The Passionate Personal Project: A Transformative 5-Week Online Workshop with Steve Simon

Join Steve Simon for this five-week intensive Personal Project Course to transform your work into a finished book using Lightroom's Book Module.

  • Dates: April 14 - May 12, 2021 or June 23-July 21, 2021
  • Genre: Personal Photo Project
  • Group Size: Max 6 participants
  • Skill Levels: All
  • Includes: Mentoring by The Passionate Photographer Steve Simon – Personalized shooting assignments – Individual portfolio reviews – Group portfolio reviews – PhotoBook Resource Website List with more than 60 of the world's best sites for On-Demand printing, Publishers, Distributors, PhotoBook Stores, PhotoBook Blogs and Book Fairs. – Training on editing, sequencing and the Lightroom Book Module as well as a PDF of your final book, ready for printing.

In this five-week online class, Steve will help you strengthen your vision and visual voice, with the mantra “the more personal you make it; the more universal it becomes” always close in mind. We will finalize your course project discussing your existing one and/or brainstorm ideas for a new project to pursue if that’s the direction best suited for you. 


View All Steve Simon Passionate Photographer® Workshops Here

Workshop Details

Articulate, Refine & Encapsulate Your Vision and Project By Creating A Photo Book 

Let the power of your personal project accelerate your growth and progress in photography with the help of Steve Simon. 

This workshop is for passionate photographers both amateur and professional working on projects currently or who want to begin one, exploring the power of the photo book narrative. (Limited to 6 Participants)

The more personal you make it, the more universal the images become. Steve Simon has been a passionate documentary project photographer his entire photographic life. He knows the power and the benefit of a personal project to springboard your passion for and/or career in photography. 

Your personal project could mean fresh shooting with personalized assignments designed by Steve. Or it may involve the culling, editing and sequencing from existing work to create a final portfolio or themed book with a creative, innovative and original narrative. You can concentrate on a theme or subject or very specific project.

In the end, Steve will personally edit your work in collaboration with you to sequence and produce a photo book using Lightroom’s book module. We will figure out the most effective and innovative sequencing for maximum communication. 

The type of book we create; number of pages, number of pictures, how you combine words and pictures to tell a greater story, the book format—all will be determined by your specific project in collaboration with Steve and fellow participants.

You will meet individually through Zoom with Steve as well as group Zoom lecture/critique sessions to learn and be inspired from each other’s work and project. The book will be the final outcome.


Week 1: Wednesday June 23, 2021 

Introductory lecture by Steve Simon (2hrs)

Course and participant introduction 

One-on-one reviews – 60 minutes per participant, by appointment. 

We discuss the individual Personal Project to be pursued and establish a plan for its completion. Students will have uploaded up to 1000 images (could be much less) from their project for culling/editing by Steve. First round picks will be available in a Lightroom web collections page. 

(Participants are present only at the time of their appointment.) 

Week 2: Wednesday June 30

Lecture & Group Critique (2hrs)

The Art Of The Cull

Group Discussion of our various projects and speak to our path moving forward. Steve will cull down the project work into a broad range of selects to be approved by the artist.

Students will communicate with Steve as needed (e-mail, phone or Zoom)

Week 3: Wednesday July 7

 Lecture & Group Critique (2hrs) 

The Power of the Words & Pictures Combination

Steve introduces the culled down images from each project. Personal Project descriptions/artist statements are due. We go over the selects that both participant and Steve had culled to prepare for Lightroom Book. Students will view Steve’s Lightroom Book Module Tutorial. 

Students will communicate with Steve as needed (e-mail, phone or Zoom)

Week 4: Wednesday July 14

Lecture & Group Critique (2hrs) 

We go through book module and talk about the edit, sequencing and discussion before final presentation of each project to the group. 

One-to-one reviews – 30 minutes per participant, by appointment. 

(Participants are present only at the time of their appointment.) 

Week 5 Wednesday July 21

Lecture & Group Critiques. Final edit, sequencing and discussion before final presentation of each project to the group. On approval, Steve will email PDF’s of all participants final projects. 

    Our Venue: Your Home via Zoom

    A workshop BSD (before social distancing).


    I can't stress enough how grateful I am to Steve Simon, for having agreed to edit this second book. Steve didn't only approach this book project solely with an award-winning photographer's eye. He immersed himself in the editing process.  Steve understood the personal motivation that brought me to create those images. He could also understand and respect my vision for this book while bringing his expert eye to the process of editing content, covers, and title.  For this reason, Steve allowed this book to express much better what I wanted to say and show but had difficulty doing so by myself. 

    My photographs are the words, but Steve put the words into an elegant and truthful presentation. I could never have produced this book without Steve's contribution.”

    Colette Simonds

    While putting together my street photography book, I felt I needed an editor that I could trust because I knew they would be helping me with my decision-making process.  I was familiar with Steve Simon because I used to listen to ‘This Week In Photography’ religiously when I first started getting into taking pictures.  He was my favorite personality on the show because he always seemed to have such a thoughtful and empathetic angle to the topics of the day.  That lead me to read his book, “The Passionate Photographer,” (also great) and I have tried to incorporate what I learned from it into my approach as an artist.  Finally, it was Steve’s eye and impressive work as a street photographer himself that solidified my choice to use him as a consultant for my project.

    I’m so glad that I did!  Steve was as gracious and thoughtful as I always imagined he would be.  He was able to look at my work and shake up how I viewed it.  I told him all sorts of wild theories and wonky philosophies about how I saw my work, and he as able to sort through all the fluff and get me to focus on the core of my message.  He did this with sensitivity and tact.

    And through it all, he was more amiable and responsive as I could have reasonably expected.  I ended up paying for five separate sessions because his input was that valuable.  Our conversations allowed me to save countless hours debating random minutiae with myself (that would have probably ended up nowhere and being a big waste of time), and our time together fostered an accelerated growth in me as an artist.  In less than a month of interaction, I feel like I am in an entirely different place as a photographer, and I feel that Steve is a significant reason for that. 

    I can’t recommend Steve highly enough!

    Tony Le

    I started working with Steve because I wanted to move from making individual pictures to working on photographic projects. Our first couple of sessions had an immediate impact on my photography in two ways.  First, Steve looked at a sample of my work, selected several strong images, and showed me what made them work.  We also talked about the images that didn’t work as well.  We dug into my picture making process and explored what I could do differently to increase the number of strong images I make. The sessions are interactive, so I can ask questions to be sure I understand Steve’s feedback.  Second, Steve looked at the strong images as a group and showed me how they could be the start of a coherent body of work. I really appreciate that he helped me begin to identify and develop my personal vision.  HIs questions and comments helped me sharpen the focus on what my project can be. In each session, Steve’s thoughtful suggestions and encouragement are helping me make steady progress on my goal of being a better photographer.  

    Larry Felton

    Steve Simon is a gifted instructor and also has the amazing ability to help you understand what you have unconsciously captured but may not have seen. You can then embrace that visual voice/style with direction and clarity. He is genuine and focused on your growth as a photographer … which is why I and so many others come back to his workshops and mentoring sessions.

    Denise Pensky

    It is said that people tend to emotionally support and defend that which they have created. Nowhere is that truer than for photographers in the pursuit of intended audiences for their photographs. We can subconsciously become prejudiced arbitrators when it comes to evaluating, editing, selecting and sequencing our own images. The private mentorship and critique sessions I’ve participated in with Steve Simon have been invaluable in helping me to cast off the emotional baggage attached to my photos allowing me to see them as they are and how they may relate to each other to form coherent collections greater than the sum of their parts. 

     Owen Seidenberg

    I would never be where I am professionally without great mentoring.  Thus, I knew the very best way for the quality of my photography to progress was to find an exceptional photographer as a mentor. Steve Simon has delivered big time…..with insight, skill, incredible editing ability and, of course, passion for the art.  Give him a try, it is a great investment.  

    Jeff Carson

    I participated in one of Steve’s Havana workshops, and recently had a online zoom discussion with him.  He has a comprehensive knowledge of Nikon’s equipment as well as the best photographic techniques to capture great images. Moreover, he is an  easy and fun guy to talk with because, clearly, he is genuinely interested in helping others enjoy photography.   

    Stephen Handley


    A picture is the expression of an impression. If the beautiful were not in us, how would we ever recognize it?”  

    – Ernst Haas