This October I traveled to a workshop just outside Philadelphia. Cliff Mautner is just the coolest guy ever. Sometimes when you lay down money for a workshop, it's not always worth it. Not true with Cliff Mautner. I found out about Cliff from a WPPI convention in Las Vegas a few years ago. I sat in his lecture there and fell in love with his work. He was talking about light, how to see it and how to shoot it, but it wasn't as in depth as I wanted. How could it be with such limited time?
How fortuitous that life worked out for me to finally get to his NJ studio and go to a full 3 day workshop. For 3 whole days, my group, which was purposely small, learned all the ins and outs from one of the best in the industry. We shot all the stuff that challenges most photographers: harsh outside light, off-camera flash, using highlight and shadows to paint an image instead of shooting flat, boring light. Cliff taught us how to give our images more dimension. He also reminded us that most of the time, less is more. Complicated lighting setups aren't always needed to achieve images that are striking and full of impact. Knowing where the light comes from and using it to shape images are the ultimate keys to dynamic images.
This workshop changed me and my work. Below you will see tangible evidence of what I learned. I met people that will stick with me for a long time. Having a connection to photographers across genres and the world is empowering and edifying. And having Cliff on your side is pretty awesome too.
Thank you, Cliff, for your openness, kindness and thorough teaching. You made things that seemed mysterious and difficult, accessible and understandable. Thank you for your honest critique. Your points on how to improve drive me to do just that: grow.
I hope we cross paths again.
Sonce Landa is a Chicago area portrait and wedding photographer, servicing the North Shore and Northwest Cook County areas, such as: Glenview, Wilmette, Winnetka, Skokie, Niles, Des Plaines, Wheeling, Northbrook, Highland Park, Deerfield, Arlington Heights, and Mount Prospect. Sonce Landa specializes in children, families and senior photography in the Chicagoland area. Sonce Landa is not limited to these areas and is willing to travel for sessions.