"I find myself using the techniques I learned for every shoot that I do."
"Mark has the rare combination of passion, outstanding talent, and the desire and ability to teach others. He is a giver who cares about the growth of his students and is not afraid to push them out of their comfort zones in order to achieve this all important goal. Everything I know and enjoy about photography is thanks to his mentoring."
"Working with you was inspiring, enlightening, and downright demanding. I walked away with so much more than I expected to after those rather grueling three days, and will carry those lessons -- both personal and professional -- I learned from your workshop for the rest of my career. You asked us, at one point, what our biggest fear of the weekend was. My biggest concern was "not living up to my expectations." By the end of Day Three I had exceeded them, and saw that I can actually do this thing I've chosen for the rest of my life, and do it well. I'd gladly pay the money and go through the Halper Photo Boot Camp again."
"Mark made me think about the approach to photograph people with intent. Getting to know your subjects, composing, lighting and shooting. Creating with your personal vision."
"[The workshop] was an invaluable learning experience. I am ready to go back to work armed with lots of new ideas and with the fire that I lost before the workshop. I learned so much and can't wait to start to expanding my portfolio based upon the knowledge you have provided. Before the workshop I had lost my drive, but I'm ready to get back to the studio and start creating and having fun. You are such a master, you have an incredible vision. You have inspired me to start to look at things differently, I only hope that someday I will have the creative vision and the technical skills to create great images. In some bizarre way I'll miss getting my ass kicked , but I think I will always hear your voice behind me pushing me shoot with intent and look for the strongest composition."
"I realized by watching Mark that the art of great photographs is a combination of intuition, creativity and a planned process. I grew in three days more than I could have ever expected, and it changed my view and respect for the integrity of being a'real' photographer."
"The workshop was challenging and intense to say the least. I was impressed that Mark was able to effectively transmit the important elements of his work process to us in such a short amount of time. His speaking style is dynamic and entertaining, and he made sure every student had a successful workshop experience. Immediately upon completing the workshop, I noticed I was bringing more mastery and confidence to my headshot sessions. And almost a year later, the lessons and techniques I learned are still sinking in, which I really love."
"Being pushed from a very technically sound, great artistic eye photographer was a very valuable experience that I can use immediately in my work."
"This workshop exceeded my expectations and allowed me to internalize an effecient and effective way to see, plan, set up and execute a shoot for publication."
"If you like being pushed beyond your box, Mark's workshop is for you! Come with an open mind. Leave you ego at home and you'll get an experience beyond belief. It's like being thrown through a meat grinder, however, you'll come out the other side all better for it. Can't say enough about Mark's passion for his craft!"
"I found Mark's workshop clear, concise and to the point. It gave me the ability to find a stating point in each shot from which creativity can grow."
"Mark is tough, no doubt about it, but it's a toughness that comes from experiences that most photographers would die for. In a nutshell, Mark will break down your shooting like a high end potential client would and build you back up so you deserve every dollar they're paying you. Check your ego at the door because Mark will tell you the truth, unlike your friends, family and current clients. And in my opinion, it's made a WORLD of difference in my approach to every shot I've taken since. I don't even touch my shutter release without knowing EXACTLY what my intent is. Thank you Mark, you've helped me distance myself from my competition because I am now as tough on myself as you were on me."
"I want to thank you for your wonderful class. It's going to change the way I shoot forever!"
"It wasn't easy - I didn't want easy. It really was the best workshop I have ever attended. I hated it the first day - but that was because I was scared and unsure...Now I wish it wasn't ending. I can't say enough about it other than Thanks!"
"Mark has the unique ability to communicate complicated lighting, composing and framing concepts, while leaving the students own vision intact. I learned so much in the course of one brief weekend."
"Mark's workshop was a remarkably unique experience. While Mark can be a little brash, his attention to detail and advice are always spot on. I've learned a lot from listening and observing him."
"This workshop gives you the opportunity of doing some real conceptual and perceptual block busting. Thank you!"
"If you want to learn how a successful artist works, and learn a process for photography that can take your work to the next level, then Mark's workshop is the right place for you. Just be ready to work."
"This workshop has opened my eyes to many new things, and I know I will become a better photographer because of it."
"I learned the value of identifying my goal, studying my subject, and planning my shots. Purposing to hit the target though a structured approach eliminates chasing your tail and ending up with mediocre shots. Thoughtfulness avoids a lot of wasted effort."
"Before deciding to come to this workshop, I had reservations about whether or not it was for me. I made my choice, and I don't have one regret. This workshop made me a better photographer in all vital areas and I recommend it for photographers at any level. Thanks Mark!"
"The first day, you're bright eyed and full of butterflies. By the end of the third day, you're bleary eyed and full of caffeine. But in the end, the result is the same: Mark Robert Halper provides the perfect kick in the pants to thrust a competent photographer into the realm of greatness."
"The work was difficult. Making something from very little was a great experience."
"There were certainly many moments I questioned Mark's methods, however this type of exposure to the process of photography was invaluable. This is most definitely a "BOOTCAMP" for photographers."
"If your looking to challenge yourself and able to set aside your 'normal' way of thinking, this workshop will open your mind and your vision. Thanks to Mark and his team!"
"Great hands-on experience in shooting people, with all the time constraints and client needs a professional photographer must deal with. It gives you a practical approach to structuring a shoot and getting the shot the client wants."
"Being forced to follow Mark's rules and structure forced me to move outside my comfort zone. This enabled me to solve challenges in a more calculated way. I have grown because of that. Having admired Mark's work for years, I decided to take the workshop to better understand his approach to capturing quality images. Mark challenges his students to work and create without relying on the methods most comfortable to them. This was tremendously difficult, but by the end of day three I had grown as an artist. Thank you Mark!"
"I really wasn't sure what to expect. Finding such a centered, creative and down to earth kind of guy was great. No question was treated as stupid. Mark expects nothing less than 'giving your all' and it is very rewarding doing so."
"This is the best money I've spent on my career ever. I will be able to use and interpret the tools I've learned the minute I leave the class."
"It pushed me to do my best regardless of circumstances. It helped me learn that I can actually do this and be good at it."
"'Hell's Darkroom' - A well needed kick in the pants. It added a welcome amount of purpose and structure to my shooting process."
"A great way to re-energize your creative juice."
"This was my first workshop and I was in over my head and many times thought what the hell am I doing here; this is too hard and intense. As the weekend progressed, and then came to the end I was so happy! I got to experience this workshop and feel I wouldn't have gotten what I did without the hard push, toughness & intensity. I hope to do it again in a year or two."
"As a professional photographer, I learned a lot of new techniques; most importantly intent and composition. I was challenged and learned from my mistakes. I now have a new platform from which to improve and grow."
"Mark taught me to be responsible for whatever is in my frame, to compose properly, to light sincerely and honestly, to work my shot, to eliminate luck, and to see."
I love the ass kicking teaching style. I took away a ton from this workshop."
These are comments from participants who took The Exceptional Portrait in March of 2008:
"If you're looking for a creative kick in the pants, this is the workshop for you. Mark is able to succinctly break down his incredible style and lighting techniques in an easy to digest presentation; it's fun, inspirational and will give you a whole new sense of creative direction. His teaching methods are able to break through to new and fresh ideas in an otherwise staid industry. This workshop is for you if your looking for a whole new approach."
"I loved this workshop. I can't wait to run home and play with light. That you are so creative and untraditional has given me a new feeling of freedom in the way I think I will approach my work from now on."
"The workshop came at a perfect time as I am just in the process of choosing an approach for work. I found the idea of composing the background first to be particularly important for me. The idea of allowing lots of not knowing in the process was very freeing. The hands on demonstration of how Mark works without having previously seen the location was fascinating. In a way, he made himself as vulnerable for us, his audience, as he had his subject become through his questions. A very important and worthwhile workshop."
"I was able to observe Mark's process of connecting with an individual on getting to be the heart of understanding his subjects humanity, then he captured that in a beautiful portrait."
"This was an incredible opportunity to hear about the process of creating intent - then seeing it in action as Mark went from conversing with the subject to creating such striking images and all was done in the fashion he had outlined."
"The ability to quickly gain a rapport and comfort level with a subject in a short amount of time is often challenging. This workshop teaches a method of quickly breaking the ice between subject and photographer while also aiding in the conceptualization of the shot. An invaluable skill for any photographer."
"This was a great workshop. Although I was probably the least experienced person there, it was understandable, practical, and truly taught how to get to know someone quickly and turn that vision into a portrait that is unique. Mark taught how to use the available location and resources to create a great picture. [As Mark said]'It's not what you see, it's what the camera sees."
"Loved the workshop. It solidified the photographic process for me and helped me realize what I was doing wrong, and what I needed to do to pull it all together and make it work for me in my style. Also loved his 'no holds barred' approach."
"Whether your an experienced photographer or fairly new to the field, this workshop will give you amazing new insight into how to display and refine your vision and your photography."
Los Angeles Photographer Mark Robert Halper also works as a photographer in Orange County and throughout California. Find out more about Mark's Fine Art Photography, corporate headshots, music photography, annual report photography, photography workshops, and Mark's Innovative Family Portraits and other photography business. Mark now also offers hotel and corporate art photography, and other resources. There is also a photography internship available from Los Angeles Photographer Mark Robert Halper.