Photographic Composition

© Stambaugh Photographics

© Stambaugh Photographics

The Photographic Composition class is for ANY photographer who would like to create more compelling and interesting images. This class moves you beyond taking snapshots and transforms you into a photographic artist.

During the class, you will learn the most important basic photography concepts including: effective composition guidelines, use of leading lines, color harmony, proper positioning of subject matter, creation of strong focal points, beyond the rule of thirds by understanding Fibonacci mathematics, eliminating distractions, tonal control and so much more.

Major topics discussed include the elements of Space, Line, Color, Tone, Shape, Texture, and Form. The proper use of negative space, foreground, visual balance and story telling or "mesasging" in your photography are also discussed.

The Photographic Composition Class isn't about getting you comfortable with your camera, rather it's an informative look at the craft of photography. Learning to "see" though your view finder.

You'll have plenty of opportunity to receive feedback on your work in a friendly community environment.

We always tell students that the number one way to improve their photography is to show their images and receive feedback from professional photographers who know what makes a good photograph.  Showing your images to relatives is great and in their eyes you'll always be a fantastic photographer, but to make real improvements in your work, you need to receive real, constructive feedback.

I want to thank you and the BSOP school for creating this course. It opened by eye to creatively thinking about my composition and how to "feel" and understand the moment and story a photograph is conveying and look beyond the technicalities of a picture. I had my doubts at the beginning if am going to learn anything, but I was wrong. I have improved in my skills as a photographer in the last few weeks and will put techniques acquired to further use. I will surely recommend this class to everyone. Thanks - Adisina A

Please read above and if the class you are interested in sold out, please click here to add your name to the wait list

© Stambaugh Photographics

© Stambaugh Photographics

Your Instructor for the Photographic Composition Class

Your instructor for the class will be Chris Stambaugh.

Chris is the former president of the Professional Photographer's of Canada and has been a professional photographer for over two decades.

Chris holds the designations of "Master of Photographic Arts" and "Honorary Lifetime Member" by the PPOC and has won numerous awards for his work including being a finalist in the Alberta and Canadian Portrait Photographer of the Year.

Chris runs his own photography business Imagine That Photography where he specializes in portrait photography, commercial and school photos / graduation photography as well as teaching photography at NAIT and the U of A Faculty of Extension.

Along with this Photographic Composition class here at our photography school, Chris teaches 5 other classes: The Digital Camera Fundamentals class, our Wedding Photography class, the Posing Families and Children class, the Weekend Portrait Photography class, and our extended 4 day Portrait Photography workshop.

I enjoyed the course on Photographic Composition. The students ranged from beginners to experienced photographers. Chris Stambaugh made sure that all students felt comfortable while the photos were being critiqued. Students require to know that without proper critiquing one never advanced to the next step of photography. Thanks Chris for your respected evaluations. - Don D

This is the second course I have taken at the Paul Burwell School of Photography (The first was Creative Landscape Photography.) and both times I was very favorably impressed by the course content, the quality of instruction and the over-all quality of the course. I definitely took home a wealth of information & improved my photographic skills.-Ralph F

© Stambaugh Photographics

© Stambaugh Photographics

What You Will Learn

  • Improving your photography
  • Strong underlying compositional order
  • Ignoring the Details
  • Simplifying and Excluding
  • Composition versus Framing
  • Lightening and Darkening
  • Distractions
  • Using Colour
  • Composing for different frame shapes and orientations
  • Dividing the Frame
  • "Rules" of Composition
  • Frames within Frames
  • Creating Dynamic Tension
  • Using Lines to direct the viewer
  • The use of curves within an image
  • Using focus to direct the viewer through an image

What to Expect

  • 12 hours of classroom instruction
  • Plenty of hands-on practical exercises
  • Photographic Composition course book
  • Certificate of Completion
  • Delicious snacks during coffee breaks
  • Small group size, limited to 16 participants


© Stambaugh Photographics

© Stambaugh Photographics

Equipment Required

At a minimum, you'll want to have...

  • A fully adjustable (must have the ability to shoot in Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority and Manual Modes) digital camera (digital SLR with a removable lens preferred).
  • If you are not sure that your camera qualifies, please contact us with the details of your equipment

Optional Equipment

  • An external flash unit
  • A tripod
  • A remote shutter release

Class Location

Cost of the Class

  • $250 Canadian Dollars (plus tax) for the weekday evening class.

More Information

Policies and payment information are available here.

For additional information, please contact us at:
E-Mail: Contact us Electronically
Phone 780-669-1261

Please read above and if the class you are interested in sold out, please click here to add your name to the wait list