I have had the great good fortune to work with a number of people at the top of…their fields, and whether they were writers or musicians or photographers, they…all have one thing in common-- a profound ability to focus.…There's no way around it: if you want to get really good at something, you have to practice a lot.…And you've got to practice in a very focused way.…And the easiest way to lose focus is to start thinking about yourself rather…than the task at hand.…Let me tell you what I mean.…I am sure you've experienced this, because I know I have.…You are out shooting and maybe it's not going so great.…You're not like anything that you're shooting.…
You don't feel like you're seeing anything, or you feel like you're only shooting…the same things you already shot before, and so you started thinking, maybe I…am not really a good photographer.…Maybe I just got lucky before. Maybe it's all been the auto mode on my camera…or just events were inspiring to make me look good.…At that point, you've lost focus.…
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.
- 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
Skill Level Intermediate
Photography Foundations: Black and Whitewith Ben Long3h 3m Intermediate
1. Understanding Composition
What is composition?2m 1s
3. Composition Fundamentals
4. Geometry: Lines and Shapes
5. Shooting Best Practices
6. Balance Revisited
8. Workshop: Finding Light
10. Guiding the Viewer
11. Workshop: Foreground and Background
13. Post Production
14. Workshop Exhibition and Wrap-Up
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