Field Craft and Artistic Vision for the Landscape Photographer.



Originally I’d used the words ‘Professional field techniques’ as a title for this workshop.  However, I changed it after a client pointed out that they thought some people may be put off by those words; thinking that they had to be a pro before they could come on the workshop.  No, you don’t need to be at any particular level to come on the workshop.  We will however teach you the secret tricks that professional landscape photographers use to get those amazing photos.  Whatever your level of photography, this course will advance you further.  If however you are worried that you may not be up to it, we will be running our 'One day workshop for beginners' course, on the day before the main workshop (on the12th). Use this extra day to brush up on your skills. You may even learn a thing or two. Add $320 to the over all cost. This includes an extra nights accommodation (11th) and food. This workshops will be held in the same location as the main workshop. Click here for more information on course content etc.


The Workshop:      (From the evening of Wednesday 12th July to Sunday afternoon on the 16th July 2017)

Great landscape photos don’t just happen; they are made!  They are made by someone who has mastered the technical aspects of photography, has great artistic vision and has worked to be in the right spot at the right time.  All three are necessary and all three can be taught.  On this workshop we will teach all three.

Technically speaking, are you absolutely nailing the shot?  There are little differences in the ways that the occasional landscape photographer works, verse the pro who has been shooting in the field for years.  These little habits might not seem like much, but they can make the difference between getting ‘the shot’ and missing ‘the shot’. Trust me on this one: when you have dragged yourself out of a warm bed, at some god-forsaken hour.  And then driven and walked in the dark to get to a location, just as mother nature puts on the most amazing lightshow ever.  You don’t then want to miss that award-winning photo due to some technical fault. On this workshop, we will systematically go through your technique and iron out any little wrinkles.

Artistic vision: this is the part that brings that technically perfect photograph alive. We all have artistic vision, we are just inclined to forget it!   As Picasso once said “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”  We will spend quite a chunk of the workshop remembering how to be artists. We will look at things like where artistic vision comes from and how to be more creative.

And finally we will spend time in the field, in the right location, at the right time, so you can practice combining the artistic and technical sides under great light and come away with some wonderful photos.


The Location:

The Maniototo in Central Otago is an austere landscape of rare beauty.  From rolling tussock lands littered with Schist monoliths like a giants chessboard, to the fluted and sculptured landforms of old gold sluicings.  The pallet of colours ranges from the greys and olives through to the golds, yellows and reds; all begging to be photographed. It is also an area with particularly dark skies, so night sky photography is a possibility if conditions allow.  

So come and experience Central Otago, and find out what you've been missing out on.

Level of fitness:

One photo location we may use, involves a gentle 20min amble along a track beside a creek. If this track is beyond you, then you should probably be checking yourself into the nearest cardiac unit instead of coming on this workshop. Most other locations, are within a few hundred metres of the car. We do however recommend good footwear, as to get that perfect photo you may decide to walk through long grass or scramble down a small bank.


Okay, first the bad news: there is no hot tub and no big screen TV!
Yes, we realise this means that instead of spending the evenings watching soaps, you may have to spend it with a glass of wine, talking photography and other equally boring subjects, with other course participants. We think you'll get over it (in a decade or two)! ☺

On the positive side, you do get a warm comfortable bed/bedroom to yourself (none of this twin share business) in a cosy lodge with great character. And best of all, the accommodation is smack in the middle of some fantastic photos locations! (We find the locations that have the best photos, and then we look for good accommodation within that area. Not the other way around.)

More information on accomodation here


We will provide all the food for the weekend.  Breakfast will be continental style (cooking facilities are available if you feel you need something more). At this point in time, I feel I should make a small confession: we are not French gourmet chefs! I do however believe we have progressed past the stage of burning water (just). After a long day of shooting and photo exercises – potentially in cold conditions, our aim is to provide you with food that is hot, tasty and plentiful. 

For an example of the type of food we provide click here


If you are flying in from out of town, we may be able to proved transport from Dunedin and during the workshop. Ask.  Otherwise, we ask that you provide your own transport to and from Waipiata and that you are prepared to drive from the accommodation to each photography location.  The locations that we will use are about 30 minutes drive from our accommodation.  Often people end up sharing transport to these locations.

What to bring:

  • Camera and lens
  • Tripod and, remote or cable release
    (can be borrowed if you don't have them)
  • Raincoat
  • Camera batteries and charger
  • Spare memory
  • Footwear suitable for outdoor terrain
  • Lots of warm clothing, including a hat and gloves
  • laptop with photo editing software (if you have one)
  • A sense of adventure and the
    willingness to give something new a go!


Equipment borrowing:
Some equipment can be borrowed and we’ll have some specialty equipment with us for you to try.
Let us know if you feel you are short of anything as we are often able to help.

Structure of the days:
The good news is that because of the time of the year, there won't be the ridiculously early starts or late evenings that we have in the summer months to capture the good light.  The bad news is we'll be working you hard during the day.  We’ll spend time out on location when the light is at its best., and at other times you'll have lessons and exercises to get your creative juices flowing.
If you catch us in a good mood, and ask very nicely, we may let you have some downtime to relax. ☺

$1600 per photographer.  This includes accommodation and food.

The maximum number of photographers on the workshop will be restricted to 5, which means that you will receive lots of one-on-one tuition and plenty of opportunities to ask questions.

We require a deposit of $400 to secure your place.

Terms and Conditions:
Also known as the fine print. terms and conditions here