Tony Sweet's Visual Literacy: Photography Workshop
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Tony Sweet's Visual Literacy: Photography Workshop

Tony Sweet , Gregory McKean  |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

Price: $39.99 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Tony Sweet
  • Directors: Gregory McKean
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Region: All Regions
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Studio: Master Photo Workshops
  • DVD Release Date: May 1, 2008
  • Run Time: 270 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001878RY0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,522 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The workshop is geared towards towards the intermediate to advanced amateur photographer.

Renowned fine-art outdoor/nature photographer, workshop instructor, and seminar speaker, Tony Sweet takes viewers on a personal workshop experience through the Great Smokey Mountains National Park and into his studio to teach his digital image workflows and describe the real working environment of a successful professional photographer. The two-disc set runs more than 4.5 hours. Filled with practical shooting advice, tips, and all the secrets of a seasoned professional.

Disc 1 - In the Field: Join Tony while he shoots on site in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, capturing the stunning spring-time scenery. Chapters include:

-Sunrise at Sparks Lane
-Late morning fog at Lea Valley overlook
-Shooting water scenes at Greenbrier
-Cabins in the mountains
-Using a tilt-shift lens at Roaring fork
-Classic shots in Tremont
-Overlooks of Clingmans Dome
-Macro shooting in the forest
-Getting the most out of scouting
-Best of The Smokies slideshow

Disc 2 - In the Studio: Tony opens up his studio to show how he process his digital images, creates fine art prints, shoots macro flowers, and even manages a series of lectures on getting into the outdoor/nature business itself. Chapters include:

-Lectures on getting started, publishing, workshops, marketing, and building a buisiness
-Early work near misses portfolio presentation
-Current professional work portfolio presentation
-Shooting macro flowers in the studio
-The camera package
-The digital darkroom
-Printing workflow
-Stock submissions workflow


Watched the DVD last night as soon as I got it, wish I was down in the Smokies right now! DVD was great! As usual Tony let's you in on all his secrets for taking great photos. I felt like I was right there with him! I took a seminar with Tony last spring to Acadia state park Maine. This seminar really bumped up my photography to a higher level, and just like in the video, Tony explains all! --Ken Levins

Tony's DVD is great. He is the ultimate artist and technician combined. I have all of his books and his old DVD but this one surpasses them all. I recommend this to anyone interested in photography. Thanks! --W. B. Helton M.D.

In quick response to viewing the DVDs, I would like to say WOW! To be more descriptive: Viewing Tony Sweet's Visual Literacy DVDs was like reading a great book where you find yourself being unable to put-it-down and wind up reading the book cover-to-cover in one sitting. As for Tony s DVDs, I watched both In the Field and In the Studio DVDs in one sitting (I believe 4.5 hours worth). Simply phrased, I was that impressed with the DVDs and felt as if I was on a virtual workshop; and along for the ride. The quality of the DVDs are absolutely first class and amazing: From content, description of various locations, sound quality, subject matter, showing what you see in the subject and with the camera, multiple exposure creations, exposures, using various settings (i.e.: D.O.F. preview, etc.), use of equipment, showing final results and comparisons of using a filter (i.e.: Singh-Ray Vari-ND, etc.) or not, etc., etc. Everything was simply put together perfectly and captured Tony s enthusiasm, creativity and master talents not only as a photographer, but as an artist as well - especially as an impressionist. From being a fan of all of Tony s books, these DVDs simply take you on a virtual journey alongside Tony in-the-field and in-the-studio. I also enjoyed the introduction of the various filters and equipment that Tony uses: From in-the-field, to post work, and in-the-studio, to Singh-Ray, Lensbabies and having an infra-red dedicated camera Tony simply covered it all. Needless to say, I am very impressed and inspired. Thank you for sharing and creating the DVDs.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Join a Photo Legend in the field and the studio May 22, 2009
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I've always been a fan of Tony Sweet - he's got a unique eye and creative style that help to improve my creativity.

Tony Sweet's Visual Literacy is an intimate look in the field with Tony to learn how one of Nikon's Legends approaches a variety of opportunities.

This is a two DVD set. The first DVD takes the viewer along with Tony for a multi-day shoot in the Smokies in the Spring of 2008. Tony visits Cades Cove, Roaring Fork, Greenbrier, Tremont, and Clingman's Dome to create images at some of the prime locations in the park. Having been to the Smokies many times, these locations were very familiar. But it was interesting to see how Tony worked the locations and the lighting.

Here's an example of how the DVD flows. At the Ogle cabin in Roaring Fork, Tony goes to a familiar composition and talks you through his thought process for composition. Tony creates multiple compositions to work the site with everything from long lenses to close ups and IR and talks you through everything he is doing and why.

The second DVD takes the viewer into the studio to explore a variety of close up and macro techniques for florals. Then the DVD covers the editing process, the commercial side of professional photography, and the gear Tony uses in the field and the studio for photographs, editing and printing. I found the section about photographing flowers in the studio a little slow, but worth it to pick up important nuggets.

Each DVD has extra features that are worth a look. The Extra feature of the first DVD puts you in the car with Tony while he scouts locations in Cades Cove. Buckle your seat belt!

This is certainly one of the better purchases I've made.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I did learn some tricks September 19, 2009
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The first DVD shows Tony trudging around the Smoky mountains and taking pictures. He described the shootings sporadically, as pro photographers would speak to advanced students. Some shootings were described better than others. How he managed lighting to deal with shadows and to enhance textures was instructive. I learned that #10 Magenta filter can be used to give a bit of life to fog, and the variable ND filter made by Singh-Ray can close down the light all the way to 8 stops, and is a great tool for taking blurry flowing water pictures.

I liked the first part of his second DVD much better. In this section, Tony analyzed some of his successful pictures. He made quite useful comments about mistakes in composition, lighting and editing. That is visual literacy proper. It was also interesting to watch him describe his equipment collection.

This DVD set is meant for somewhat advanced students of photography (which I am), but it does not do very well in addressing the usual questions of this group of photographers. So I give three stars.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One Word: Outstanding December 8, 2008
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I found these DVDs to be outstanding. I have watched both discs three times in the two months I have owned them. He doesn't do any remedial teaching; it assumes you have more than a surface understanding of exposure, metering, light; if you do not you will likely be frustrated and not rate the DVDs very highly. I have seen a number of DVDs and sat in workshops and Tony is a natural teacher. He doesn't take himself too seriously and isn't one of these prima donna photographers ; he is very down to earth and just wants to take great photographs. I HIGHLY recommend this DVD.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, but more of a two hour product advert. July 31, 2009
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I live in the UK and I enjoyed watching this video, as there are some fairly good tidbits of info in there, that is if you are advanced enough in the use of photographic jargon, to understand what he is talking about. And, unless you mainly want to shoot waterfalls with eight second exposures, using $400 filters (only available in the US, so add import duties as well for everyone else). Or how to make blurry green and white abstracts using a lens baby combined with a filter that you cannot buy(?) he had one hand made just for him. Then this DVD is of little use to you.

As you would expect, Tony being one of the people at the top of the commercial photography pile, he has access to more lenses, kit, filters and gadgets etc, than your average photog could ever dream of being able to afford, including a second high spec camera converted to infrared use only, with which he took about three images.

But if you are that advanced photographer with a large wad of spare cash burning a hole in you pocket, then this video is just right for you (although if you are, I suspect you would already have all this kit), but for the rest of us mere mortals, I would not recommend it for anything other than aspirational purposes.

UPDATE: Well, I took the plunge and bought the filters, had them shipped over to the UK and took the very large and painful hit in the groin for the import duties ($160 I think it was - thank you Gordon!). Took some shots (so so), then some more (mmm, not too bad) until finally, what do you know, I am making some really quite stunning images.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring DVD
I would definitely recommend this DVD, it was so informative, I do think anything Tony Sweet does is going to be good. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Linda Taylor
1.0 out of 5 stars Tony Sweet's Visual Literacy
Although I'm sure Tony Sweet is very knowledgeable, he is a terrible communicator. He did not explain what he was doing or why. Read more
Published on June 11, 2012 by cbhall
5.0 out of 5 stars Tony, you owe me lunch
Its like spending an afternoon shooting with Tony Sweet. Not too much of a tutorial walkthrough, just casual real world photo challenges/experiences, and learning how a... Read more
Published on February 26, 2012 by ritewinger
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic DVD!
Tony Sweet hit the ball out of the park with this DVD! I have viewed it several times and learned quite a bit from it. Read more
Published on August 30, 2011 by Arthur Mullis
5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet video!
There is no doubt he's a salesperson for Nikon, but who cares. Watch it the first time and just enjoy the beauty of the Smokies! The next time watch to learn! Read more
Published on August 12, 2011 by BlackCrocTN
2.0 out of 5 stars Wasted time, minimal information
I was extremely disappointed in this video! As a moderate photographer I was looking for a video that could help develop my ability to capture impressive landscapes, but this video... Read more
Published on November 10, 2010 by skibum21
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome
Fantastic Video. Loaned it to several friends and they loved it so much that they still have it, so recommend it highly. Tony is a great teacher. Read more
Published on July 20, 2010 by cristina somerset
2.0 out of 5 stars Not for the beginner
This was a big disappointment for me as a beginner. He was shown rushing around doing his craft, but never gave the details of what it is about!! Read more
Published on January 23, 2010 by Glass Lady
5.0 out of 5 stars Photo Shoot Workshop
Tony Sweet's Visual Literacy: Photography Workshop DVD is a very informative work. The package comes with two DVDs. One DVD take you on Photo shoots in the Smokey Mountain area. Read more
Published on January 11, 2010 by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Tony Sweet's Visual Literacy: Photography Workshop by Tony Sweet
Very much enjoyed this workshop video presented by Tony. There are two facets he cover; 'in the field' and 'in the studio. Read more
Published on December 7, 2009 by Jeffrey A. Campbell
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