Closing The Gap, the Masterclass

A free series of video sessions to help you get to the next level as a photographer.

Did you ever find yourself thinking one of those thoughts?

  • “Photography makes me feel alive. I never get tired of shooting!”
  • “Oh, this sucks. Didn’t turn out at the way I saw it!”
  • “Trying to find my style! Aaarrgghhhhh this is so difficult.”
  • Question Circle
    “If I think of my hard drive and all the courses and videos I bought? Embarrassing.”

Let’s face it, f-stops will only take you so far.

After refining technique and learning the magic triangle where most images seem to sink anyway, at the end of the day you’re still unhappy with what you’re doing and there seems to be no reasonable explanation for that. I mean, you’re doing everything right!

You learn some more. Composition! Rule of thirds, golden ratios, leading lines. That leads you nowhere in particular, because your photos are still a long way from where you’d like them to be. Frustrating to the hilt. And utterly boring stuff anyway.

So much so that sometimes you fall into a rut. The fickle muse has abandoned you. Inspiration only happens after exhalation and the lofty goals are as out of reach as a Tibetan monastery. What are you to do? And why does it happen?

We like to call this the "gap".

The Gap

Ira Glass, host of the radio and TV show This American Life, explains it perfectly:

"But it’s like there’s a gap, that for the first couple years that you’re making stuff, what you’re making isn’t so good, OK? It’s not that great. It’s really not that great. It’s trying to be good, it has ambition to be good, but it’s not quite that good. But your taste — the thing that got you into the game — your taste is still killer, and your taste is good enough that you can tell that what you’re making is kind of a disappointment to you."

That's great and we're sure it will resonate with you, but while it's good to realize that there's a problem, what you're looking for is a solution, right?

There are thousands of books and millions of hours of online videos available that teach photography. You probably have consumed a good number of those and yet you still feel like something is missing.

The problem is that most of the educational material about photography deals with the technical issues, things like getting the right f-stop.

Don't get us wrong: those things are important, but once you have refined your technical skills, there's a lot more to learn. No photo ever won a contest only because it was perfectly exposed and sharply focused. Every award-winning photo is telling a story and conveying emotions in a way that is unique and bears the signature of its author's distinctive style.

Even tutorials about more artsy topics, like composition, tend to be incredibly shallow, often consisting in nothing more than the rote repetition of basic concepts, without much discussion about the reason for them. Rule of thirds, anyone?

Ira Glass goes on to say:

"And the most important possible thing you can do is do a lot of work — do a huge volume of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week, or every month, you know you’re going to finish one story. Because it’s only by actually going through a volume of work that you are actually going to catch up and close that gap. And the work you’re making will be as good as your ambitions. It takes a while, it’s gonna take you a while — it’s normal to take a while. And you just have to fight your way through that, okay?"

We wish it was that simple!

Yes, doing a lot of work and putting yourself on a deadline, like publishing a good photo every day, might very well be the most important thing you can do, but we believe more is needed.

Things like (in no particular order):

  • Not just practicing, but practicing deliberately.
  • Getting the right feedback from the right people.
  • Believing in yourself.
  • check
    Staying faithful to your original vision.
  • check
    Showing up.

We bet you won't find many of those covered by YouTube tutorial or even by most photography workshops. Enter Superpowers.

Superpowers

In the end, why do we take photographs?

If you've been reading this far, it's obvious that you aspire to something more than vacation snapshots. You think that photography can be a means to express yourself creatively and artistically.

We believe that, in order to be a fulfilled artist, you need to grow as a person, learn to focus, adopt an abundance mindset, and be successful in what you do. Can you tell that we don't subscribe to the myth of the starving and suffering artist?

And yet most people have no idea how to make that happen. We long for fulfilment, abundance, excitement… we long for Life with a capital L, and possibly a capital I, F and E as well (dare we dream that much?)

The good news? We all have superpowers. We may have forgotten them or never discovered them, and we may have buried them or been surrounded by Kryptonite and temporarily lost them.

We may not think we have them, but we do. And we can find them, unlock them, and learn how to use them.

This is your journey of discovery.

We will help you find your superpowers, and to warp speed your life in the direction it’s meant to go. To unlock, unblock and release the deep flow you’re meant to live in. To realise the abundance that is available to you in every area of your life. And to finally start LIVING large and strong and beautiful.

If you sense that life can be more than what you have right now, this journey is for you. If you long for health, strength, courage and wealth. If you’re tired of the same old same old, and you’re ready to break out of it. If you want more joy, more money, more love, more of anything you truly desire.

Let Us Help You

Nobody starts this journey knowing all of the above. We've been through this, made mistakes, stumbled along the way, and took many a wrong turn.

More than once, we have considered giving up, but in the end all of our past missteps have made us stronger and more experienced.

We would like to share our hard-earned lessons with as many people as possible, because we don't believe in hoarding knowledge. Knowledge wants to be free!

For this reason, we have designed a series of FREE live video sessions to help you bridge the gap between who you are now and the artist you know you can be.

1

The first session is all about the "Why?" Why do you struggle as an artist? Why do you often feel like you're stuck in a rut? Why can't you find your unique vision and style? Why aren't you getting the recognition you deserve?

2

The second session is all about the transformation. What changes in your life can be effected by following a simple set of practices, both in your photography and in your daily routine?

3

The third session is all about the "How?". We'll delve deeper into the techniques we have presented in the previous session, present new ones, and answer any questions or doubts you might have.

At the end of the last session, we will have a special bonus reserved exclusively to those who signed up for our masterclass!

It's All About The Community

We believe teaching is so much more effective if involves more than just a series of lessons delivered from above. We believe in getting feedback from our students at every step of the way. This is why we have included a forum system that will give you the opportunity to discuss every session, to give us feedback and to compare your notes with those of your fellow attendees.

We will also provide a closed community, a kind of a safe and private space where you will be able to share your struggles and your wins, without fear of being judged or ridiculed.

The Masterclass Is Over!

Sorry you couldn't make it on time. We will be back with a new program in the upcoming months. If you are interested, please leave us your email address by clicking on the button below and we'll let you know as we are about to launch the next edition.


Meanwhile, why don't you check out the photography retreat we'll be doing in Tuscany next spring? It will be a much expanded version of this masterclass, in person and intimate. 

Who We Are

UGO CEI

If you were to ask me what do I do, I would say that I am an educator who helps photography enthusiasts sharpen their skills, so that they can take amazing pictures.


I am a professional travel and landscape photographer from Italy with a multi-year experience in leading photo tours and workshops. I love to travel and show the beauty of the world and its inhabitants to everybody. This is really an amazing planet we live on and every place and every culture possesses beauty that deserves to be shown.

FABRIZIA COSTA

My passion for photography started many years ago: as a fashion and beauty editor for some of the top magazines in Milan, I worked with some of the best photographers in the world, creating beautiful images and shooting my own reportages when travelling.

Today I don't work with supermodels, yet I find amazing beauty and light in everyone I meet. I love to tell stories through images, to capture a part of your life and give it back to you, a treasure that will be part of your family for generations.

And then I discovered a passion for teaching, so I coach photographers, hold workshops and classes, and the interaction with professionals really inspires me to give my best to my clients.

Fabrizia Costa