Take your creative vision on the road.

Traveling Light:
The Spirit of Travel Photography


  • Have you ever come back from a trip with photographs that feel generic and uninspired?

  • Have you ever felt let down because your images don’t convey the spirit of adventure and discovery you experienced on your trip?

  • Does the pressure to photograph the "right" things in the "best" light at the "perfect" time leave you needing a vacation to recover from your vacation?

This is why Traveling Light exists.

Travel is about more than famous locations and "award winning" vantage points.



It’s about fulfilling your dreams and pushing the edges of your comfort zone.

It’s about leaving some things behind and bravely stepping forward into new chapters.

It’s about daring and wonder. Curiosity and catharsis. 

It’s about meeting new people and places - and finding yourself in the process.



Traveling Light is about making images that reflect what travel really is.


OMG - you just turned my whole idea of travel photography on its head. How cool is that!? When I think of all the words I’ve read about travel photography all these years - yikes! None of them hold a candle to your thoughtful and inspiring approach. You truly are a muse!
— Patricia Hogan

What exactly is Traveling Light?

Traveling Light is a one-week online course for photographers who want to make insightful and deeply personal images during their travels - whether it's a weekend road trip or an international extravaganza.

The course includes inspirational readings, gorgeous audio slideshows, and audio essays designed to help you move your images beyond the commonplace travel snapshot. Some of the lesson themes are:

  • Expressing your personal vision even when you’re in an unfamiliar environment

  • Choosing subjects that are truly you

  • Finding more unique and less touristy spots (and styles)

  • Letting light (instead of the subject) be your guide

  • Deeply interpreting your subject - going beyond surface-level views  

  • Designing your trip so you have more time to create with intention and care

  • Mindful image-making - and knowing when to put the camera down

  • Connecting with people even when you don’t speak the language

  • Making relaxed, expressive, authentic portraits (instead of sneaky snaps from across the street)

  • Savvy strategies for paring down your gear 

  • My favorite travel apps and resources - exactly what I use when I'm on the road

  • And so much more!


You can ask questions and post your photos in the online classroom (I’ll be there!) and you can view the discussions and Q&As from previous students, too.

Since Traveling Light is an “on-demand” course, you can start any time and go through it at your own pace. Dive deep into the lessons on a red-eye flight across the Pacific Ocean, or savor the material from the comfort of your home, well in advance of your next trip.


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There are two ways to experience Traveling Light

The e-Course only option is detailed above. The second option includes everything in the e-course option and adds a mentoring component. Here’s what that looks like:

  • Step 1: I will review your past travel photographs. (Yes, I’ll look at ALL of them.)

  • Step 2: We will schedule a 60-minute mentoring call. Ask me anything - this is your time to use however you like. I’ll give you feedback on your images, and we’ll chat about how to use your next trip to advance your personal photography goals. We’ll discuss challenges you’ve previously experienced while traveling, and I’ll offer stylistic suggestions, encouragement, and fresh ideas for how you can approach image-making in whichever country you’re headed to next (I’ve been to quite a few!).

The mentoring option is ideal for people who want detailed feedback and personalized advice.




My travel & photography background:

I'm Laura Valenti, founder of Light Atlas Creative. For me, photography is so much more than a technical and mechanical exercise. I'm passionate about helping photographers become visionary artists.

I fell in love with photography at age 5 and spent the first fifteen years of my life living in Korea, Japan, and Hong Kong. Since then, I’ve traveled extensively around the world…and my camera has been my constant companion.

When I’m not traveling the globe with my camera in hand, I’ve been building a 20+ year career as a photographer, curator, juror, arts director, and educator. My teaching centers on clearing creative blocks and cultivating the insight and confidence necessary to make deeply authentic personal work.


A large and heartfelt thank you for this course. I loved the structure, content, interactivity, and very much enjoyed other participants’ photos, comments, and your feedback. It has been a very rich and thought-provoking learning experience, affirming some things, and encouraging deeper exploration with others.
— Ellen Edson



Frequently Asked Questions


What kind of camera do I need?

All cameras are welcome! You don’t need anything fancy to take this course. In fact, the simpler, the better! DSLRs, point-and-shoots, smartphones, pinhole cameras made from oatmeal boxes - I have a strict equipment nondiscrimination policy. If it makes you happy to shoot with it, you've got the right gear.


What happens if I fall behind?

Traveling Light is entirely self-paced so there’s no such thing as falling behind. Unlike a traditional classroom experience, Traveling Light lessons can be taken at any hour of the day or night, whenever it suits you best. No rush. No pressure. You'll have access to all the material for one full year after the course ends.


What's your refund policy?

Because you receive immediate access to all of the Traveling Light course material immediately after purchase, this e-course is non-refundable.


Is this class better for beginners or more advanced photographers?

Traveling Light is a conceptual photography course (not a technical class), so photographers at every level are welcome. The only prerequisite is being comfortable with basic camera operations (your smartphone is absolutely sufficient!) and knowing how to upload images to your computer.


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You are an artist.
Everywhere you go, your artistic viewpoint goes with you.



  • Maybe you’ve gotten comfortable photographing your local environment, and you want to learn how to express your creative voice (yes, you have one) no matter where in the world you are.

  • Maybe you want to photograph your next travel destination with a fresh eye and a wholly original perspective.

  • Maybe you want to document your travels with images that reflect the energy of the culture and landscape - the heart and soul of the place.

Traveling Light will show you how to tune in to the rhythm of a place and make images that reflect your artistic spirit.


Come join the adventure!


I want to say THANK YOU again for another wonderful course! It’s full of inspirations. Each day the lessons started with insightful materials that inspired me to do more and deeper thinking and reflecting. The best part was your feedback of my comments – very individualized, opened up my mind, encouraged even more and deeper reflections. I learned so much from those conversations. You made learning a process of opening the doors to possibilities. The course became the starting point for wonderful journeys of my own. I didn’t feel I was learning from an external source, didn’t feel I was having stuff piled on me. The process felt like me digging into my own thoughts, history, and ideas. Your suggestions of focusing on personal vision, personal growth, projects, slowing down, taking the time to develop a portfolio are all so great for me.
— Ning Fan
What a wonderful class! It has been so inspiring and thought-provoking for me. You’ve got me thinking about travel photography in particular, about photography in general, and about my photography. Awesome! I think the course is just as valuable for everyday photography as it is for travel. I also wanted to thank you for all the time you spend replying to our comments. That, I think, is one of the strengths of the class.
— Jill B.
I travel regularly and take a lot of photographs along the way, but it wasn’t until Laura’s course that I finally understood the true power of what I could do with my passion. I’ve also completed her Candela course and have come to know Laura as an intuitive and challenging guide. Since her curriculum cuts to the philosophical and emotional heart of the craft, the course is ideal for experts, beginners, and everyone in between.
— Gail Jessen
Traveling Light is the first of Laura’s e-courses in which I have participated. It certainly won’t be the last. Laura presents the right mix of pertinent information, stunning photography and thought-provoking questions to stretch you technically but, more importantly, philosophically as well. This class, while designed for travelers, is relevant to all photographers whether you are planning a trip or not. Truly, it is an enjoyable experience from beginning to end.
— Lisa Waddell