If you want to learn more about photography, check this out!

Just finished the most difficult but also the most rewarding course I’ve taken in a long time: Photography foundations: composition.

Regarding the why – I really enjoy photography, but I have no formal training. I see something I like, and I take a picture with my little point-and-shoot. I’m not interested in lenses and apertures and f-stops and all that. So for a long time I looked for a course that would focus on content, not on technique. This course is it!

Regarding the how – it is a self-learning course available from the LinkedIn platform. You have to pay for a subscription, but then you have access to many hundreds of online courses.

Here are the learning objectives:

  • 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

Here’s the contents of this course:

  • Understanding composition
  • Seeing
  • Composition fundamentals
  • Geometry
  • Shooting best practices
  • Balance revisited
  • Light
  • Workshop: finding light
  • Color
  • Guiding the viewer
  • Workshop: foreground and background
  • Layers
  • Post-production
  • Workshop: exhibition

It’s a rather long course (5 hours and 29 minutes) – I spread it out over several weeks because there is literally too much material to digest. I’d study a chapter and learn something, then spend a few days thinking about it and trying things out with my camera.

Final thought: these are one of those courses that I’ll probably come back to again and again – and that’s a nice feature about LinkedIn, after you take a course it is still available and you can go back and watch the videos as often as you like!