201: Composition

“Mas­ter­ing the art of pho­to­graph­ic com­po­si­tion is the cor­ner­stone of cre­at­ing time­less, visu­al­ly strik­ing images.”

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$105 • 3‑hour course • In-per­son  Lim­it­ed to 6 stu­dents • Pro instruc­tor

Learn how to improve the composition of your photos without relying on stuffy “rules.”

This course intro­duces new pho­tog­ra­phers to sev­er­al tech­niques for devel­op­ing the abil­i­ty to iden­ti­fy a poten­tial­ly strong pic­ture and then orga­nize the graph­i­cal ele­ments to cap­ture a great pho­to­graph. Our goal is to train the way you think about pho­to­graph­ic com­po­si­tion with­out the con­straint of rules.

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Learn to see the world like a photographer.


What you’ll learn:

  • A brief overview of how our minds process visu­al infor­ma­tion (and why this hin­ders com­po­si­tions)
  • Tech­niques for iden­ti­fy­ing and defin­ing your sub­ject
  • The impor­tance of per­spec­tive, focal length, and expo­sure in con­trol­ling sub­ject scale and promi­nence
  • For­mat, frame dynam­ics, and crop­ping
  • Sub­ject place­ment for more strik­ing pic­tures
  • How to visu­al­ize and design bet­ter pho­tographs
  • Easy short­cuts for imme­di­ate­ly improv­ing almost any pho­to


Com­po­si­tion is one of the essen­tial fac­tors in cre­at­ing a com­pelling pho­to­graph. A good com­po­si­tion starts with under­stand­ing your sub­ject and scene and effec­tive­ly assem­bling those visu­al ele­ments into a cohe­sive whole using a cam­era and lens. 

New pho­tog­ra­phers often have trou­ble with both parts of this process because how our minds process visu­al infor­ma­tion is incom­pat­i­ble with the pho­to­graph­ic medi­um. 

This work­shop intro­duces you to sev­er­al rule-free tech­niques to over­come the psy­cho­log­i­cal bar­ri­ers to ide­al pho­to­graph­ic com­po­si­tions. You will learn about effec­tive meth­ods for iden­ti­fy­ing your sub­ject and giv­ing them scale and promi­nence with the help of your cam­era place­ment and lens. You will dis­cov­er how cam­era for­mat and sub­ject place­ment can change frame dynam­ics and sub­se­quent crop­ping. You will learn about using your mind’s eye to visu­al­ize bet­ter pho­tos before tak­ing them. And you’ll be intro­duced to sev­er­al easy tech­niques for improv­ing almost any pic­ture in short order, even after tak­ing it. 

Important Details

Rec­om­mend­ed pre­req­ui­site:

201: Com­po­si­tion in Pho­tog­ra­phy is also avail­able as a pri­vate pho­tog­ra­phy course for 1–2 peo­ple.

Meeting Locations:

One of two loca­tions depend­ing on the time of year and weath­er.

April – Novem­ber: In front of The Roy­al Con­ser­va­to­ry of Music:

Decem­ber – March: The Allen Lam­bert Gal­le­ria inside Brook­field Place, just by the RBC Domin­ion Secu­ri­ties facade:

Accepted cameras:

  • We accept all cam­eras capa­ble of man­u­al mode.
  • We accept all brands of dig­i­tal cam­eras.
  • Con­tact us if you’re unsure about your camera’s suit­abil­i­ty for this course.

What to bring:

  • Cam­era and lens
  • Bat­tery (ful­ly charged)1If you’re par­tic­i­pat­ing in more than one work­shop, please bring either your bat­tery charg­er or a sec­ond bat­tery to ensure you can oper­ate your cam­era through­out the day.
  • Mem­o­ry card (emp­tied)
  • Cam­era man­u­al
  • Note­book and pen
  • Ques­tions and thirst for knowl­edge!

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Are you ready to start learning photography?

Join the 100s of begin­ners who’ve improved their pho­tog­ra­phy with Expo­sure Ther­a­py.

201: Com­po­si­tion in Pho­tog­ra­phy

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The scope of our photography lessons

At Expo­sure Ther­a­py’s pho­tog­ra­phy cours­es, I focus on build­ing a strong foun­da­tion in pho­tog­ra­phy that will work well with most cam­eras. How­ev­er, to ensure a con­sis­tent and pos­i­tive expe­ri­ence for all par­tic­i­pants, I can­not cov­er every fea­ture of every cam­era. If you have an advanced cam­era and would like to learn more, I’d be hap­py to offer pri­vate pho­tog­ra­phy lessons that explore those fea­tures in more depth.

What to wear

This is an out­door pho­tog­ra­phy work­shop, so it’s essen­tial to check the weath­er fore­cast and dress appro­pri­ate­ly for the con­di­tions on the day of the work­shop. This is espe­cial­ly impor­tant on wet days, so bring weath­er-appro­pri­ate cloth­ing to stay com­fort­able and pro­tect your equip­ment.2To ensure the best per­for­mance of your cam­era dur­ing the work­shop, I rec­om­mend bring­ing two or more ful­ly charged bat­ter­ies.

Meeting point and workshop location

My work­shops are held out­side and involve walk­ing to dif­fer­ent loca­tions. Please note that some places we vis­it may not be ful­ly acces­si­ble.

In the event of bad weath­er, I may need to change the meet­ing loca­tion for the work­shop. I’ll inform you in advance if this hap­pens and will ensure the new loca­tion is easy to get to by pub­lic trans­porta­tion.

Cancellation and refunds

Satisfaction guarantee

We want to ensure that you ful­ly under­stand the mate­ri­als cov­ered in our pho­tog­ra­phy cours­es. If you aren’t com­plete­ly sat­is­fied with your learn­ing expe­ri­ence, please let your instruc­tor know imme­di­ate­ly after your work­shop con­cludes. We’re more than hap­py to address any points of con­fu­sion on the spot or to offer you the oppor­tu­ni­ty to repeat the same work­shop on a future date (pend­ing avail­abil­i­ty).

Cancellations, refunds, and rescheduling

My full can­cel­la­tion and refund pol­i­cy is found in the Terms of Sale. The fol­low­ing sum­ma­ry is for your con­ve­nience:

  • All sales are final, and no refunds are giv­en if you can­cel.
  • If unex­pect­ed issues occur, you can resched­ule up to 24 hours before your group pho­tog­ra­phy work­shop is sched­uled to start.