Model in Landscape Photography workshop by Arteh Odjidja 

with Leica Camera UK and Park Cameras London.

All images shot on the Leica M240 and 35mm f/1.4 Summilux lens

© Arteh Odjidja 

Model in Landscape: Monochrome Photography workshop by Arteh Odjidja with Leica Camera UK, is a workshop for beginner and intermediate photographers designed to help them gain confidence in their ability to produce high level photography by fully utilising the basic elements of any photo-shoot. Light, subject, and manual camera settings. 


Participants will learn how to direct a professional model on location while using the surrounding elements to enhance the final outcome, and produce spectacular images in timeless monochrome.


Aside from getting to grips with your camera settings and working with available light, Arteh will discuss his use of black and white processing in creating a strong visual narrative. All participants should leave with the confidence to organise and undertake a similar shoot in their own time.


Special Thanks to:

Steve and the team at Park Cameras, London Rathbone Place W1T 1JR for hosting our workshop and for the great care they took to make sure we had all we needed on the day. Thanks also to Leica camera uk for supplying all the amazing Leica cameras we had to shoot with. 

Date: 19/5/17

Location: London Soho

Model: Latesha Wilson

Hosted by: Park Cameras, London Rathbone Place W1T 1JR


Meeting our Model

Latesha Wilson is our model for the day, and what a great face and personality to work with. You wouldn't believe she's been doing this for 10 years, but that experience is invaluable when trying to get the most from a shoot day. 

Latesha approaches me as I am finalising the prep for my workshop presentation that morning at Park cameras London, and asks me "What should I do with my hair today, leave it out and bushy or slick it back, I've also brought with me some elegant dresses and shoes I could wear if you like" She stood before me in a very relaxed - Bomber jacket, hoody, jeans and trainers look, with her hair tied back, and I loved it. "It fed right into the street stranger idea I had in my mind, so I responded "We'll keep the clothes as they are, and yes definitely let your hair out". We want you to have as much presence as possible today.  As a student and teacher of monochrome image making, I knew that her freshly dyed ginger afro, and smooth brown complexion would be a dream to shoot with available light and that the attendees would thoroughly enjoy the results they would achieve.

Shooting our model in London Soho

Our model Latesha is a talkative and energetic character with the patience of a saint. She's completely at ease with a mixed pack of shooters like us. We head into London's Soho to look for interesting locations to shoot, we all have our eyes peeled for any interesting backdrops and street scenes we can work with. The great thing about an old city like London is that, you are spoilt for choice when it comes to old facades, brick and metal works. You just have to keep your eyes open for them.

Utilising available Sun rays

We were blessed with clear skies and sun rays that day, but we were looking for muted warm light to work with and this side alley off Soho square was just perfect. The light was diffused and easy to work with. The use of a silver reflector was all that was needed to create a nice highlight on our models face and hit of light in her eyes. The group assisted one another and each photographer got their desired shot. 

Tease out a natural Expression and be ready to capture the moment.

Making new friends along the way!

For many photographers and enthusiasts, approaching someone in the street to take their photo, can be a very nerve racking prospect. The thought of possibly being rejected or even confronted by a stranger in the street, can be too much. This is an understandable fear, no one wants to be embarrassed in public. But what if they say yes, and what if they like you, have a creative mind and respect the effort you've made to step to of your comfort zone and attempt to create something. Everyone has to weigh up those pros and cons for themselves in the moment, but as the old adage says 'He who dares wins'.

We spotted a man wearing shiny black PVC trousers across the street from where our group was shooting, so we approached him to ask his permission to shoot him with our model Latesha. his name was Mario and he worked in one of the nearby boutiques. He smiled at the prospect and then in a nonchalantly agreed and we got shooting. Here he is looking just too cool for school with our model Latesha on Greek street Soho 19/5/17. 




Enhancing daylight shots using the silver bounce of a 80cm 5 in 1 reflector.


Off to China Town

Getting creative with obstructions in China town

As street photographers, we should embrace our modern urban environments as our most influential muse. Your ability to identify your shot amongst the simple happenings around you, and react quickly is your biggest asset. Things happen fast when your street shooting so you have to see it and then capture it quickly before the moment departs. One of our attendees was inspired to shoot our model behind some delivery palettes from a nearby supermarket. It wasn't soon after the scene was set and our model was in place that we were being shooed away by an impatient delivery man, waiting clear the delivery palettes away, he reacted quickly and got his shot, he inspired others in the group to push harder to see and capture what they were inspired by.

After an afternoon of exploring Soho and China town with our Leicas and making new friends...

The group had mastered the art utilising available light, learned to instruct our model on location and gained new techniques in mastering the Art of Monochrome shooting. We had such a lovely group and I look forward to the next workshop I will do here in London. 

Maximise your image's 'centre of focus' with a strong CROP! 

Don't be afraid to crop if the current composition you have doesn't serve the images centre of focus (centre of focus is the part of the image that draws the viewer in, the part section of maximum impact) with portraits usually the facial expression or the stare in the eyes - the composition should serve to maximise the impact of this section of your image. Shooting with a 35mm Summilux lens means I'm gonna get a little more than I sometimes want, when capturing a portrait (a 50mm would be a more appropriate lens for tighter portraits). But using a good quality digital sensor with 24 megapixels like the Leica M240's allows quite a bit of flexibility when editing your digital files in Lightroom and Photoshop. If you feel the impact of your image's centre of focus is being diluted due to a composition that includes too much then crop appropriately, till you are looking at an image that conveys all the drama and emotional connection it can. Lightroom has a great feature where you can create multiple virtual copies of any image by right clicking on the image in the film strip below the main display window and choose the appropriate action. The you can experiment with crops and compare different compositions to your hearts content. The use of a 'Post crop vignette' can also be a useful tool to enhancing your images centre of focus.  


After an afternoon of exploring Soho and China town with our Leicas and making new friends....

The group had mastered the art utilising available light, learned to instruct our model on location and gained new techniques in mastering the Art of Monochrome shooting. We had such a lovely group and I look forward to the next workshop I will do here in London. 

Using Format