Learning the secrets of taking WOW photographs with Gary Friedman Photography Workshop

Do you come home with a camera full of images that look okay on the display or device screen only to find out a bare 10% make the cut?

Gary Friedman of the Friedman Archives High-impact Photography Seminars is coming to Gibsons for the June 29/30 weekend for a 2-day course that will take every beginning – or frustrated – photographer and walk through the steps that made the images of the ‘original kodachrome photographers’ possible, regardless of modern technology advances like do-everything-for-you cameras and endless retouching/editing programs (Photoshop CS6 is my post-shoot drug of choice).

Gary Friedman's

Gary is a well-established Photographic Professional, with a stock photography business, The Friedman Archives, where images covering a wide variety of locations and subjects can be licensed for use on and offline. He has written a number of Ebooks of best practices for specific cameras, and around topics like color calibration, high dynamic range (HDR) imaging, photographing sports in low light… just to name a few. He is also the Associate Editor of the magazine Cameracraft, a brand-agnostic publication revisiting the habits and techniques of great photographers new and old.

Oh, and he once was a rocket scientist for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where he patented the image authentication system for high-end digital cameras from Canon and Nikon… and was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records for building the world’s smallest telephone in 1980, before cell phones or even cordless phones were available.

True or False? The more expansive the camera, the better the pictures are.
FALSE. Whatever camera you have is the camera you want. You can get the pictures you want from that camera, without Photoshop.

Back to the two-day workshop…

There’s no denying cameras of today are fantastically, epically easier to use for better baseline quality, right out of the box, than the cameras I grew up using in journalism school. But what IS different is skill level and the understanding of the basics of photography that needs to be present before the camera is pointed at the subject to achieve optimal results.

A lot of us just point and shoot and live with the results. That’s no longer good enough for me, and I’ve signed up and would love to have some other Coasties come for a great couple of days.

Photography Workshop Day One

The seminar is spread over two days. Day one is “The Creative Class” for humans. It covers

  • What the Kodachrome shooters knew about high-impact images (hint: they never needed Photoshop!)
  • The compositional secrets of the National Geographic photographers
  • How to “see” light like the Hollywood Cinematographers do, and make the most of available  light
  • Compositional rules derived from the world of art
  • The difference between snapshots and photographs (and why both are important)
  • How to add drama to your images with wireless flash (with live demonstrations)
  • The secrets to outstanding travel photography
  • Making the most of available light
  • In-class exercises for creativity and composition
  • How your exposure meter thinks (or “Why can’t the camera just make it look the way I see it?”)
  • Color balance and Human Perception
  • The “inner game” mindsets used by all the photographic masters
  • The noise about noise
  • A practical “zen” approach to compelling images without having to get bogged down in technical stuff

Photography Workshop Day Two

Day two is “The Technical Stuff”:

  •  The four variables of exposure, explained intuitively.
  • The three types of metering, and which ones are actually useful.
  • The RAW vs. JPG dilemma explained without religious ferver
  • How to avoid horrific .jpg compression artifacts
  • The surprising tradeoffs between P, A, S, and M modes.
  • Balancing ambient light with flash
  • What’s a Histogram, and why you should care
  • The important problem of print vs. screen resolution
  • The only eight Post-processing functions I use
  • How to cut through haze
  • How to clean dirty windows
  • Saving Lenin with Curves
  • Make Stuff Go Away
  • Recommended Unsharp Mask values
  • Expanding Dynamic Range using RAW.

What I really like is I can bring my own camera and work through accomplishing what I need to without getting caught in endless menu loops on the back, and practice changing settings for common types of photos I tend to take, such as wildlife, people in public places, product photography, and sports/activities.

I love the idea that I can choose a GOAL for a photo or series of photos, and then work with my camera and settings to capture those specific images, instead of what I currently do – shoot copious 4 frames a second images and try to do through volume what can be done through purposeful setup.

So whether you capture images for work, for pleasure, for family, or for social sharing, this seminar will help you take your photography to the next level, which in my case is less ARGGHHHHHS.

There are a number of testimonials on Gary’s site for the workshops, and you can also register for the June 29 & 30 Gibsons course as well.

Gary Friedman’s High-Impact Photography Seminar
JUNE 29 & 30

930 Chamberlin Road, West Howe Sound
9:00am – 5:30 pm

COST: $125 per day, per person.

Author: Laurie McConnell

Geek-loving, tie-dyed creative time artisan and general rabble rouser. Passionate conduit of Sunshine Coast stories, myths and fables. Founder of Bigpacific Creative Web Design & Digital Strategy (formerly Bad Dog Design) with 17 years of continuous operation.

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