Digital Photography Workshop in Big Sur and the Carmel Mission
Photos from the past workshops
It has been called "the greatest meeting of land and sea on the planet." National Geographic Traveler Magazine includes this region in its list of "Top 20 World's Greatest Places." Famed author Henry Miller is quoted as saying "It is here in Big Sur that I first learned to say Amen". For over a century, Big Sur has provided inspiration to painters and poets, writers and musicians, and most notably to us here at Aperture Academy, to photographers searching to capture the grandeur of one of earth's most scenic coastlines.
Big Sur refers to that 90-mile stretch of rugged and awesomely beautiful coastline between Carmel to the north and San Simeon to the south. Highway 1 winds along its serpentine length and is flanked on one side by the majestic Santa Lucia Mountains and on the other by the rocky, dramatic Pacific Coast. Starting in the northern end, we'll begin this workshop with a little bit of history by exploring the rich photographic opportunities found at the Mission San Carlos Borrome Del Rio Carmelo (aka the Carmel Mission). Founded in 1770, it is the second oldest mission in California. With its traditional adobe walls, moorish inspired architecture, colorful flower gardens and classic courtyards, the Carmel Mission is considered one of the most beautiful missions in the chain of nine missions that stretch along California's central coast.
From there, we'll continue to head south along Highway 1. The scenic qualities and the natural grandeur of the coast which result from the imposing geography, rich vegetative compositions, and the dramatic meeting of land and sea, provide the photographer with a bounty of photographic delights. Although the image possibilities are seemingly endless along every curve of the road, we've selected a variety of locales that represent some of our favorite spots. As with all our workshops, we'll work extensively with you on composition, tools and tips for determining the optimum exposure, filter use, as well as a host of other topics to help you get the most out of your camera.
For those of you who have visited this area before and for those of you who will be first timers, it will be easy to see why Big Sur has attained a worldwide reputation for its spectacular beauty. If the dramatic contrast between land, sea, and sky, coupled with a bit of history, and a speck of bohemia excites you, then this workshop is for you.
Equipment To Bring
Safety, Confidence, Being Prepared
Aperture Academy is a professional organization dedicated to safe, quality, positive experiences for our students, and a responsible stewardship for the breathtaking locations and beautiful wildlife we enjoy at every workshop.
We work with the United States Department of Interior, the National Park Service and the US Forestry Service to obtain all the proper permits to operate safely, conscientiously and legally. We carry much more than the required minimum of insurance, and our skilled instructors are certified as Wilderness First Responders, in CPR, as well as in the Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics program. They are qualified and rated to drive Class B vehicles. And, have we mentioned that each is an accomplished, successful professional photographer?
Every "ApCad" member is dedicated to ensuring our students receive the best care and guidance possible, so each of them have the opportunity to get the most remarkable, enjoyable and enriching photography experience available anywhere in the world.
What to Bring
:: What should I expect? ::
All workshops are designed to help you learn how to take better photographs and offer a complete immersion into digital landscape and/or wildlife photography. You will learn important photography techniques such as how to properly expose a composition, when to use a filter for best effect, and how to understand and adjust camera settings for optimum results.
:: Why only Digital? ::
Digital photography offers unique opportunities for in-field photography workshops. By reviewing captured images as soon as they happen, we can examine exposure, composition and histograms, and instantly learn what works--and what doesn't.
:: What should I bring? What is required? ::
:: What kind, and how much, equipment should I bring? ::
Bring it all if you can! You never know what you might see. On many workshops we focus on landscape photos, but you never know when wildlife might enter the scene and provide the perfect opportunity to photograph them in their natural habitat. It's always better to go into the field with too much gear, rather than miss an opportunity because of not enough equipment.
:: Is transportation provided? ::
Each student is responsible for their own transportation to and from the workshop meeting location. Once on location, we will provide transportation for all enrolled students over the course of the scheduled workshop.
:: Can a non-photographer friend or spouse attend the workshop? ::
Non-photographer friends and/or spouses are welcome to attend, but will be subject to the full tuition fee based due to transportation availability.
:: Does weather ever alter or cancel events? ::
Only if conditions pose a safety risk. Often, poor weather can make for dramatic photographic opportunities, so if rain is forecasted, pack a light jacket or rain poncho and bring something to keep your camera dry (a hotel shower cap is ideal).
:: What happens if I have to cancel? ::
Because of the limited number of workshops and availability of one-on-one instruction sessions, once we schedule a spot, it won't be available for anyone else, therefore we can not offer a refund unless the cancellation is 90 days before the workshop date. This policy is necessary to assure us that those who sign up are serious about the adventure and will not back out, ruining the opportunity for someone else.
:: Be prepared to take better photographs! ::
These workshops will help you develop skills, learn techniques and get to know your camera and equipment like never before. As a bonus, you will have a fun time and build friendships while learning to improve your photography technically. The result? You'll be capable of producing photographs as beautiful as any professional!
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