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James Kay




"I had an absolutely marvelous time in Banff! The combination of great tour leaders, wonderful locations, and excellent dining venues made for perfection! Both of you run a superb operation with attention to great detail; endless effort to please your clients; and most importantly, with the goal to provide the best photography possible. Once again, many thanks to both of you for a wonderful experience."   Dr. Cyril Mazansky - Boston, MA

"Thank you for a memorable adventure in New Zealand!! It was beyond my wildest expectations! It was a wonderful trip; certainly one of the very best I have ever had. You and Susie do such a wonderful job in making every aspect of a photo workshop a winner! I know it takes months of planning to make such a complicated itinerary a success. Your personal attention to details is so much appreciated. I cannot think of one item to improve the workhop. It is not surprising that all your workshops fill up so quickly. You two are great!!!"  Dr. Carl Kjeldsberg - Salt Lake City, UT


"Many thanks guys. What you accomplished was nothing short of magnificent. Your hard work and dedication to excellence and detail was obvious. I cannot imagine that any other photo excursion could come close to what you gave heartfelt thanks!"  Dr. Murray Robertson - Edmonton, Alberta
"Thank you so much for your graciousness, warmth, competence, creativity, and caring.  Your planning and execution are flawless, and you both create a great environment and experience for everyone on the trip.  You have found really great spots to visit, and your on-the-spot feedback is just the way a workshop should be run since it is the best way to accelerate improvements.  I also greatly appreciate the way you have planned to be in the field throughout the day. So thanks again for a wonderful week and especially for being so welcoming and kind as well as for getting me to great locations and teaching me how to capture them better. You have a really nice and loyal clientele and I'm glad to become a part of them." Eric Herbolzheimer - Green Brook, NJ
"Jim, you are the consummate teacher! I learned so much in Capitol Reef that this short little email will never do it justice. I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed your teaching style and interest in what I was doing. It was great to have someone who really cares about the students and their progression in photography. From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU!! - for the education, the great week, images, and care and attention to so many details."   Richard Sandford - Gahanna, OH
"Your trips are much more than simply workshops, they're grand-life experiences!"  Tim Preston - Arlington, TX
"The Canadian Rockies was my first workshop with you and it was simply outstanding. Of all the workshops I've taken over the years, it was by far the best. You combined endless photographic opportunities with your highly proficient teamwork and created the perfect workshop. You are wonderful and amazing hosts and provided a well-organized, productive, and enjoyable experience. All needs were met with grace and enthusiasm, and your extensive experience and knowledge of the area enabled us to be in the right place at the right time to maximize our chances for great images. My expectations were high based on input received from former guests and these expectations were exceeded. Six stars out of five!"  John Morrison - San Diego, CA
"I wanted to thank you for an awesome time in Capitol Reef. This was the most enjoyable workshop I've ever been on. You were so welcoming and took such good care of us. Your attention to detail was beyond belief and everything ran so smoothly. I also really appreciated the camaraderie you fostered among all the participants and I loved photographing in the remote areas of the park. I'll see you on another workshop soon!"  Rebecca Hagberg - Palatine, IL   
"Thank you so much for a truly outstanding adventure in Escalante. This region is one of my favorite places, and I loved exploring, photographing, and learning about it with you. Thank you so much for all the instruction and support -- I definitely could not have made my way out of those canyons otherwise! I will highly recommend you to anyone who is looking for a top-notch workshop. Thank you for some great photography and memories."   Deanna Peters - Sykesville, MD

See our team in action:


"I want to thank you both again for a fantastic week. I had an amazing time, learned a ton, and returned with 500+ amazing pictures. It was a life-changing week; I feel re-invigorated with my photography and have taken it to the next level with your help. I promise you will see me again on a future workshop. I just don't know if it will be possible to top this one though!" Jason Van Ark - Plain City, Utah

"I just wanted to thank you again for an awesome New Zealand workshop. As always, it was with the now-expected excellence that the two of you bring to your craft. The group was wonderful, the learning exceptional, the lodging and meals over the top. This trip was not about removing an item from a photographer's bucket list, it wiped out the entire bucket list in one trip! You are without a doubt, the best of the best photography workshop planners, instructors, and hosts. Again, thank you for a mind-altering 3 weeks of friendship and photography and for a lifetime of images, memories, and just flat-out fun!"  Fred Kraut - Salt Lake City, UT


"Heidi and I want to thank you both for a most wonderful workshop in Boulder/Grand Staircase Escalante Monument. It was an AWESOME ADVENTURE!!!!!!  Your patience and attention to the needs and desires of your clients was obvious right from the start. As a result, we had some of the most enjoyable hikes, spectacular photo locations, and saw some of the most remarkable scenery we have ever experienced in our lives. Heidi especially enjoyed Susie's companionship and we're both looking forward to Hole-in-the-Rock in May."  Wayne & Heidi Inkpen - Edmonton, Alberta, Canada


"I looked at my photos and was amazed at how well they turned out. So in addition to having a fun trip filled with new adventures and friendships, I have a renewed passion for photography. Thank you again for making it all possible!"  Claire Benson - Denver, CO


"We had a fantastic time in New Zealand! It was such a fun group of people, and, of course, the scenery was amazing. We hope to see you again soon!"  Molly Forstall - San Francisco, CA


"Another stunning trip! I got some excellent photographs. I really enjoy these expeditions with you two. Thanks so much for your efforts. As I mentioned while we were in Bannf; your workshops are a wonderful photographic, social, and cultural adventure akin to a relgious experience! Take care and have a great time for the rest of your trip."  Paul Kaufmann - San Diego, CA


"I want to thank you for planning and executing the ultimate workshop! I can’t think of a better way to see and photograph New Zealand than being a part of a small and very nimble group of like-minded people led by two individuals who truly know the country. Whether it was shooting locations, wineries, accommodations, great places to eat or knowing the history and geology, you know New Zealand as well as you do Utah. The accommodations and the cuisine were off the charts and the aircraft and boat rides really made the trip special. The quality of everything we experienced was top notch but what really impressed me most about this workshop was that it was such a great value." John Morrison - San Diego, CA


"Thank you both for running such a fantastic workshop and bringing us to such fabulous places. This trip was one of the best photography experiences I've ever had, bar none."   Josh Trudell - San Antonio, TX


"Thank you both for your diligent preparation, your obvious concern that each person leaves fulfilled, and the dexterity you exhibited in handling challenging personalities. Bravo! We enjoyed the experience; we loved Banff and the Kays!" Richard Boyle - Youngsville, NM


"I can certainly see why you have so many repeat customers. I was hoping for a jam-packed photography experience and this workshop more than exceeded what I thought it would be. I did not expect the level of organization, care and individual attention that you both gave each of us. Whether we were hiking to our destinations, at them, or eating the exquisitely-presented meals; the whole experience was wonderful! Besides having a great time, my photography improved each day, both in composition and technical quality and I have Jim's input to thank for that. I learned a lot in only 5 days.  Thanks so much for a great experience and I hope to join you again in the future."  Bonnie Ryder - Colorado Springs, CO


James Kay is one-of-a-kind. A photo-Ninja. He uses a camera the way a wizard might use a wand. Plus he's a down-to-earth likable guy. No ego walls to climb. No too-cool-for-you interference. Which is all-too-unusual in the pro photo world. Get to know him. You'll learn a lot."  Neil Stebbins - San Clemente, CA


"I just wanted to take a moment to thank both of you for a fantastic, productive, creative, and most enjoyable photo session - for me, the best that I have had to date. I've learned more on your workshops than all the other workshops I've taken combined! Thank you for being the best of the best, or to use a marketing term... you are the Best in Class!"   Fred Kraut - Salt Lake City, UT


"Thanks for two glorious weeks in New Zealand. Even though this was your inaugural NZ workshop, it felt like you've done it many times before. The photo locations, the lodging, and the adventure was unmatched. You guys offer so much more than a typical workshop; you make us all feel like family, much appreciated and well looked after. Secondly, your expertise and familiarity with New Zealand is unmatched for US-based tour providers. Thanks to all your trips to New Zealand over the years, you certainly know "The Land of the Long White Cloud". You made the workshop feel like a family vacation. Taking great photos in spectacular locations is certainly a plus, but being able to tour, enjoy great food and lodging, learn new things and do it with like-minded and adventurous people makes this workshop one not to be missed. Thank you both!"  David Benson - Denver, CO


"I had a great time in Escalante last week. As always, you and Susie exceeded all expectations. Common thoughts throughout the week were "I can't believe we're doing this" and "this is incredibly beautiful". I really enjoy shooting with you and appreciate your help in the field. I've taken workshops with other photographers but you and Susie are simply the best and it's not even close!  John Morrison - San Diego, CA


"Thank you once again for a memorable and enjoyable week! Your hospitality and professionalism were truly exceptional and I can definitely say that the entire workshop experience was first class. I look forward to joining you on future workshops!"  Andrew Steptowe - Houston, TX

"The New Zealand exploration was my best workshop ever! An epic voyage through a fascinating and picturesque world with the best guides on the planet! Many thanks for a marvelous trip - best one yet!"  Paul Kaufmann - San Diego, CA


"Thank you so much for a wonderful week. You put together what I call a perfect workshop! Every day was a new adventure of amazing scenery. The schedule was full, but I never felt rushed and you were always available to help. Your patience was much appreciated. But what really made it such a great experience was your and Susie's knowledge on a variety of subjects! Your knowledge of the geology of the region gave so much meaning to what we were seeing and photographing."  Dr. Carl Kjeldsberg - Salt Lake City, UT


"I had a great time last week! What a wonderful bunch of people to spend the week with. Once again, you did a superb job of coordinating an amazing experience for all of us. I've only just started editing, but I definitely got some great images. Thanks again!Judy Wright - Colorado Springs, CO


"Every aspect of this workshop far exceeded my expectations. The experience was so much more that simply a photography workshop; it was an amazing adventure. I learned a lot about photography, captured some amazing images; and even learned about the geology of Capitol Reef. Even more memorable though, was the adventure aspect of the trip; the wild weather, insane roads, and all the laughter we shared. Thank you for such an inspiring week in Capitol Reef! I will definitely see you again on another workshop."   Bobby McFall - Mankato, MN


"Thank you so very much!!! It has been a pleasure for Justin, Rachael, and me to take part in your workshops over the last 3 years. I love the aspect of photography, hiking, and adventure they bring. It is also a bonus to meet such extraordinary people each time. Everyone starts out as strangers, and parts as friends. We are ready to go again! Thanks again and we look forward to the next adventure with you and Susie".  Carrie Lapow - New Berlin, Wisconsin


"We would like to thank you guys for ANOTHER incredible workshop; this time along Hole-in-the-Rock Road. We've traveled to many places around the world but the locations you took us to were just unbelievable. This workshop should be on every photographer's bucket list!"  Wayne & Heidi Inkpen - Edmonton, Alberta, Canada


"As usual, a great trip. Hard to beat your combination of eliciting a warm camaraderie among diverse and interesting photographers, terrific hiking, and the Kay Karma for being at the right place at the right time for memorable photos (even when the weather gods were conspiring against us). I will look forward to seeing you both again in Glacier next summer. "  Alan Aviles - New York, NY

"I would like to thank you both for putting on such an outstanding photography workshop. The venue was spectacular, your organizational and photography skills were very impressive, and the social atmosphere you created among the participants made for an enjoyable vibe. Not only did I see beautiful things but I also learned more than on any other previous photography workshop."  Robert Specker - Wildwood, MO


"Thank you so very much for creating an amazing experience for all of us in Glacier National Park!!! I truly appreciate your communication and thoughtfulness throughout the entire process. I am looking forward to next July in the Canadian Rockies!  Lynda Holman - Marietta, GA


"Your Hole-in-the-Rock workshop was one of the most memorable trips I've experienced and I look forward to joining you again in the future. Thanks for sharing your impressive knowledge of both landscape photography and the landscape itself. Your down-to-earth humor and warmth, together with the collegiality of our entire group, made for a very special week."  Alan Aviles - New York, NY 


"Let me thank you both for a very rewarding workshop. Your expertise made my second trip to the Capitol Reef area most enjoyable. The extemporaneous camaraderie that we all shared was an added bonus. Jim, your knowledge of photography as well as the geology and history of the area was most helpful. I look forward to our next sojourn. Thanks again for being the best host and hostess of any workshop I've ever taken."    Dr. Jack Berger - New York, NY


"Hole-in-the-Rock was my second workshop with you and it will not be my last! You set a very high standard on the first workshop I took with you and my expectations on this one were exceeded. As usual, the trip was well organized and the photographic opportunities from sunrise to sunset were exceptional. Your web page promises a lot and you and Susie deliver on your word. You both work very hard to ensure that the entire workshop, beginning with the introduction dinner on the first night and ending with the after-dark dinner on the last night is the best possible experience. I can't imagine a better workshop and look forward to joining you and Susie on another."  Ted Truex - Valencia, CA

"I cannot thank you both enough for the adventure, friendship, photo locations and companionship last week. The whole experience was wonderful and exceeded my expectations. The location was great, but you two really made it special!!!!" David Benson - Denver, CO


"I had a great time in Capitol Reef. I just wanted to let you know that this workshop did NOT SUCK!!  This was by far the best workshop I've taken. I don't think there is a better landscape to be captured in a photo than Capitol Reef.  I learned so much by watching how you frame up a shot, which elements you emphasize, and how you work with your equipment to deliver the right image.  I came away with many images I'm very happy with.  You and Susie do a fantastic job."  Claudia O'Grady - Salt Lake City, UT


"Many thanks to you two - I had a great time and learned a lot last week. You ran a great workshop and I'm glad I chose to attend. As I said, I appreciate good organization and you really had it planned out beautifully. We were always where we needed to be, when we needed to be, without feeling like we were being pushed on a schedule. All the little touches like coffee and muffins in the morning just added a nice personal touch. You and Susie are a great team and it just made the experience that much more enjoyable."   Judy Wright - Colorado Springs, CO
"Again; thank you for a great workshop...great locations, great teaching, and great feedback. You are still the "Best in Class" of all photography workshops. You go way above and beyond to give your workshop participants a perfect environment to grow in. Thank you for everything...see you in Bryce!"   Fred Kraut - Salt Lake City, UT
"Thank you so much for an amazing experience in Hole in the Rock - who knew I could climb up and down a sandstone wall with a pack and a rope. I just signed up to do it again next year. I can't wait!!!"  Lynda Holman - Marietta, GA
"Lynn & I keep talking about what a wonderful trip we had in Glacier.  And the weather issues that arose don't even factor in.  The last part of our hike to Iceberg Lake in the rain was great!  Even if we couldn't photograph it, we got to experience it which is wonderful in itself.  We really enjoyed the group too. Once again, you two put on a first-rate workshop. Travel safe, and we'll look forward to seeing you soon!  Claudia O'Grady - Salt Lake City, UT
"I first visited Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in 2007 and always wanted to go back. After a little research, I decided to sign up for Jim's Hole-in-the-Rock workshop. This turned out to be a great decision. In addition to being an outstanding photographer with a long list of published work to his credit, Jim is an expert outdoorsman, geology and meteorology buff, and one of the world's nicest guys. His talented and beautiful wife Susie shares his love of nature and does an amazing job of making all the photographers on the workshop feel like part of their extended family."  Dr. Mark Laussade - Las Vegas, NV

"I had a fabulous time on your Hole-in-the-Rock workshop. I loved the format and you were both amazingly gracious hosts. I will indeed be back. Love your work!"  Michael Blanchette - Bedford, NH


"I just wanted you to know that I thoroughly enjoyed myself. The memories of each day's adventures will last for quite a while in my head and then the images will take over visually. You two are a great team! With Jim's great knowledge of the locations combined with his outdoor classroom technical approach plus Susie's help in the field, it's a complete package. Last year I said I didn't know how it could be any better but this year it was better!"  Stephen Clarke - Orange, CA
More than simply a comment, here's a short story from one of our guests:
"The workshop in Capitol Reef was absolutely wonderful, and I can’t say enough good things about it. You came highly recommended by Judy, and I can certainly see why. It wasn’t just one single thing that made it so great, but was instead a collection of many individual items, each of which was enough to make it a great experience by itself. The combination of everything put it over the top. To wit:

The photography: The full itinerary made it a real photo workshop instead of a part photo, part post-processing, and part show-and-tell event. So much photography in fact, that there was barely time to download the images, recharge the batteries, and get ready for the next session. For a photography workshop, this was perfect. There was always more than enough time to take photographs of the selected sites, and even sufficient time for unplanned stops along the way for ad hoc opportunities. Jim’s knowledge of the area was a huge benefit, since when the weather turned bad for a particular spot, Jim was able to select another one without missing a beat, making it seem as if that were the plan all along. The location for each stop seemed to be the ideal spot for the best photos, and Jim was always available for setup and assistance without being intrusive. A quick talk on the suggested settings, a few snaps displaying some ideas on his iPad, and we were on our own if we wanted. Jim also called out his focal lengths and apertures as he was taking pictures alongside us, allowing us to double check and possibly modify what we were doing. Essentially, teaching the “best” way without seeming to do so. Jim was also available for critiquing the images we took as we took them, giving us immediate feedback and allowing us to correct any problems and get better pictures. Finally, Jim always let us know which lenses and filters would be appropriate, which was particularly helpful when all the equipment had to be carried in a backpack. Not surprisingly, I found that due to Jim’s suggestions I always had the correct equipment with me. Finally, Jim’s knowledge of the geology of the area was excellent, and it was great to learn more about the area and how it came to be.

The “Customer Care”: I can’t say enough about how Susie turned this from a photo workshop in the field into a high-end experience. Coffee, tea, muffins, and other goodies in the morning was an excellent way to wake up and start the day while Jim was covering where we would be going, what to bring, and what to expect. Going so far as to pick up additional coffee for any coffee snobs (ahem) in the group was a step beyond. Lunches in the field were much more than just a bag lunch. More appetizers, condiments, and food than I would ever have expected were available, all of which was laid out with accoutrements more in keeping with a high end gathering than a quick stop in a rough area of the outdoors. Table covers, soap and water for washing, and other things were the rule rather than the exception. I usually managed to remember to bring along snacks for use while we were hiking or at a photo site, but Susie always seemed to have a bag full of goodies for anyone who forgot to bring some. The dinners were great; each time at a different place allowing us to sample the local places without having to worry about getting skunked at a bad restaurant. Susie also acted as the “den mother” to the group, helping anyone who needed assistance, carrying gear for others as needed, going back to the car to pick something up, and quickly handling any crisis that might arise. Superb job!

All in all, this workshop was an outstanding experience, and I would not only go on another of your workshops in a heartbeat, but would also repeat this one. I have no hesitation in recommending any of your workshops to others (and already done so to a photographer friend in Oregon, as a matter of fact). I definitely plan on attending one of your future workshops.

Thanks so much for a wonderful workshop that turned out to be a combination of outstanding photography, an excellent learning experience, and a great vacation all rolled into one (including the 4WD segment, which was a fun experience and made me appreciate the Volvo even more)."   Ken Bates - Colorado Springs, CO











Utah Photography workshop customer reviews, testimonials, and customer comments for the photography workshops of James Kay. We have customer reviews for our photo workshops in Utah, customer reviews for our photograpy workshops in Glacier National Park, workshop reviews for our photo workshops in Banff National Park in the Canadian Rockies, Capitol Reef National Park, photo workshop reviews for Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument, photography workshop reviews for Bryce Canyon National Park, Yoho National Park, photo workshop reviews for New Zealand, workshop reviews for Hole in the Rock Road, and photography workshop reviews for Boulder, Utah.