BIG ARTS in Sanibel Island logo.
Loading Events

An Invitation to Photographic Storytelling
Instructor: Dr. Harvey Schipper

A group of pink birds standing in the water.

February 7 @ 1:00 pm - February 9 @ 4:00 pm

  • This event has passed.

Modern digital technology frees us to be artists and storytellers first, technicians second. This highly interactive three-day workshop is about the expression of inner vision through photography.

In each session, we will examine (and create) images and ask the questions, What is the story I am trying to tell? How did I come to that point of view? How did I compose the image? What elements add to or detract from the story? Are there some simple (technical) tricks we can employ to make our storytelling better?

The great photographic storyteller becomes intimate with his or her surroundings. When we are deeply resonant with what we experience, it becomes possible to tell a large story in a single image. Or a small series.

About two weeks before the workshop begins, we’ll send a brief assignment for the first session.

We’ll start with the building blocks of an image: noticing the light, lines, color, and form. We’ll then build on those foundations to consider perspective, mood, mystery and revelation.

Finally, we’ll put it all together, exploring stories in an instant and stories over time.

Each session will mix examples from my experience with the results of students’ explorations based on exercises and homework from one session to the next.

Student level: Beginner to advanced photographer. It helps to be comfortable with a camera. However, the seminar presumes neither advanced equipment nor technical wizardry. This is about creativity and storytelling, not technique. Any previous artistic creative experience is a decided asset. For those who have taken the course before, this presents an opportunity to revisit the themes and push your skills just a little further.

We are planning to do things a little differently this year. Instead of three weekly sessions, we’re going to do this as a three-day intensive. We’ll begin in the classroom. Then we will adjourn outside and do the exercises together in the afternoon. Each day, we’ll come up with an interesting location around the island for our work. The next morning, in class, we’ll compare notes and share our work.

This course is based on Dr. Schipper’s book:  Of Light, An invitation to photographic storytelling. Interested students may purchase his book from

In the early spring of 2022, FRAMES, a European journal of fine art photography, produced a podcast profile of Dr. Schipper and his work.  It offers some insight into both his work and the content of the course. Here is the link:

Supply list:

A camera. Each participant will prepare a small portfolio of photographs based on each session, which we will then share and critique. They can be in electronic format, preferably on a memory stick, though small prints are workable.

Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday, February 7, 8, & 9, 2024, 1:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.

3-day workshop, $106 / $85 Annual Donors

Class meets at 900 Dunlop Road., To register, call 239-395-0900.


Harvey Schipper headshotDr. Schipper is Professor of Medicine and Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Toronto. He has travelled the world in the cause of cancer control as an engineer and physician. His camera has been a constant companion, a tool to focus his vision and impart his story. His photography has animated lectures and has become widely recognized as photographic art. He has mounted solo shows in Toronto and Winnipeg and sells internationally through Saatchart.

Instructor Website

CANCELLATION POLICY: Cancellations made more than one week prior to the start of class will receive an 80% refund.

-Or- funds can be transferred to any other workshop of your choice during the current season.

Registration fees are non-refundable and non-transferable for cancellations made less than one-week (7-days) prior to the start of the class.


February 7 @ 1:00 pm
February 9 @ 4:00 pm

Call for details/to register

Event Category:


BIG ARTS Sanibel
900 Dunlop Rd
Sanibel, FL 33957 United States
+ Google Map
(239) 395-0900
Stay in the loop