3 Things You Can Do to Start Seeing in Stronger Ways

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[text_block style=”style_1.png” align=”left”]The job of the photographer is first to see, to be observant. Our job is to see the scene but also the possibilities! Seeing is the first step to better compositions and stronger photographs!

You can’t compose a photograph with elements you don’t even see in the first place; it’s one of the great struggles of photographers. But seeing is something that can be learned intentionally!

In this last of three videos I explore 3 ways you can begin to learn seeing in stronger ways, so your compositions can  become more intentional and more captivating. I also introduce you to The Compelling Frame – a new course on creative composition that’s going to change the way you make photographs.

Take a few minutes to watch this third video and then I’d love to hear your questions about how we perceive, or see photographically. I’d also love to hear your questions about The Compelling Frame course.  Enrollment for this deep-dive into visual design and what it really takes to make stronger photographs starts on September 13, 2017.

For the Love of the Photograph, 
David duChemin



What stands in the way of you seeing more creatively? I’d love to hear from you!


  1. I can’t get on the website – it’s saying password protected. Will this change at 6 AM PST? I’d love to register right away. Thanks!

    1. Hi Sally, You didn’t really miss it, we’ve only mentioned it once. The price will be $295(USD)

  2. What stands in the way of me seeing more creatively?

    I think the biggest obstacle is that I already feel pretty creative. I’ve been finding my photographic over the last few years, really clarifying my vision. I know who I am as a photographer and a creative. Which is a good thing, but it also means (I think) that I tend to look at things the way I always look at things. I produce images I really like.

    The question then, that I’m hoping will be answered in the Compelling Frame: How do I find a new creative vision without sacrificing my vision?

    1. HI Chris – I have to be honest, it sounds like you’re in a really good place. The course may help you re-calibrate some things, but my question to you as a mentor would be – why fight it? It sounds like you’re making images you love and that you’re in a sweet spot. Of course you can plateau there, and that’s a danger, but don’t second-guess the joy you’re getting at this place in the process. Keep moving forward, but not so fast you skip the moments we all work so hard to enjoy!

  3. I am not sure how to register and how to set up a password in advance.
    Sorry, I am fairly new with your site and courses. Thank you.

    1. Carol – You’re a bit early. On September the 13th at 6am Vancouver/ Seattle / Los Angeles time zone the registration opens and it will all be very easy! But until then the site is locked up tight with a ninja-proof password.

  4. Hi David
    Looking forward to our one on one session. I’m also signing up for the Compelling Frame Course. It’s all that I am looking for – Thanks for spending the time putting it together

  5. Sounds like a great course. I also have the Vision Collective. I went to the archive to review it and see that Weeks 1-7 are missing. I didn’t keep the emails when sent, relying on the archive instead. Can you update the archive or resend me weeks 1-7? Thanks for all the great instruction and inspiration.

    1. HI Micki – Check your email, I’ve just sent all the links for all the weeks. My apologies, we’ve had a weird glitch that’s not quickly fixed but the links I sent will get you to all the lessons ASAP.

  6. When I went to the link to the upcoming course, it asked for a password but my Craft and Vision password didn’t work. Perhaps I misunderstood and that link won’t work until the 13th. In which case will I still need a password?

    1. Hi Judith – That’s correct. The course will open at 6am (Vancouver time) tomorrow, the 13th of September. Until then it’s password protected. At 6am tomorrow you can go back there and the links will all work just fine!

  7. Can’t wait. What time in the US, so I can do a conversion for Sydney. Australia? Thanks

    1. September 13 at 6am here in Vancouver / Seattle / LA time-zone. If I’ve done my math right that’s 11pm on September 13 for you. Double check that, David, my math is less than reliable! 🙂

      1. Thanks, David. I get 11pm too. I’m way too dozy by then. Sign up tomorrow – see you on the other side.

  8. Hi David

    Got the executive approval from the significant other last night, so I’m in.

    I trust you to provide good value for money but would be good to know how many hours of content it is, so I know how much time to set aside each week starting this weekend… if it’s anything like the Created Image series then I know I’ll be kept busy for a long time.



    1. Hi Arshdeep! That’s great news. I’ve worked hard to overdeliver on this and should I fail there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee. 🙂 It’s broken into 19 lessons, and if I were to guess I’d say students can plan to spend about 90 minutes on average for each lesson, depending on how deep people are willing to go. You know how to reach me – drop me a line if you’ve got more questions. Happy to help!

      1. Are you saying each of the 19 lessons average about 90min’ worth of video? If so, that is very thorough or perhaps I misunderstood point there.

        1. Hi David – No, I estimate the lessons themselves to take about 90 minutes with the Creative Exercises, Key Questions, and Study the Masters. Average length of videos is a tight 10-15 minutes.

  9. This is brilliant, David. And beautifully priced.

    Now if you could just add in a module about camera bag addiction, that would save me. 😉

    1. Can you clarify what time registration would be in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario? Thank you

      1. HI Carol – 6am Vancouver time would be 9am in Toronto, which I believe is the same for the Sault.

  10. Hi David:

    Exciting stuff you presented. Of course I want to be on board. Just 2 questions:

    Will the audio portion you briefly mentioned come with a transcript or something as I’m hearing impaired? You probably are thinking “that hearing impaired guy is bugging me again….” lol

    2. Was curious if most, if not all the video content, will be mostly your face so I can read lips as I’m making the assumption it will not be CC or subtitled. Really want to get this but cannot justify 295.00 if I’m not going to be able to get much out of it.

    Thanks for your patience in answering these 2 questions

      1. Stephen – It includes mostly my face, yes. If I can make a suggestion: get the course and see if it works for you – there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee and if it doesn’t suit because of your hearing issues, just let us know before October 30 and we’ll happily refund. I can also send you full transcripts for the videos if you like. Just drop me an email. 🙂

            1. Hi Stephen – You could reach out to my support team at vision@craftandvision.com – and they (probably my wife Cynthia or my manager Corwin) would forward that to me. We’ll do what we can for you, Stephen!

  11. Hi David, this sounds exactly what I’m looking for. However is this aimed for the pro or experienced photographer? I am too stuck on learning the technical and this more what I’m looking for. However, it would be great to see 1 of the sample clips and get a feel for it before purchase. As right now, feel a bit of sales pressure with the time limit, and the great initial clips to ramp up the value.. but need to see/feel a sample if possible 🙂 hope that’s coming in next clip. thanks, Dave

    1. Hi Dave – no real samples, no, but there will be a money back guarantee (30 days) if you feel unsure. I’m sorry to hear you feel pressure – my hope was to get everyone on board at the same time. Perhaps when I open the course again next year I’ll offer a slightly longer enrollment. I did a lot of research and a one-week window seems to be one of the more common ways of doing this. Hopefully those that know me trust me to over-deliver on this one.

      1. Thanks David. sounds great. This wasn’t the same program you included in a previous 5day deal was it? I missed that 1 but I do recall something like this included.. perhaps not as deep as this 1 coming up.

        1. Hi David – No, that was The Vision Collective, which I will also offer again but it wasn’t specifically about composition and visual design the way this one is – two very different courses with only a little overlap.

          1. Thanks David for quick response. wil this be CDN$ (I am here in Vancouver BC). or USD? No need to reply if you prefer – I can find out on 13th. makes a big cost diff for us Cdn’s 🙂 Cheers, Dave

            1. It’ll be in USD, David. As the majority of my audience is in the US or international, it just makes more sense. Sometimes it’s been in our favour, sometimes not (mostly not). Thanks for asking.

  12. Sounds great, and the price is totally honest. I look forward to taking the class.

    Just to follow up on what you said about looking at great photos, I’ve been doing this for the past six months, buying books from a variety of photographers, and every time I’m out walking around, with or without a camera, I see things that I hadn’t seen before. I hope to refine that process.

    1. Thanks, Kirk. It always amazes me how we try to learn to make photographs without actually studying photographs. Very strange. 🙂

  13. Hi David,

    This looks awesome. I am in. It’s in my calendar (September 13th) . Looking forward to this course and to seeing you in PEI next July. Thank you 🙂

  14. Hi David,
    Thanks again for working on this projecj focusing so well on our needs. I do understand that we will need to put us in action to make progress and not only looking at videos; I am very in agreement with that. BUT, winter and cold will come (not easy in Quebec) … will it be possible to do some of these exercices inside ?

  15. David,

    This is very interesting sounds like a fleshed out and more pointed version of the 26 week Vision Collective. Is that even remotely accurate? Looking forward to it.

    1. Hi Alan – Yes, you got it. It’s meant to be a continuation of the Vision Collective and is a much deeper dive into the principles of visual design and composition. My hope was that the Vision Collective would set people up nicely for the Compelling Frame.

  16. Hi David,
    That’s sound like a thrilling course. Unfortunately, I’m not up to the required expert knowledge yet. So, I will do first another year of making daily intentional photograph series for my instagram account and thereafter definitely I will join your next mentor class.
    For the time being, I will catch up with your videos “vision is better” and your ebooks. I wish you great success with the training session.
    Cheers from the Palatinate Michael

    1. Hello Michael – I think you might be surprised how little technical knowledge this course requires. Anyone with an iPhone will get a lot out of it. If you’re not ready, I get that, but as long as you can focus the camera and expose it, this course is for you!

  17. Hi David. I’m so excited and I’m definitely in. Such a promising course. I’ve always loved the way you teach and I am sure there will be many answers to many many questions I still have. Since I will be away from home September 14 to September 20 (with bad Wi Fi connections) I hope to be able to sign up September 13 (I’m living in Europe-Switzerland). Thank you for your contagious enthusiasm!

  18. I have enjoyed The Visual Tool Box.
    Should I expect about the same content in the tutorials?

    1. Hello Pierre – This course is a much deeper dive into specific composition issues – much more than the Visual Toolbox was. If you’ve completed the Visual Toolbox, I think this course would be an excellent next step.

  19. I am interested by your tutorials.
    I understand that I will learn next week how to subscribe.
    I have bought some of your books.

  20. I’m excited David. This is exactly what I have been looking for, a deep dive into everything “composition”. Appreciate your passion and interest in our progress!

  21. Fear! That I’ll mess it up, that my camera settings aren’t right, that my clients can sense my fear & awkwardness as I fumble about trying to get it right.

  22. I love this idea and have always enjoyed your approach to instruction through both books and videos I have purchased. My only question is why is enrollment limited to 1 week? I can’t invest the time right now and while I know I can take all the time needed to get started, I don’t really want to buy something that sits on the shelf for 6 months before I can crack it open.

    1. Hi David – Mostly it’s because I want as many people beginning the course at the same time and I don’t have the time later to be as available. I plan to release it again in a year, but this is the only way I can make it happen. Still, even if it does sit on the shelf, it might be worth the savings – next year the course won’t be offered at this introductory rate, so you’ll save about $100 or so.

  23. One of my main challenges is to reduce the chaos in a scene. I tend to prefer a simple, clean image and ask myself what is it that I saw initially and how can I reduce or reorganize unnecessary elements
    so viewers will feel the same tug of emotion that drew me to the scene in the beginning. I have been recovering from a brain injury for the last year and every day I try to celebrate life. Learning to see and create better images is a big part of this. Thank you for giving us all this opportunity.

  24. I have discovered that my interest (and my talent) lie in street photography or environmental photography. In many cases the images I capture are, of necessity, grab shots. Any compositional options are limited except in those few times when I sit and wait for the scene to develop or can direct my subject.

    My question is: to what degree will your new course be worthwhile for my type of shooting?

    1. Hi Richard – this course will be for every kind of photographer as the content is about visual design and composition and those ideas apply equally now matter what our subject is. Great question, thank you for asking!

  25. Hi David,
    first of all let me say I’m from Germany and my English is not the best. So sorry about that.
    I love your videos and your books and moreover I love your way of teaching (especially in your books).
    My challenge is to compose a good photograph from that what I see. In most situations I see something what touches my soul and then I am confused how to put this scene into a good photograph. I am trying hard to see lines and shapes and colours, just to see what the camera sees. But often the result that I see at home on my screen is not what I feel. Moreover it is very difficult for me to analyse, to intepret my own photographs. Actually I see lines and so on on the (flat) screen, but I am unsure to conclude to say “Yeah Baby, this is a good composition”. So for me there is a big gap between my soul and my head.

  26. I would love to take this course but since my camera is not a DSLR, it is a Lumix fz300 bridge camera , I am wondering if the course will be referring to photography using DSLR cameras? Will specific cameras be mentioned for specific subject matter? Please email me your response before the 13th.

    1. I’m in. David, I’ve enjoyed your style and your message for a while now, and your philosophy about photography and life in general resonates with me.

      A little bummed that I know that I will not be able to register first thing for a chance at a signed copy of The Soul Of The Camera! Unfortunately, I will be attending a company function at that time. But that’s life eh?

      Looking forward to the course!

    2. Linda, if you are listening to the videos, you should know that it is NOT about the camera. It’s about the mind.. Your Lumix FZ300 will be just fine Sue Hutchins

    3. I have hung off Davids every word for years and all I have ever heard about any Camera reference is that he is now shooting with a Mirrorless Camera. I am certain that you will be fine as David is never about buying More Gear.

    4. Hi Linda – Sorry for the late reply, I’m just now off the boat after a week with whales and bears. Yes, this course is for anyone – even an iPhone photographer will benefit – it’s much more about composition and photographs than it is about cameras.

  27. Hi David, this looks very promising. It’s certainly essential to look at other photographers’ work, but also painters’. My main challenge is figuring out how to make consistent series and stories. It may be just a diptych or triptych or a series of 12. Maybe a story in a single picture, too. Nevertheless, how to approach a more consistent way of planning, shooting, selecting and editing? It all seems so random and accidental.
    Cheers, André

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