© 2017 Tristan Gramling

Let There Be Light: The 2017 Lighting Workshop

Let There Be Light: The 2017 Lighting Workshop

   April 27 – 30, 2017 | Denver, CO      

Adding light to a photograph does many things: it allows otherwise unseeable places to be seen, it adds the crucial ‘catch light’ to a subject’s eyes in a portrait, it creates a new style and intent in the image, and finally, it elevates the photograph to a work of art.

Lighting is a crucial and necessary step photographers must consider when trying to reach the next level in their photography, and for four days in April, Denver, CO was lit up with light as instructors and attendees met for the 2017 Summit Lighting Photography Workshop. Attendees came from all over to better their lighting techniques, learn about the lighting equipment that helps create some of the most stunning photos, and reach a new Summit in their photography.

Using the latest Profoto lighting gear, attendees had a variety of shooting events from studio portraiture to on-location sports action, as well as a variety of models including crossfit athletes, lacrosse and tennis players, and fashion models. This combination of cutting-edge lighting equipment and a well-balanced variety of shoots and models led to some excellent photographs.

Attendees were able to learn from some of the most talented photographers in the industry who are masters of lighting, including Nikon Ambassadors Dave Black, Joey Terrill and Lucas Gilman, and Nikon shooter Matt Hernandez.

Dave Black - Summit Lighting Workshop

Dave Black

Workshop Faculty

A Nikon Ambassador, Dave Black is one of the pioneers in the conversion to all-digital photography. Black is best known for his sports photography including covering Olympic games for more than 20 years for Newsweek. Constantly reinventing himself, Dave is currently pushing new frontiers in combining light painting and western imagery, photography well suited for a gallery wall. Dave is a wide-ranging photographer who uses light in very creative and unique ways, and he's also an outstanding teacher who conveys his passion for photography in every lecture he gives.

Joey Terrill - Summit Lighting Workshop

Joey Terrill

Workshop Faculty

A Nikon Ambassador, Joey Terrill is a Los Angeles-based corporate and editorial photographer with a long and varied career in photography. In recent years Joey has migrated towards his passions for environmental portraits and studio/location lighting. A prior attendee of the workshops in the mid 1990s, he’s now a regular faculty member, with a talent for effectively communicating the principles of controlled lighting in terms anyone can understand. His portrait talents are regularly tapped by commercial clients as well as Rolling Stone, Sports Illustrated, People and other leading publications.

Lucas Gilman - Adventure Photography Workshop

Lucas Gilman

Workshop Faculty

After early years in newspaper journalism, Nikon Ambassador Lucas Gilman's love of the outdoors transitioned his work to build a career in adventure photography. Traveling the world in search of untouched places and wild experiences, Lucas captures images ranging from kayaking in India, Brazil, Uganda and Costa Rica to backcountry skiing in Colorado, Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Alaska, and South America. A winner of numerous awards, Lucas regularly works with editorial clients that span the globe including: National Geographic, Sports Illustrated, ESPN Magazine, Men’s Journal, Outside Magazine, USA TODAY and the New York Times.

Matt Hernandez - Summit Lighting Workshop

Matt Hernandez

Workshop Faculty

Matt Hernandez is a portrait photographer based out of Kentucky who specializes in on location creative lighting focusing on seniors and athletes. He began his career as an award-winning graphic artist, and has since used those skills to help launch a very successful photography career. He has won multiple awards including the “People’s Choice Award” at the 2012 Google+ Photographer’s Conference, and The “Most Creative Award” at the 2013 Las Vegas Photoshop World Westcott Shootout. In 2013 he was chosen to represent F.J. Westcott as one of their “Top Endorsed Pros.”


Dave Black - Summit Lighting Workshop

Instructor: Dave Black

To say that Dave Black is a master with high speed sync and strobe lighting doesn't even do his abilities justice. Dave is so experienced and well-versed with Nikon speedlights that Nikon had him come to Japan and shoot the campaign for the new SB5000 lights! Now Dave gets to use his knowledge to help students capture incredible tennis action shots where the tennis ball is perfectly frozen in the sky, and great lacrosse shots where the players are either frozen in the air or are blurred to convey motion. Thanks to high shutter speeds, high speedy sync, and Dave's famous 'triangle' method of lighting a subject, students can come away with some portfolio-ready images and a better understanding of lighting.

Student Photos


Joey Terrill - Summit Lighting Workshop

Instructor: Joey Terrill

If lighting was as simple as shining a light on a subject, than everyone would do it. But the simple fact is lighting is much more complicated than it sounds, and Joey Terrill is one of the few photographers who truly understands the math and science that makes lighting work. Whether it's metering, power consumption, exposure and camera settings, or the shape and color of light, Joey is a master at walking students through the entire process of setting up a shoot with lighting equipment, measuring that lighting equipment, and then making adjustments to capture stunning portraits. Many students experience there "aha moment" when listening to Joey give his lecture or presentation on lighting.

Student Photos


Lucas Gilman - Adventure Photography Workshop

Instructor: Lucas Gilman

From the icy beaches of Iceland to the largest waterfalls on Earth, few people have lit more subjects and situations around the world than Lucas Gilman. An expert at both sports action lighting and portrait lighting, Lucas is well-versed on how to shape light and color in light to enhance the final image. He teaches students how to achieve the true "studio look" and how to successfully go from a one-light setup, to a two-light setup, and so on, until the desired effect is achieved.

Student Photos


Matt Hernandez - Summit Lighting Workshop

Instructor: Matt Hernandez

When it comes to portraits and action portraits, few photographers have a more well-defined style than Matt Hernandez. With a background in graphic design, he is able to use compositing techniques as well as his excellent dodging and burning skills to turn a great portrait into a portrait that deserves to be a magazine cover. This allows him to teach students with the end-goal in mind; thinking not only about the lighting and composition of an image but also what the image could be used for.

Student Photos


A great deal of photography is not spent out in the field photographing subjects but rather at home or on the computer maintaining equipment, editing photos, and building connections in the industry. In addition to being able to shoot out in the field alongside elite photographers, attendees to the Lighting Workshop also got the chance to learn some of the non-shooting aspects of photography, like post-processing and camera maintenance. With instructional classes, portfolio reviews, roundtable discussions and evening presentations, attendees are given a wide array of options to learn about the business of photography as well as what makes a desirable photograph.


Sometimes we get lazy. We think that anything we want to learn, we can find it on Youtube. It's just not true - I learned more about lighting in these 4 days than the hours I've spent trying to learn online. Don't cheat yourself; learn hands on with world-renowned photographers who can answer your questions, and give you hands on, real world education.

-David Pike, Edinburg, TX

You want to get better, you want to try new things, you want a mentor. Come to this workshop! Where you can work with fabulous instructors who show you how they work. Who make it personal through portfolio reviews. Who share their creativity. There is nowhere else that you can have such close contact with all these great instructors. It was a no-brainer for me to choose to come to this workshop.

-Colleen McCloskey, Catonsville, MD

From day 1 to the end of the class the inspiration, confidence, and knowledge that I received was simply immeasurable. I am looking forward to the next class I take with Summit.

-Jim Martin, Parker, CO

The Summit Lighting Workshop was incredibly inspiring--I cannot recommend it enough. The instructors were patient, enthusiastic, and encouraging. Networking with other participants was an added benefit. What a great group of people!

-Natasha Rigg, Boulder, CO

The Summit workshop was my first. My experience was great. I left with my confidence level through the roof. All I can say is that the professional staff and instructors of the Summit workshop have changed my life. Thank you so much.

-Allen Brown, Columbus, OH

The entire experience was first rate. The staff and instructor were all extremely helpful

-Nate Guidry, East Pittsburgh, PA

Understanding the why in the photography is the first, most important aspect. That cannot be taught, but I believe the next is understanding light, and how to harness it in any and every situation. This workshop has truly helped me to refine my skill set as well as learning new techniques and applications that will have a deep impact on my work as an artist.

-Jamie Boler, Scottsville, KY
Attendees to the Summit Lighting Workshop are seeking to reach a new summit in their photography.
Lacrosse models Luke and Sean pose for a shot during their studio shoot with instructor Dave Black.
Workshop model Francesca puts up her dukes as attendees take portraits of her at the Crossfit studio.
Instructor Dave Black stands next to a Profoto B1 light as he talks to students about how to use them.
Massif Studios, our classroom and headquarters during the workshop, is where all of the studio shoots took place.
Workshop model Jodi poses for a shot during instructor Lucas Gilman’s studio portrait class.
Workshop model Julie is the one lit spot in a room full of darkness as she poses during instructor Joey Terrill’s portrait class.
Instructor Dave Black snaps a shot of lacrosse model Luke during a studio portrait session.
Workshop model Francesca poses as she is lit up by the Profoto’s that instructor Joey Terrill set up.


The 2017 Lighting Workshop was certainly one to remember. With an exceptional cast of instructors and a dedicated group of attendees, the amount of photographic learning during the workshop was stunning. Not only did the students create amazing images that they can be proud of, they also created friendships that will help them expand their network in the photography industry.

We’d like to give a special thanks to Julio Aguilar and Sara Hertwig for assisting during the workshop and capturing behind-the-scenes footage. We’d also like to thank all of the models who helped us create great images during the workshop, we could not have done it without you!

2017 Lighting Workshop

© 2017 Joey Terrill

To Learn More About The Lighting Workshop
And To Sign Up For The 2018 Lighting Workshop:


Visit our Lighting Workshop Page.

Scroll to Top