Man on a Mission


Award-winning photographer Rick Sammon loves his day job. A tireless, prolific and inspirational image-maker, Rick, called by some “The Godfather of Photography,” is one of the most active photographers on the planet – dividing his time between creating images, leading photo workshops, and making personal appearances. Rick’s enthusiasm for digital imaging is contagious. He is a man on a mission – a mission to make digital photography fun, creative, exciting and rewarding for others.

Click here to contact Rick, or send an email to ricksammon "at"

A natural teacher, Rick enjoys sharing his photographs and providing practical how-to advice to a wide audience of photo enthusiasts through his blog, books, how-to videos, iPhone and iPad apps, a podcast and an expanding following on social media. With more than 700,000 Google+ followers, he has been recognized as one of the top photographers to follow on Google+. In his spare “desk time,” Rick writes for Photoshop User magazine.

Speaking of being a natural teacher, whenever possible, Rick teaches guitar - and plays with musicians of all ages. Here's a shot of a jam at Rick's house. "It's so cool playing with young musicians," Rick says. "Keeps one young at heart." Need a bass player? Need a rhythm guitar player?

Rick started his professional photography career as an underwater photographer, producing six underwater books and leading scuba diving expeditions to the seven seas and to Lake Baikal, Siberia - the largest and deepest lake in the world.

He easily transitioned into travel, landscape, wildlife, cultural and nature photography. Rick’s images, from his travels to more than 100 countries, have been published in numerous newspapers and magazines, and have been featured in his 36 books, including the popular Rick Sammon’s Exploring the Light, 11 apps, including Rick Sammon’s 24/7 Photo Buffet, and in this on-line training classes.

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In recognition of his talent and influence, Rick has been named a Canon Explorer of Light

Rick is also a Westcott Top Pro Elite, recognized for his skill in portraiture and lighting. He was also named by Squarespace as one of the world's best photographers. Keeping busy, Rick is also a Coloratti – a select group of photographers recognized, by x-rite, as color experts.

Rick is also an instructor on Kelby Training, where he shares his knowledge – though 11 classes – about light and composition.


While Rick describes himself as “evolving,” he hesitates to categorize his work. “I’m an A-to-Z type of photographer. I do it all – and I enjoy the freedom of not specializing.”

With nearly 40 years of experience, this self-taught photographer has many accomplishments – and many more anticipated for the road ahead.  As Rick suggests, “When you are through changing, you are through.”

Check out this video to  gain some insight into Rick's teaching philosophies.

Shoot Rick an email with questions or comments. Phone: 914 271 6132 (in New York). 

For updates on what's up, please subscribe to his blog.

Follow Rick on Google+ 
Follow Rick on twitter. Daily tweets about new stuff.
Check out some of his favorite pictures on
Check out Rick Facebook Fan Page.
Listen to the Digital Photo Experience Podcast. 

Like travel photography? Check out Rick's travel photography columns on Adventure Collection.

Sammonisms - Rick's photo workshop participants are familiar with his "Sammonisms" - one-liners that drive home an important photo technique. Rick's Sammonisms app, developed my Dr. Dave Wilson, features these sayings – and more: each tip/guideline/rule is described by a page of text with example photos. Rick shares 50 photographs that illustrate the tips and techniques, and each photo displays the exact camera settings used (the "EXIF" info). Dr. Dave also developed my Photo Buffet and iHDR apps (scroll down for info).

Here are a few of Rick's Sammonisms:

- The name of the game is to fill the frame.
- Dead center is deadly.
- When you think you are close, get closer.
- The camera looks both ways. Adapted from Freeman Patterson's "The Camera Points Both Ways."
- Expose for the highlights.
- Use your camera like a spaceship. (A Dick Zakia philosophy.)
- Light illuminates, shadows define.
- Backlight = shoot tight.
- Make pictures, just don't take pictures.
-  See eye to eye - shoot eye to eye.
- Take the darn flash off the camera.