Studio Lighting Image
Vancouver Photo Workshops proudly presents this intensive two day hands-on workshop,"Learn to Light" with internationally renowned photographer and workshop leader Don Giannatti.

After the great sucess of Don's workshop in 2011, we knew we had to get im back to Vancouver!

This is really like no other workshop out there!

Real world information YOU can use immediately to increase the level of your photography. And it is intensive... no sitting around, no wasted time, we even shoot while having lunch most of the time.

Don Giannatti has a lot of information to get into your head and hands, and we don't waste time with any frills.

This Two Day workshop will introduce you to lighting by learning the basics and then working with the tools of the trade to make the images you see in your head. We start with basics and move through the amazing world of lighting.


We aren't interested in auto settings, or sticking a flash on your camera and clicking away. We do it with manual strobes, manual settings and attention to detail that is the mark of a professional photographer.

Don believes that the best way to teach someone is to Tell Them, Show Them, and Have Them Do It. That is his approach.

Sure we'll talk about the ISL and what that means to our light. But we also see it, and work with it to get it ingrained. Once the concept is embedded in what we do, there is no limit to what we can achieve. Me yakking about how close an umbrella is not as powerful as me yakking, you watching, you doing it... moving it to see the difference. Embed... yeah!

About Your Workshop Leader: Don Giannatti

So Who is this Guy Who Loves Light so Much? A former drummer for jazz bands? A composer whose compositions have been played by international chamber orchestras? A dad who loves his kids more than anything in the whole world? A photographer who has kept studios in LA, Chicago and New York and shot for magazines, editorial and advertising for nearly 30 years? A former Creative Director for one of the largest ad agencies in the southwest?

Yep... that's me. Oh, and I am learning the Tenor Sax... but that doesn't have anything to do with lighting, does it? I fell in love with photography when I was a kid and my dad gave me his cool Brownie. I was coveting his awesome Argus, but was happy to get the Brownie. I shot everything I could see. My dad and I would go into the darkroom and work with the prints under that cool red light. I fell in love with the still image.

Visit Don's Website for even more information about this workshop!

Important Information:

This Workshop includes the Lighting Essentials DVD - Lighting for Effect, the Photoshop Essentials II DVD, and the LE Workshop Workbook.

Please Note: SLR Camera only
Day One - Saturday:

8am to 9am: Breakfast and meet time: Optional.

9am to 10am: Overview of Light and Light Modification Tools * Parabolic reflectors * Umbrellas * Scrims * Softboxes * Cookies and Flags * Light and the Subject * Working with the Subjects in the Light * How to Use Light to Create the Image You Want * Inverse Square Law - Practical Applications That can Save Your Shots * Working with Models Part One * F-stop choice... How it Matters - a lot.

10am to 11am: Setups for Professional Results (Mix of Studio Lights and Speedlights) * Single Light Solutions with Umbrella and Softbox (or scrim) * Beauty Dish for Drama * Softbox Simplicity * Classic Clamshell Beauty * Accent Lights

11am - Noon: Working Lunch: Model and Photographer Team * Posing Ideas * Working with a Model on Set - and in the Light * Myths and Truths about Models * Working through "challenges" * How to Find and Keep good models

1pm - 3-3:30pm * Shooting Models in the Setups (Models rotate through the groups) * This is a shoot time for working with models in different light setups, Photographers shoot in all setups as well as all models. * Setup Photos encouraged / workbook has graphing for notes

3:30 to 5:00pm * Lighting for Location Portraits * "Beach Light" Setup for Beauty * Creating a shot in a bad location - Using Light as a Subject * Model shoot with new techniques * "Knowing" your Speedlight: a technique for taking the guesswork out of working with small strobes.

5:00pm to 5:30pm: Teardown Optional shooting after 6PM - we all go to dinner at some point, so plan on sitting around eating and chatting about the day and any photography questions you may have.

Day Two - Sunday:

8am to 9am: Optional hour for discussion/review - a casual time for talk 9am to 10am: Natural Light and Natural Light Modifiers * Finding perfect light on location * Using reflectors to control contrast * Location Challenges and How to Overcome them * Natural Light Subtleties

10am to 11pm: Models on Location * Working with Models on location (part two) * Controlling the Model within the light * How to keep control of your shoot * Setting up for location headshots * Using the environment to help create the lighting for the shot * Five ways to use a speedlight without changing your natural light settings... and add a 'killer' look. (Only taught at the workshops - you'll love this stuff)

11am to 12pm: (working lunch): Using Speedlights on Location * Bare Flash techniques for a Non-Flash look * Using modifiers on location (Umbrellas/Softboxes/Scrims) * Adding Speedlight to existing sun * Shooting in the worst light of the day... now not a problem

12:30pm to 2pm: Shooting on location with models * Photographer model teams shoot in the locations with natural light / speedlight / mixed assignments photographers and models rotate so everyone has a chance to shoot all assignments/models

2pm to 3pm: When the Location Sucks * "Creating the Shot" when the light and location is less than perfect * How multiple speedlights can help when the light isn't cooperating * Two and three light setups * How "knowing" the lights can save time and keep the shot moving * Dynamic "Posing" techniques. How to light a moving subject * "Choosing the angle can make all the difference." How that applies to lighting as well.

4pm to 5:30pm: Model Shooting with assignment sheets. * Models/Photographers rotate for four assignments * Each group will photograph every model

6pm to 7pm (optional): Group Dinner

7pm to 10pm (optional): Postproduction and Photoshop Demonstrations * Taking our images to the next level * you may want to bring your laptop to follow along as Don demonstrates how he gives his images that 'finishing look'

Please note that this Postproduction session is in addition to the 'regular' workshop program Don is teaching elsewhere. VPW is very proud to have Don commit to this special addition to his workshop. This part is optional but it is highly recommended that you stay. This will ONLY be offered in Vancover! Thank you Don!


If you can change the lenses, fire your flash off the camera, change aperture and shutterspeed, then you can take this workshop.


Maximum 14 participants.

What to Bring

Equipment Needed:

Bring your camera (must have manual controls) and at least 1 lens. A tripod is a good idea if you like working with one.
A laptop is computer is recommended (not required)

We Provide:

Workshop content as detailed above.

This Workshop also includes the Lighting Essentials DVD - Lighting for Effect, the Photoshop Essentials II DVD, and the LE Workshop Workbook.


Early-Bird Discount:

Most of our courses and workshops offer a 10% discount is applied automatically if you register before the Early-Bird Discount deadline date listed in the registration table below.

Some courses and workshops offer a discount if you're among the first 3 people who register. This discount will replace the 'standard' Early Bird Discount mentioned above, and will be applied automatically during the online registration process (as long as it is available). Check the course/workshop listing page for more details.

Group Discount:

A 5% discount will be appplied if 3 or more people register at the same time for the same workshop. (All 3 tuitions must be paid for by one credit card to be considered a group registration.) Please follow the instructions on the online registration page.


In order to provide the best learning environment possible VPW keeps class and tour sizes limited to 10-15 people (depending on the workshop). This is but one reason that we count on you to attend your chosen class or tour, once you have registered for it.

If you must withdraw for any reason please be aware of our refund policy as follows:

For our Local Lectures, Seminars, and Workshops valued at or under $100, VPW is unable to provide a cash refund. Transfers are limited to one transfer to either the same event at a later date, or a different event of equal value. VPW requires 48 hours written notice in order to make such a transfer (email notice is acceptable). The event you are transferring to must occur within 6 months of the original event you registered for. A $15 fee will be applied to all transfers.

For our Local Workshops, 1 to 5 days in length and our Local 4 to 10 Week Courses, VPW requires 30 days written notice (before the event start date) of your withdrawal in order to provide a refund. (Email notice is acceptable.)

For our Master Photographer Series workshops, 1 to 5 days in length, VPW requires 60 days written notice (before the workshop start date) of your withdrawal in order to provide a refund. VPW may retain 15% of fees paid or $150 minimum in processing your refund. If the tuition is less than $500 the minimum fee drops to $75.

Within 45 days of the Master Photographer Series workshop date all fees paid are non-refundable.

For our Photo Tours (national and international), the following charges will apply:

  • If you cancel up to 3 months before the tour start date and we can fill your space, your reservation (or deposit) fee will be refunded
  • There is no additional cancellation fee up to 8 weeks before the start of your tour
  • From 8 weeks to 4 weeks before the tour: 25% of your balance
  • From 4 weeks to 1 week before the tour: 50% of your balance
  • From 1 week to 72 hours before the tour: 75% of your balance
  • If you cancel within 72 hours of the start of the trip, no refund can be paid
  • Transaction charges incurred on accepting and refunding payments will be deducted from the refund amount
  • In the (unlikely) event that we cancel the Photo Tour, all monies paid will be refunded in full

We highly recommend that you take out travel insurance to guard yourself against monies lost due to unavoidable cancellation by either party.

Transfers (for all events over $100): If you wish to transfer to a different workshop date, VPW requires a minimum of 30 days written (email) notice. All transfers are based on availaibility, and subject to approval by VPW staff. For courses/workshops with tuition above $101, the transfer fee is $35.

Transfer Fees as based on event pricing:
Tuition of $100 and below, the transfer fee is $15
Tuition of $101 and above, the transfer fee is $35

VPW can give no refunds:

If you registered for any event valued at or under $100
If you do not show up for your registered course.
If you register for a course beyond or below your skill or ability level.

Refunds for all events valued at $101 and above (excluding Master Series Workshops):
If a student wishes to cancel their registration for any of VPW's events, and has provided written notice within the appropriate timeframe, a refund less a $50 administration fee will be provided.

Course Cancellation:

Occasionally, we may have to cancel a course due to low enrollment. In this case, we will issue a full refund of all monies paid to VPW up to that time.

Instructor Replacement:

In the event that a listed instructor is unable to participate because of a change in his or her professional schedule, we will replace the instructor with someone of equal or similar credentials. If we cannot find a replacement in due time before the course is about to start, a particular class may have to be rescheduled.


In the event that we cancel your course, for any reason, the extent of VPW's liability is limited to the return of all monies paid. We will do everything we can to register you in another equivalent course. VPW will not be responsible for reimbursement of travel expenses of any kind.

Please note: An administration charge of $50 applies to all refunds

Read complete refund and liability policy

"Just wanted to drop you a line and tell you what a fantastic time I had at your workshop. I have been up the better part of the night sorting pictures because I am so excited to see the results of my two days of hard work and learning. The personal one on one attention that you gave to each of us was terrific. I plan on taking your workshop again and recommending it to all my photography friends. It was hard work but so much fun that I felt like I was on vacation. Thanks again for sharing all your valuable knowledge with us and feel free to give out my e-mail address or phone number to anyone would needs a reference for you workshop."

- Sheri Tanner -

Your workshop proved to be an exciting light trip to the highest degree! Your expertise and insight as a teacher of photography demonstrates again that everybody can learn!

- Eddie Rios

Read more testimonials......

The learn to Light Workshop is taught by the following instructor:

Don Giannatti
Visit Don's Website for more information


Class Start Date Time Early Registration Discount: Location Instructor Registration
Saturday and Sunday October 13th + 14th, 2012 9am - 6pm First 5 students registered receive $55 off regular tuition VPW Studios Don Giannatti Click Here to Register