here we have a couple of images of some new versus old buildings. This is something that if you're out in any city or modernizing city, you'll see this kind of contract contradiction, this juxtaposition. I liked the one on the left because it's more like a texture. It's kind of a weird composition and almost looks fake where it looks like that background shouldn't be there. But it's just the way that they composed it and zoomed in tight on the end of this brick building to see this modern building in the background. Whereas the one on the right is really interesting too, because you see the whole story of this building itself. You see what the building is to work by these modern skyscrapers in the background. Here's a photo that I shot down in Chile. In Santiago. And you can see on the left the foreground element of this old building that's being reflected in this modern skyscraper with their reflective Windows. But you can see this old tower from one of the old buildings that was built hundreds of years before. Young and Nolan. Object's position. Baby's hand and I'm assuming maybe a grandparent hand. Here we see the visual weight difference in this juxtaposition of a small lifeboat to this gigantic freighter ship. The juxtaposition of this big orange wall to the small lifeboat. Here we have these new buildings juxtapose in this book to this old construction site. And it looks like they are demolishing some old buildings. And I'm assuming to replace with new buildings like the ones you see in the background. The way this is frame though the framing within a frame of the new building within this barbed wire is very interesting. And the decision to simply show the foreground elements. This is a story. This is a story captured in this photo. It's not just here. Look at this new building or Hey, look at this construction site. It's a story of this old building that's being demolished and it will be replaced. A modern building. Here we have a solitary human looking up into the vast space of our galaxy with thousands of stars in the background. Just a juxtaposition of perhaps a theoretical concept of humans versus the universe. Who are we? Why are we here? How did we get here? Another storytelling juxtaposition. Then lastly, here's just a funny juxtaposition of bird on this guy's head. It's just a moment that is funny and not one that you see every day. And so be on the lookout for this photo for a juxtaposition of elements of characters, of subjects in your photos. And that's juxtaposition. I hope that on your next photo adventure, you keep it in mind as a way to capture something both within your frame, but also with storytelling. 15. Shoot Diagonal Lines | Pro Photography Tip: Welcome to this next compositional tip. Finding diagonal lines. Diagonal lines can make a photo feel more powerful and interesting to look at. Here we see an example of a classic photo from the Boston Public Library of this beach scene with all these cars lined up going across the frame diagonally, which creates a little bit less balanced in photo than if it was perfectly parallel to the edge of frame, which could be an alternative way to compose an image and be a little bit more balanced and easy to look at photo, but the diagonal lines often make a photo just a little bit more interesting to look at a little bit. It makes our I go across the frame and spend a little bit more time in our photo. Here's an example of a parking lot of cars with vertical lines of the cars, which to me, isn't that interesting? Compared to this photo, similar subject matter, rows and rows upon rows of cars. But when I look at this one, it's just something more interesting photo to look at. I don't know if you agree, disagree, but the one on the right with the diagonal lines is just more interesting. Here we have a parking lot. And the lines in this photo are vertical and horizontal, parallel to the edges of the frame. Here we have another one, similar shot of a parking lot. This one has a subject and this yellow car, but with the lines going diagonally across the frame, it just creates a little bit more of a dynamic image. Back to this image. Say we want to add a subject which would increase the interest in this photo for the first place. Let's add a car. I've gone in with Photoshop, added a car. Without a car. With a car automatically makes it a little bit more interesting. Now, let's add and make, crop it and make it diagonal. And to me this is even more interesting. So first we added a subject. Next, we made the lines diagonal and the one on the right, I find much more interesting to look at. Here's a couple more images, just samples about a ball court from above. Lots of diagonal lines. Here we have a tractor and a farm. Diagonal lines. Make it more interesting than if it wasn't diagonal. Here we have vertical lines. Diagonal, vertical, diagonal. What do you think? So this is just another thing to keep your eye out for or if you're composing a shot, think about, okay, can we maybe change the framing a little bit so that these lines are more diagonal or we have lines going through our frame diagonally. Thanks so much for watching and I can't wait to see your diagonal photos. So share them with me and the course. Wherever you're posting your photos, tag me on Instagram or whatever social media account we're using in the future with photography. And I can't wait to see your photos. Cheers. 16. Find a Unique Vantage Point | Pro Photography Tip: Our next pro composition tip is to shoot from a unique vantage point. So often we go out as photographers and we photograph from a standing perspective, just walking down the street, going around, choosing our photos, taking photos of our friends or family at an event. And it just literally us at a five to six vantage point, shooting straight on try bindings and unique perspectives to shoot at. And I'm not just talking about tilting up, tilting down, but from a unique vantage point, can you go somewhere? This photo will just become more interesting. Here we have an example of classic photographer Dorothea Lange. She took a lot of photos during the Great Depression. Here. It looks like a line of men and people just lined up for something. Maybe it's too at the bank, maybe it's to get food. I'm not sure, but the fact that she's shooting from above makes this a more interesting photo than if you were just eye level looking at this line of people, which might be an interesting photo as well. But this from above vantage point is a little bit more unique. Here we have a photo skateboarder, nice wide angle lens, that's a cool shot. But look at this one. This one is from above. And the angle is also a fisheye lens. But I find this photo much more interesting to look at because they've chosen to include the photographers that are outside of this bowl in the framing itself. The entire bowl is nicely framed in this photo. And around the edge we have these photographers framing our skateboarder. Talk about capturing a defining moment, a dynamic moment in time. Here is a perfect example of that. And I, both of these have their place in terms of being a great photo. This one I just find a little bit more interesting to look at because it tells more of a story from this unique vantage point. Again, here's a shot from above. Interesting diagonal line going on in this photo as well. This lineup of boys at this diving board or platform from above. Just, it's kinda cool perspective here compared to that similar sort of location or story. Boy jumping into the pool. But here were from a lower perspective. And so we can see their faces lot different than the one before. You can see the emotion. You can see maybe this, this looks like a lifeguard who is helping this boy jumped in the water. This boy is maybe giving a little bit more encouragement. And then up here on top of this diving board, you see another life guard, I'm assuming that is waiting, watching. And I think choosing to shoot from this perspective for this photo helps this photo be more dynamic because you can see the faces. You can almost feel what they're feeling in this moment. Here's a great perspective. Sometimes you go into these buildings like this or you go to old architecture and it's cool to just take photos of the architecture itself. But if you have a friend or a buddy there with you, and you can place them within that environment in a unique way. You could come away with an awesome shot like this. This photo would not be the same if that person wasn't there, it would still be a unique vantage point. I liked the leading lines twisting around, going down, down, down, leading us to the bottom of the stairwell. This is an example of leading lines, leading to a subject which works as well to completely unique vantage points. One, this is an upside down photo, makes it creative. Legs popping up out of the earth, but they've decided to crop it, rotate it upside down, which works well with this photo because the natural position of the legs being down in the feet, being down at the bottom of the frame. Make this not look just like completely upside down. But you know, it's upside down because obviously the Earth is at the top of the frame. Very creative. On the right we have photographer who chose to shoot this model shot from down below the foot using a wide angle lens. Super interesting, completely different than just a standard shot if you're at eye level with this person in this environment. Here's a photo, classic photo looking down the highway, which is okay. But you can tell it's shot at eye level. I think that crouching down, getting closer to the road makes a photo like this even more interesting. A more unique vantage point that you don't see every day with your eyes. That makes a photo standout. Here. This this to this. And it's like the exact same location. Some other things have changed. The lighting changed a bit, but mostly just the editing also has changed to bring out the reds and oranges of the rocks. Boost of contrast. But also the perspective and vantage point being closer to that street has a very cool photo looking down at a pond, looking at the reflection. We see lots of classic photos like this where you're looking up at buildings and there's a plane flying by. I see that on Instagram all the time. This photographer decided to include themselves in the photos sort of like a self portrait. Looking down at this reflection, Look around, you never know what you're going to see. Talk about unique vantage point. You're literally showing yourself. This is, this is more interesting because yes, it's at eye level. You're looking as if you are there. It's not like close to the ground or high up or anything, but they're in a unique space. And that's what makes this interesting. A completely unique view of Time Square in New York. Here's a classic shot. Great colors, cool edit, cool moment, crop, people crossing the street. This is the life of New York. But this is a scene that is seen by everyone all the time compared to this. Very unique. So sometimes it takes going around, I don't encourage you to go out, climb buildings and hang over the ledge like this necessarily. But maybe it does take a little bit of creativity and going to a different place to get a more unique photo. Here we have a shot on the left of a tram. The same photographer captured the same location or similar location two different ways. Both low to the ground, which I think works well. The one on the right, I think, is more interesting because they've chosen to focus on the leaf in the foreground. The tram is just a background addition to what the story is and where the location is. But it's not the main subject. But I liked that low to the ground perspective and adding another element in front works well. Here are a couple of shots of camels in Egypt. This is a great shot itself. Here's a different type of shot. This is a type of shot we see a lot nowadays with the advent of digital cameras and smart phones, we're often seeing that POV point of view, perspective. But it's something to take into account to help tell the story of your location, of your travels. Having a series of photos like this where you have different vantage points works really well. Here we have someone that is doing a backflip. It's a cool shot because it's a cool action. But how can we make this a little bit more unique? We've put ourselves underneath the person who's doing the backflip, the one on the left or on the right, we see another type of flip going into the water, but they've chosen to compose the image with some water at the bottom of the frame. Both of these I find much more unique and interesting than this photo itself. So when you have a subject, start to think about ways that you can position yourself to create a more unique image. The tip. Alright, see you in the next one. 17. Leave Space for Motion | Pro Photography Tip: Our next pro composition tip is to leave space for emotion. What this means is if you are capturing a subject that is moving in your brain to leave more space in front of that subject. Because it's a more natural way to view a subject in a defined space of a frame. It will just feel more balanced and natural compared to putting more space behind the subject. Which can also be an interesting way to compose a subject. And we'll see an example of that here in some photos. But generally you want to leave space in front. And oftentimes this can be done in post. If you have a wide enough shot to put more space in front and crop it that way. Here we have a natural photo of the cyclists. Great, long, little bit of a long shutter so that you get that blur in the background, which is very cool. And the way that you do this, if you've never attempted to capture motion like this, is you set your shutter speed to something a little bit longer than normal, maybe like 1 15th of a second, 1 tenth of a second. Even 1 second could work in some situations. But really what you're doing is while you're taking the shot, you're panning with the subject. So the subject will stay in focus, but the background will be blurry because you're moving your camera across the frame. And so the subject here we have these cyclists have to stay in the same part of the frame for them to be in focus. Really just even 130th of a second might work if the subject is moving fast enough, like a race car or something driving by superfast. But then you're going to have to play with your other settings, your aperture and your ISO so that it's exposed properly. Lock your shutter speed, and then use your other ones to expose. But the space in front makes it so much more natural photo to look at compared to here. If we cropped in and they're directly in the middle of the frame, it's not a bad photo, but I think having more space in front works well. Here we have the same tight crop. The one on the right, more space in front compared to the one on the left. Looking, looking at these now, I think the one on the left could work in some situations. But I like this one a lot more rule of thirds, more space in front. Here we have a photographer who has captured a runner without a lot of space in front. And I think this is one where it just awkwardly the runner is moving in the middle of the frame. And there should be more space in front like this. So even though this bridge is a nice part of this photo and the story, I would have tried to capture it with the runner running the other way or with capture the runner earlier, maybe over here. So that there's space on the right side. Because I think just the balance of the photo with the runner running this way to the right works better with this shot. There are some lines that are a little bit funky to, I don't know. It looks like that's just how this fence or this barrier is built. And not just the framing of it, but because this runs up, It's just kind of an awkward location to shoot at. Again, we have runner going to the left, almost a little bit past halfway in our frame. Then cropping it here with more space in front works better for this photo. Here we have similar a diver diving right in the middle of the frame. I just don't think the centering of your subject works. Good in this example. Here we could do something interesting with the diver, almost diving out of the frame, which I think makes us pause a little bit. It makes me look at the photo and be like, Okay, this is interesting. So that can work sometimes. But I think this is a much more balanced natural photo to look at. What do you think? One on the left or the one on the right? More balanced? Kinda awkward, right? Sometimes you want awkward in your photography. Feels a little bit unsettling. Maybe you want that. But for a balanced look, I like this composition better anyways, because we have the boat in the background, which is a nice other subject in our photo we have this great leading line of this peer leading us to her toes and our feet jumping in sort of a nice curve. All of these lines leading us together. Here we have a surfer great use of space in front of the surfer. Another one that works really well. If we cropped in and the surfer was centered, It's just not as good. I don't think I like having the surfer with more space, especially for this photo because you can see their path. You can see more of what the surfer is going through. What's in their mind. Where do they have to go? What's going to happen with this wave compared to this here? I think the one on the right with the more space is a better one. Better crop maybe could be cropped a little bit more. I like seeing part of this wave in the front that's gets cropped out here, doesn't have to be as extreme. But leaving more space in front and not just centering, I think works better. Here we have some cyclists, great use of space and front. Here. They're not using the space in front. The cyclist is about to go out of the frame. This one works a little bit better. You can tell they're rounding a curve. You also see the cyclists in the background. If this cyclist was a little bit further up here, it would have made more sense to capture it like this without space in front of our front writer. But I do think this one works fine without as much space in front. If you're capturing people walking, athletes, moving around, any sort of car, airplane or anything that's moving. Start by capturing it with space in front and enough space so that you can crop it to have a more balanced photo. And then play around with some creative edits or creative shots without space to create a more jarring image. Thanks so much for watching and we'll see you in the next one. 18. Spot Reflections | Pro Photography Tip: Our next pro composition tip is to spot reflections. We talked about symmetry earlier on. But with this tip It's specifically to look out for reflections, go out, go to somewhere where there's water, where there's class, where those windows, where you can find some great reflections. Here we have this image of these people standing in front of the window, which would just not be an interesting photo without the reflection down below. Laura is just perfectly polished so that you get this nice reflection. Here we have this photo of this bird that's flying over the water. The water is a little bit choppy so we don't get much of a reflection. Great photos still. Talking about our last tip, leaving a little bit more space in front, I think would be better or cropping this in just a little bit tighter so that the bird is flying off the frame. Here we have another photo where we don't have reflection, which just isn't as interesting as if we did have reflection, See what I did there. I was able to just remove that birds reflection from this photo like this, which still an interesting photo, but obviously much better and more interesting when we have that reflection. And that's because this was shot on water like this at this time of day where you can see that perfect reflection, great lighting, this photo as well. I would say that most of us watching this video would agree that the one with the reflection is more interesting. Here we have another type of reflection which tells a different type of story. This is a classic historical photo from the New York Public Library, this bakery. And when you see the reflection of a couple of people that are looking in the window. They're not inside this bakery, but they're looking from outside in this photo just wouldn't be as interesting without the reflection of these people right here. This person right here framed perfectly in this spot of the window without the text or the signage. So you can see their face. This person, a little bit harder to see their face, but still a pretty cool use of reflection. Here's another one That's cool photo. Looking out the window. Interesting photo, interesting person to look at without the reflection. But this photo works much better because they're looking outside this window. Can't tell if this is on a train or if it is in our room or something like that. But very cool. Reflection, not symmetrical. Notice that these reflections doesn't mean symmetrical photo. This is not balanced centered to this window frame with equal reflection on one side, the person on the other. It's not balanced, but it's a cool reflection. Here. You have these trees. And sometimes you don't see this when you're just walking by, but it takes going to that unique vantage point to see the reflection. And also, it depends on the time of day where the light is shining, depending on where your light sources. If the sun, you might not see a reflection if it's shining straight down on this puddle. But because it's shining a specific way on these trees in the top of the frame. It reflects in this water this way. Another one. This is a great example of where if you're just walking by, you might typically just shoot a photo of this building. Great framing within these other building. But I loved that they got down and use the water that came from a recent rain to create this nice reflected image. Who wouldn't want to stay at a place like this. This cabin looks awesome, great reflection in the water. This photo uses reflection well to have a nice symmetrical balance. Top and bottom of the frame. And these are just examples of photos that have reflections and look interesting because well, we're flexing. Reflections are just interesting to look at. Here's a reflection I captured. This is a little old train depot, train station in my hometown where I grew up. It was a perfect day after the rain where I could capture this building in the reflection. Now on the left I focused on the leaf in the foreground, very similar to a photo we saw earlier in the course. Where the location and that building in the background just provides more context to the photo. It's not necessarily the subject. On the right. The building itself is the subject of the photo. And I remember when I was shooting this, I had to play around with exactly how high and high, low my camera was to get that reflection just right where you can see the clouds in the sky. You could see the building enough to have some nice balance and symmetry. So it'll take playing around, but this was just a little ugly puddle on the ground that you wouldn't think twice about except if you got down six inches above the water. So look out for those reflections. If it's a rainy day and you're bummed out because you're gonna go out on a photo adventure. But then it rained. Well, when the sky breaks open and it's clear, go out and look and try to capture some cool reflections. Alright, see you in the next video. 19. Break the Pattern | Pro Photography Tip: My next pro composition tip is to look out for photos where a pattern is broken. We talked earlier about capturing patterns and textures. This is a great thing to do if you're just looking for inspiration, interested in going out and taking photos really wherever you are, there's gonna be fun patterns and textures. But something else, sort of like spot color in a sense where a certain color that contrast with the background color creates a nice dynamic image. Here we have an example of where we have this nice pattern of the sand broken up by this single shell. If you just had this photo of the sand itself. Okay, we've got this nice sandy texture. But we add in the subject that breaks up this pattern. And it creates a very nice looking background and foreground, even though that background is right there with that shell. A nice photo. Here's a photo. I shot this pattern of the shadow of this chain link fence on the ground, broken up by this leaf in the middle of the frame. Lots of textures going on. I just thought this photo was very interesting. For an uninteresting subject. A leaf that fell from a tree, a chain link fence. Not much interesting about that, but we layer them on top of each other. We have this pattern created by the shadow and it creates a more interesting photo. And the editing of it in black and white, it helps bring out those textures, brings out that contrast in the shadow that makes it work better than if it was even in color. Here we have this beautiful textured wall with the yellows broken up by some flowers at the bottom. Without those flowers. I don't know if this would be a photo that you would be very interested in looking at. Here we have an example on the left of a pattern without anything breaking it up. Versus on the right, we have the leaves broken up by the pink flowers. Spot color also, as well as the pattern being broken up. Here's a great example of finding a location with a pattern that could be broken up by a subject, not sure if she was placed there on purpose or if they were just passer by walking by this building. But a great composition of a clean pattern broken up by a subject. And that's what we're talking about here, is trying to capture a clean pattern that fills the frame. Not just some textures and patterns that are within a frame, amongst other things, but a clean pattern broken up by a single subject. Here's another example. Great texture of the water broken up by this loan surfer. Great use of negative space here as well. So be on the lookout for those patterns. And the patterns that are broken up by subject. 20. The Rule of Odds | Pro Photography Tip: Our next composition tip is the rule of odds. Now, I'm bringing to you some ideas that I don't always agree with. But I put them out there because some people think that they are ways to make your photo more powerful. And the rule of odds is that it's this that having three of something or an odd number of something makes a more dynamic and interesting shot than just an even number and not subject. So here we have three people. This is, this is from Unsplash, but the brand was a crisp bread. But as these photos there, and this photo works really well. Having the dynamic trio, these three people trying their food compared to the one on the right where there's just two people. Maybe it's just the balance and the look of the people, the composition of them looking at each other. On the right, this person's sort of awkwardly looking off to the side. But the rule of odds will say that the one on the left is a more powerful image because there's three of them versus the two. I feel like two gives balance. Here we have this really interesting photo. Think, shot during World War Two, maybe World War one, I'm not sure, but wearing the gas masks to people to look like two women versus another photo taken by the same photographer and Bernice couple, three people. Totally different setting obviously. But three makes it a little bit more dynamic in a way. Look at both of these photos, very interesting subjects and both of them. But there's something about three triangle. Isn't that like the strongest structure, the strongest FAPE in nature. Here we have three palm trees versus two. There's just something about the three that makes it a little bit more interesting in this version and ways to Donuts three doughnuts. I don't know if there's something about the three, right? That makes it more interesting. Now of course, the donuts on the right do look a little bit more appetizing as well. But the fact that there's three, there's a stack. Something about it that just works. Again, let's flip-flop on the side of the screen, three versus two. Maybe there's a little more balanced than the two. A little bit more calming. The three powerful trio. Sometimes it doesn't work as well though. In terms of storytelling. Here we have what all I assume is a mother and a child elephant, which is a nice duo. But is that as powerful of an image as three? There's also something nice about seeing the three elephants. Storytelling wise. Different balance, different themes going on with these photos. But when you're out shooting, if you're doing product photography or things where you have control of the number of subjects in your photo. Maybe play around with having an odd number or an even number and see how that can improve your photo. I did just that on this trip that I recently did to Big Sur with two of my best friends. Here's a photo of one of them. One solitary, singular person, singular subject tells a different story than 22 has some balance to it. The dynamic duo. Then there's one with 33 of us. And I think the one with the three of us. There's some different type of balance going on compared to the two. That makes it a more to meet balanced and interesting photo to look at. And I also liked the photo with the one as well. So play around with it. See how even versus odd changes your photo. 21. Fill the Frame | Pro Photography Tip: Our next composition tip is to fill the frame. We often find a subject and we place it within an environment so that the background or the surrounding area gives some context, or simply so that we can see the entire subject itself. But one thing that you could play around with is actually zooming in, stepping closer, getting closer so that our subject or a part of our subject fills the entire frame. Here we can see a portrait or a photo of this person where they've actually gone in extremely tight. There are some tips with people that I think will benefit if you're trying this kind of photography. It's much more natural to see the chin and below the chin and not cut off the bottom of the chin compared to cutting off the forehead, it just seems to be a more natural way to crop or frame a photo. So be careful about that. But here I just love how they fill up the entire frame. You get this great expression. So you're closer up with this person and you can really feel what they're feeling. Here we have another example of great portraiture. You don't need to see the entire face sometimes, and sometimes this profile of a person is very nice. Just the shape of a person's face, their nose, their lips, their chin. Again, not cutting off the chin here. Here we have this photo cropped in, cutting off the chin, which I think is a little bit too abrasive. This one is not terrible. I would say that if you cut off the chin and left the full forehead, that wouldn't be the right spacing because here we're cropping in both the forehead and the chin. It works better. But still I think that sometimes you can get a little bit too tight as well. Here we have a photo of an elephant, which to me it just doesn't work that well because I would much rather either see the full elephant's trunk or be tighter in. Here we have this detail shot filling the frame of an elephant, which I think works really well because we're not trying to show the entire elephant here compared to this one which is sort of in that awkward middle ground. This one works really well to show the detail, you can see the more of the emotion in the elephant's face and I see the textures much clear. And this works really well. You can compare both of them here and see that in terms of artistic photography, the one on the right, I think works better. Here we have a photo of some flowers, which the flowers themselves, the whole pot or bush of flowers is filling the frame with yellow. But how can we make this flower more interesting, this photo more artistic? I would say filling the frame, something like this, where we can see more of the details is a more creative version of the shot. Both are nice shots. Both have their place in terms of maybe being used for different things. Sometimes when you fill the frame, It's almost too abstract where you can't tell what that subject is. You don't get the full story. That might not be what you're going for, but in terms of being able to see the detail of a subject filling the frame like this on the right works well. Here's another version of a fill the frame shot versus a shot that's completely not filling the frame of the sheep to different sheep. I'm assuming the one on the left, a little bit more hairy get needs a bit of a haircut. This is a great example of how both types of shots can work compared to the elephant one before though, shot on the right, I think does a good job of showcasing the sheep in its space nicely balanced using the rule of thirds with that horizon line, the cheapest centered negative space at the top gives us a lot to focus on. Some foreground element that's out-of-focus gives us another texture that makes this a nice photo. But in terms of capturing the emotions of a sheep, the one on the left wins. The one on the left. You've got to be a little careful about the shallow depth of field though, because the focus is really on the nose, the mouth, which is interesting to see, but it falls off on the eyes, which I think works fine for this photo. But sometimes you do want a deeper depth of field to get more in focus. Having both of these types of shots creates a great series of photos. Filling the frame doesn't necessarily mean just getting tight on a subject. We're also talking about filling the frame with elements or focusing in an area, moving your frame, your composition around where there's lots going on. Here's a great example of this, these sailors who are in the ship, and you can see that there's just so much going on. Because there's so many of them wrapped around each other in the space. You can spend a lot of time with this photograph going from one person to the next, seeing what they're doing, seeing their emotions, and just seeing feeling like you're within this space with them. Here's another example of that where we're filling the frame with items. So this is the opposite of cleaning up your frame and simplifying your photo. Here we have our subject looking at a phone, a mobile phone in the middle of this antique type collectibles shop, where there's all these trinkets and bases and candelabra is and all of these things. And he is in the middle of it. And it's another shot where you spend more time looking at it because it's filled with interesting things that add to the story of the photo and don't detract from our subject. Similarly, here we have a photograph where at this restaurant, this frame is filled with all kinds of beverage options that are available. In the middle, we have our subject, this lady who I'm assuming runs this restaurant or this shop. And they've decided to nicely framed it within a frame. So you can see we have the framing of this building which creates a nice frame around the shop. They could have tightened in, they could have cropped in and just shown maybe the bottles right here gone in for a close up, which would have been a nice portrait of this lady. But here we really see the person in their environment, but it's a filled frame. Similar here we have a lot going on filling the frame, but every element adds to the photo. The lines horizontal and vertical are very straight and perpendicular with the edge of the frame, which works really well. We have some leading lines of this pathway with the people going through it. Nice lighting, natural lighting coming from above. Lots going on to fill the frame. But there's a nice balance to it. Here's a food photography shot where they've filled the frame with all kinds of elements from the food, the condiments, the plating, the textures of the plates and the table itself to create this colorful, vibrant scene. And so sometimes this works. We like filling the frame with elements to create a more vibrant dynamic seen other times taking everything away. Having one of these pieces of toast with cream and strawberries and basil might give us a chance to focus in on that food a little bit better. But in terms of an overall vibrant scene, this is a beautiful setting. So fill the frame means both getting close and tight on a person or your subject. It could be still life, it could be an object, it could be whatever but getting tight on there so we can see the details. But also when you're photographing something in a wider setting, either capturing a scene that is filled with things that are already there in a nice composition, or filling the frame with people or objects or things that add to the story of your photo. 22. Left to Right Theory | Pro Photography Tip: Our next pro composition tip is another theoretical one that I would want you to try and see if it works for you. And it's the left to right theory. It's a theory that for many people, especially cultures where we read from left to right, we are naturally looking at things in photos, specifically, our eyes naturally gravitate to the left. And so this theory says, place the subject on the left of the frame to create a more dynamic photo. I don't know if I agree with this one necessarily, but I would love for you to try it out and see if it works for you. Take a photo of the same subject, place them on the left and the right, and then do a little test. Come back to those photos later, one at a time, show it to some friends or family and see which one they prefer. And don't tell them about the theory to see which one they prefer. Here we have an example of how this could be portrayed. This ancient computer that this man is looking at, placing this subject on the left is more natural for us looking at it because he's on that side of the frame. Here. You can see it full screen. Let's look at it. Flopped. It's always weird to kind of go back and forth between flopped photos because you think, well, this looks unnatural now because it's flopped. But if you had seen this for the first time this way, maybe it is this way. Maybe I'm tricking you. Which way do you think is the original photo? Either way, the theory is that this one isn't as natural for people to look at or dynamic because our eye is automatically going to go to this side first. But this side it does not contain the subject that is most important in this photo. Here we can see both. It's hard. It's hard when you look at both, the same photo flopped like this. To say which one is better. But I encourage you to do something like this. Either flip the photo that you've taken with a subject on one side and show it to people and see which one people prefer. Here's another example of this. This person looks like a sailor soldier who's writing a letter home to the love of his life perhaps, or to a family member. Now we have elements on both sides of the frame, but our main subject is on the left. Again. If we flop it, Which one do you prefer? Here we have this great silhouette. People walking cross this bridge. Lovely lighting, lovely use of editing and darkening those blacks to make sure that it's a pure silhouette. Dog. On the left side, elephant on the left side versus the right side? Left side. Right side. I think the I don't know if I'm in my head now, but I feel like when I look at these two photos, I prefer the one with the subject on the left. This is a great use of this theory, but also leaving space for motion in front of this person walking. Here we have an example of a subject that's completely centered versus if we put them on the left side. So this is a combination of both centering versus using the rule of thirds, but also placing on the left. And here we have that subject on the right side. I'm not sure which one I prefer. I might prefer this one where he's on the right side because what's happening on the left side isn't as distracting as in this photo. Here we have this advertisement up in the right corner. And so that kinda distracts me from our subject compared to this photo. But I do think I prefer the cropped version with this man on the side versus him centered. Alright, so play around with it. Put this theory into practice, and let me know what you think. Do you like when the subjects are on the left side of the frame? Let me know. 23. Solo Color | Pro Photography Tip: My next composition tip is so low color. This is more than just composition. I've included this in composition because I'm thinking of it as a way to choose a framing where there's one color or one similar color palette or killer range within your photo. And it's different than spot color. It's almost the opposite idea that spot color creates a subject that stands out from the background. Here we have this idea that you can create an artistic photo where there's just one color range. Here we see some yellow gummy bears on a yellow background that creates a very specific. But this can also happen naturally. Here we have this bear in an environment where the background is the same color tones as the bear themselves. And it looks to me, this is kind of like a photo for me because you can see the emotion in the buret space and you can see that the bokeh in the background is created and you see these sort of blurred outlines that looks like the bears in an enclosure. So kind of a sad photo. Also the way that they've edited this photo, the muted colors, the muted exposure, very dark. It just gives off a vibe. But in terms of the color itself too, I like that. It's this one color palette. Here's similar. We have this Toyota truck going across this landscape, all in the same color tones. You get a little bit of green in there as well, tiny bit of blue at the very top with the sky. But in general, one color range. Similarly cool colors in this, this horse, amongst the background and the foreground elements, all very similar, no colors that stand out from the rest. Here we have a photo of this fishermen who is wearing a green vest, is standing in front of a green lake, in front of some green trees on a Green Mountain with some foreground elements as well that are green. I have a feeling this photo was edited to be more green. The white balance doesn't seem perfectly white or natural. And some of the colors I'm imagining even in these foreground reads and weeds that are in the foreground, it might have been a little bit more yellow, but they've changed the hue and post to make them a little bit more green. But overall, it creates this nice effect of having this very green palette. Here's a great example of this, where we have this gradient of blues on these hills that are fading into the distance. And opposite of this, we have the golden oranges to the deeper reds of this photo. Sometimes the use of this solo color composition creates a more abstract photo which can resemble a painting or other type of art. And that's something that I think makes them really cool to look at. Here we can see and compare a photo with solo color versus spot color on the left. Oh, cool colors with the white and the blue. On the right you have the warmth of the yellow and the brown contrasting with the blue and the white coolness. Both are really interesting. Photos give off a little bit of a different vibe. The one on the right, I think, is a little bit more bolder and dynamic because you have that spot color on the left. A little bit more balanced and soothing. What do you think? Alright, so look out for those compositions or create the composition is yourself by putting together elements of the same color range. Thank you so much for watching. I hope you've enjoyed the tip so far. We've got lots more coming up for composition. And then we're gonna move into lighting and other things too like storytelling, getting inspiration to go out there. But I just wanted to take a moment to say, thank you so much for watching this course. And I hope that you've truly learn some things that you're going to take out and will help you improve your photography. Cheers. 24. Wait for the Decisive Moment | Pro Photography Tip: Welcome to this next pro tip. And it's waiting for the decisive moment. This is a tip that's not strictly limited to how you frame a subject or a scene, but really waiting for something to happen in your frame, in your scene to truly capture that moment. Here's a great example of this. A bride on her wedding bouquet and the tradition that we have. And the ladies down below trying to catch this bouquet because as we believe that means they're going to get married. This is a perfect moment captured, a perfect example of that decisive moment. You see the expressions on their face of the Bride, of the ladies below, and then also of these kids up here. Just bursting with joy and curiosity. This momentous occasion. This idea of the decisive moment was popularized by henri Cartier Bresson. He was a French photographer who was a master of candid photography and really became a master of street photography as well and popularize just going out and capturing every day life. Here's a quote from him. He says to me, photography is the simultaneous recognition in a fraction of a second of the significance of an event, as well as of a precise organization of forms which give that event it's proper expression. Take a moment to take that in. But I believe this is a great definition of what photography is and should be. Here's another great quote. I couldn't leave just one in this class. We must avoid, however, snapping away, shooting quickly and without thought, overloading ourselves with unnecessary images that clutter our memory and diminish the clarity of the hole. Isn't that a beautiful idea? And this is from a photographer who was shooting with film, not digital cameras, where we can shoot burst mode and literally shoot 102030 frames a second. I can't imagine what you would be thinking now or how he would do his photography now. But I doubt you would be promoting the idea of just snapping away because film or digital film is cheap. Now, I had the fortune of learning photography on film in high school right before digital cameras really became affordable for most people. And well before, smartphones had high-quality cameras on them. And we're in everyone's pocket around the world. And so I understand this idea very well that you have to be careful with how many photographs you can take on a roll of film. You couldn't snap away because it was very expensive to develop that film. You truly had to try to wait, attempt to hate for that decisive moment, to click that shutter button as you go out, especially when you're doing street photography or candid photography, try to pay attention to the moment. This is going to look different than if you are doing still-life photography, landscape photography, architectural photography. With that kind of photography, maybe you're waiting for a moment where the lighting or the Sun is in the perfect position to create great color in the sky. But when you're photographing people and action or wildlife and nature, you're waiting for that moment. Here's a great example of this, where we see this person and she is in the midst of all of these bubbles floating by. The moment captured is perfect. Not only because of the expression on her face, but also because the number of bubbles and the position of the bubbles, this photo wouldn't be the same if one of these bubbles was right interface where her eyes or her mouth was, where you can truly see her expression. Now this might be a photo where burst mode might have helped. And that is one thing about our modern cameras. That can, one would argue, can help us capture that decisive moment. Because we can snap away and we can choose which photo captures that moment better. But I also liked this idea of just attempting to wait, attempting to focus in and wait for that moment. That is magical. Like this photo here where it's another photo of bubbles. But you get this little kid popping this bubble. You see the bubble formed around their arm, not completely broken in the middle of being popped. And I love that this moment was captured. Another example of a decisive moment in nature where we have these waves. Crashing on this lighthouse. Perfectly captured though, because you can see the details of the lighthouse. The top, the doorway at the bottom, the wave, I'm sure after this moment, a fraction of a second after covered the front of that lighthouse covered this peer or the structure that goes out to the lighthouse. So perhaps this was a happy accident, or perhaps this was the photographer sitting there, wave after wave after wave, trying to capture this moment. Here's a great example of how a fraction of a second can change how the moment is seen and how dynamic of photo is. And this was obviously shot in some sort of burst mode because the moment from the left to the right photo doesn't. It's probably just add quarter of a second or less. But this basketball player, the positioning on the left isn't as dynamic. On the right. On the right, they're higher in the sky, they're closer to the rim about to slam this basketball into the basket. And that moment, to me at least, is much more dynamic than the one on the left. I also think that this moment is a little bit better in terms of composition because the background of the blue sky allows us to see our subject better than this one here where the background of the trees competes with the view of our subject. Then here we have a photograph of the same basketball player actor. I'm assuming he scores a basket. And it's a different moment. Is it as decisive? Is it the decisive moment? If they different moment? And I don't know, maybe you have an opinion, but which one do you think is more decisive? I liked that we can see the face of our subject on this right side photo. And maybe if the moment was this one but reverse, or if they were jumping from the opposite side of the basket, same moment, same position, but we could see their face that might make this photo a little bit more dynamic. But overall, I think in terms of a decisive moment, I prefer the one on the left Stowe. Here we have a lion. And two moments. One, just kinda chill in there. One doing a big yawn or a roar. The one on the right, I would say is more of a decisive moment, doesn't make the one on the left a bad photo. I like seeing the line space. Great pose. You get to see the majestic quality of this animal. But on the right you can really see at the moment in time, captured. Here's a photo I took of my sun slamming the stick into the water that I thought represented the decisive moment. Well, because you can see the splash of this water and the rippling water around it. So well, a moment later, a moment earlier, it wouldn't have had as big of a splash. I wish I could see his face, but I would've had been standing on the other side of the lake or something. But I liked this moment. Faces create moments. Here is another great shot of a little kid in bucket with water pouring on their head and their expression, the way the water is pouring. Perfect moment. This is something to pay attention to if you are doing family portraits. A lot of people like getting the candid photos as well. And so being ready to snap a photo as people are posing or even tell people, just don't, don't pose for me. Interact with each other. Try to make each other laugh or smile and be ready to capture those moments as well. Here's another great expression we see on a great decisive moment. Here's a great moment, framed really well. I like all the details around this. I'm assuming a mother and their child. And use of nice sort of solo color as well. There's colors, all kinds of colors in this frame, but all very soft, very white, but a little bit off. Wait. Even the color of the mom's genes, even though they're blue, whether it's edited or just because of the light exposure, it creates a very bright solo color vibe. And even the use of this foreground element on the left-hand side, the photographer could, could have Zoom, then they could have moved forwards that we didn't have this out-of-focus, whatever this is on the left. But I think staying wide and framing them within this whole frame works really well. So the decisive moment is the last composition tip that I have right now for you. It's something that you should pay attention to regardless of the type of photography you're doing, regardless of the other elements too. We're going to talk about lighting. We're talking about editing as well. And when we talk about storytelling, we'll come back to this idea of a decisive moment. But I'm going to leave you here for now with that last composition tip and move on to lighting in the next section. Thank you so much for watching and we will see you soon. 25. Introduction to the Photography Lighting Section: Welcome to this next section of the advance your photography course. In this section, we're going to dive into lighting and how lighting and help improve your photography. As I mentioned early in the course, lighting is something that I believe is almost the easiest way to make a Coke. A photo turned into a great photo at the same location, you just change the time day that you're shooting. And the lighting of the sun can dramatically change how a photo looks. But it's also a little bit harder to comprehend in terms of the different types of life and how to use them. So in this section, I want to dive into why lighting improves your photos. We're going to look at a number of photos to see how different lighting styles and setups change how a photo looks. So that by the end of this section you'll come away knowing a little bit more about why you should pay attention to lighting, more in your photography and how to do so. Lighting is important because it can draw the attention of the viewer to the subject. Our photograph, Here's a perfect example of this, where we have this dog and this line of clothes in a literal spot of light in the middle of this frame. Because the rest of the photograph falls off into darkness. Our attention is on where the light is, what's exposed properly. Oftentimes our eyes are attracted to the brightest spot of a photograph. So some would say that it's generally a good practice to have the subject or whatever is most important in our photo, be the brightest part of our photo. Now this is true when a majority of the photo is dark. But if we are in a situation where everything is bright, everything is exposed properly or overexposed because we're in a setting with lots of sun, the background very bright. That's not always going to be the case. Different types of light can add or subtract color from our scene. It can add vibrance. It can create emotion with our photography lighting. And especially when we get into artificial lighting, can really enhance features of a subject, whether it's a product photography shoot for a photograph of a person. The different way you use light can change and enhance certain features and really draw your attention to the shape of someone's face, their nose, their lips, their cheeks, or their chin. This is what you can do with lighting. So now you know a little bit more about why lighting is important. In the next video, we're going to go over several types of lights. 26. Types of Light: Here are several types of lights to understand. The first is transmitted light. This is light coming directly from a light source. So it could be the sun shining light on us or our subject or our scene. It could be an artificial light, just a light bulb in your house or in a building. Neon lights on Assign. It could be a flash on your camera or off of your camera, or some other type of photography or video lighting that you use to light your subject. Here's a perfect example of artificial light that was used to light this subject. Here we have the sun, a transmitted light shining directly on our subject's face to light her face. And then here we have transmitted light that's actually shining behind our subject. This is going to take us into what the next type of light is. And it's reflective light because the light that's coming from behind her, It's not directly shining on her face. It's bouncing off of everything else in her environment, the sand, the buildings, the rest, the water, and it's reflecting light back onto her face so that is exposed. So reflected light, light that comes from a transmitted light source and bounces off of some sort of bounce. Here, I'm actually using a video light to light myself, but I also have a white sound card on this side that's bouncing more light off of me. Behind me. I have a light that's shining back on the wall. So that's a transmitted light that's shining on the wall, but it's reflective light that's coming back at me. Here we can see an example of how reflective light can still shine on a subject and expose a subject very well. You can see lots of light bouncing from these buildings onto the subject here, walking down the street. In terms of another thing, when we think about types of light, we have hard versus soft light. Hard light is very direct focus light. If you stand outside in the middle of the day and the sun is shining directly on you, you're going to get hard light. And that creates more contrast in the exposure of your image. So from the brights to the shadows, there's going to be more contrast. There's going to be more shadows. And sometimes it can just feel a little harsh and maybe that's what you're going for. But on the other end, you have soft light that can feel a little bit smoother and less harsh. Here we have a photo, harsh light or hard light shining on our face. Another photo where you can see it's trying so hard on a specific part of our face that is creating lots of shadows because there's other things in the way creating these shadows. With softer light, you're not going to get as many harsh shadows. Here is a very direct, focused, hard light on this person's face. Some of this might have been edited so that you see his face and that's little spot on his face even more. Here's another example of hard light coming through these windows. Then we have soft light. You can tell automatically from looking at this picture that the soft light creates fewer shadows. There's light coming from all over the place, likely because this is reflective light. And reflected light is generally going to be softer than a transmitted light. Unless you are like shining a mirror from like a light source directly onto your subject. Here we have another example of soft light coming in through a window. When there's diffusion in front of a light source, it creates a softer light. So this diffusion, one could be for the sun, it could be clouds. If you shoot on a cloudy day, the light is going to be spread out. It disperses that diffusion of the cloud disperses the light. So it's not so direct. If you're shooting inside a building, the windows themselves or drapes and curtains might diffuse that light. Right now I'm using a video light with a filter in front of it so that the light isn't as hard on my face. Here we have nice soft light coming in from one side. We still have shadows. We still have shadows on this side of the cat space. But it's not as hard or harsh as the shadows. And the contrast from light to dark as if there was a bright light source coming from this same side of the bed. So those are some different types of light. In the next lesson, we're going to learn about different ways that we can use light to photograph our subjects. 27. Light Direction: Here are several ways to use light. The first is with direction by changing the direction of how the light is shining on our subject. It can change what the photo it looks like. This can be done easily if you are using something like a flash or a continuous light source to light things like a portrait or a head shot. But it also comes into play when we're photographing out in the sunlight. And the sun is either up high in the sky or if it's down low on the horizon. Here's a series of photos of some dancers shot by the same photographer, which is going to be a good exploration how the direction of light can really change what the photo looks like. This dancers standing on this beach. And it's hard. Light transmitted directly from the sun shine on her face. Notice how bright she is and how much contrast there is in the shadows. There's lots of shadows created by the shape of her face, her leg, on her arm. But everything is generally exposed very well. But it's definitely a style where you're shining light on her face from the Sun. Here's some softer light you can tell diffused by the clouds and the shadows and the contrast in this photo is a lot less. Still a great photo. And that's the point of this lesson is that you can use different types of light to create great photos. You don't always have to use how hard or soft light. So see here you can see that there's still some shadow going on. It looks like the light is coming from the sun's probably on the left side of the frame. But even on the right side of her body, you can see there's lots. There's still shadows, but it's still brighter than say this one where the contrast from the lighter part, the higher exposed part of her leg to the darker exposed. It's much more contrasty. Here's hard artificial lighting. This was shot it looks like with some light coming from both sides. So there's probably a light source on the right. A light source on the left. You're getting exposure on both sides. Which is really cool. Look because it really makes her stand out from the dark background with everything, the edges of her body being exposed well, you see the sharp lines, but you also get these weird shadows in-between along the middle of her leg, her body. But still really great photo. But because you're using hard artificial light, you're getting more contrast these shadows. Here's another photo with very similar lighting, so hard light coming from both sides. Compare this with this photo where we're using softer light coming from one side. This is a different photographer. The light is all coming from the right side of the frame. And you can tell that the left side of her her when we're looking at her, her right-side really falls into the shadows. You can barely see the details of her arms, her fingers. You just see almost a silhouette compared to this photo on the right where you can really see the details of her fingers because there's light coming from both sides. Now on this one, even though it's softer light, we still have a lot of shadow and a lot of contrast. It's darker. Soft light doesn't necessarily mean you're not going to get shadows are underexposed elements in your photo. The photographer decided to expose her this way where she's a little bit underexposed. And it's really the form that you're seeing in this photograph, not necessarily the details of what her face looks like. You still have enough exposure though to see the details of her body. Here we have the direction of the light coming directly from behind this dancer. And when the light source is bright enough and the direction is right where the, all the light is coming from behind a subject. If you expose to that background, meaning that you're not overexposing the background and you're not trying to expose our subject properly, that results in a silhouette. And so this is a great example of how the direction of the light can really change this photo. Now remember this photo, all the light coming from behind compared to the very first photo, we looked at. This one right here where all the light was coming from in front. Much different photo. All has to do with the direction of the light. Here's another series of photographs of some cyclist. This is like street photography out in a variety of cities. But I think it's a great way to look at how even during street photography and candid photography, you can see how lighting changes the photos. In both of these photos. Lots of reflective light that is shining on our subject and that's really what exposing our subject is reflected light. The one on the left. I'm not a huge fan of this photo because our subject is in the shadow and then write on the left side of the frame, it's super bright and all these cars are not overexposed, but because these are one exposure and then the rest of the photo is a different exposure because of the shadow. It, to me doesn't feel very balanced. I wish that this cyclist was in the sunlight. Like if this photo was taken maybe a half hour later and there was more sun on here or earlier depending on the movement of the sun in the cyclist, in the sunlight, I think it would've made for a better photo. Or if this whole photo was in the shade of this building, it would have been better. This photo similarly, I don t think it's a great photo because our cyclists isn't exposed that well. You can still see the details of the bike, the skateboarder or the person riding the bike. But their face is a little bit dark. And the brighter part of this photo is really this spot right here where the sun is shining. Again, if the sun wasn't shining a spotlight right here, maybe the photo would have been better. Or if the cyclist was in the middle of the spotlight, it would have created a more interesting dynamic photo. Well, I say that and that doesn't always work though. Here we have a cyclist with the sun shining directly on his face and it's too bright. The background is all in the shade. And so there's a lot of contrast between the foreground and the background element, which again, I don t think works that well. This is top. All these photos are not bad photos, they're just not great artistic photos. Now let's look at another one where I think that in terms of the light and the composition and the direction of that light, it works really well. Here we have a cyclist that's in the middle of this spot of sunlight. The sun is shining behind this cyclist, creating a cool shadow of the cyclists here. And if this photo was taken a second later, where the cyclist was halfway in the sun and the shade or all the way in the shade, it wouldn't have been a good photo. So the decisive moment was captured here in this photo. I almost wish this person wasn't here because they distract from the main subject of the photo. But it also works because they are in the sunlight and not like halfway in the sun, halfway in the shade. But overall, this photo is the one that I think is the most artistic. It uses the light that they captured in the scene. The best they could compare to the previous photos. And one other thing that comes into play is the light temperature, which is this warm warmth and the warm glow from the sun. Here during, I'm assuming sunset or golden hour at the end of the day, which we'll talk about more in the next lesson. One last example of direction light. I hope you're enjoying this. Here we have two photos, maternity photos to pregnant women. Here on the left, we have natural sunlight shining from behind our subject, which creates a nice glow around the edge of our subject. So this nice rim lighting, you can see her hair at the top, even like around her belly and her legs. You see this glow and it makes her stand out from the background. And that's what backlighting can do. On the right side you see this? I'm not sure if this is artificial lighting or natural lighting. If it was natural light coming in from a window, there's probably some editing done here, but I'm guessing it's artificial lighting with a dark backdrop edited so that the drop is completely black. But I love the way that this photo highlights her, the shape of her while she's pregnant. But you don't get that back. Light glow around the edge of her body like you have with this one with the backlight. Also, another thing is here with the natural light in this setting, there is so much light that you see the rest of the environment, which is not a bad thing, but it's different than the one on the right. I like just talking about positioning. I like the one on the right better. This one is like kind of like an awkward she's playing with their hair kinda before almost like it's before she actually takes a photo. In terms of positioning, I like this one a lot better lighting wise if she was in the same position as this woman. I think both would be really great photos. But because the positioning isn't that great, I'll prefer the one on the right. Here we have light shining from the back. So direct transmitted light shining directly on her face. Now she's facing the other way so we don't see her face. But this great glow around her hair, her dress. And enough light reflected back from the environment to expose her hair. And the details which you like to see as well. On the right is very soft, light. Soft light. Everything is exposed. Relatively at the same exposure. You don't get that glow around her hair because there's no direct transmitted light shining on her from behind. Still though a nice photo. In a lot of times it just comes down to preference of whether you like the hard light. You liked the contrast that it brings in terms of the shadows and the highlights versus a softer, more natural look like this one. And here we have light shining directly from above that creates a very different vibe for this photo. And also creates this nice sort of cone of light around here, which is like a nice sort of vignette around our subject, which truly focuses our attention on the subject of this photo. So that was the first way to use light direction. And since that was a little bit of a long lesson, I'm going to break this up into another video, coming up next, which is about hard versus soft light. 28. Hard vs. Soft Light: Another way to use light is to change the hardness or the softness of that light. And we've seen some examples of this. I've talked about hard versus soft light, so I think you'd get it. But let's look at some more examples. Here we have a photo of very hard light shining on our couple, both from likely a flash coming from where the photographer is and then all of these flashes holding, held up by the guests of them, which create this nice lighting around them. So it's separates them quite a bit from the background. I don t think this photo would work as well in terms of separating our subject, our main subjects from the background. They weren't lighting them because you wouldn't have this flow or this rim lighting around their heads like that. Here we have two examples clearly of hard light versus soft light. Hard light often comes from artificial lighting flashes that are not being bounced. So if you want softer light with a flash, you either turn your flash around. If you have one that rotates and bounce it up towards the ceiling mounted behind you. Or you have to cover it with a filter or some sort of diffusion. Here. It's pretty hard light coming directly from above at an angle. It's creating this shadow behind him, which is because that light is so harsh. Look how dark it is. Completely black behind him versus on the right-hand side, very soft light. It looks like a relatively cloudy day. And they've positioned themselves so that the sun isn't shining directly on their face, but it's backlighting them and all the reflected light is shining more softly on them. So on their faces there's not as many harsh shadows. And even in their shadows it's not as dark or contrast do because it looks like it's a cloudy, sort of diffused light that's shining on them. Here we have the same photographer with two examples of a very softly lit photo versus a harshly hard light lit photo. And I say harsh. Harsh doesn't mean bad. It just is the term I use for hard light shining directly on someone on the subject. Both really, really cool photos, totally different vibes though, and it works right? Soft lighting in nature, very beautiful versus this hard light of this epic posing woman saying what this epic backdrop which looks like it's maybe in nature because there's, It's not like in a studio or anything. This is probably at the wedding. Outside. You see some plants in the background. But because it's with some sort of flash, likely diffused a little bit to get enough light spill on everything. It works really well. Here we have two more from the same photographer, hard backlight, bright flash setup right behind our subjects to create this glow around them. But enough light coming from just in the environment to expose them properly as well. They are not silhouetted by that backlight. Versus on the right-hand side, lots of natural light. This looks at golden hour, maybe even after sunset, where the light is very, very soft compared to when the sun is shining directly on a person. Another photographer with two photos of the same couple. Hard light, soft light. Even though it's the sun that's shining on them, It's softer light because it's at golden hour. And the positioning of them, the light looks like it might be diffused through some plants, through some buildings were a lot of reflective light as well. Here you can just tell there's more shadow. So you'd look at the shadow. I write here this eye socket right here. That's what you get when you have harder light shining on people compared to here. Everything is a little bit more evenly exposed. Again, not that one is better than the other. Just two different styles of photos. We've looked at a lot of people, but hard versus soft light comes into play with all kinds of subjects, especially product photography. Here on the left photo, you can see that it's likely used with artificial lighting. On the right. It looks like more diffuse, softer natural light, maybe coming in through a window. Let's zoom in here. And when you're zoomed in, a little bit hard to see the difference. Some of it might have to do with how the photo is edited. But you can really tell that on the left-hand side there's more contrast in the photo. The shadows are a little bit harsher on the right side of these subjects or food because the light is coming from the left side of frame versus here the light was coming from behind or above. And there's just more soft light being diffused so the shadows aren't as harsh. But in this case, I think with food photography having a little bit more contrast works. And sometimes that can be, like I said, fixed in editing to lose that contrast. But I liked the more directional, harder light on the left side. So hard versus soft light is another thing to pay attention to when you're taking your photos. Hopefully now you have some ideas of how to use hard and soft light. And next we're going to look at the last way we're going to cover which is light temperature. 29. Light Temperature: The last way we can change light for our photography purposes is to change the temperature. This might be review for some of you watching this class, but all light has a temperature. There's a temperature scale, the Kelvin scale, that goes from warmer light all the way to cooler light. If you think of something like a candle or the light coming from a fire that's very warm, reddish oranges light compared to an LED light bulb, a little bit cooler. And then you have daylight, which is actually even cooler than that. When I say cooler, it's actually like bluer light. Then beyond that you have light that comes and is diffused through things like clouds that ends up even being cooler and bluer. So the easiest way to see this dramatic changes when you are standing out at sunset versus the middle of the day. As it says, son gets to the horizon, the light gets warmer. Oftentimes most times, right? And the sky is full of color. Reds, oranges, yellows. Here we have this photo at this beach. It looks like sunrise or sunset. This is our magic hour, golden hour. And oftentimes the time before sunrise and after sunset is when the sky is the most vibrant with color. So don't always just stick around for sunset, but stay afterwards or go before sunrise. Here's another photo of a beach scene, birds flying across the sky with warm light. And another scene very similar with cooler light. Now some of this could be with how the editing was done. Oftentimes, photographers will bring out certain colors or enhancer and in colors for their photography. But in terms of the temperature of the light, much different photos here. And it would be a much different photo to if this was the light source for a portrait or for our family photography shoot that you were doing, warm versus cool. I can also add motion to your photography. Here we have this photo with this gray cool light from the clouds. Artistic photo of this lady in the water. And what vibe does it give off? Is this like a happy photo? Now, right? This is like a serious melodramatic photo. And part of it is because it's cool light. Here we have warm light coming from late afternoon shining on this family, which enhances the feeling and the emotions we get from this photo because of their smiles and because of the scene. So if this photo was shot in the same location with their smiling faces, It's still would be a happy photo. But the combination of the warm light, the subjects, the smiles on their face, it all creates a more emotional photo that works. Here. We have very cool light coming in to someone bedroom crying. And that cool light just add to that emotion so much. Here we have warm light. Previously, we've seen photos that were using natural light, but here we're using artificial light. So here the photographer photograph this subjects smiling, a very warm light, which works very well. They also took a photo of her looking at the camera like this in a more serious pose. And I honestly don't think there's lighting works that well. For this photo. I did a little bit of editing and I tried to make that light cooler to see how it would look. So here on the right-hand side you see some cool light. So if this was like very, very blue light coming in, and I think the emotion of the photo on the right matches the light more than the one on the left. Sometimes taking away color can also add emotion. So here I've taken all the colors, desaturated everything in a black and white photo can add a lot of emotion, more serious emotion than that warm, happy, glowing light that we saw here. So these two photos, I think, work well in terms of the colors in the story the photo is telling compared to this photo right here. So pay attention to light temperature. It can truly change what your photo is saying. 30. Natural Lighting Tips: Here are some quick tips to improve your natural lighting. First is sun placement in time. Pay attention to where the sun is. I've said this a million times in my courses and I mentioned at the start of this class, the easiest way to take a better photo is to change the time of day. If you're out taking landscape photos and they're kinda math, and you're shooting them at noon. Well, get up at sunrise or sunset and go out and take the same exact photo and see how it transforms your photo. If you are taking portraits of people, make sure you're doing it at a time later in the day with more golden magic, our lighting compared to the harsh sunlight during the middle of the day, Be very careful if you have a lot of light shining right on your subject's face. If you are shooting during the middle of the day in the sun, I highly recommend using that sun as backlight and being in a location where there's enough reflected light so that your subject's face is exposed without the background or the back of them being completely overexposed. That harsh light directly on your face. Kind of look. I'm not a huge fan of it. It can work. We saw some examples earlier where it work creatively. But generally, I would stay away from that type of lighting if you are wanting naturally soft lighting go out on a cloudy day. Here's a great example of this product shot of this car, where the light position, the clouds and the white of the snow reflects the light creates very soft lighting where everything is very well exposed. If you are stuck in the middle of the day with harsh light, bringing a reflector or look for reflected light. So you can bring those round reflect photography reflectors. It's like a big white balance card or it will have a silver or gold side. And you can position that so that it bounces light onto your subject. So if the light is so harsh and you have your subject facing you with the light, bouncing, the light shining directly on the back of them. Use a balanced card in front of them to bounce some more light on them so that they are exposed better. Or move to a location where the light is bouncing off of a building or something else, rather than standing right in the middle of that harsh light, or alternatively, move into the shade. Pay attention to what's in the background though, if you are moving subjects into the shade, which this off, what happens when I'm shooting more than one person or just out in the middle of the day doing head shots or portraits. It's very bright out. I move the person into the shade so there's not harsh light. But then in the background it's completely overexposed or splotchy with overexposed bits and shadow here and there. Try to get into a place where there's even exposure for both your subject and the background. That's going to create a better looking photo. We're gonna go through a couple of series of photos to show how this all comes into play. So first with time of day and the position of the sun. Here are some photos of some giraffes. One where the sun is in the middle of the day. Overall exposure for these drafts, definitely a natural looking photo. But if we want something a little bit more artistic, let's wait till the sun is a little bit lower. You have that warm sun, that warm light from golden hour. The sun creates a nice silhouette of our giraffes. But if we wait even longer, sometimes the sky can even look more magnificent with this gradient from the purples and reds all the way up to the blues at the top. All three are great photos. And the position of the sun and the temperature of that light dramatically changes what these photos look like. Here's an example that I shot up in the top-left in Big Sur of this waterfall in this cove, really iconic location in Big Sur. But I was there in the middle of the day. The one on the right, bottom right is shot. At the end of the day, sunset, warmer, golden vibes going on. Both are interesting photos, both have their uses, but I prefer the one and the bottom right. I wish I was there at sunset. Here we have some pagodas here. Bright in the face sunlight of this building. So when I'm talking about shining light on the face of a subject, maybe it's a building or an object and not a person. So here this is almost too bright. The light, the building itself is overexposed. This probably could be fixed and post-production as well. But the sun was so high, so bright, everything's so exposed. It's almost kinda just like Matt has everything so exposed brightly. Compare that to this photo where because the sun is a little bit lower, we're a little bit lower, exposed. It creates more contrast with the rest of the environment. And our pagoda building stands out more because the rest a little bit darker. And then what's brighter stands out for us. Here's another one, and here we have the sun going down, but enough exposure to see the details of this building. But we also get some bright li lit building in the foreground, which kinda distract from what I would say that the main subject here were cropped in with light a little bit lower. This might even be after sunset. Beautiful building, beautiful sky. And here we have another view where it's probably on a different day, maybe edited to look this way. Two more silhouette the building. So you're really focused on just the shape of the building, but in terms of the lighting of the sky. So, so beautiful. All great photos. I would prefer the two on the right in terms of lighting. And this is the thing when you're going on Instagram are looking at photos. The one on the right is the one that stands out. I'm sure this is the one that's going to get more light likes and the one on the left. And it's simply because it was shot at a different time of day with more interesting, beautiful light. It's also an example of simplifying. And part of that's done with editing. They've cleaned up the frame. There's not as many foreground elements. The sky doesn't have the clouds which sometimes add to a photo, but also in this case, it detracts from our subject versus on the right hand side, very simple. The silhouette simplifies things. You just have some birds flying around, which adds another element to the story of this photo. And the cleaning up of this frame works really well. And then back just another comparison of these two photos. The one on the left, just too bright, overexposed. Overall, the exposures to bright compared to the one on the right. So those are things to think about when you are out photographing with natural light. I hope they help and I hope to see you improving your photography with these tips. 31. Artificial Lighting Tips: We talked about natural lighting. Now let's go over some tips for artificial lighting. This is really going to be focused on portrait photography and product photography because that's when you're most likely going to be using things like flash, flashes or continuous lighting. For your photography. Single slash portraiture is great. It's simple. You only need one flash and you can still get great photos with it. Here we have this subject with one foot, one light source coming from in front of their face, evenly lit on both sides. Now if you move that flash around and you put it to the side, to an angle up above, you can get a really different type of portrait. So when you're out photographing with a flash, do that, put it around different places, shine it from an angle directly in front of the subject and see how that changes the way your subject looks and also the emotions you get with more contrast with that light coming from one side of the face. If you want more even lighting on both sides of your subject, you can add a reflector or a second light. Here we can see an example where there's a lot of light coming in from this left side of his face, the right side of the frame, softer light coming in, it's very evenly lit. And then there's another light or a reflector coming in filling in this side of his face. It's a little bit harsher, you can tell because there's this line of the shadow that's being created from this light source, but more even lighting. And you get a nice highlight on his hair right here coming from that light source, which you wouldn't get, it would kinda fallen the darkness without a second light. Generally, I don't suggest putting the light right in front of a person's face like this. You can get some weird shadows like this. So you generally want to put it onto the side, but then you get more contrast, more shadows on the other side of the face. So that's why you bring in a reflector or a second light. Here's a couple of other examples where there's likely multiple light sources creating even lighting. Here they use two different light sources creatively. One very warm, one very cool. Two lights. Maybe this has done an editing, but definitely two lights coming from either side of the face out of backlight to separate your subject from the background. Here you can see an example of this person here is a backlight, so there's one light source coming from the right side of the frame. And then the backlight really highlights the edge of his face and his hair. And that rim lighting really separates them from the backdrop. Also start to think creatively about how you can use lights or bokeh of lights or bouquet, which is the way that the light looks when it's out-of-focus. Here they've creatively use some lights in the foreground that are lighting his face, but also add this foreground element framing our subject. This weird sort of reflection going on right here too. Here's another example where this lady is holding lights. Very creative to light her up with some nice bokeh in the background. Another one here you can really see the bokeh in the background. She's also holding some lights. If you want an in-depth video of how you get the different shapes of bokeh. I have a video on my YouTube channel. So go over to the Phil Webinar channel, search for Boca. And you'll see a great video on how light changes and how different lenses change, what bokeh looks like, get creative with it. So this kinda ties everything together. Be on the lookout for how light plays in your scene. This is what we are doing as photographer. We're capturing light. Here's a great example of this person posing here, which it's creative because she's not right in the light, It's hard light, but it's creating these interesting shadows that make this an interesting photo. Using a candle or a lighter to light up his face in this frame with the backlight, creating a nice silhouette of him, but also lighting up his face so we can see his face is very nice. For architecture, for photography, pay attention to shadows. Shadows aren't necessarily bad. They create interesting shapes that you can capture with your photography. And it's really brought out when you do edit in black and white. And just some more creative uses of light here in this very interesting structure. Similar to the one we saw before with the light strand, the bokeh in the background. Here they've used light creatively, both from the cars lights, but also inside the car. So we can see our subjects. Pay attention to your surroundings, see how light creates an interesting scene. Without these headlights shining through this umbrella, it wouldn't be an interesting, as interesting of a photo. A great example of how lights change, what a photo looks like. And of course, look up to the sky. Light comes from all around us. So that was hopefully a semi brief overview of the way that light plays a role in our photography. Pay attention to it. It's something that can dramatically change your photography if you have questions or want something to be discussed further, let me know. Otherwise, I will see you in the next section on storytelling. 32. Introduction to the Storytelling Section: Welcome to this next section of our advanced your photography course, all about story and how storytelling can improve your photography. This is the element of photography that truly takes a mediocre photographer to a great one. While composition and lighting are things you have more control of no matter where you are. Photographing. Storytelling is an element that is somewhat of a secret sauce. It's an element that you need to work to have control of. And sometimes you just don't have control over. As the famous quote goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. In a good picture doesn't need any words to explain what's going on. Photography is storytelling. It can be entertainment. It can be for cultural preservation, it can be for moral value promotion. Here's a photo of a woman working on something to do during the World War II. Why does story even matter? Well, photography stops time. It makes people think, react, feel. That's important. Here we have a photo titled Christmas dinner. This was shot during the Great Depression. Here's a photo that I shot at my sister's wedding. I wasn't the photographer for the wedding, but I did bring my camera and I thought this moment was the perfect way to capture the vibe and the feeling of this wedding. We have my sister, her husband, the entire first family members of our families in this photo, except for me maybe in the reflection you can see me. And we were in this great room at this location in Ireland where they got married. And I just really loved this moment. Maybe it's a story that you don't know. But sometimes photography is a very personal journey and it captures the stories we want to keep. Storytelling can be journalistic, documentary style photography, or it can be creative, narrative, abstract, or it can be a combination. So story is important. Let's look at some ways that people can improve the story of your photography. We're going to look at how objects improve the story of your photos. And hopefully you'll come away from this entire section with ideas to improve your photography by telling better stories. 33. Storytelling with People: People can and will improve your photos story most of the time. Why is this? Well, people are just inherently interesting to look at. Here are five generations in this family. And this photo obviously wouldn't be interesting if it was just of the room without the people in there. The more people in this photo makes it more interesting. Here's a photo shot in the South when there was segregation and a, as its term, colored admission, where black people had to come in to the back of the theater. Now this is an interesting story, but this is actually not the original photo. Here's the original photo. Having this person walking up the steps adds so much to this photo. In completely changes the feeling of the photo. People are inherently interesting. Look at beautiful people, beautiful faces. Even a portrait with no context can tell a story. People are the character of your art. Here we have a woman casting her vote. And to me, the look on her face, it almost looks like maybe it's the first time she's voting. Maybe it's a moment where she feels very confident in her vote. She is a character that we care for. In this photo. People are interesting. Look at. As photographers, we need to try to be confident I am an introvert myself, and I struggle with getting people to be the models of my photograph. But if you want to be a good photographer, it will help if you can force yourself to get people to be in your photos. Of course this is not necessary. Some people like wildlife photography, some people like landscape, some people like architecture. But in terms of storytelling, the people is where it's at. People create emotion. And the more emotion you can cause a person to react to your photo, the better experience they'll have with that photo, the more powerful the photo will be. Here's a photo captured of my beautiful family. This was on a road trip, visiting my sister up in San Francisco. This was on the way back. And what do you think that emotions are? Tired, sick. Yeah. We were we were sick. We got some sort of stomach bug and my kids were not feeling good, and my wife got it as well. Photos are worth a thousand words. And the people in our photos tell us those stories without any words. Can't you just feel the emotion of this photo? Here's a great example of how the amount of people can create emotion. Here is a photo from the March on Washington during the civil rights movement. It's a lot different of an emotion from this photo. Same location, but completely different story and completely different emotion in connection and power of a photo. As you've seen, people changed the story of a photo. Simple architectural photo, or the story of a couple sitting on their porch enjoying their coffee in the morning. A staircase, abstract, creative, great composition. Here we have a different story of a person feeling lonely, going up this gigantic staircase. Here, another giant staircase with a different story. The start of a journey for this young child. Different stories created by people in our photo, telling stories with our photography thoughts, what we're doing when we add people to our photos. Simple map or and adventure. With two people trying to figure out their way. A beautiful lake or an adventure that you're on. So people add a lot to our photography. They help us tell stories, but it's not limited to people. Let's look at how objects can enhance and tell our stories as well. Coming up in the next video. 34. Storytelling with Objects: Let's look at storytelling with objects. The placement and juxtaposition of objects can truly tell an interesting story. Here we have sand bags from the time of recording this, the war in Ukraine. These sand bags that are covering this entrance to a building. The placement of the sand bags here tells a completely different story than if these sand bags around the banks of a river. Here we have a juxtaposition of the interior of the building. But you can tell that the objects broken through the ceiling on the floor tell the story of war. Here we have a bike and a car. Juxtapose placed next to each other. Is the photographer just capturing an interesting moment? Are they trying to tell a story? Like all art? It's up for you to decipher all of these warheads in the middle. These woman checking on them. Very interesting composition. Great diagonal lines, great rule of thirds, placement of our subjects, great patterns, objects, and also have symbolism to them. Here we have these locks that in many parts of the world, this is the tradition you do with the love of your life. You put a lock on a fence around a location where there's these other locks. And this lock is completely different. There's no real symbolism to this lock. Although maybe it just gives off the vibe of separation very different than this lock. And the symbolism that it has. Something that I love with photography is capturing the details of an object. So here we have a series of photos. This barista making some cappuccino. And the detail of the artwork really showcases the quality of barista. Here we have another photo with lots of detail. Again, seeing that quality and that looks really delicious right now, I want to go get coffee. Here's just like a photo. Again, storytelling can sometimes be just truly personal. This is a photo that I captured in my grandparents home. You can see the different signs. Happy Birthday assign, welcome home site, grandpa sign. You see this hat here? To an outsider. This wouldn't mean anything to me. What this means is, this is the hat my grandpa wore all the time. Whenever you went out. This is the sign that was made for one of his birthday's. This was the sign made when he came home from the hospital. And this is the entryway to his home with the objects that tell the story of his life. Here is the drawers that are in the hallway of their home with stickers placed by my dad and his brothers. This is the band that my dad was in when he was younger. And these stickers never came off. They stayed there as relics of an old time. And it reminds me of my childhood because at my parents house there is still a door with all kinds of stickers on them. I look back and I appreciate that my parents let me do that because now I have little kids and I'm like, don't color on the wall. Here we have ice skates that tell a story or an old pair of ice skates with snow in them. They've lived a long life. And I wonder what stories they have to tell of kids decades ago riding around a frozen lake with them. So look around and see how objects can tell stories in your photos. Try to be conscious of the object. Does it have a story? Does it add to the story? Does it take away from your story? Is it a distraction from the other elements of your story and your photo? These are all things that you can do to improve your photography. 35. Improve Your Stories with Color, Photo Series, Decisive Moment: Here are a few more storytelling tips to keep in mind versus how can colors tell your story. We already saw last in the last section about how light temperature can give off a different emotion. And that's important for storytelling. Here we have this cool light of a rainy day, the street lights at night shining in through this window with the cool light of a computer screen. Here we have some darkly lit, darkly edited flowers versus the brightly lit flowers on the right-hand side. Sad, happy. Here we have two hands. One, cool light, dark, dramatic, desaturated versus on the right-hand side, warm light. The one on the left, me says saved me. That's the story. The one on the right says, I'm here to help you or look at this beautiful scene that I'm in. Taking away color as we've seen before, can also improve a photo. Here we have this photo that is in black and white and our eye is drawn to our subject in the middle of this frame. But this actually isn't the original photo. I took it upon myself to edit this photo because I felt like this photo. While interesting, it was a little bit too busy with all of the colors. And the main subject of our photo, which is this lady in the middle, wasn't as easy to see or wasn't as prominent in our photo as she is when we have it in black and white and a vignette around this photo. While you're editing photos, sometimes taking away colors draws our eye and our attention to the most important part of our scene. Other times the colors add vibrance and we want to see what those colors are. Maybe it shows off a different time of year or different time of day that helps tell that story better. Our next tip is to capture a series of photos, which is really important for storytelling. Here we have the story of someone who is putting coals into a fire, who's starting a fire. But we don't know what this person is doing. And so we needed the next photos in the series to truly be able to understand. And so here we have a series of photos that tell a full story of baking bread. Now that first photo makes more sense. And of course wait for that decisive moment. This is important with lighting, with composition, but also with storytelling. The decisive moment, someone winning arrays. Here's a happy accident where I was studying abroad in Germany. And Sam, one of my good friends and co-instructors for many of my classes was tossing the snowball at me. And the happy accident was that the flash of my little point and shoot camera reflected light off this snowball to make it this magical Electric ball of snow. And this is a memory that I hold dear to my heart. One of the last days we were there, but a magic decisive moment captured. Alright, so those are just a few other tips to help you with storytelling. I hope that now you will pay attention to the storytelling elements of your photos, both with people and objects. And hopefully this will help you take better photos than ever before. 36. Feeling Stuck? Getting Inspiration as a Photographer: Do you ever feel stuck as a photographer? You either just don't want to take out your camera or the photos you're getting aren't as good as you want them to be. Everyone needs a little bit of inspiration some time. And here are some tips for getting inspiration to go out there and take better photos. Like I just said, it's important to understand that everyone goes through this. Even the greatest artists, Everyone is uninspired, get stuck and feels like they're not good enough. Don't get discouraged by others photography, it's easy to get stuck scrolling through the streams a beautiful photo, photos and to feel like one, What's the point? Everyone else's great. Why do I need or should I even try to be a good photographer? Or just to feel like I'm never going to be good enough. So sometimes it's good to just stay away from that entirely. Other times you can consciously use it as energy and a reason to get out there and try to capture photos like XYZ photographer. A couple of things you can do is to change the scenery. I know, and I've mentioned this before that in my hometown where I grew up and where I currently live. I am not inspired anymore to go out and take care my camera with me. Sometimes I tried to force myself, but I feel like I've honestly photograph the buildings, the location that people hear, enough that I struggled to find things that are new and creative. And so sometimes it takes just changing the scenery, even if it's just going down to the city, five-minutes away to a village that's around the corner that you haven't been. Do that and see if it can inspire some new photography. It's easy to get discouraged. It's funny. I have a group of photographers in a private community called Photography and friends plus. And we mentor them. And we have photographers who live all around the world, in Australia, in Europe, in Asia and the United States. Everyone in the United States is like, wow, I wish I could live in Europe and just have all this majestic locations and buildings and people to be photographing. And then the people that live in Europe or like I wish I lived in the United States. There's so many great landscapes and I wish I could go photograph that. So the grass is always greener on the other side. So it's important to realize that sometimes there's green grass right outside your front door or 510 minutes down the road. So get out there if you need to change the scenery, That's a totally legitimate feeling to have. And I truly believe that doing a little change can help you improve your photography. Another thing is to get outside of your comfort zone. And what I mean by this is if you are used to taking pictures of buildings and wildlife and flowers. But you're a little hesitant to be doing street photography of people, or even just doing portraits and head shots. Force yourself to get into those situations. And hopefully you have a friend or a family member who you could practice with and ask them, Hey, I need to practice my head shots, my portraits. And hopefully there's someone there for you that will be willing to spend some time for you to practice with the build up your confidence. So you can start doing that with other people or be out on the street more. We live in a society nowadays to where in most places. Now take this with a grain of salt because every location, but in most places, people are used to people taking photos around, around them, on the streets, candid street photography. And so try to not be scared of taking photos of street scenes. And I know from my personal experience, I still get a little bit worried, nervous about taking photos of other people on the street. But as we've learned those photos with people on them can be the most impactful, best photos in terms of storytelling. And so force yourself to try something new and get out of your comfort zone. One way you can do all of this is by joining a photography challenge. There's different ones out there. Sometimes there's photo groups in your local area. Other times there's online photo contests. I have a weekly series of photo challenges that you can join over at photography and, where you get weekly prompts with a different type of photography. It could be a style of photography, landscape photography or portrait. It could be a style of composition like negative space or framing within a frame. Or it can just be a theme like warmth or friendship or sad. And it challenged you something new each week to capture that type of photo. And it's been a great way for our students to practice their photography more and more. This was just a little bit of a break in this class because I think that it's one thing to learn the technical skills to take better photos. But there's also this mental game of forcing yourself to get out there and practice your photography, which at the end of the day is what it takes to actually improve yourself as a photographer. So hopefully these tips help you with getting a little bit more inspiration. And in the next section we'll go back to some more practical tips with how editing can improve your photography. 37. Improve Your Photography with Editing: How can editing improve your photography? This is not a section teaching you how to edit photos. I want to be clear on that. I have lots of other courses on how to edit photos in a variety of applications if you're interested. This is simply a section on how to use editing to improve your photos and then how you actually do that technically with the sliders and stuff that can be learned in another course. Here we have a photo of a simple flower in this location. It's a really great photo. Edited with sort of a flat black matte look. Here's another edited photo of the same flower, same location. But a completely different photo. Editing improves our photos because it focuses our attention to a specific part of the photo. It can remove distraction, and it can also give style to a photo. Style can be anything from the way you edit contrast if you'd like more contrasty photos or less contrasty photos. If you like a certain color tone. If you all your photos are cooler or warmer, have some sort of gradient of color added to them. Here as simple crop can really improve how we see our subjects and how this photo is. The one on the left shows us a little bit more of our environment, which is nice, but being able to see our subjects a little bit clearer, I think is more important for this photo. So I think just a simple cropping in can help us, which is done with editing. Here I've removed a distraction of this photo of my sisters puppy maple. I've removed that leash, which was done simply with Lightroom. Removing that leash, and it just creates a more balanced photo without that distraction. Here we give a little bit of style with this photo. This was the photo are originally posted. I took the liberty to crop it a little bit tighter. Add a little bit more color to those flowers. Original, edit, warmed it up quite a bit, added some vibrance to the blues and the greens to make those colors pop. Because I felt like a photo of a lady carrying flowers needed to have a little bit more vibrance to it. Sometimes, as we've seen, taking away color through editing can add emotion to a photo. I like the softness and the color tones and palate on the left photo. But on the right, taking away the colors, add some emotion. And that's just something that black and white photography does. It has this nostalgic feeling to it of the past, which creates this sort of intense enhanced emotion for our photos. And sometimes editing is simply used to make a photo look better. And what does look better mean? It depends on the photograph. Here's an example of a photo I shot in Big Sur. A long exposure, a great original, raw photo. But the edited version pops. The stars are a little bit brighter, the colors are more vibrant. The exposure of the mountains allows us to see more details before, after removing little errors and mistakes and things that are distracting like this lens flare up here, all of that done with editing. Here's the unedited and the edited version of this photo we saw earlier in this class of this Big Bird on this rock in the middle of the lake. I've enhanced the colors, added a little bit of warmth and glow, especially to this left side to make it look like the sun is shining harder on this bird because it was already back lighting this bird. But adding this little overexposed gradient over here, it makes it look like a sun ray. Added some contrast cropped in. You can see the bird a little bit better and the colors just give it more style. And lastly, editing can help tell the story of a photo. Here's a very creative example of this. This is a day tonight edit of a series of photos that I shot in Avila Beach, California. So I took a series of photos in the same location over the course of a day, from sunrise to sunset. And I've stitched them together from left to right so that you can see the sunrise, the morning, midday, afternoon, sunset, nighttime on the right, telling a story of dislocation through editing. This was a very brief section. The point is that be conscious of how editing can improve your photos and then use the tool of your preference to do it. Thank you so much for watching, and we'll see you in the next video. 38. Improve Your Photography with Equipment & Tools: Let's briefly talk about equipment and tools. And can cameras, lenses, and other photography tools improve your photography? I'm a fan of saying that you can take great photos with any camera in a truly believe this. But there are times when certain technology can improve a photo or the type you can capture. Sometimes it's just impossible to get x type of photo with the camera or the tools, the lens you have. So some examples of this are when you want to do things like daytime long exposures, macro photography, wildlife photography, low-light photography, or super shallow depth of field searching tools might be necessary for daytime long exposures. You're going to need an ND filter and neutral density filter to cut down light entering your camera. For macro photography, you'll need a specific lens or type of lens where you can get extremely close to your subject but still focus on them. For wildlife photography, you'll need zoom lenses are highly telephoto lenses that can get you close to wildlife. That's not going to stick around if you get close to it. And a camera that can focus fast, and also perhaps shoot burst mode, which most modern cameras can. For low-light photography, you'll need lenses that open up to a wide aperture. If you don't want to use artificial lighting or you will need a camera that has a sensor that is good enough to be able to capture low-light scenes without a lot of digital noise. For shallow depth of field photography, you'll obviously need lens that can open up to a wide aperture or a user telephoto lens to get that compressed background and very shallow depth of field. Here's some examples of these types of photography, like a macro shot, you just wouldn't be able to capture this with a wide angle lens or a non macro lens. This is perhaps what you could capture with a general lens. Still a great shot, but not macro like this. You're not gonna be able to see the details with that lens. Here we have a scene where it's a beautiful location. Something that can make this photo even more creative as a long exposure. During the daytime though, you can't do this with pretty much any camera without an ND filter. Here we have this long exposure of the same location shot during the day. Here's another version of it, shot at a different time of day where the lighting was different. Both are great photos, but the one on the right to me is a little bit more artistic and you need a tool to do this. We have some more examples of daytime long exposures, which is how you capture moving water, moving clouds like this during the day. This wildlife photo likely could not have been shot with a non telephoto lens. Same with this one here. Here's an example of an interior shot with artificial lighting. And if you're doing weddings or events like this, you will need a camera and lenses that can expose a properly without a lot of digital noise. If you're gonna do this professionally. Here's an example of a photo with a very shallow depth of field. This is a very common practice technique of getting a photo like this, where with the baby or with hands being held or whatever it is that the couple is holding or a person is holding, but they in the background are out-of-focus. This is done with a very wide open aperture, very low f-stop, and not all lenses can do this. So it is true that sometimes technology and tools are necessary to take a certain type of photo, and sometimes those photos are better looking or more creative or more artistic. It doesn't mean that you can't take great photos with whatever camera you have. And just mean that there are certain styles of photos that you won't be able to capture. So hopefully this gives you a sense of what equipment you might need to invest in if you want to achieve a certain style photography. Thanks so much for watching, and we'll see you in the next video. 39. Thank You & Conclusiuon: Wow, Can you believe it's the end of this photography course? I feel like that by now you should come away from this class knowing many, many practical ways to improve your photos. And I hope you feel the same. I just wanted to say thank you for being here with me. This is a class that I've been wanting to put together for a long time. As I mentioned at the very beginning, we have courses that teach people the basics of how to use a camera, how to expose, how to compose, how to edit all of those things. But in terms of helping people really take their photos from a to B, from being okay, too great and knowing what makes a great photo, I truly hope that this was achieved for you with this class. If there's anything in this class that you were hoping for that I didn't cover, that. I glossed over too quickly and you want more in-depth lessons on, please let me know. This is a class I really want to continue to update and make better. So that is the perfect class for you as a photographer, looking to advance or photography. If you're interested in other classes, you can always check out my profile on whatever platform you're watching this course on. Because I have dozens of other courses on photography, video design, business and marketing, and lots more topics. Thank you so much for watching. Most importantly though, go out, take photos, improve your photography, and let me know if there's anything that was in this class that helped you improve your photos, send it here in the class, tag me on social media, wherever. I would love to hear it. Have a beautiful day and we'll see you next time. Bye.