Mobile Photography: Capturing Friends and New Perspectives | Brenton Clarke Little | Skillshare

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Mobile Photography: Capturing Friends and New Perspectives

teacher avatar Brenton Clarke Little, Photographer/Designer Represented by Tinker Mobile

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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.



    • 2.

      Project: Photograph a Friend


    • 3.

      Shooting in the Argenta District


    • 4.

      Editing with VSCO Cam


    • 5.

      Shooting on Petit Jean Mountain


    • 6.

      Explore Photo Classes on Skillshare


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About This Class

Photographer Brenton Clarke Little (brenton_clarkeis known for capturing nature and portraits with mystery, symmetry, and a soft glow. In this short 15-minute class, travel with Brenton around his hometown of Little Rock, Arkansas as he shares how to make the most of any sky and situation. Follow along as he uses fog and smoke to trap light, illuminates a subject against a sunset, and shares his favorite post-production edits. By the end, you’ll have tactics and inspiration for capturing an incredible image anytime you’re on an adventure with a friend.

Meet Your Teacher

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Brenton Clarke Little

Photographer/Designer Represented by Tinker Mobile


Brenton’s expressive work runs the gamut from crisp, bold graphics to dreamy nature photography and a keen eye for finding beauty in the mundane.  An experienced musician playing drums as a live studio music production.


When he’s not creating, he’s out exploring. A desire for beauty and a love for balance, color and adventure. His work evokes a freshness that transcends any medium. Whether it's design, music, photography or his family, Brenton's passion shines through whatever he does. 

Art Director for 1517 and 1517 Publishing, formerly Sr. Art Director for Advantage Solutions, Design and art Direction for ONYX Coffee Labs, Senior Design... See full profile

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1. Introduction: I'm Brendan Little, graphic designer by day, started getting into photography a little bit. Primarily through Instagram and I got into realizing that if I took a lot of my own photography, I didn't have to pay people for stock photos. I was always looking for that certain photo, I couldn't get it, so I just go take it myself. Since then, I mean, Instagram has been quite a ride. It became this thing where I just would like go out to take shots not realizing that we're you're like crafting our skill and getting better with what you're doing, but just really just having fun with it. It's turn it into where I can actually make a career sort of or an ongoing freelance project thing. I've had some really incredible opportunities in the last year, especially sponsored campaigns with some brands like Mercedes and Ford. Most people come to my feed expecting landscape shots. From doing what I do for the last two years it's like what I lean towards as far as what I'm comfortable with, but I'm really trying to get out of that a little bit and push myself to do a little bit more. Sometimes I've gotten to where I just really want to capture what's just right around me and sometimes it's like we're out looking for this amazing moment or something so hard that we missed little things just right here. So today, the first location that we went to was some abandoned buildings and historic part of town. Always like bring a few friends with me just to have subjects if they're not doing anything just an excuse to it, explore and have fun. Sometimes this place can be too dark because it's all based on natural light, the time and day that it is like there some really nice little pockets of light coming through the windows and today's actually perfect because there's a little bit dusk, here we are. So, yeah I was worried this morning we're not going to get any light, but it turned out really nice, so surprised but the storm kind of roll through. Looks like we got some really good stuff going here. Don't be limited to trying to find something amazing necessarily, but just wherever shoot you're working on, whether it just be for fun or for a wedding or for work or for just yourself, whatever it is just take advantage of everything that's like right around you. Just find the beauty and everything right there. There's always great places to find, you just have to look for him. 2. Project: Photograph a Friend: The project for this class is to photograph one friend against an unusual or interesting backdrop in your neighborhood, outdoor or indoor, in nature or in a city. By making yourself choose an unusual or interesting backdrop in your neighborhood, you're going to train your eye to take advantage of what's around you. Here are three things you should remember. A backdrop doesn't have to be perfect. If you decide to pick a wall, some roster peeling is okay. Imperfections will give your photo more character by telling a story. When you're setting up a shot, look for straight lines, like a row of trees or the edge of a wall to create some parallel lines. Lining up objects makes things look clean. Lastly, chase the light. There are a lot of tips on light in the class and in the class resources, so check those out. Once you have your photos, I want you to share three photos in the class project gallery. That way, other students and I can give feedback on them. The biggest mistake you can make is to not do the project. This class is all about going out on your own. Wherever you live, not to find something amazing necessarily, but to take advantage of everything right around you. I can't wait to see your shots. 3. Shooting in the Argenta District: Today, we're going to be exploring around a few different areas, indoor and outdoor, mainly trying to find interesting places to shoot with the best available light that we can find. So, I brought a few friends with me just to have as models and subjects in these locations. Also, it makes it a lot more fun. I'm going to get Taylor, just walking, just stride by, right? Yes. All right, let me get lined up here. Sometimes there's really nice walls that kind of speak for themselves. If it's really busy like if it's some kind of mural or designed and you can get creative with what's in there but if it's just a blank wall with a lot of nice color in it, for some reason, I just like to catch on kind of like walking by as if they weren't posed. Playing around with obviously the lines, lining up certain things for me, that's just kind of my style. I used the green door that's there as kind of the emphasis of what's interesting in the shot and balancing that with the person. So obviously, the window and the door are competing for attention. So, I can wait for the person to be over here to balance out the different colors of the door and that wall. Okay, let's see. I'm feeling a portrait here. There you go, look up there again. I like the look up there. I'm going to take a square one because I don't know how much you're going to have here. Yes, go line up those lines. Kills me if I don't. Beautiful. Maybe one over her too. Yes, I like that better. Just look at me this time. Here you go. That's a nice shirt. Thank you, sir. I think the color grabbed me at first and then I realized that there was some nice shrubbery around it that might create a little bit of interesting aesthetic. So yes, the lock, it's pretty simple. I mean, I think everybody probably knows by now. Lock it, that's pretty common feature that are pretty accessible feature for the iOS but you can't separate the two, in certain apps you can. You can get exposures lock in iFocus point lock. In this case, that wall, I would just want to get that color in there. When I got closer to it, the color that I wanted was correct there but when I didn't have it locked, it was either overexposing it or just changing that right there, it changes it to like a purple almost. So, I didn't like that color. I like the actual color of the wall and so I just locked it here, and then got closer. I was hoping that when the subject was there that it would still be in focus and not since if you're focusing further away, sometimes it may be blurry on that person if it's focusing on the background. So we're in this abandoned building in the historic Argenta district. I found this a few months back. I started seeing people take some photos in here. I was like, "Wow, that's a really nice spot." Great lighting, there's always this really nice, natural lighting in here. It's great for portraits and stuff. I've done a few shoots in here, but there's some really nice little pockets of light come in through the windows and like this area right here. So, today is actually perfect because it's kind of overcast. You have a white one? I mean, I assumed that's the purple ones around. Okay. I think they're actually purple. Just throw it in the middle. It adds like a depth to it and you can see where the light's coming from. If the light hits it just right, almost like you can see these beams coming in because the light's already there. It's just like if there's particles in the air for the light to catch, kind of like with fog breaking through trees and things like that. It makes the rays like the natural rays and make them even more intense. There we go, right there. It already looks sweet. I mean, like kind of fades into nothing. So, there's this really cool element to it and then you just add a little bit of some haze or fog in here and this gets even more interesting. Let's head over to the next building. There's another really nice wall in there as well. The problem with, I don't know if it's a problem but just like people come to my feed expecting like epic nature landscape kind of shots. Sometimes, I've gotten to where I just really want to capture what's just right around me and not like having to go out to find something awesome. I just want to try to find little nuggets or little things right around me, and sometimes it's like we're out looking for this amazing moment or something so hard that we miss little things just right here. I'm just trying to get better about that. I really liked this room, the color, the lighting, it's just a really interesting room but there's a toilet. Where can I shoot in here? I think I want Matthew again. I'm going to lock my exposure here but that's going to make you out of focus, isn't it? Do we have anything to stand on? Perfect. This is what I wanted. Throw more shadows on my face. Yes, there you go. Perfect Portrait. One, two, three. Hard to beat that. Is it? It's hard. Let's see. Yes, like that. This is probably the weirdest shot I've ever taken and that's why I love it. It's very artistic. It's not me, not typical me at all but I love it. When they said there's nothing new under the sun, right? So, I feel like everything's been done in a way, planted shadows, shadows play, one of the more common ones I see where they like split a face or split like a body, I just want to distill limb, a couple of limbs in there. See this, this is a shot. Backup a little bit, more in the doorway. Kick that piece of wood out of the way, maybe. Yes, there and I'm not going to get your head and it. Why? Because I'm just not. When the head is not there, it leaves more to the imagination, right? There's a lot of good lines and color, pink in there, the blue, yellow, a lot of rhythm. If you can get it to just come up from the bottom and then I want you to look how I look down too or look like, not as down as I did, but just like more like right here. I mean, I can hold it. Okay, hold it. All right. Kind of wish that was a white one but it's okay. Look towards them a little bit. There you go. I mean, look at him. I mean, come on, that's just. It's just, look how it appeared. Dude, I love that in the blue. You do? I love it. Okay. 4. Editing with VSCO Cam: I did a recent shoot with a musician friend and I had a nice Canon 5D with a really nice artists series sigma wins on it and then I was just snapping shots with an iPhone in between and his management actually, without knowing, chose 90 percent of the iPhone shots. So, I just want to say that it's not all about the gear. It's about the shot and setting up and composition and stuff like that is more important. Lighting and composition obviously are much more important. This is visual supply. When you have a good photo and then you put a preset on there like specially this is a portrait preset, it's just hard to beat that. It looks like film or something to me. It's not like overdone either. You can reorder the presets however you want but I've got them set up to the ones I use the most right here just up in the front. Every photo is definitely different. I go through phases where I really tried to edit like a batch or a series of photos if I'm on on a particular trip or project. I try to edit them similarly so they kind of have the same feel, and they're concise together. But yes, every photo's definitely different. Not only how you took the photo, the lighting, and stuff like that. But just like whatever color the room is or around. If we're not in a room, if we're outside, it's even more unpredictable. So, I try to edit similar and keep them similar. But you can't. I went through a phase one time where I was like I'm going to use the same preset on every photo so that my feed looks cohesive, but it doesn't work that way. It just doesn't. So, like even this, I tend to lean towards the G Series. I don't know why I love the G Series. Yes, obviously, they have all these tools, exposure tool. That's the best one I've seen in any of the other photo editing apps as far as not overdoing it. That's about all I ever really do, honestly. Slap a filter on or pre-setting on or whatever, it's just like it almost feels good. I don't know what it's like, and that's hard to explain but I always feel like, yes, it feels good. I don't know if any other photographers or designers out there understand what I'm saying, I'm sure you do. But once again, the G series is winning here. Don't really need to do much to that one. Yes, I mean even in five, the M series are really nice. Just a warmth. Sometimes, what I'll do is I'll cool it down or cool the warm filters or presets down. Then I may find another one. If I use something crazy like P5, which I do sometimes, it just alters the color a lot. It's almost like a vintage kind of, I think, the P is for polaroid or something. I'll warm that one up. Go warm up a cool and I'll cool down a warm sometimes. But other than that, I mean, that's pretty much my process. 5. Shooting on Petit Jean Mountain: So, when we first got to the top of the mountain, we are hoping to get there in time for sunset, which we did. It wasn't quite time for the light to be at the level that we wanted it on the horizon. The clouds were, I mean they're really nice actually. It was really interesting. Everything looked like it was an HDR art with no processing whatsoever. It's just like everything was really saturated in contrast and really sharp. The sun kept going behind the clouds quite a bit, so it was really unpredictable. Moving around on the rocks a little bit to try to find out where it hit the subject the best. Somebody jump. Just let me know when. So, while we were waiting on the Sun to set a little bit more, we just decided to explore around the area a little bit and do some really nice caves that we found and the lighting is really nice. It's more like what we saw earlier with indoor lighting to where it was not as harsh and not direct. It's more of just diffuse through the trees and through the caves. You can usually get some pretty nice the light leaks coming down through these cracks and stuff, but even if you don't, using the caves themselves is like framing around the person. We can do more a portrait style or you can get a little further away a wider shot like that and see how big the caves really are. It's pretty neat when that happens in nature. You don't have to do a lot. So yeah, I was worried this morning we weren't going to get any light. Surprised, but this storm kind of roll through and looks like we got some really good stuff going here. The sky's really nice. Turned out way better than I thought it was going to. It looks like a movie scene or something. Okay, that is with, and then without. Okay. I'll show you what I did with that reflector there. So, that's without and then same shot with. Just throws a lot more light back on me and we still have the definition of the sky and backdrop, it's really nice. All the light that's behind him creating that rim light is getting thrown back on his face, so you don't lose the subject. So, what you can take away with this is maybe try going out on your own and wherever you live, don't be limited to trying to find something amazing necessarily, but just whatever you're working on, whether it just be for fun or for a wedding, or for work, or for just yourself, for your portfolio, or whatever it is, just take advantage of everything that's right around you. Just find the beauty and everything right there. It doesn't have to be, like I said, some amazing landscape or even some big city or metropolis. It can be just wherever you are. There's always great places to find, you just have to look for them. 6. Explore Photo Classes on Skillshare: [MUSIC]