West Coast Seascapes Photography Workshop


From Sunday evening of the 26th of August to Thursday afternoon of the 30th 2018.


New Zealand has some awe inspiring coastline for seascape photography, but if there is one area that stands out as the prima donna it would have to be the stretch between Greymouth and Westport on the West Coast of the South island.

‘Lonely Planet’ lists it as one of the top ten coastal drives in the world! With an accolade like that what more can I say?

We’ll spend four days in August photographing the best this area has to offer.  Come prepared to be amazed.


The Weather and Sandflies.

The temptation is to think of the West Coast as being wet with lots of rain, and it does get a lot of rain, but this doesn’t mean that it rains all of the time and it doesn't mean it has no sunny days.  It just means that when it does rain, the rain comes down by the bucket full; it can then clear to the most glorious of  days.  Some of the more settled weather can be during the winter months when you get big high pressure systems sitting over the South island leading to cold frosty nights and sunny windless days (The last two years we've had six days of sunshine).

The other thing the West Cost is known for are Sandflies.  During the heat of summer the little B#%#*s  can drive a person to distraction, but during the cool winter months their numbers drop right away.

Because of the above two reasons, we actually think the best time to hit the West Coast is during the winter months: hence when we have scheduled this workshop.


Who this workshop is for:

Whatever your level of photography, we can offer something to improve it. With a maximum of 5 course participants, we get around everybody and give you plenty of personalised attention.


Beginners one-day course before the workshop:

We'll be running our 'One-day workshop for beginners' (more info. on course content here) on the day before the main workshop starts (ie on Sunday the 26th at Te Nikau Retreat, Punakaiki). This is for those who feel it would be of benefit to them, whether because you feel there are gaps in your knowledge at this level or you need a refresher because it's been awhile.  Add $350 to the cost.  This includes an extra nights accommodation (Saturday night) and food.



We ask that you provide your own transport to and from the accommodation and that you are prepared to drive from the accommodation to each photography location.  The locations that we will use are between 10 and 30 minutes drive from our accommodation.  Often people end up sharing transport to these locations.



Our workshop is timed for the Starfish at Motukiekie.

Accommodation and Meals:

We'll be staying at the beautiful 'Te Nikau Retreat', where everyone gets their own room. You'll either have your own ensuite bathroom, or you'll share a bathroom with just one other client (obviously not at the same time.) Let us know how strongly or otherwise you feel about the above two options and we'll try to accommodate. All meals are supplied and included in the cost, except the last night where we will go to a local restaurant for a final celebratory dinner. Breakfast will be continental style and we will provide yummy lunches for you–Vegemite sandwiches if I have my way, something much nicer if Kim gets her way. Of course Kim always gets her way ☻

For more information and to see the accomodation click here

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


General fitness and walking.

Most of the locations are within a few hundred metres of the car.  Some involve a short walk of up to half an hour over mainly flat ground.  One location however does require a bit of a scramble down a dirt bank. Other locations have rocks, that if you can climb onto, will give you a better vantage point for photography. So it’s not so much fitness that you require, as stability on your feet over rough terrain. Provided you haven’t reached the stage of needing a Zimmer frame to get around, you’ll probably be fine!  If you are worried please contact us and discuss it.


What to bring:

Large umbrella (if you're flying in, don't worry about an umbrella as we'll have spares)
Footwear suitable for outdoor terrain
Clothing for cold conditions including a hat and gloves
Some warm weather clothing
Camera and lens
Remote or cable release (if you don't have one you can buy one off Ebay for less than $10)
Camera batteries and charger
Spare memory
If you have a laptop with photo editing software of some sort, please bring it.
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.


Big stopper / ND400/1000 filters:

To get the most out of the seascape opportunities, we recommend that you buy a big stopper / ND400/1000 filter (9 or 10 stop Neutral Density filter). We use the Hoya and Rocolax brands. The second of these two is quite a bit cheaper yet seems just as good. Buy for the biggest lens that you have or are likly to have in the future (Probably 77mm), and if you need to, use step-up rings for your other lens (we'll have step up-rings with us). See the following link for the Rocolax filters on ebay.

Rocolax filters on ebay here

If you would prefer, we can order a ND 1000 filter and step up ring for you. Add $90, and let us know that you would like one and we’ll get it sorted.

We are not fans of the variable neutral density filters as they seem to be more trouble than they are worth.




Cost $1800 per photographer
(non-photography partners are welcome at $400)

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