This workshop is designed to help you begin to see the possibilities. Successful photography is more often than not all about being able to see beyond the obvious and imagine the possibilities of a situation. This workshop aims to pluck you and your photography out of the world of mediocrity with it’s cliché photographs and catapult you into the world of fine art, where limits are set only by the boundaries of your imagination.
Photographers in the digital world have become overly dependent upon tools such as Lightroom and Photoshop for creating art with their photographs. Though post processing has become such an important part of our workflow, this workshop will help you learn to create stunningly unique photographs in camera while in the field.
You will come away from this workshop with a completely revolutionized view of natural light and all of its forms. You will learn how to tap into your viewers psyche and connect them with your subject. Advanced theories of composition will be discussed, and then we will break every rule you have ever heard of in photography. As far as I can tell, nothing like this workshop has ever been offered before.
May 7 – 11, 2017 SOLD OUT May 14 – 18, 2017 SOLD OUT May 21 – 25, 2017 SOLD OUT
September 3 – 7, 2017
September 10 – 14, 2017
- Day 1: Fly in to Coastal Regional Airport. Shuttle to Beaufort, NC. Dinner meet and great + discussion on logistics
- Day 2-4: photograph on the islands
- Day 5: shuttle back to Coastal Regional Airport in New Bern, NC
Lodging: Not included. We highly recommend the Beaufort Inn, or the Inlet Inn. Many other options exist a short distance away.
Beaufort Inn: (800)-726-0321
Inlet Inn: (252) 728-3600
Participants: This workshop is limited to a maximum of 5 participants
What to Expect
- This workshop will be focused on mastering the creative and visionary aspects of wild horse photography
- 2 sessions per day on the islands photographing wild horses. 6 sessions in total.
- Both pre-trip instruction and post-trip notes
- Access to a private online forum specifically for this workshop
- A review and critique of images throughout the workshop
- One on One sessions during the middle of the day to review and discuss your photography
Who this Trip is for
- This photography workshop is quite unlike just about anything else being offered on photography wild horses or wildlife in general. This workshop is specifically for photographers who want to learn how to see and think creatively. This workshop is designed to give you the tools necessary to take your photography to a whole new level. This workshop will help you begin to move away from documentary photography and dive into the world of fine art.
The first day is basically a travel day. For those who are flying in, you will do so to the Coastal Regional Airport in New Bern, NC. For those driving in, you will proceed to the town of Beaufort to check into your hotel. We will meet that afternoon, have dinner, and discuss the coming days.
Day 2 – 4
Each day we will spend both the morning and the afternoon out on the islands photographing wild horses. A typical day will include leaving the dock before sunrise to travel several miles by boat to Shackleford Banks in the morning to photograph. Once the light becomes to harsh to continue photographing we will then make our way back to the dock. We will grab lunch, and have a couple hours downtime before we head back out again. During this time we will have either a classroom session, reviews of participants’ work so far, and / or Lightroom and Photoshop help. In the afternoon we will travel by boat to an entirely different complex of islands to photograph horses. This basic itinerary is subject to change daily depending upon weather and tides.
Like the first day, the fifth day of the listed dates is a scheduled travel day. I will provide transportation to everyone who is flying out that day.
In the Field Instruction
While we are in the field, each day brings something new. Every time we set down our tripods, conditions, lighting, backgrounds, action, etc. . . will offer us new and unique challenges. From the right brain creative aspects of learning to see the possibilities of composition and light, to the left brain analysis of exposure, there is a lot to keep up with out there. But don’t worry, that’s what we are here for.
Small group sizes allow us to devote significant amounts of time working individually with participants while in the field. As conditions are ever changing, the realm of topics to be discussed while on location is endless.
Moving well beyond to technical parts of photography, while we are in the field together we will spend much of our time also discussing the creative aspects of photography. Understanding light and how to exploit it creatively sits at the heart of photography and this will be a key undercurrent throughout the workshop. You will learn the different types of light and how to properly handle them. You will learn how to control perspective and the relationship that this has with your viewers psychology. You will learn how to start seeing like a professional in terms of quality or opportunities as well as compositions.
The technical parts of photography are the easy stuff to learn. Though it may seem daunting if you are still learning, this side of photography is made simple when taught how each of these components functions in relation to real world situations and repetition. On the flipside of this coin however is the creative part of photography. This is the subjective, the art, the intangible stuff that takes cliché and uninspired technical perfection that is a dime a dozen and catapults it to a true work of art with the ability to make a lasting impression on your viewer.
This is our lofty objective while we are in the field.
Prior to this workshop, we will set up a private Facebook group for which participants will receive and invitation to join. From this platform, we can begin discussions relevant to upcoming workshops starting several months out.
Throughout the duration of the workshop, we are compiling notes based upon the days activities, concepts discussed in the field, obstacles, challenges, and successes. After the workshop, these notes are then compiled into a series of documents. The idea behind this is to take real world situations that you yourself were apart of to use as an instructional resource for you to refer back to after the workshop. Photographic concepts are outlined in detail, and specific examples are used with in depth descriptions of how exactly the photograph was made including the reasoning and artistic aspects that went into the composition as well as the technical side and how the two are used in conjunction with each other to express your creative vision.
Are we working from boats?
Absolutely! A 24′ Carolina Skiff will be our primary mode of transportation on this workshop. As the wild horses we will be working with eek out their living on isolated islands, boats are our only means of accessing them. The boat that we will be working from is specifically designed for the waters that we will be traversing. Though boats will be our means of transportation, we will be doing most of our photography out of the boat either in shallow water or on the islands with the horses.
How do I protect my gear
Protecting your valuable camera gear on this workshop a top priority at all time. With that said however, doing so is much easier than you might think. The biggest concern comes from when we are traveling to the islands. Wind and waves can work together to send spray over the bow of the boat. This does not happen often but it is a possibility. By no means is this dangerous for us and its really just par for the course when it comes to using boats. If your gear happens to be laying out unprotected however, it may get wet.
In order to safeguard against this, we require that all participants bring what is called a “dry bag” for storing their camera equipment in while on the boat. Your camera bags will be safe as we do have places to store them. There are many photographic opportunities that can arise while we are in the boat. From sea turtles to dolphins, from birds in flight, to horses suddenly running through the shallows – the last thing you want is to have your primary camera body and telephoto lens stored in your camera bag and inaccessible while an unexpected and fleeting photo op occurs.
The dry bag that you purchase must be large enough to hold your camera and telephoto lens attached while being able to still roll down the top of the bag at least 3 times before snapping it shut. A dry bag that is too big can be cumbersome and allow for your gear to roll around inside of it. A bag that is too small will not allow for the top to roll down enough times to ensure waterproofing.
We recommend an ultralight roll top dry bag for this workshop. These are actually the inexpensive bags on the market and are preferable to this trip due to the flimsy material that they are made from. Heavy duty dry bags will work fine, but they are more difficult to manipulate and take up much more space on the boat.
We like to use Outdoor Research’s Ultralight Dry Sack.
Is there special clothing that I need for this workshop?
Yes and no. You do not necessarily NEED special clothing, however we do highly recommend certain key articles that will significantly improve your experience on this workshop.
We will be working in and around water the entire time during this workshop. You will get wet to some degree. Clothing that is not designed to dry very quickly will become heavy, stretch, and will become a burden to you while we are working. For this reason, we highly recommend that you purchase quick dry clothing for this trip. The proper shorts / pants will dry within just a couple of minutes and allow you to concentrate on your photography and not your wardrobe.
This is very important. As we will be working in one of the most productive estuaries in North America, you will need shoes that will protect your feet from all manners of different types of offenses. The biggest issue that we face are of course oysters, but sea urchins, muscles, barnacles, and a grocery list of over species can be found living in the sand beneath the water. None of these animals are dangerous of course, its only that we need to protect our feet when working around them so that we do not inadvertently injure our feet.
Our recommendation is for closed toed sandals or dedicated water shoes – again with closed toes. Companies such as Keen and Teva make excellent options.
The recommended Keen’s can be found here:
What size telephoto lens do I need?
For this particular workshop, we highly recommend a telephoto lens that is at least 400mm. In addition to this requirement, a zoom lens that reaches this is ideal. Whether you use Nikon or Canon, there are many great options for this type of workshop.
If you are photographing with Nikon cameras, consider either the 200-400 or the 80-400 lens. In regards to the 80-400, the VRII version of this lens will be considerably better for this workshop as speed of focusing and sharpness issues have been resolved.
If you are using camera equipment, consider the 200-400 or the 100-400.
Third Party Lenses
There quite a few third party lenses that are also suitable for this workshop for which we recommend the Sigma 150-500. Sigma manufactures both Nikon and Canon versions of this lens.
Is lodging provided on this workshop?
Lodging is not provided for this workshop. We highly suggest obtaining lodging at the following:
- Beaufort Inn (252) 728-2600
- The Inlet Inn (252) 728-3600
What skill level is this workshop designed for?
This workshop is designed for intermediate to advanced photographers. Though photographers from all skill levels will benefit greatly from this workshop, those with a working knowledge of their cameras will gain the most out of it. Photography is both a left and a right brain experience. However, in order to full explore the creative aspects of photography, a solid understanding of the technical side of the craft is first needed.
If you are still learning the basics of photography such as exposure theory and how to read and understand histograms for instance then you will probably find the Technical Wild Horse Photography workshop to be of far greater value to you. The Technical workshop does go beyond the basics of photography but it does not dive so deeply into the more esoteric aspects of creative fine art.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions regarding this or any other workshop that we offer. To the left, you will find a simple contact form in place to make this process as simple as possible for you. We realize however that sometimes these sorts of onsite forms are difficult to work with when more lengthy questions and comments are necessary. Therefore, below you will also find the appropriate email, phone number, and even facebook account that you can contact us with if you would prefer.
Fact: flights get canceled, airlines overbook, snow storms shut down airports, family members get sick, doctors occasionally deliver unexpected news. Life is what happens as we are busy making plans. John Lennon said that, and it’s about as true of a statement that can be made when it comes to travel.
The recent loss of power to Delta’s systems that led to the grounding and cancellation of thousands of flights drives home this point. With so many variables and possibilities out there that cannot be foreseen or planned for, we highly recommend purchasing trip insurance for this workshop. The costs are surprisingly low and well worth the small expense. Trip insurance gives you peace of mind and allows you to know that if one of those little inevitabilities in life happens to pop up, you will not lose your money spent on your workshop and flights.
CSA and Travel Guard are the two big ones out there. But you can get instant comparative quotes through www.insuremytrip.com