How to Think Like a Photographer

7 Building Blocks of Photography - Online Course7 building blocks of photography course product box

If you don't think like a photographer - it's impossible to be one

Could you create delicious meals if you didn't think like a chef? - No
Would you get standing ovations if you didn't think like a musician? - No

Why would photography be different?

Master this straightforward, consistent method of conceptualising and you'll instinctively achieve the ideal lighting, composition, and settings for any image. The thought process of photography is universal across genres.

Merely knowing the camera won't suffice; to excel, you need a photographer's mindset.

What will I learn?

To think like a photographer

  • Use and predict light
  • Enhance composition
  • Add mood, feeling and purpose
  • Pre-visualise
  • Get settings from the picture
  • Become confident in your choices

In 7 weeks

  • Weekly video lessons
  • Support notes
  • Exercises
  • 3 Free bonus videos
  • Extra 2 hour lesson on week 8!
  • Pause or speed up delivery

7 weekly videos + support notes and exercises

Course features a portrait, in door close-up and a landscape. Each week we explore one item of the 7 step thought process on each image as it's shot in the real world. 

Week 1 - You & Your Brilliant Brain
  • 20 minute video lesson
  • How to think pdf
  • Support notes & exercises
Week 2- Let there be light
  • 25 minute video lesson
  • Bonus video - Blue holes for perfect light
  • Support notes & exercises
Week 3 - Compose yourself
  • 23 minute video lesson
  • Bonus video - Pre-visualising
  • Support notes & exercises
Week 4 - Which focal length lens?
  • 27 minute video lesson
  • Support notes and exercises
Week 5 - Stay Sharp
  • 23 minute video lesson
  • Bonus video - Depth of Field & distance
  • Support notes and exercises
Week 6 - Exposure - how bright or dark do you want it?
  • 27 minute video lesson
  • Support notes & exercises
Week 7 - Colour, white balance & check list
  • 27 minute exercise
  • Support notes & exercises
Week 8 - Bring it all together bonus
  • Portrait video
  • Close up video
  • Landscape video

How is your photography course delivered?

On completing checkout, we'll email you a receipt and a few minutes later your log in details to our online training centre. You can change these from inside your account.

Weekly tutorials, notes and exercises are added in your account every seven (7) days to completion.  You can pause or speed up your course should you wish.


Quote marks on grey background

Mike is extremely good at explaining how to combine complex, technical things with subtle creative choices. Simple and straight forward. I suggest you listen to what he says.

Adam Scorey - Group editor of Professional Photography, Photography Monthly and Turning 'Pro' Magazines

Is this course for you?

You're confident and at ease with your camera and its settings, you can see how different qualities of light affect an image and can control composition beautifully -  but something's missing. Your images are not as fulfilling as you hoped and you're not sure why. Do you point the camera at a bowl of eggs, set the perfect exposure and click? Or do you pre-visualise ways to make them more interesting?

The most engaging images are usually about something, not of something and to achieve that you have to think outside the box. 

Settings don't give you pictures. Pictures tell you settings.

You'll learn the right questions to ask yourself, in the correct sequence so you can pre-visualise your image the way you want it and this will tell you the camera settings. The 7 Blocks thought process will help you find innovative angles, great light, composition, the best focal length and more. Learning to think like a photographer is vital because...

There's nothing worse than a sharp picture - of a fuzzy concept

[Ansel Adams]

I don't want you to buy this course if...

You are less than confident with your camera settings, knowing when to ignore the camera's suggested exposure and choose your own, choice of focal length and how to combine it with composition, the fundamentals of light and its qualities. These things are not covered in this course.

The 7BBP is an advanced deep dive into behind the scenes and rarley talked about photographer skills, such as pre-visualising how you want an image to look, what you want to say with it and how to achieve it.

Camera skills, lenses, settings, light and composition are in my Masterclass In Photography course. Please complete that first.

All good? Then let's do this...

Buy The 7 Building Blocks of Photography

As a gift


Use this box to buy 7BBP for someone else

  • You buy it
  • Tell us who to send it to
  • They get an awesome surprise


buy as a gift

Buy 7 Blocks...


How to think like a photographer

  • 7 lessons - delivered weekly
  • Pause or speed up as you choose
  • Weekly support notes and exercises
    • You and your Brilliant Brain
    • Let there be light
    • Compose yourself
    • How long is it?
    • Stay sharp
    • Exposure
    • Colour and white balance
    • Bonuses...


Buy Now


Try a sample


Are you ready to think like a photographer?

  • Whatever genre you love
  • Thinking stacks up
  • Pre-visualising leads to settings


Try Now

7 Building Blocks Reviews From People Like You...  Trustpilot 5 stars Google 5 star

7 Building Blocks has: Massively improved my photography overall

What are the differences before 7 Blocks & after? Mike, this course has given to me a better understanding of all seven building block subjects , as you say its made me think like a photographer. It puts things in order.

What is the course worth to you? The course has helped alot even though I have been taking pictures for a while, your excellent explanations and YouTube films have given me a lot better understanding of photography - and a bit more confidence, very enjoyable. Also as local to you, I can relate to the locations.

Would you recommend The 7 Blocks? I would recommend 7 building blocks, as you teach in a very practical/visual way that makes it easy to understand.

Tell us about your achievements (Published/sold/100s of likes etc.): I am very pleased with my photos, I get plenty of likes - up to 200 on local media, and likes on RPS nature site that I have joined. I know a lot more about how to achieve the image I have in my head before taking pictures.

Anything else you'd like to say? In the future, I would like to do one of your overseas trips.

Thanks, Mike.

Peter Gregory

7 Building Blocks has... Made me think things through.

What are the differences before 7 Blocks & after? Having a plan before pressing the shutter!

What is the course worth to you? Difficult to put a monetary value of the course! It is priced about right.

Would you recommend The 7 Blocks? I have been taking 'snaps' for quite a few years now and was getting disappointed with the results which produced a decent image only on rare occasions! I decided I needed some help in 'upping my game' to try to produce more satisfying images on a regular basis and after looking at a number of free videos on Mike's extensive website decided to embark on his 7 Building Blocks of Photography online course.

Mike 'strips back' the techniques of picture taking and creates thought provoking ideas to enable you to improve your photography both in terms of developing your understanding of the basic use of the controls on cameras and more importantly looking at the world through a photographer's eyes!

Mike's friendly, clear and enthusiastic teaching methods enable you to consider how to improve your photography skills and his use of real photo assignments (portraiture, still life and landscapes) take you through the ideas he discusses. The worksheets provide a summary of the concepts discussed and the assignments in the worksheets enable you to develop your skills in specific areas.

I would suggest that before you complete this course, you have a good understanding of how to operate your camera to produce images and use the 7BB concepts to improve your skills to move from taking 'snaps' to produce images of which you can be proud!

Highly recommended.

Andy Louch

7 Building Blocks has... Improved my photography.

What are the differences before 7 Blocks & after? Before doing the course I would pick up my camera and take a photo then work out what needed to be improved.  Now I look at what I want to photograph and think about how best to get the shot I had in mind. I am finding I am a lot happier with the final results.

What is the course worth to you? The course was very valuable as it makes me plan my photograph (wherever possible).  I also now move around a lot more and try different angles and lighting to see the affect it is having on the subject.

Would you recommend The 7 Blocks? I would strongly recommend this 7 Blocks course, even if you think you have a good understanding of photography.  Mike's way of teaching is clear and logical and certainly has given me a lot to think about when taking photos.

Wendy Wilson

Enjoy a risk free 100% refund guarantee

Valid for 60 days from purchase


Your tutor at a glance

I'm flattered to have been called the UK's friendliest Photography Expert (Thanks 500px!).  

I'm proud to have made hundreds of videos and spent thousands of hours teaching people like you to see more beauty in the world every day (and to capture that beauty), by thinking like a photographer. 

My YouTube channel has served more than 26 Million views and has more than 260,000 subscribers.

I've appeared on TV shows and been asked to speak at some of the best photography events on earth, such as:

  • Xposure International Photography Festival, Sharjah, UAE
  • The Photography Show, Birmingham, UK

I've enjoyed a wonderful career as a photographer, presenter and teacher. I even trained as a teacher so that I could reach my full potential and enable others to reach theirs.

As a photographer, I'm proud to have won multiple awards: 

  • Petapixel TopTen Youtube Trainers list
  • x3 Xposure International Photography Festival Awards
  • x1 Fuji Commercial - x2 Fuji Wedding
  • Kodak Gold Award
  • x14 Master Photographers Association Awards

And I've been lucky to have had exhibitions at prestigious venues such as:

  • The Master Photographers Association
  • Royal Photographic Society
  • Romanian Embassy (London)
  • Xposure Photography Festival - others...

When not teaching photography I also have a role as a brand ambassador for and I have written for publications such as:

  • Ephotozine
  • DSLR User magazine
  • Professional Photographer
  • Photography Monthly - others...

Trumping all of this, my proudest achievement to date is the huge number of wonderful 5* reviews on Trustpilot and Google - written by people like you after completing my courses. This is what inspires me to continue creating courses to help more people fall in love with photography. 

Man wearing motorcycle jacket pointing at a camera

Photographer, speaker and motorcyclist

Mike Browne CDTP Lite Photoshow 600

Speaking at The Photo Show Birmingham UK

Xposure International Photography Festival - Sharjah, UAE

Group of photographers on a wooden dock at a lake in Switzerland

Switzerland Photo Workshop Group