Spend Two Hours Learning from Portrait Master Greg Heisler

Earlier this week, when stumbled across this two-hour presentation by iconic portrait photographer Greg Heisler, it took all the will power we had not to share it with you right away. In our world, being the “first” to report on a story is often very important, and it’s an impulse we often have to resist because we’re intent on getting the story right.

In this case, however, it had nothing to do with getting the story right and everything to do with sharing it at a time when we felt the majority of our readers would have enough time to watch the video from start to finish. Two hours is a long time to listen to one photographer speak, but in the case of Gregory Heisler, we think you’ll find it’s not nearly long enough.


This presentation was given by Mr. Heisler at an Ilford exhibit of his work last February. Large prints of selected photographs from his then unreleased 50 Portraits: Stories and Techniques from a Photographer’s Photographer book were on display and so he spent some time talking about his life, career and a few of his favorite photographs.

We refuse to give anything away because we just can’t do it sufficient justice in text, so watch the video if there is any chance you can carve out two hours today. After all, that’s why we waited to share it. It’s a lazy Sunday and the NCAA National Championship (War Eagle!… sorry, can’t help myself) isn’t until tomorrow — as far as we can tell, you have no excuses.

And once you do watch it, head over to B&H and grab a copy of 50 Portraits. This is one photographic purchase we highly doubt you’ll regret.

(via Ilford Blog via ISO 1200)

  • Harry C. Thomas

    Time well spent learning. My only concern is the narration following the image of discussion for highened awareness is not returned to the image for observation for reinforement and observation.

  • Lukas Prochazka

    This post is probably to promote his book but I was planning to buy that book anyways and looking forward to watch that video. :D

  • Will Mederski

    watching it.
    worth it.

  • Vin Weathermon

    In case you want to pay a reasonable price: $26.99 with free shipping versus $35.95 with $9.27 shipping at B&H.

  • Blake Britton

    WAR EAGLE to you too!

  • Georges

    Really, really, great talk. Lousy film making, totally lacked coherence. Sad, because some great moments could have been heightened with framing and proper angles. Still glad I watched, great photography.

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  • Vlad Dusil

    What a GREAT piece to watch. Mr Heisler seems like a funny & clever man, obviously very knowledgeable and experienced. There is lots to learn about his approach and connecting with your subjects.

    I love how meticulous he is about planning the portraits ahead of time, yet he can produce stunning images in a pinch when plans are foiled.

  • MS

    Cool to see. That chick on her phone in the front row needs a drop kick..

  • Ted

    Yes indeed. That was a wasted seat.

  • Richard

    I agree with others, the video is poorly produced but the content is well worth the time spent watching. Heisler’s been there and his stories are excellent. I’m still gonna watch Tommy Lee Jones in movies but Heisler is credible and informative. And, his images are excellent.

    My mother dated Arnold Newman a long long time ago…. she tells me he was a total jerk although an incredible photographer.