The Art of Self-Portraiture

The Art of Self-Portraiture, an online-class, creates a platform for you to explore photography and celebrate yourself with a camera. Throughout history, artists have turContact-Cheryl Machat Dorskindned their study inward and created self-portraits. Whether another model was unavailable for lack of funds or character, painters and photographers often became their own subject. Back in the days of Van Gogh, it was customary to trade self-portraits, it was a token of friendship and mutual respect. 


Today, self-portraiture is extremely popular. Just look at Facebook and Instagram; everyone likes to show themselves.  Selfie officially became a word in the Oxford Dictionary in 2013, but there is nothing new about self-portraiture. This class moves beyond the Selfie, and like Disney, I too ban the selfie stick. Instead, I offer you an opportunity to look into the camera’s eye and discover.

Self-Portraiture is an art form and this class is a vehicle to learn about light, photography, art, and… oneself.


Topics Include

  • Technique
  • Who Are You?
  • Shadows and Reflections
  • Silhouettes
  • Avatar
  • Metaphor
  • Personification


  • Camera (any camera – including smartphones)
  • Cable release
  • Tripod
  • An understanding of exposure
  • A willingness to experiment
  • A sense of humor


Like all my online classes, The Art of Self-Portraiture promises a rich personal journey augmented with in-depth video critiques. You can expect at least 60 minutes of personalized review, insights, and new ideas; 15 minutes per assignment.

The class is divided into four lessons in pdf format with four corresponding assignments. Students are encouraged to submit three digital files (jpegs or PSDs (with layers) per assignment and a summary sheet (word docx) detailing the strategy involved. Cheryl Machat Dorskind will provide video critiques addressing the work.  Email correspondence is available throughout our session. You get to create your own timeline for assignment due dates!

The Art of Self Portraiture, online photo class

Office (virtual) hours 

During the online class, students will have access to communicate, ask questions, converse — a great way to connect.


The critiques will be rendered as private Vimeo videos (a total of four videos which each average 15 minutes per assignment – that is over 60 minutes of personalized photo critiques!) in the platform of choice (Lightroom, Photoshop or Photoshop Elements).


“Thank you so much for your kind, generous & encouraging words in your critiques, and otherwise.
I truly enjoyed your class, and I think it came to me at a very good time as I am trying to hone my skills with portraiture. Part of my struggles with this is finding willing subjects for periods of time. That issue was resolved for your class…
I appreciate you directing my attention to the “details” in my images (or lack of…). With self-portraits sometimes those are missed by nature of relinquishing some control of the timing of the shutter release. However, you pointing the importance of those elements resonated and will stick with me going forward. So again, thank you for that insight.”

~William Lee

The Art of Self Portraiture

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