An Environmental Awakening: Using Your Surroundings to Build a Strong Image

with Kristen Ryan


all materials are downloadable & yours to keep

Learn to create beautiful, unforgettable environmental images!

Join Kristen Ryan in a Breakout that will help you create strong images from your everyday using your environment, the power of observation, and by strengthening your image through purposeful framing and post-processing. She’ll also show you how to capture big, unforgettable skies (or enhance/create them in post-processing)!

what you’ll get

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84 page eBook that covers the creation of strong, emotive, environmental images


Four behind the Scenes videos showing how Kristen captures emotive photographs during every day activities


Over 2 hours of editing videos (including a step-by-step tutorial for adding overlays and processing amazing skies)

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A bonus creative composite editing video, 365 project guide pdf, and PDF on The Uncomplicated Self-Portrait

what you’ll learn


Learn to dive deeper into your environment through observation


Learn to create art in seemingly ordinary places


Focus on your individual senses in order to express your creative vision


How to bring consistency to your work through personal projects


Capturing skies in camera and creating your own


Being purposeful with everything in your frame


Using your gear and/or surroundings to eliminate distracting elements and create stronger photographs

about your presenter

Kristen Ryan is a hobbyist photographer who has a weakness for pretty light.  She is a wife and mother of two little ones.  She strives to capture her everyday life and turn it into a little piece of art.  Using her camera to document her children’s childhood and beyond has been a driving point in her photography. Photographing her everyday has made her slow down and look at the world around her.  She has a new appreciation for the little things in life.



  1. Shirley Voelker November 14, 2018 at 11:56 am - Reply

    I really enjoyed this breakout. Kristen Ryan provided an awesome pdf full of great photos and descriptions of techniques. The one think I love about the pdf is that she included camera settings!!! Yes!

    I’m old and the photos I have from growing up from film cameras, you cannot see people’s faces. So, I’ve gotten in the habit of cropping a taking close up shots. Well, after this Environmental Awakening breakout, I’ve come to appreciate taking photos and including the whole “picture” of what is going on. It’s been fun to try new types of shots.

    And the skies! Great video instruction to do a sky overlay. Can’t wait to try more.

    Kristen provided wonderful feedback and suggestion for photos submitted to the forum. For one of my photos she provided at least six links to other pages so I could do more research and learning. Fabulous!

  2. Lauren Dougherty November 12, 2018 at 8:38 pm - Reply

    Breakouts are such a great tool to expand your knowledge by seeing a photographer’s whole practice from start to finish. Breakouts give us new perspectives from a talented photographer’s mind and soul, and this is exactly what Kristen gives through her breakout. She helps us rediscover our five senses and how to apply it effectively to our photography, whether we’re just starting out or seasoned photographers. She also translates what it means to push our photography comfort zones by working at it everyday to reach a whole new level we may not know we’re capable of. Such a great breakout to teach us to push our limits and to learn about Kristen’s amazing work!

  3. Lauren Dougherty November 12, 2018 at 12:36 pm - Reply

    Breakouts are a great tool to dive into photographer’s mind, perspective, and inspiration behind the lens. Kristen does just this and helps amateur photographer’s build that courage to take the next steps into growing more each day. She breaks down how to ignite each of the five senses into our photographs in ways we may have not realized until her teaching. Because of her passion and hard work, you truly know Kristen’s work when you see it. We truly get a sense of her worth in this breakout. She inspires us to put ourselves out there and keep learning and growing no matter how long it may take. Great breakout!

  4. Holli Pool November 12, 2018 at 8:25 am - Reply

    This is a beautiful breakout, full of both inspiration and helpful tips. Aside from the main topic of using your senses in capturing the world around you, Kristen also includes information on working through and finishing personal projects, taking creative self portraits, and shooting/editing. I haven’t even gotten through all the videos but know I will learn a lot from them!

  5. Cami Turpin November 12, 2018 at 1:03 am - Reply

    I have been swamped during busy season, but decided to take a day and immerse myself in this breakout before the live run is over. I am so glad I did! The PDF is jam-packed with inspiration and a fresh approach to shooting using your senses. I am ready to really slow down and pay attention to my environment while I decide what kind of story I want to tell! Come on over and grab this during these last couple days! You won’t be sorry.

  6. Jennifer Santry November 9, 2018 at 3:58 pm - Reply

    This was another BO that didn’t disappoint. I really appreciated Kristen’s encouragement throughout the class. Her heartfelt words and enthusiasm for meeting and exceeding our photography goals really hit home for me. Her photos are also amazing! I loved her editing videos and learned so much about how to properly enhance skies and colors. My photography skills definitely improved in this class and best of all, she inspired me to commit to my 365 project.

  7. Ebony Logins November 3, 2018 at 12:36 pm - Reply

    Kristen’s beautiful breakout is one of my faves! I love the shooting videos because they demonstrate how she shoots and sees a moment through her unique perspective. As an environmental photographer, I also love seeing how she edits her work. I have picked up tons of great tips and tricks from this breakout and have been inspired by Kristen’s amazing artwork. This breakout is definitely a must-have!

  8. Veronica Johnson November 3, 2018 at 2:01 am - Reply

    I pre ordered this breakout and could not wait for it to start. I am beyond happy with the information provided and the editing videos. I have learned so much is just a short amount of time. , Kristen is very open with her editing process and what goes thru her mind when capturing moments. A wide angle lens in now on my list of things to get and I also am going to be practicing HDR photos and Sky overlays! Seriously a great breakout and you get so much information for such little cost.

  9. Nicole Loeb October 31, 2018 at 1:36 pm - Reply

    I just finished reading the pdf and it is so unique! I have always been drawn to the simply beautiful way that Kristen Ryan sees her everyday world. I always know her images when I see them, even before I see her name. If the image contains a stunning sky paired with an authentic moment it’s most likely one of hers! So when I saw she was having a breakout I wanted to learn more about how she sees the world and captures these moments. That is exactly what you get in this breakout. She helps you learn to slow down, use all your senses and really ‘see’ the world around you in so many different ways. This break out is great for photographers of any level, if you are just starting out she will give advice on how to get going on projects and how that will improve your photography. If you are an advanced photographer she will help remind you of ways to slow down and really see what you are missing in the everyday magic moments all around you. I was honestly sad when I got to the last page of the breakout as I felt I was really learning a lot. She writes about editing techniques she uses and talks about how to best use overlays. I can’t wait to watch the videos and put all this information to use in my everyday photography.

  10. Cody Farrall October 31, 2018 at 10:19 am - Reply

    I just read through the PDF and I’m already so inspired to capture my life in a different way! I’ve been in a rut lately (hello fall busy season!) but Kristen’s breakout has sparked some ideas for photos that I never would have thought of before. I can’t wait to watch the videos and learn more editing tips and tricks. I’ve always loved Kristen’s photos and the PDF is full of gorgeous photos, complete with the settings she used for each one.

  11. Annick Paradis October 30, 2018 at 11:20 am - Reply

    I am a big fan of Kristen Ryan and her big open skies images! I have always wondered how she turns a mundane moment into a magical one. In her material, she tells us everything about her though process and her editing tricks! I can’t wait to dive in all the videos. Her breakout is full of eye candies and you can feel her generosity and her personnality through her written voice. Now, it’s time to shoot and practice what I just learnt, in perticular, doing HDR in my documentary images!! See ya on the forum!

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