Matt Payne Photography Blog: Composition Is A Dance! A Conversation With Michael Torkildsen

November 10, 2021

Welcome to episode 238 of F-Stop Collaborate and Listen!

This week on the podcast I was joined by Michael Torkildsen - a landscape photographer who has been living on the road since right before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, with his eyes on becoming a full-time photographer.

Michael has had to pivot quite a bit since he launched into his full-time career and has recently been putting in the hard work of writing a self-published book on composition. Michael and I chat about his book project, and focus a lot of our time on discussing the challenges of composition in landscape and nature photography.

We also discuss:

  • Stories from working in his mother's 1-hour photo shop,
  • His journey into full-time photography through COVID-19,
  • Photographing icons and its application in composition,
  • Rules of composition and how to use them (or not),
  • Our thoughts on Instagram,
  • And a lot more!

In the episode we briefly discussed Greg Vaughn's excellent Photographing Oregon book, and Greg sent in a correction to the discussion:

"For Photographing Oregon, the publisher and I arranged a license for each of those photos with the creators. The photographers were paid in the form of 10 copies of the book (valued at $25 each), plus they received an adjacent photo credit and a link to their website in the book. With the exception of one photographer, all of the photographers that I asked to contribute readily did so on those terms. We did the same for photographs featured in Photographing Washington."

Here's who Michael recommended for the podcast this week:

Other items mentioned on the show:

1. Support Michael's Kickstarter Project.

2. Michael Rung's special offer.

3. Support the show on Patreon.

4. Join us on Clubhouse!


I love hearing from the podcast listeners! Reach out to me via Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter if you'd like to be on the podcast or if you have an idea of a topic we can talk about. We also have an Instagram page, a Facebook Page, and a Facebook Group - so don't be shy!

We also have a searchable transcript of every episode!

Thanks for stopping in, collaborating with us, and listening. See you next week.


Please find a transcript of this week's episode below:

BeautyThatSurroundsYou.com, Michael Torkildsen, colorado, cr 7, ralph lorean ranch, ridgeway
BeautyThatSurroundsYou.com, Michael Torkildsen, aspen groves, colorado
idaho, little redfish lake, sunrise
BeautyThatSurroundsYou.com, Michael Torkildsen, beach, elk, foggy, golds bluff beach
SIlver Jack, aspens, colorado, rowdy lake, sunrise
lisbon, nusara, street photography
Bandon Beach, Oregon, milky way