The Art of Self-Portraits: Expressing Yourself through Photography

A course by Laura Zalenga , Photographer

Photographer. Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Joined October 2019

Learn how to use photography to delve into your thoughts and feelings

  • 99% positive reviews (158)
  • 4676 students
  • Audio: English
  • English, Spanish, Portuguese, German, French, Italian, Polish, Dutch

Learn how to use photography to delve into your thoughts and feelings

A course by Laura Zalenga

Our most reliable source of creative inspiration comes from within. So when a photographer becomes the subject, a more challenging, introspective form of expression takes place. Self-portrait artist Laura Zalenga claims to have learned everything she knows about photography through this artform. What began as a way to experiment with different techniques and explore her emotions quickly became a full time career for Laura, with clients like Adobe, Disney, and Sony relying on her expertise to communicate a visual message.

In this course, Laura Zalenga takes you on an intimate journey of self-discovery and experimentation through the art of self-portrait photography. See how to develop a strong concept, find unique outdoor locations, and use natural light creatively. She shows you her process, from the initial idea to final editing techniques in Lightroom and Photoshop, by creating a self-portrait that tells a captivating story.

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What will you learn in this online course?

18 lessons & 6 downloads

  • 99% positive reviews (158)
  • 4676 students
  • 18 lessons (3h 19m)
  • 6 additional resources (6 files)
  • Online and at your own pace
  • Available on the app
  • Audio: English
  • English, Spanish, Portuguese, German, French, Italian, Polish, Dutch
  • Level: Beginner
  • Unlimited access forever

What is this course's project?

Conceptualize, prepare, and shoot a self-portrait in an outdoor setting with natural light.

Projects by course students

Who is this online course for?

This course is for beginner and intermediate photographers looking for simple techniques to experiment and expand their creativity through self-portraiture. Also for anyone who is interested in learning Laura’s methodology for creating self-portraits.

Requirements and materials

To take this course, you will need basic photography skills, such as knowing how to use ISO, shutter-speed, and aperture. Basic editing skills in Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom are not required but will be helpful. All you need is your curiosity, and a willingness to express yourself.

As for materials, you need either a digital camera or a phone with a camera, a computer with Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop, a tripod is ideal but not essential.


4676 Students
158 Reviews
99% Positive ratings
  • More reviews

Laura Zalenga

A course by Laura Zalenga

Teacher Plus

Laura Zalenga is a German freelance photographer with a passion for creating self-portraits filled with emotion. She started taking photographs at eighteen and although she went on to study Architecture in Munich, she always found the time and inspiration for photography, publishing her work on Flickr and Facebook, where she first started to get noticed.

Laura’s visual language is captivating and clear, narrating an intimate story in every image she produces. She believes photography to be a type of therapy and one of the motivating factors behind her work, capable of healing both ourselves and others.

In 2018, she was one of the seven international artists selected for the Adobe Creative Residency and has worked for companies such as Adobe, Artemide, Disney, Lufthansa, Sony, and more. Laura also teaches workshops and gives inspirational talks relating to photography throughout the world.


  • U1


    • About Me & Self-Portrait
    • Influences
    • What We Will Do in the Course?
  • U2


    • Where to Find Inspiration
    • Two Ways of Finding Your Concept or How I Found the Concept for 6 of My Portfolio Images
    • Scouting Locations
    • My Equipment
  • U3

    Practicing and Examining: Technique, Posing, Light and Composition

    • Practice Self-Portrait Technique
    • Practice Posing
    • Examine Lighting
    • Examine Composition, Crop, and Ratio
  • U4

    Shooting a Self-Portrait

    • Setting Up the Location
    • Test Photos - “Trial and Error”
    • The Final Photos
  • U5

    Post-Production - How to Select and Edit Your Photos

    • Lightroom - Selecting Images
    • Lightroom - Basic Editing: Game of Trial and Error
    • Photoshop - Final Touches 1
    • Photoshop - Final Touches 2
  • FP

    Final project

    • The Art of Self-Portraits: Expressing Yourself through Photography

What to expect from a Domestika course

  • Learn at your own pace

    Enjoy learning from home without a set schedule and with an easy-to-follow method. You set your own pace.

  • Learn from the best professionals

    Learn valuable methods and techniques explained by top experts in the creative sector.

  • Meet expert teachers

    Each expert teaches what they do best, with clear guidelines, true passion, and professional insight in every lesson.

  • Certificates

    If you're a Plus member, get a custom certificate signed by your teacher for every course. Share it on your portfolio, social media, or wherever you like.

  • Get front-row seats

    Videos of the highest quality, so you don't miss a single detail. With unlimited access, you can watch them as many times as you need to perfect your technique.

  • Share knowledge and ideas

    Ask questions, request feedback, or offer solutions. Share your learning experience with other students in the community who are as passionate about creativity as you are.

  • Connect with a global creative community

    The community is home to millions of people from around the world who are curious and passionate about exploring and expressing their creativity.

  • Watch professionally produced courses

    Domestika curates its teacher roster and produces every course in-house to ensure a high-quality online learning experience.


Domestika's courses are online classes that provide you with the tools and skills you need to complete a specific project. Every step of the project combines video lessons with complementary instructional material, so you can learn by doing. Domestika's courses also allow you to share your own projects with the teacher and with other students, creating a dynamic course community.

All courses are 100% online, so once they're published, courses start and finish whenever you want. You set the pace of the class. You can go back to review what interests you most and skip what you already know, ask questions, answer questions, share your projects, and more.

The courses are divided into different units. Each one includes lessons, informational text, tasks, and practice exercises to help you carry out your project step by step, with additional complementary resources and downloads. You'll also have access to an exclusive forum where you can interact with the teacher and with other students, as well as share your work and your course project, creating a community around the course.

You can redeem the course you received by accessing the redeeming page and entering your gift code.

If you're a Plus member, when you complete a course you've purchased, you'll instantly get your personalized certificate. You can see all your certificates in the Certificates section of your profile. You can download your certificates as PDFs and share the link online. Learn more about certificates.
The Art of Self-Portraits: Expressing Yourself through Photography. Photography, and Video course by Laura Zalenga

The Art of Self-Portraits: Expressing Yourself through Photography

A course by Laura Zalenga
Photographer. Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Joined October 2019
  • 99% positive reviews (158)
  • 4676 students