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Masterclass Claudiu Guraliuc

Claudiu Guraliuc is a full-time portrait photographer and educator, based in Cluj, Romania. He is a Master Photographer, holding the Associate distinction with The Master Photographer’s Association in the UK, and the distinction of Licentiate of the Royal Photographic Society of Great Britain Over the last 5 years, he photographed over 100 couples both nationally and internationally and numerous projects for commercial clients, from oil companies to restaurants, healthcare, IT or jewelry retailers. He`s been awarded numerous international accolades, in October 2020 receiving the Fine Art Photographer of the Year award, at the Master Photography Awards Gala in the UK, with an image part of his painterly, baroque-inspired series. Claudiu is an awarded member and competition judge for the International Society of Professional Wedding Photographers ( In 2018, he received a double Award of Excellence in the Creative Wedding category, in recognition of outstanding photographic skill and excellence in imaging, from the Master Photographer`s Association UK Nominated in the Top 3 destination wedding photographers by the Destination Wedding Planners Congress 2019, in Dubai, UAE. The DWP Congress is recognized as the world’s strongest business platform set to honor excellence in the luxury wedding industry. He had his work published by the largest circulation photography magazines in US (Popular Photography) and UK (Digital Photo Pro) and by several curated galleries. At this moment he is represented by the Katsea Art Gallery in Baltimore, MD, USA.


Learning from the Master

In this shooting we used a deep octagon box with a grid on top, and a light strobe in the back to create the effect of a single light source. The octagon is not directly reflected on the model, it touches the model very little, only with one side, and gives the painting effect.

The setting:

  • grid with strob ligt at 5.4

  • placed at about 1m from the gray background

  • grid placed at 1.5m from the subject

Claudiu studied substantially Rembrandt's art, paying attention to the finest details, from lifestyle, status, and clothing to the position of the body, hands, eyes, and small accessories according to that era.

The photographs themselves already have a painting effect, considering the settings, the clothing and the position of the models, but the retouching brings to life the pictorial photos.

His postproduction work is very complex, paying a lot of attention to detail. He edit the pictures in a professional way color, light, skin, contouring, gestures, until it reaches the desired pictorial effect.

I was very impressed by his work, and that's why I chose to learn it, and use it to bring my visions to life. I would like to make a profession out of this, to open a photo studio for Fine art. My inspiration for this photographic style are Caravaggio's paintings.

~Final result~

Not having time to recreate the technique I recently studied, I looked for an older picture with myself, and edited it in the style in which I learned, to practice this technique, and not to forget the editing steps.

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