Category: Photography Workshops

2019 New Orleans Photography Workshop Schedule with a dose of REAL...

December 17, 2018

Ding. Ding. Dong. Tis the season to start thinking about your goals for next year. I am not talking about New Year’s Resolutions about eating better or exercising more. I want to talk about your photography goals for 2019. Are you ready for some REAL TALK? Then read on…

if you are ready you can just CLICK HERE – 2019 Photography Workshops

Do you want to learn to photograph better?

Do you want to learn how to see like the camera and react to the world around you with lightning precision of creativity, balance, and insight? Learning to be a better photographer takes time, practice, and a sincere dedication in your life to WANT to see your world in a different way. If this sounds like you, then keep reading.

I have been actively teaching photographers for over 16 years and that time has given me so many tools to help YOU be a better photographer. I am not here to teach you tips or tricks. I am not here to teach you what you can learn online. I am here to look you in the eye and find out what it is that makes your photography mind tick, tick, tick and learn! My courses are geared to turning your view of the world from a curious observer to a participating director, filled with apertures and focal lengths options for EVERY situation.

Do you want to learn how to photography portraits? Do you want to learn how to photograph second lines, live music, even Mardi Gras? You have come to the right place. Go ahead…make your resolution…

2018 Digital Camera Buying Guide For Beginners and The Upgrader

February 16, 2018

Trust me, Your new digital camera just wants to be held…

Did I come on too strong there? Or not strong enough? There are so many websites out there you can consult to help you with your next digital camera purchase but I am glad you found this one. In the big scheme of the things it’s not about how high the ISO will go, how many frames per second your drive can exceed. It’s all about ARE YOU GOING TO PICK THIS CAMERA UP AND USE IT!?? Have you ever thought about doing a Google search on “what’s the best camera for big hands” or “what camera menu is easiest to understand for beginners?”. If not, I think that’s where you need to start…but first keep reading.

 I have been teaching photography to beginners and professionals since the D.O.D. (Dawn of Digital) in 2002 and I have seen all sizes, shapes, sensors, and shutters. My approach to finding the right digital camera is simple – which camera will you use? It’s just that simple. Each year digital camera technology makes amazing advancements in low ISO noise, low light shooting, sensor size, and autofocus while keeping the barrier to entry manageable.

Your High ISO full frame don’t mean JACK if you have no desire to hold me….

So that’s your camera talking, not me. I’m taken, by Canon, Hasselblad, and Cambo. Buy you still have a chance, a fighting chance. There’s so many digital cameras out there that claim to be the best, but if you have no desire to pick up the camera and use it, the bells and whistles fall on deaf ears. Many types of photography can be done really well on a standard DSLR camera, but it is up to you what you purchase and there’s alot out there. Keep in mind, the best camera you have is the one in your hand..or in this case – the one you can afford. Great photography is not about wether you have a cropped sensor or full frame. Great photography is not about Canon vs Nikon. Finding out what those tools are can be daunting, but hopefully I can help with my over 15 years experience in photographic education. I like to make hard concepts simple, so let’s give it try. 

If you are interested in taking the next step in purchasing a digital camera, please contact me to setup a FREE consultation before you spend all that money? You can go to my CONTACT page to setup your call.

If you are near New Orleans, Louisiana and you are wanting to learn how to use your digital camera, you can join my upcoming Learn Digital Photography in New Orleans which has two sessions beginning in March and then again in November. You can read more about this photography workshop and sign up HERE

How Do You Choose Which Digital Camera Brand to Buy?

I don’t think I would ever consider myself a “gearhead”. You know, the kind of person who fauns and obsesses over the new tech or new gadget that hits the market or even the type of photographer who likes to amass a ton of lenses. I do have to say, I like the fact now that I have all the lenses I need to feed my artistic vision and complete any client requests. But one recent purchase I made brought me to another level; when I went from a cropped sensor to full frame.

Just the increase in sensor size while using the same Canon L-series lenses showed me a whole new possibility when recording more pixels in a variety of lighting situations. My low light photography just looked better, my portrait’s eyes rendered more detail and the skin tones…wow, the skin tones! My full frame sensor was able to record more information, thus allowing me better sharpness, contrast, and broaden my artistic expression.

Now I know that most folks are not at the level where they feel they need to make a jump from cropped sensor to full frame. Some photographers are still wondering if they need to make the upgrade from their smartphone or a point and shoot digital. Either way, I find that when your resulting images no longer match up with your creative impulses maybe it’s time to broaden your camera horizons and consider an upgrade.

When you decide to upgrade your photographic life, or find yourself at this creative chasm, you will likely find that you will need to purchase a new camera. Because we are living in such a wonderful technologically advanced era, you are probably going to want to go with a Digital SLR or Mirrorless camera. The barrier to entry into high resolution cameras that function well in any situation is low and ripe for the picking and waiting on you!

Best Tips for Buying A New Digital Camera or Upgrading your current model

1. The camera must feel good in your hands or you won’t use it!

Consider the weight, size, and if you are going to add on lenses or flashes later…these thing add up! I always suggest going by you local camera store, Best Buy or Wal-Mart to hold the latest models and see how they feel. If you are passionate about buying local then you have the tools at your disposal. 

2. The price must fit your budget and not break your bank

Always consider you will by an extra lens one day, or even a new larger capacity memory card to hold more images. All of these prices are online and easily researched.

3. Compare the relevant technical specifications that are important to you! 

Always compare: resolution, optical zoom magnification (NOT digital zoom! – NOT a factor), battery life, built in flash vs hot shoe, and what lens comes in the package. Does it have built in WiFi? I love having WiFi built in as it lets me send images directly from my camera to my phone to my social media posts!

4. Is Video Important?

Most semi-pro and professional digital cameras have a video option but all are not created equal. Think about if you want to shoot your own high quality (sometimes 4K resolution) video as well as high quality still photographs, and go from there. More on which camera to buy if you lean towards video later.


After teaching hundreds of new digital photographers there are only a few features that allow you to be creative, and so many features that are just bells and whistles meant to increase you desire to buy. When we start shooting RAW we immediately negate most of the features marketed in so many of the new digital cameras. What are left with is understanding aperture, shutterspeed, ISO, focus, framing, and composition. If the camera feels good, fits in your budget, 

This isn’t anything against analog cameras, I still shoot plenty with my Hasselblad and 4×5, but the latest greatest digital cameras allow you as the photographer so much resolution, focus, lens options and the ability to bring your creativity to the next level. As a commercial photographer that focuses on lifestyle and corporate branding, I need the instant image to create on the go and turn around the job on very tight deadlines. Just know, there is so much out there, but you still need to know what to look for when purchasing a camera. In this article, I hope to show you some of the best tips for buying a digital camera.

To begin, here are some of the things you need to look for and consider when buying a digital SLR camera:

Why is Digital Camera resolution and Quality important?

We’ve all taken a picture from our smart phone or our current camera and realized later that it wasn’t a great quality shot when we view it on a computer or in an editing software. It’s difficult to shoot action, low light, or complicated scenes with a camera that has limited control. You generally see a lot of noise or an overall softness in your images. This has a lot do with resolution.

Camera resolution is measured in megapixels, which are equivalent to one million pixels. The higher the number of megapixels, the better resolution your camera will have since the pixel is the smallest unit of measurement that records information…or let’s say LIGHT. It is important to choose a camera that has a resolution that allows you to create and present in the best way possibly.

Some companies make it simple by labeling their cameras as “high resolution.” Canon’s EOS

5DS R boasts a resolution of 50.6 megapixels, for example. This is considered high resolution, but is it practical for you? I would think not – unless you are upgrading for the need to make large prints, or crop in to your images for greater detail not found on your current camera. There is the question of budget. The 5DS-R is almost $4,000 for the body. Maybe not in your range, but this is the top end of the camera spectrum – there are so many other options for you.

What is a camera sensor size and Why Is it Important?

The camera’s sensor size can determine the resolution and the quality of the photos you take with your new camera.

Camera sensors are located inside of the camera and are used to record the image you see through your viewfinder to your memory card. If the sensor is bigger, there is a good chance it can capture more information and clearer photos. Larger Sensor = Higher Quality and most of the time, Higher Price. So if you are a photographer who is looking to upgrade your quality immediately – going from a cropped sensor (15.6mm x 23.5mm) to full frame (24mm x 36mm) will drastically do that!

 Take a look at my go to cameras: Canon G7x for my

Take a look at my go to cameras: Canon G7x for my ‘walkaround’ shooting, my backup full frame 6D and my workhorse 5D Mark IV for my commercial and larger photo shoots. ©Zack Smith

A lot of photographers like to hold on to their cropped sensor cameras even after they upgrate because they are great for those who are taking photos farther away, as the “crop factor” will extend your focal length by 1.6x. With a larger sensor, it is less likely that you will encounter noise and other problems when zooming and cropping in post-editing vs a smaller sensor. However, cameras with larger sensors are typically more expensive, so be sure you choose the camera with the sensor size that will work best with the type of photography you’ll be doing.

What does a good Digital SLR camera cost?

A great camera package (body, lens, batteries and a card) can cost anywhere from $500 to $1,000s to $10,000s of dollars depending on what you’re getting. The price of your new DSLR camera needs to be something you know you can afford or easily pay off. If you are a professional or a semi-pro looking to upgrade, you can write off this purchase on your taxes if you are an LLC or Sole Proprietor. This is where deciding what you’re photographing comings in handy. You can buy DSLR packages that come with a 18-55mm lens, or even a 2407mm lens that will work as a great starter package. I find that camera manufactures have way too many options for photographers who want to get in at the $600 – $1000 range. Once you get above the $1K digital camera range the options get slimmer, functions and features get more easy to read and the choices become clearer. That’s wonderful, but sometimes this exceeds our budget and we need to buy a digital camera under $1,000. Don’t worry, they are out there.

What are some DSLR Camera modes and features to look for when purchasing?

It is always great when your camera can operate in several types of conditions and record several different file formats. This is something we don’t get to access very much in smartphones and some point and shoots. Control over our shooting conditions and light is very important! When you go to purchase your camera, be sure you have options like Manual Mode, Aperture Priority, and even quick key shooting modes like: sport mode, portrait mode, and scenic mode.

Most cameras come with a starter kit and one lens. That lens is usually the equivalent of a standard zoom lens that has a focal length of 28mm-80mm (or in cropped sensor language – 18mm-55mm) This is great when you’re just starting out and you can add lenses later. You can get cropped sensor or full frame sensor camera starter packs.

What is a better camera to get, Canon or Nikon?

This might not matter to many, but if you are used to shooting on a certain type of camera, you should take brand in mind when purchasing only from a user experience and interface matter. I only say this because there is always the debate in Canon vs Nikon. Now you have to include Sony, Panasoninc, Minolta and Olympus into that debate and once you do, discussion gets a little tricky. I do believe that with any of these cameras you will have success – but not all camera menu’s and interfaces are created equal. I have been teaching beginner photography since before digital was popular. Since the early 2000’s I have taught on almost every camera invented and I find that if you don’t buy a camera that’s easy to use or that is “learnable” then you will not want to shoot with it!

In my opinion, Canon has the easiest User Interface and Experience in navigating the menu modes and quick keys. Nikon comes in at a distant second only because the amount of features offered in even the most beginner Nikon, rival that of a professional camera in Canon, Minolta, or even Olympus. There are features there that I feel don’t make you a better photographer and are only added there to confuse and boost the “user control” factor which doesn’t say much. So..that’s my 2 cents!

What are my favorite DSLR Cameras on the Market?

NIKON D7200 – $859 MSRP – Body Only – I like this camera due to it’s 24.2 megapixel quality, and with a APC-S sensor (23.5 x 15.6) and especially for the fact it has built in Wifi. With 51 Auto Focus points you shouldn’t miss a shot!

NIKON D610 – $1,400 MSRP – Body Only / $2,000 – w/ 28-85mm lens – Nikon’s entry level full frame camera boasts 24.3 megapixels, 100-6400 ISO range, 6 frames per second, wireless adapter (no built in wifi), weather sealed, pop up flash and you also get Nikon’s ultra confusing menu. Ok, sorry not sorry.

CANON 77D – $800 MSRP – Body Only – I like this camera again for it’s 24.2 megapixel sensor, but the smaller sensor size (22.3 x 14.9) will give you more zoom on your focal length. This camera has a 45 auto focus points and an easy to use menu (ok I am biased here!) but if you want to spend a little more and stay with cropped sensor and ADD weather seal, faster shutter speeds, and frames per second:

CANON 7D Mark II – $1,500 (on sale) for the body. This competes with the Nikon D500 giving you great resolution but a larger body, weather seal (so important down here in New Orleans!) and 10 frames per second shoot in burst mode.

CANON 6D Mark II – at a MSRP of $2,000 you gain entry into Canon’s full frame arena, utilizing the 26.2 megapixel sensor, 45 point AF system, 6.5 fps, Built in Timelapse Mode (really cool!), Built in WiFi and weather sealing ( so important again in the South!). The 6D Mark II has the built in articulating screen that allows you to compose your images in difficult angles without having have your eye to the viewfinder at all times. 

SONY A7 II or A7sII (mirroless) – $1,300 A7II with 28-70 lens (24mp) / $2,500 A7sII (12mp) Body Only – If you have smaller hands, want better video quality and low noise in low light then the Sony A7 series is for you. Consider the A7sII if you want lower noise, and true 4K resolution video on a full frame sensor, without the crop. For the money, the A7II with a lens is a great entry into mirroless digital photography and that price might even go lower with the new A7sII on the market.

So now that I have my camera what do I do with it?

If you made it this far I am hoping you took my advice on searching for digital camera that you are going to use rather than the latest greatest that just sits on a shelf. But what if you still have questions and you are still interested in taking the next step in purchasing a digital camera? Here’s your chance, I want to help. Please contact me to setup a FREE consultation before you spend all that money? You can go to my CONTACT page to setup your email conference.

Do you want to learn how to use your digital camera in the New Orleans area? You can join my upcoming Learn Digital Photography in New Orleans which has two sessions beginning in March and then again in November. You can read more about this photography workshop and sign up HERE



How to shoot prism photography: Prisming for Beginners in the Streets of New Orleans

January 6, 2018

Do you want to learn how to use prisms for photography? Look no further


Before you read this NOTE! I will be bringing ALL OF MY PRISMS with me for the Mardi Gras Photography Workshop in New Orleans on Saturday, February 3rd. CLICK HERE to learn more and sign up!

As a photographer do you ever get stuck in a creative rut? Creative gridlock happens to me more often than I care to admit, but luckily I found my new muse to get the ideas running full speed again. I discovered prism photography by happenstance one day while on Instagram and it ignited one of those infectious Google Search Time Warps where I was searching and researching Google on prism photography, prisms, and photographers who use prisms. I found so much great inspiration in those searches, and I came away with buying a set of old school original prisms from Amlong Crystals and some very new school prisms from Get Fractals.

Prism photography is easy, just experiment!

Yes, you probably recognize this type of prism from physics class in grade school.  Did you know that when held up to your lens you can not only project the full spectrum of light into your lens but reflect anything within a 180 degree radius into your lens? Creative rut be damned! I also bought a Crystal Sphere set as well and have been experimenting with that. Normally, prisms are sometimes used for the internal reflection at the surfaces rather than for dispersion. (duh!) If light inside the prism hits one of the surfaces at a sufficiently steep angle, total internal reflection occurs as all of the light is reflected. This makes a prism a useful substitute for a mirror in some situations. (did you know you can also use a mirror?) Does this make you want to walk the streets with one of these? Me too!

For me, whenever I get my hands on a new way of seeing, like a prism for photography, I immediately take to the streets and the swamps of Louisiana to try it out. What better environment to get out of your creative rut!

Street Walking Documentary In New Orleans With Prism Photography

There are so many variations you can make to your composition by the way you hold the prism to your lens. I suggest (and many other prism photographers) to use at least a 50mm, or something close to that so you can cover the full front of the lens and focal length with your prism. In most cases I was using the cylindrical prism held horizontally in front of the lens. I was holding it directly up to the UV filter so I could balance and stabilize the prism. This I found very hard to do, because you only have so many hands to hold the camera stable, hold the prism stable, and create a good composition at the same time. This was a challenge, but I managed.


Prism Photography Of Musicians In The Sweaty Swamps Of New Orleans’ Couterie Forest

As you all know me by now, or are just learning, I shoot ALOT of New Orleans and Louisiana musicians. Being a musician most of my life, it’s the circle of people I have been around the longest and can effectively communicate their visual needs and creative ideas with ease. One of the longest relationships I’ve had in this manner is with the Lafayette based Lost Bayou Ramblers. I have been photographing this band’s promotional photography since 2000 and anytime they need new imagery for an album release, new member add, or a big gig – they call me. I am very grateful to have this relationship because these guys let me get as creative and “out there” as I want. There’s a certain trust afforded here, and I am thankful for that…because I get to use prisms!


How to Use Prisms with Photography

But what exactly is prism photography? Prism photography, also known as prisming, uses a prism-shaped, clear object in conjunction with a camera lens to produce artistic distortions. Using a prism while photographing is relatively simple. You just have to twist the prism in front of your lenses to give the illusion of a curve or bend in your surroundings on your camera. It does take some practice, but using a prism works a lot better than using mirrors or photoshoot techniques because it actually looks pretty natural.

Most photographers prefer to use a wider lens between 24 mm and 50 mm. You should start by using a wider aperture to let light into the lens. You can expect to see things like rainbows, prism-shaped light flares, curves in your image, and so much more. Using a prism in your creative photoshoots can leave you or your client with breath-taking photos that will be great for your portfolio and their personal keepsake.

If you are eager to try and use a prism in your photography, you can purchase one for as little as $12 on Amazon. Be sure to get one that isn’t too big. Most photographers are happy with a 6-inch prism. Sometimes, you may find that your fingers are getting in the way of your shot. Move your fingers to a point on the prism where they aren’t visible. Just be cautious when you are photographing your subject and you will be fine.


6″ Amlong Prism held vertical


6″ Amlong Prism held vertical.


6″ Amlong Prism held vertical

 Circular Sphere - Amlong

Circular Sphere – Amlong

 Amlong 6

Amlong 6″ crystal prism held horizontally

Get Fractal Filter Set

I was really able to control and master my prism photography with the set of “finger filter” prisms from Get Fractal. The set came in three and were housed in a pouch you can lock on your belt. I brought the filter set to photograph Satchmo Summerfest in New Orleans and was loving the way it made my portraits of musicians like no one else’s. 

 Jams seen through my fractal filter from Get Fractals. These filters allow you to have more control with the filter. So cool!

Jams seen through my fractal filter from Get Fractals. These filters allow you to have more control with the filter. So cool!

 Pscyh-a-Tuba!!! Jon and Jason at French Quarter Fest shot through a Fractal Filter.

Pscyh-a-Tuba!!! Jon and Jason at French Quarter Fest shot through a Fractal Filter.

 Dancin Man 504 - Birthday Boy shot in Prisms during Satchmo Fest in New Orleans!

Dancin Man 504 – Birthday Boy shot in Prisms during Satchmo Fest in New Orleans!

 Freddie Lonzo photographed through my Fractal Filter Prism!

Freddie Lonzo photographed through my Fractal Filter Prism!

EXCLUSIVE LIGHTROOM CONFESSIONAL "I was lost and now am found" One of Zack Smith's stock images breaks it's silence!

March 13, 2017
 I have seen the light and in it

I have seen the light and in it’s a room. It’s Lightroom….

I never knew life could be so easy, I never knew life could be so grand..Now that I am setup with Lightroom my archives are in Command!

Ya like that? I just wrote that. Inspired by the last 365 days of using Lightroom to manage my archives, tag and star my favorite photos, and really rock my Global Edit WORLD I am a new man. What finally brought me to bite the bullet and totally throw my workflow into the waiting bosom of Lightroom was a day last year that I will never, ever forget…

I received a call from a potential client looking for Louisiana stock imagery for a limited use agreement. The images needed contained no visible people, private residences or business store fronts. It was a dream stock job from heaven! The only catch was that the client needed to see gallery of Louisiana stock images and New Orleans cultural galleries by the end of day. Sure, I thought, I’ll just go through my Louisiana Stock hard drive and find what they needed. But lo and behold all of my New Orleans and Louisiana images were in separate folders and in multiple drives. The only way to find specific themed images was to open each folder, inspect the images and drag them to a new destination folder. I had no time for that!

It was time to learn Lightroom for myself…

It was then that I needed to get my workflow “act” together. I was shooting more client work than ever from music festivals, corporate head shots, conferences, and events – I needed a better way to archive, keyword, and edit my files in a way i could find them fast and easy! Welcome in my buddy and yours, David Marx. (www.davidmarx.com)

David and I attended the Rocky Mountain School of Photography during the same summer of 2000 and became fast friends. Our love of PHISH, slide film, and music set us on a path to friendship going on 17 years strong. Not only has Dave helped me improve my workflow management, he has helped me with my Lightroom techniques and archiving prowess. Thanks Dave, I owe you alot!

I began using Lightroom to SAVE my workflow, now it’s a part of my lifeflow…now teaching it to beginners who were right where I was!

For the past 15 years I have taught what I know. Concert, Portrait, Long Exposure, all types of photography that I do..i teach. That’s why I thought it was a no-brainer to begin teaching Lightroom in New Orleans. I taught my first class (15 people) in the Summer of 2016 and begin my second one this Saturday, March 18th where I will unleash tons of new helpful tips, presets, and editing techniques.  For me, giving it away is the ultimate treasure and balance to receiving so many rich insights from others. 

I teach Lightroom with the same philosophy I have had for photography since day 1: Shoot for the Wall! I teach and preach non-destructive editing, fine tuning your images for print, and using Photoshop as a file, not a chainsaw. If we can shoot RAW and get what we need with our initial exposure, then there are only a few edits we need to do in Lightroom to get our images print ready. 

What are you waiting for? Get a Philosophy! Learn Lightroom with me!!! SIGN UP HERE~!


Watch My Lightroom Workflow Edits from our Facebook Live Workshop in New Orleans!

January 15, 2017

Wow what a day! On Saturday, January 14th we completed a successful FACEBOOK Live broadcast of my “One Block in New Orleans” photography workshop! Yes, this was all a promotional opportunity to help drive traffic to my website to promote my New Orleans photography workshops, and it was a blast!

See the Re-Cast of the Video HERE

See the Lightroom Workflow Edit Below:

See the full final Photo Gallery Here with the Edits as shown above:

It is time to begin your life as a photographer and create your own reality.

November 27, 2016

Take one moment with me and reflect on the words you are about to read. I want you to think about your day so far…how did you wake up? Did you step out of bed with your left foot, or right? Did you step out of bed with both feet, walk to the bathroom or kitchen to start your daily routine? What was the next thing you did?

You access your digital information on a daily basis without even looking, thinking, or reacting. It’s just Second Nature.

I want you to reflect with me one more time. Did you check your email today? Did you check a text message or a website you frequent? I wonder if you even have to remind yourself how to swipe your smartphone, wake up your computer, and access the daily digital information you use every day…without thinking, without having to remember how to.

In my 15 years of teaching photography and almost 20 years as a professional photographer, I feel that what we want most is to use the camera to see like we do – and in turn see like a lens does. We want replicate the visual feelings we have in our real life, and recreate them seamlessly and without hesitation in our photographic life.

Whether we post our images online, make books, or make prints – we want the photographic process to be second nature. There is a way to get there…

If you really want to see like your camera and allow your photographic life to become as second nature and as fluid as a smartphone swipe, you need to start making photographs EVERY DAY starting RIGHT NOW. They don’t have to be works of art or even an image you love. Start by shooting around your house every day, and just the motions of turing the camera on, selecting apertures and spinning dials will be good for you.

Make sure you photograph with intention, purpose, and a clear goal in mind. OWN YOUR IMAGE!

What are you waiting for? Get out there and create your own reality and see your world they way you always have wanted. TTL….You can always SEARCH my blog (see, upper right hand corner?) for the content you want to read up on. Go ahead try me~

Hey You! Yes You. Want to be a great photographer? Get a philosophy.

August 25, 2016

Do you like to look at photographs? Do you have a photographer whose work you look up to?

Take a minute and think of your favorite photographer. It doesn’t matter who this person is or what style of photography they do, their work only has to inspire you. I guarantee that when you find articles, interviews, or bio’s about your favorite photographer the reason they got into photographer wasn’t for the money. What was it for? When I first became attached to my first camera I was obsessed with Henri Cartier-Bresson. I couldn’t get enough of his work. I would stare at his works like “Héyres France 1932” and read books on him until I could see like him or so I thought. I loved his mastery of exploring space and setting his compositions up in a way that begged for the interaction of life. I read veraciously – any book I could get on Robert Capa I would read it. His photographs were great, but his story interested me more. 

Why do photographers pick up the camera?

Why is it that a camera became the tool of your favorite photographer’s mode of expression? Why not a paint brush or a computer or even a pencil? I am asking you to find this out because it will be these words and inspirations of your favorite photographers that will help guide you to yours.

In my 10 years of teaching photography to beginners, amateurs, and professionals I find that the photographer that shows the most drive and determination to learn are the ones guided by a force and fire that can’t be taught. They have a reason to create. They have a purpose for their vision and they have a story to tell. You can say they found religion. You can say they found a meaning behind their reasons to pickup the camera. Whatever they found…you should too.

Why do you photograph? Is it the rush of “nailing the shot”? Is it the experiences before and after the 1/125 of a second shutter opening? If the camera is your tool, if photography is your canvas then it’s time to figure out your WHY…

Spend some time in a new Environment

I often wish I had one purpose with the camera, but it was about 14 years ago I realized I wanted to share my knowledge instead of keeping it inside. When I was first learning photography I relied on the kindness of other photographers who let me into their busy lives to answer all of my really dumb questions. I realized fast that photography can be an all inclusive adventure, and the more we share about what we know can only propel us further on our path. I wanted to create a place where photographers go to learn how to tell their story and make great photographs. 

Photo tip’s and tricks are fads, and fads fade like your uncle’s washed out family photo. My goal has always been to help people learn their cameras, but I also want to help forge a photographic philosophy and help people understand the “why” of what you photograph and the “where” that photograph will go. 

I am very exited to get my Fall 2016 Photography Workshop Series underway. It’s my most ambitious photography workshop calendar yet: 12 workshops in a unique collaborative partnership with Crescent Park, French Market Corporation, and 5 Press Gallery to bring the New Orleans photo community it’s most comprehensive photography workshop offering ever. 

I hope you can check it out and take a course – CLICK HERE to find out more


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