Basics of Light, Composition, and Color

Learn the creative fundamentals of photography in this structured course that includes assignments & quizzes. Learn how to see light, what makes a good composition, and how to work with color and black & white photography.


Course rating: 5.0

6 reviews


Light is the language of photography. Learn the basics of photography's grammar and vocabulary. How to think of light, its direction, quality, and more importantly, where light isn't - shadow.

Learn Light

Composition isn't a set of rules. It's a philosophy, how to take a jumble of words and arrange them into a strong sentence. See what makes an impactful photo and how to bring those elements together.

See Composition

Color and tone are the adverbs & adjectives of photography. See when color and black & white treatments better suit a photo. How do you think in color schemes, and how do you think in black & white tones?

Use Color

What's Included?

When you purchase this course you'll get lifetime access to...

10 videos

Ten short, easy-to-digest videos will walk you through the building blocks of understanding light, composition, and color to create more compelling photographs. Each video is accompanied by the text outline.

3 assignments & quizzes

Each chapter includes an optional assignment that you can turn in to me for feedback. Quizzes will help you further assess your understanding and reinforce learning.


Download reference material for each chapter. The end of the course offers another download with exercises to help you practice the concepts outlined in this course.

Course curriculum

    1. Learning About Light, Composition, and Color

    2. Virtual Classroom Orientation

    3. Student Survey

    4. One-on-One Consult Call

    1. What is Light?

    2. Direction of Light

    3. Quality of Light

    4. Test: Light

    5. Download: Light

    6. Assignment (Optional): Light

    1. Philosophy Behind Composition

    2. Using Perspective & Geometry

    3. Layering Photos

    4. Test: Composition

    5. Download: Composition

    6. Assignment (Optional): Composition

    1. Creation in Color vs B&W

    2. Elements of Color Photography

    3. Elements of B&W Photography

    4. Test: Color

    5. Download: Color

    6. Assignment (Optional): Color

    1. Download: Practice List

    2. Final Test

    3. Next Steps

    4. Course Review & Feedback

About this course

  • $59.00
  • 10 videos
  • Skill level: Beginner to intermediate
  • PDF downloads

This course is included in the bundle...

Purchase a package and save!

Photography Creative Foundations

Start your photography journey here. This bundle of three courses will teach you about exposure, composition, light, and storytelling - the foundations of photography.

View bundle

Course Reviews

Read what other students have said


Very helpful

roy wyman


Concepts and definitions of light and composition are simply explained. The course made me think more about what my image would look like before I hit the shutter button. Also, made me consider B&W photography, which didn't interest me.

Kevin Lamport


This is another of John's very well designed courses that covers important basics of good photography. There's really nothing too fancy here, just clear explanations, solid examples followed by very useful and engaging assignments. Well worth the time.

Bill Farrell


Although the course is called basics, the content offered in this course gives you all the tools you need for improving your photography as it comes to creative aspects of making pictures. I don't know how John does it, but whatever photographic subject he picks up, he succeeds to create clear, easy digestable and complete courses. Great job!

Jos Smeets


I recommed this course to everyone who wants to improve their shooting style. Great for everyone!

Marco Silva


I have thoroughly enjoyed and learned a lot from all your photo courses. I highly recommend them to anyone who wants to improve their photography knowledge and skills.

Ron Moore