Craft remarkable light using ambient and photographic sources to express your creative vision in a wide range of locations

Of course, to manage light, one must understand how to see light. A primary emphasis for the week will be learning to walk into any situation, quickly identify what’s working for you (and against you), and craft an effective portrait out of that scene.

The week starts in the classroom and studio, discussing the basic characteristics of light: color, quality, and direction.  Building on these concepts, students will move out of the studio and on-location for shoots each day.

Students are encouraged to take a highly creative approach to lighting rather than to simply capture the light as it appears. Sometimes this means adding light in a subtle way, and other times that means over-riding the ambient light.  

The lighting tools for this workshop will be a mix of studio-sized, battery-powered strobes and modifiers (softboxes, umbrellas, grids, gels, flags, etc), as well as small flash. Students also learn how to use professional grip gear such as C-stands and booms.

Class time includes discussion about lighting issues that arise in the field, as well as strategies for shooting portraits on location. Students shoot on location in the afternoons and evenings. Critiques follow the next morning. By the end of the week participants feel confident in the use of light and strobe lighting systems in a variety of conditions.

This workshop is oriented to advanced amateurs and pros who have a basic understanding of flash photography. No prior experience with large strobes is required.





David Welch

David WelchDavid Welch is a fine art and editorial photographer based on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. His fine art photography explores social issues, using large-format photography steeped in conceptual influences from art history and economic theory. His project “Material World” has been widely published and exhibited both nationally and abroad.  His editorial work focuses mostly on portraiture and architecture using both natural and location lighting. Clients include Little Brown & Company, New York Post, Baltimore Magazine, HGTV, Martha’s Vineyard magazine and Edible Vineyard Magazine.

David was named one of the Magenta Foundation’s Flash Forward winners for 2012 and in 2011 he was selected as one of Photolucida’s Critical Mass top 50 photographers. David is a recent graduate of the Savannah College of Art and Design, where he earned his MFA in photography. He lives on the island with his partner Trina and children Camden & Declan.

© David Welch

Course Dates

Aug 23 to Aug 29



Class Size