Portraits Unplugged

with Bobbi Lane

Online registration for this program has closed. To check availability, find about about future dates, or if you would like further information, please call 505-983-1400 ext. 111. Also, get the SFW E-Newsletter for updates!

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Course Description

Portraits Unplugged is all about working with natural light, nothing technical or mechanical. In this engaging online workshop, Bobbi Lane teaches you how to find and work with natural light to make flattering and dynamic portraits of any subject. The beauty of available light is its ability to describe your subject from powerful and strong to soft and creamy. You scout locations for the light and look for options that can surprise us with its complexity as well as find the simple and clean look for smooth skin tones. 

Everyone has natural light available, but not necessarily the understanding of how to find and manipulate it with reflectors and diffusers. These techniques help to create the most pleasing or effective images. We work with all kinds of light: hard, soft, bounced, window light, backlight, open shade, and garage door lighting and explore how the qualities of each contribute to the feeling of the portrait. In addition, Bobbi shows you how to create a backyard studio with a canopy and reflectors that mimics studio lighting. 

The most important part of our portrait is not the subject, but how we, as visual artists, choose to define our subject. We work on capturing the essence of the people by the use of posing, expressions, tonality, composition, color, backgrounds, and props. 

Bobbi’s workshop covers the “rules” of Portraits Unplugged, how to effectively and creatively use reflectors and diffusers, color and texture of light, accurate skin tones, scouting the light, times of day to shoot, high and low key, and story-telling portraits.

This is not an overly technical workshop, but is for all photographers who want to strengthen their people skills as well as their appreciation of light for creating dynamic portraits. 

Additional Information

Amateurs, Advanced Amateurs
What You Should Know:

Working knowledge of digital workflow and manual mode on your digital SLR or mirrorless camera. Participants must be able to download and select images using image editing software for class sessions.


View Withdrawal and Transfer Policies for online programs.

© Lee Varis
Bobbi Lane

Bobbi Lane, a Fujifilm “X” Photographer, is an award-winning commercial photographer specializing in creative portraits on location and in the studio. Bobbi’s multi-faceted approach to photography incorporates over 40 years of technical experience with innovative artistic interpretation. Her corporate and editorial work includes corporate websites, annual reports, and hundreds of environmental portraits for a wide variety of magazines.

As a dedicated photo educator, Bobbi brings insight and enthusiasm to her students in workshops held worldwide. She is widely known as the “Mistress of Light,” teaching portrait lighting techniques with both natural and artificial light. Combining her love of travel, photography, and teaching, Bobbi also leads international photo travel workshops with her husband Lee Varis, such as Venice Carnival, Tuscany, Neighborhoods of New York, and Iceland. Her dynamic workshops are always both education and entertaining! 


Instagram: @bobbilanephoto

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