• Make More Than
    Snapshots & Postcards

    There's this idea that travel photography is just showing up in amazing places with an amazing camera and pointing the lens at amazing things. Anyone who's done this knows how easy it is to come back from those places, the ones where "it's impossible to take a bad photograph," with hundreds, if not thousands, of photographs that don't come close to your hopes and expectations. Traveling the world has never been more accessible, but making photographs of those places remains a technical and creative challenge. No matter how amazing the place or camera.
    The Traveling Lens is an online course that equips you to take that challenge and come home with stronger, deeper photographs of the places you love.


  • Taught by a travel and humanitarian photographer with years of challenging assignment and personal work on all seven continents in places as diverse as the Mongolian steppes, the Ecuadorian Andes, the back alleys of Old Cairo, the desert towns of Rajasthan, and 55 other countries, The Traveling Lens is David duChemin's way of teaching his own approach to seeing and photographing places and cultures in a deeper way—a way that pushes past the postcards and snapshots.


    Filmed while on location in the ancient city of Varanasi, India, The Traveling Lens was designed to teach the content from David's sold-out MentorSeries Workshops in a way that allows you to take the course on your own time, in your own space, for a fraction of what his workshops cost, making his ideas and wisdom more accessible than ever.


    The Traveling Lens is 20 great lessons, easily accessed online on almost any device, all of them with video and written components, and corresponding transcripts & audio files for those who prefer to read or listen to the lessons.


    Unlike many online courses, the content is always yours, and can be done at your own pace. Start in a month when you have the time and do a little bit every week for a year, or start now and take a sleep-deprived week to complete it; it's up to you. The course does not expire and you will never lose access.


    In addition to the lessons, The Traveling Lens comes with three Making The Image videos, and three exclusive eBooks created just for this course: Along the Ganges, David's monograph of photographs made while filming this course, Bodies of Work, an exploration into the why and how of creating powerful, cohesive images that work together, and Essential Travel, designed to distill the best travel wisdom from David's years of travel.

  • The Traveling Lens

    A MentorClass Course About The Passionate Photography of Place



    Getting There

    Three lessons, including an introduction to the course and a thorough discussion of gear and preparation for traveling as a photographer, plus a complete unpacking of David's camera bag for the India trip.



    Exploration Before Expression

    Five lessons covering the need to be present, spend the time, overcome expectations, the important concept of taking and working with a visual inventory, getting lost, and learning to create sketch images as part of the discovery process.



    Themes and Constraints

    Module Three addresses the importance of choosing and pursuing a central idea, or theme, around which your photographs will work, and the importance of choosing and working with intentional constraints to bring unity to your images and a starting place to your process.


    Working with People

    One longer lesson about working with people: one of the biggest challenges for all photographers, no matter how seasoned. Explore approaches that set you up for the greatest chance of success with the least amount of fear.


    Composition Matters

    In three lessons, Module Five explores the compositional priorities that will make your work stronger—particularly the recognition and use of light, the importance of moment, and the powerful role of stories.


    Three More Powerful Tools

    Explore three more ideas that are central to David's work and the creation of stronger, more compelling images: learning to simplify and isolate, learning to get closer, and the importance of having something to say.


    Workflow: Field & Home

    In the final two lessons, David discusses approaches to workflow, editing, image backup, how to allow your work to speak to you, and creating intentional bodies of work in order to get past the postcards and snapshots.

  • 20



    Each lesson is completed by Creative Exercises and Study The Masters sections to take you deeper.




    The course is completely self-paced and the material is always yours. Start when you want and go as slow (or fast) as you like.

    3 NEW &



    Along The Ganges, Bodies of Work, and Essential Travel were made just for this course and are unavailable elsewhere.

    3 BONUS



    Enroll in The Traveling Lens and download The Photographic Story, Forget Mugshots, and See The World.

    3 MAKING



    Made just for this course, these videos discuss the making of three of David's images from start to finish.




    Each lesson comes with complete written PDF transcripts and Mp3 audio files, and all video files are downloadable.




    The Vision-Driven is the perfect place online to ask questions and get feedback.




    All alumni enjoy a 10% discount on all future MentorClass courses and one-on-one mentoring.

  • Exclusive Bonus Resources

    Aside from an incredibly robust course that pulls no punches, and a chance to win a trip anywhere in the world with a beautiful new camera and lens, there are some valuable resources that aren't available anywhere else.


    Along The Ganges PDF

    See the full collection of the final images made while filming this course. Along The Ganges is an exclusive PDF monograph of David's work from Varanasi.


    Bodies of Work eBook

    This 100-page PDF eBook explores the benefits of creating cohesive bodies of work, and how to approach that process. Included are six case studies from David's own work around the world.

    Essential Travel PDF

    (Almost) 50 pieces of wisdom learned while traveling the world over the last dozen years. Making photographs is challenging enough as you travel; give yourself the best chance of doing it while staying sane and safe.


    Making The Image Videos

    After returning from Varanasi where this course was filmed, David sat down and recorded three videos to walk you through the making of three of his final photographs, discussing his thinking and technique from start to finish.

    Vision-Driven Membership

    One Year Free Membership in The Vision-Driven, David's private mentoring community. Full of thoughtful and respectful photographers, this is a rare place online, and with your enrollment in The Traveling Lens, we welcome you to join us and join the conversations.


    Alumni Discounts

    10% Off All future online courses & mentoring sessions. David's online courses and one-on-one mentoring will never be discounted or go on sale, but alumni always get a 10% discount (international travel workshops excluded.)

  • What Photographers Are Saying

    "So much more than a ‘how-to’ of travel photography. It is a deep-dive into methods and processes to better tell your story. I learned as much about myself as I did about travel photography! David’s teaching style is incredibly approachable and effective. I learned real, usable methods for improving my travel photos and building thought-provoking bodies of work."
    ~ Celeste Walz

    "The Traveling Lens is a perfectly presented set of videos discussing topics that will make me better regardless of where I am. Without hesitation, David once again displays excellent communication skills balanced with his superb attention to detail to offer a very polished and enjoyable course to watch."
    ~ Stephen DesRoches


    "This course is the most engaging online course I have ever experienced. David's ability to connect through video is unparalleled. I found myself actually missing him in between my viewings. Not only is he incredibly knowledgeable, but he is also incredibly personable and somehow he manages to share that through the course. Not only will you learn, you'll genuinely enjoy learning!”

    ~ Chris Broderick


    The Traveling Lens demystified the process of travel photography for me. We’re always led to believe that there is some complicated secret recipe to compelling travel photography. I now realize that the recipe is simpler than I thought—and the ingredients are right in front of me. Feeling like I was sitting right alongside David in the field, he patiently and thoroughly explained to me his step-by-step thinking when visiting any given city—and suddenly—it all made sense!"

    ~ Daniel Stainer

  • Have Questions?

    Great! I have answers.

    Q: Great! How much?

    A: Before enrollment opens again the Enroll Now buttons are hidden and so are the prices. We didn't think that one through. Sorry. When the course launches enrollment will be USD$349.00 or 6 monthly payments of $64.00 if that makes it easier for you.


    Q: I'm not really a technically advanced photographer, can I still take this course?

    A: I'm not a techy, either. Craft matters, and most of us need to keep getting better with our gear, but that's a long journey. The real work of travel photography has so much more to do with being present and creative and patient and knowing how to engage with people. I teach a process for creating cohesive bodies of work in this course, and you can do that at almost any stage in your growth as a photographer. If you can focus your camera and make a decent exposure most of the time, this course will take you miles ahead of where you are now.


    Q: How do I access the course?
    A: On your laptop, tablet, or mobile device, you'll sign in to the course with login credentials you create when you enroll. The moment you enroll, all course content will be available to you. All videos, creative exercises, and downloads. Boom! Right there for you. It's a self-paced course so you go as fast or as slow as you like. Repeat lessons as much as you like. Once you're in, you're in. This is an online course, but much of it can be downloaded for offline learning. Going on vacation? It'll be there when you get back. Can't start for a month? It'll be waiting for you.


    Q: How do I pay? Are there options? Is it secure?
    A: I want to make this as easy as possible as I can for you. We use both Stripe and PayPal to accept payments. Both are globally-trusted payment gateways that give us access to none of your personal information.


    Q: Really? One week only? When will you offer this again?
    A: Honestly, yes. But that's just the enrollment. Once you're in you have all the time in the world to begin and do it as many times as you want. So, yes, enrollment is open for one week only. But if you really want in on this, there's a good chance I'll offer it again. I just don't know when, though it will be at least a year from now and not at this price. If you want to do it in the next 10–12 months, now is the time. Remember, if you can't start for a month or two, or even eight months from now, that's OK. Enroll now while you can, and start when it works for you. Keeping enrollment open all year long means I have to be in sales mode all year long and I'd rather be out making photographs. It also means my support staff has to be available all year long and right now that person is my wife, and Cynthia also wants to be out making photographs. Limiting enrollment to one-week blocks allows us to serve you better and still do the work we love.


    Q: And you say there's a better-than-money-back guarantee?
    A: There is. I stand behind what I've created for you. If you do the course for 30 days and don't feel it can help you make stronger photographs, we'll be happy to give you a refund if you talk to us before those 30 days are up, and  you're welcome to keep and enjoy the bonus materials, with my thanks for giving it a fair try. Not sure the course is for you? I welcome you to enroll, test it out, and know that if it's not for you, all you have to do is tell me within 30 days. 


  • Need Help?

    If my team or I can answer questions or help you with enrollment,

    please drop us an email. We're here for you.

  • Meet Your Mentor


    I'm David duChemin. I love this craft as much as you do, and it's been my honour to teach students this incredible craft on all seven continents. I want to help you make photographs that you love, that light a spark, captivate imaginations, and grab the attention and hearts of the people who will see them. But I want to do it honestly—without gimmicks, platitudes, and shortcuts. I care way too much about this craft, and you, to give anything less than everything.