Start learning with our library of video tutorials taught by experts. Get started

Foundations of Photography: Composition
Watching:

Exploring a town


From:

Foundations of Photography: Composition

with Ben Long
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 12m 4s
    1. Welcome
      1m 47s
    2. Using this course
      7m 27s
    3. What you need to know
      2m 50s
  2. 2m 47s
    1. What is composition?
      2m 1s
    2. All form, all the time
      46s
  3. 12m 34s
    1. How your camera is not like your eye
      2m 52s
    2. Looking vs. seeing
      2m 25s
    3. Vision and attention
      2m 13s
    4. Dynamic range
      1m 59s
    5. Seeing exercises
      3m 5s
  4. 36m 48s
    1. What all good compositions have
      1m 8s
    2. Subject and background
      3m 5s
    3. Balance
      7m 20s
    4. Point of view
      3m 22s
    5. Simplicity
      2m 59s
    6. Finding and capturing a good photo
      2m 11s
    7. Working the shot: Why one is never enough
      6m 41s
    8. Practicing
      3m 24s
    9. Why black and white?
      2m 21s
    10. Exercise: Practicing the fundamentals with points
      4m 17s
  5. 41m 48s
    1. Lines
      7m 7s
    2. Analyzing lines
      6m 35s
    3. Exploring a town
      4m 7s
    4. The Franklin Hotel
      2m 7s
    5. Shapes
      10m 13s
    6. Repetition: Arranging the elements
      1m 37s
    7. Rule of threes
      1m 36s
    8. Perspective
      1m 47s
    9. Symmetry
      1m 10s
    10. Focal length, camera position, and depth
      2m 27s
    11. Intersections
      1m 41s
    12. Exercise: Practicing fundamentals with geometry
      1m 21s
  6. 10m 38s
    1. Working a shot, revisited
      3m 21s
    2. Understanding the photographic impulse
      2m 58s
    3. Warming up
      2m 16s
    4. Exercise: Get your feet moving
      2m 3s
  7. 35m 7s
    1. Thirds: How rectangular frames are weighted
      2m 20s
    2. Tonal balance
      3m 52s
    3. Content balance
      1m 20s
    4. Squares: Weighting the corners
      2m 24s
    5. Composing people
      3m 42s
    6. Composing landscapes
      3m 53s
    7. Sometimes you can't get the shot
      1m 12s
    8. Practicing thirds with points and geometry
      1m 45s
    9. Practicing squares with points and geometry
      1m 12s
    10. Image analysis: The work of Steve Simon
      13m 27s
  8. 19m 6s
    1. It's the light
      1m 50s
    2. Direction of light
      8m 30s
    3. Texture
      2m 7s
    4. Shadows and negative space
      1m 19s
    5. Exposure concerns
      2m 44s
    6. Keeping one eye on post
      58s
    7. Light as subject
      1m 38s
  9. 18m 59s
    1. Introducing the workshop location and instructors
      1m 2s
    2. Assignment: Finding light
      5m 17s
    3. Shooting the light
      3m 14s
    4. Critiquing the light assignment
      9m 26s
  10. 22m 11s
    1. The basics of color
      1m 4s
    2. When to shoot color
      3m 56s
    3. How to shoot color
      2m 47s
    4. Practicing color composition
      1m 4s
    5. Image analysis: The work of Paul Taggart
      13m 20s
  11. 16m 48s
    1. Entry and exit
      5m 41s
    2. Framing
      2m 17s
    3. Examining the composition of this set
      2m 28s
    4. Narrative
      1m 55s
    5. When the scene doesn't fit in the frame
      3m 13s
    6. Guiding the viewer's eye
      1m 14s
  12. 13m 36s
    1. Assignment: Foreground and background
      3m 4s
    2. Shooting foreground and background relationships
      2m 19s
    3. Critiquing the foreground and background assignment
      8m 13s
  13. 34m 24s
    1. Planes
      5m 13s
    2. Controlling depth
      4m 54s
    3. Juxtaposition
      2m 58s
    4. Fear
      4m 3s
    5. Layers
      55s
    6. Image analysis: The work of Connie Imboden
      16m 21s
  14. 41m 21s
    1. Recomposing an image with the Crop tool
      7m 23s
    2. Resizing an image
      8m 9s
    3. Tone
      8m 54s
    4. Altering the perspective in Photoshop
      4m 38s
    5. Changing composition through retouching
      6m 16s
    6. Vignetting to drive attention
      6m 1s
  15. 10m 22s
    1. Workshop wrap-up and exhibition
      3m 13s
    2. Workshop students' final thoughts
      7m 9s
  16. 1m 0s
    1. Final thoughts
      1m 0s

Video: Exploring a town

Behind me and all around me is the town of Mangum, Oklahoma. It's a little town about ten miles from the Quartz Mountain State Park Lodge where we have been staying. It's a little farming town that, to be honest, has seen better economic times. There used to be two railroads running through town so they could ship out lots of cotton and cattle and things, but that industry moved away, leaving a lot of abandoned buildings and kind of run- down spaces and crunchy textures and just generally great photographic opportunities. It's also a town of some of the nicest people you'll ever meet, and you're going to see us shooting a lot in this town and around the region. And you're going to see us having access to a lot of spaces.

Watch this entire course now—plus get access to every course in the library. Each course includes high-quality videos taught by expert instructors.

Become a member
Please wait...
Foundations of Photography: Composition
5h 29m Intermediate Dec 22, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Composition can make an interesting subject bland or make an ordinary subject appear beautiful. In this course, photographer and author Ben Long explores the concepts of composition, from basics such as the rule of thirds to more advanced topics such as the way the eye travels through a photo.

The course addresses how the camera differs from the eye and introduces composition fundamentals, such as balance and point of view. Ben also examines the importance of geometry, light, and color in composition, and looks at how composition can be improved with a variety of post-production techniques. Interspersed throughout the course are workshop sessions that capture the creative energy of a group of photography students; shooting assignments and exercises; and analyses of the work of photographers Paul Taggart and Connie Imboden.

Topics include:
  • Looking versus seeing
  • Understanding when and why to use black and white
  • Analyzing lines
  • Arranging the elements into lines and shapes
  • Working with perspective and symmetry
  • Changing focal length, camera position, and depth
  • Dividing rectangular frames into thirds
  • Weighting the corners in square pictures
  • Composing photographs of people
  • Composing landscape photos
  • Working with light: direction, texture, and negative space
  • How to shoot color
  • Guiding the viewer’s eye
  • Controlling depth
  • Improving composition in post-production
Subjects:
Photography Photography Foundations
Software:
Photoshop
Author:
Ben Long

Exploring a town

Behind me and all around me is the town of Mangum, Oklahoma. It's a little town about ten miles from the Quartz Mountain State Park Lodge where we have been staying. It's a little farming town that, to be honest, has seen better economic times. There used to be two railroads running through town so they could ship out lots of cotton and cattle and things, but that industry moved away, leaving a lot of abandoned buildings and kind of run- down spaces and crunchy textures and just generally great photographic opportunities. It's also a town of some of the nicest people you'll ever meet, and you're going to see us shooting a lot in this town and around the region. And you're going to see us having access to a lot of spaces.

There are two ways you can shoot a town like this. You can just come in and get out your car and start shooting, or you can do what the professional photographer does. When you see pictures in National Geographic or a News magazine or on the front page in The New York Times of some amazing space and some town or some faraway place, very often the photographer has gotten that picture not just because of their photographic skill, but because they've gone into that area and spent a lot of time--days, possibly even weeks-- getting to know the people, establishing rapport, building trust. That's what we've done here.

Now we haven't had to spend that much time because the people in Mangum are so friendly and because I had been spending a lot of time bringing students here over the year, but still we have a level of access that you wouldn't get if you necessarily just stepped out your car. So if you do want to shoot in a place like this, you don't want to come into town and just grab your camera and immediately start shooting. You'll get some stuff. But if you really want to go deep, you want to leave your camera in your car or in your bag or in your hotel room and spend some time just walking around, getting to know people, trying to get a feel for the town, starting to talk to people. You can look for certain resources.

For example, a town like this may have a small newspaper, like Mangum does. Go talk to the guy of the newspaper office. He can probably tell you who the really interesting people are in town. Or go to the local diner or the local restaurant, things like that. Right here on the town square there's something called the Mangum Welcome Center. They're very welcoming and they'll tell you all sorts of things. By working with these people, we've gotten to hear about interesting places, we have had the opportunity to be put in contact with the people who can get us into those places, and it's gotten us a much deeper level of access. None of that had anything to do with our camera. That had to do with telling people what we're up to, letting them know that we were interested in their story.

Now the fact that we've gotten access to this place isn't just because small towns in America are often very friendly. I have found in shooting in South Africa, Central America, Turkey, Russia, all over the place, that when you come into small towns like this and you express interest, genuine interest in the people, they'll open up to you. It's nice to have attention paid to you that way, and they like that feeling. They'll let you into their houses, they'll tell you their stories, and eventually they'll let you take your camera out and start taking pictures. When that happens, it's often nice to be able to give something back to them, so I would offer two pieces of advice in that regard.

If you ask someone if you can take their picture or come into their house or come into their building to take a picture, don't go, ooh, I'm really imposing, okay, I am just going to--I am going to work quickly and take the best, you know, take the best picture I can and get out. No, take your time. Take the best picture that you can. They're giving you their time; make the best use of it that you can with your skill level. Also, try to give them something back. Tell them--ask them if they have an email address or a mailing address. If you post your images to a Flickr page or to a blog, give them that address and tell them, hey, these pictures might end up on this web page, go look for them. Or send them prints later, email them photos, try to give them something back.

You may find that you will then establish a relationship with them over the long term and get to know them even better, and that you can come back to that place and get even deeper access. So you're going to see us shooting inside an old abandoned hotel, an old power station, a lot of places around the region. The way we've gotten those pictures is by establishing rapport and trust and getting access to those places. If you're shy, that can be a difficult thing to do, but I'm afraid you've simply got to do it anyway. You've got to get over that and trust that people will talk to you and that you can get back kind of access.

That's what you're going to be seeing through the rest of this course, and that's how we've done it.

There are currently no FAQs about Foundations of Photography: Composition.

Share a link to this course
Please wait... Please wait...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.
Upgrade now


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Upgrade now

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Foundations of Photography: Composition.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Welcome to the redesigned course page.

We’ve moved some things around, and now you can



Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked