Photo Zero (PDF)
Photo Zero is a photography course condensed into a handbook that is easily accessible on your phone, tablet, and desktop. It encourages active participation, calling on the full involvement of the person taking the course.
The objective of Photo Zero is to enhance creativity by exploring the various qualities of light while strengthening our imagination. Photo Zero helps us to see differently, erratically, intuitively, and imaginatively.
Photo Zero focuses on the observation of light; bridging photography, imagination, and evolution.
The eye looking through the viewfinder plays a bigger role in creating a photograph than the camera itself.
Photography is the art of documenting our observation of reality (light). It is an expression largely dependent on perspective and emotional responses to the world around us.
So while it is important that we understand the basic functions of the camera, composition, and lighting, it is even more important to examine the eye behind the camera.
Emotional range, curiosity, and imagination play a huge roll in our photographic style and how we document light. The main goal of Photo Zero is to spark our curiosity, expand emotional range, and boost imagination while further examining technical mechanisms within the world of photography.
No one can teach us how to see, so the next best step is to use curiosity as a tool in expanding our understanding of self and the world.
These are some of the topics discussed in the PDF (in no order):
Boosting imagination, conceptualizing, meditation through photography, directing and posing a model, forming a connection with your subject, making an income as an artist, pointers to look out for while shooting portraiture, portfolio building and contacting brands/agencies, how to utilize textures, how to implement a designer’s eye to photograph light and shadow, creating cross-references that help us create work that is not “obvious”, the etiquette of shooting nude (and how), a resource page of links to interesting subjects that have played a roll in my style, dealing with self-doubt, comparison, benefits of shooting on film, and visual examples from myself and a few others.
There are also video tutorials (see bottom of the page)
162 Pages. 344 images
Designed by: Berger & Föhr
WHO IS IT FOR
Photo Zero is for the ones who feel ‘stuck’ in a creative pattern or style and wish to change directions. Who have a hard time conceptualizing and bringing their ideas to life.
Who feel the need to perform, give to, or please their audience and those around them. Who feel repetitiveness in their work.
Those who don’t know how to create an income through photography. That wish to turn photography into a business that can support them and nurture a more creative lifestyle.
For those who don’t know how to direct or connect with a model. Who wish to photograph nudity, but are unsure how to approach it. Or those who wish to add more sophistication to the way they work with light.
For those who wish to take simple but provoking portraits.
Who wish to see eye-catching potential in any context or situation; to turn any setting into a shooting location.
For those who want to master natural light in all of its stages and seasonal changes.
For the hobbyists wanting to expand and create interesting and more dynamic photographs.
For those who wish to take images worthy of being in museums, books, and magazines.
For those who compare themselves. Who are at times anxious or impatient.
Who live a busy life and feel the urge to slow down.
Photo Zero is for those who feel like they’re not tapping into their potential.
Also, check out this entry that goes over the role of emotional states in photography.
Basic knowledge of the operations of a camera of any sort.
Open-mindedness, patience, and dedication.
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Chapter 0 - Breath
Chapter Zero breaks down the ways in which photography as a craft and in practice can be made into a meditative experience. Photography is a tool, a way to slow things down. In these pages, we talk about the roles of intuition, patience, and curiosity.
Chapter 1 - Basics
Chapter One is a brief overview; covering the basics of the camera, various lenses, film types, metering, shooting with natural light, and digital vs. film photography. There are several videos and articles on the internet that teach the basics of using a camera. This chapter goes over key points and provides links to trusted sources.
Chapter 2 - Design
Chapter two helps us view light through new relationships. It demonstrates how to implement design principles while observing and framing subjects. We observe light through geometry, patterns, detail, and composition.
Chapter 3 - Synergy
Chapter three is about making associations between points of interest in a non-obvious way; seeing beyond the surface. This chapter helps us with out of the box thinking and conceptualizing.
Chapter 4 - Texture
In Chapter four we further our understanding of light through its relationship with textures. We study and explore the use of shadow and nudity through paintings.
Chapter 5 - Portraiture
Chapter five dissects the key elements of creating portraiture, along with how to form a connection with our subject. This chapter also outlines grounding practices and the release of tension to help with forming true connections.
Chapter 7 - Business
In Chapter Seven, the final chapter, we explore marketing, building a strong portfolio, contacting agencies, working with models, gathering an audience, actualizing our style, and discovering outlets for our work beyond digital platforms.
Assignments & Commissions
Every chapter ends with assignments, commissions, or both. These practices are based on real-world scenarios. They require your participation to solidify the information discussed in the chapter.
Four workflow videos (stream only - access whenever)
- Using Photoshop to color-correct film scans and digital photos - 15 minutes
- Retouching skin in Photoshop - 23 minutes
- Using InDesign to create quick layouts - 31 minutes
- An additional skin-retouching video (without commentary) - 21 minutes
- How I meter and adjust the lighting on the iPhone camera to get deep shadows and rich colors - 8 minutes