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James Kay
Photography

OUR WORKSHOP PHILOSOPHY & WHAT YOU'LL LEARN

 

We offer photography workshops as opposed to photography tours. Photography tours will simply drop you off at a location where you'll be on your own to figure out what to do. There is no instruction. In a workshop, you will recieve one-on-one instruction and direction on composing images from a competent instructor at each location. There are also different types of workshops. Our workshops are exclusively "field" workshops, as opposed to "classroom" workshops or a mix of the two. In other words, we'll spend our time outdoors learning how to compose and capture images in a wide variety of lighting conditions, in some of the most spectacular locations on earth, throughout the entire day, not just during the magic hours of sunrise and sunset, as many mixed workshops do. We won't return to our hotel rooms after our sunrise session, draw the blinds, and spend the rest of the day in a classroom situation, reviewing and critiquing images on our laptops after we captured them. We feel that you will learn much more working with James, one-on-one, as he reviews, critiques, and offers suggestions on improving your compositions in the field before you trip the shutter release. This means you'll not only visit more locations and experience a larger variety of photographic opportunities than a mixed field/classroom workshop; you'll also maximize your time learning about image composition and you'll return home with a much larger variety of images. If we encounter difficult weather conditions which prevent us from being outdoors, or based on the desires of the group, James would also be happy to conduct image reviews and critiques or offer instruction on Lightroom/Photoshop techniques

 

While the subjective process of image composition - trying to decide which elements to include in the frame and which to exclude - is the most challenging aspect of landscape photography, working with and understanding light is also a very important aspect. Based on his intimate knowledge of each region we visit, Jim has designed each workshop's itinerary to arrive at each of our photo locations at precisely the right time for optimum lighting conditions. He will also offer guidance about how to "see" what's around us; how to slow down, and begin noticing details which you might otherwise miss. There are unlimited compositions just waiting to be discovered out there; it's all about being able to recognize them when they present themselves. 

 

In addition to in-depth instruction on lighting and composition in the field; Jim will also provide detailed information on the technical aspects of camera functions: histograms, exposures, depth of field, white balance, filters, etc. We'll discuss specialized digital techniques such as merging files to create high-resolution panoramas; what to look for when shooting for B&W conversions; using Live-View to aid in composition, HDR; focus stacking to achieve extreme depth of field; night-sky photography; and how to guarantee razor-sharp images every time. Jim will also discuss his personal philosophy of photography; what inspires and motivates him and will help each participant begin to develop a style of their own.

As an avid student of geology, Jim will also provide insight into how these remarkable landscapes came to be. He'll teach you how to use this information, as he has, to improve your photography skills. For a quick overview of the geologic history of the Colorado Plateau, see Jim's article in Outdoor Photographer Magazine.