Death Valley Photography Workshop, CA
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Death Valley & Joshua Tree National Parks
Photography Workshop

Stovepipe Wells, CA; Twentynine Palms, CA
March 5th - 11th, 2018 - Workshop Full!
Biennial Workshop

Instructor: Andy Cook

Andy will be leading a photography workshop to capture the stunning beauty of the lowest place on the continent and the unusual landscape of Joshua Tree NP. Join us as we photograph the best of each National Park.

During this workshop we may spend all day in the field, on other days we will have a midday break. This workshop is geared for the intermediate to advanced photographer. However, beginners with a working knowledge of their camera can gain a lot of experience and instruction. Each participant is assisted at their level. We focus on helping participants create the most appealing compositions of each location we visit. We also delve into discussions on equipment, exposure, metering, filters, post processing and personal tips. This is a workshop environment, the instructor is present to aid in the field and teach his techniques for landscape photography. If you're an advanced photographer he is happy to help or stay out of the way. Additionally, for those who bring their laptops with Photoshop, Andy will be available during some of the midday breaks to answer processing questions.

Death Valley National Park Photography Workshop

Photo Workshop

Itinerary Outline

The workshop starts on Monday, March 5th, 2018 at 6:00 P.M. with an introduction and orientation. We start shooting on the morning of Tuesday, March 6th, 2018. The Death Valley portion of the workshop ends after shooting on Thursday evening, March 8th, 2018. Friday morning is a relocation period and no formal shooting is scheduled. This is a great opportunity for participants to re shoot a Death Valley scene that may have suffered due to weather or other issues. Those continuing on to Joshua Tree NP will regroup in the lobby of the Fairfield Inn in Twentynine Palms, CA at 2:45 P.M. on Friday, March 9th, 2018. Drive time to relocate is just over 5 hours. Workshop ends after photographing sunrise on Sunday morning, March 11th.

First Lodging Location: Monday, March 5, 2018 (Check-in) - Friday, March 9, 2018 (Check-out): Stovepipe Wells Village, Hwy 190, Death Valley, CA. Phone # 760-786-2387.

Relocate to
Fairfield Inn, 6333 Encelia Drive, Twentynine Palms, CA. 760-361-5000
Check-in Friday, March 9, 2018; Check-out Sunday, March 11, 2018.

Generally, one can expect to be at a shooting location for the start of civil twilight (about 5:15 A.M.) and we'll stay at that location through sunrise. We will go to a late breakfast after the morning shoot. On some days we've scheduled a midday break allowing participants time to download, nap, process images... We will provide breakfast bars and water for the early mornings. In the evenings we will head back out into the field and shoot through sunset (approximately 5:45 P.M.) and on some evenings we may photograph into the stars. We do have a picnic dinner in the field or late dinner in a restaurant scheduled for each evening.

COST: $1,290.00 per participant - Death Valley & Joshua Tree National Parks
$895.00 per participant. (only Death Valley National Park)

Why two prices? Depending upon clouds, photography in Joshua Tree NP may be very challenging. If it is clear then only about 45 minutes at sunrise and sunset may be fruitful and compositions can be difficult to find until the light is right. At this national park our group will tend to spread out in search of compositions. Therefore, the instructor may not be able to offer aid to every participant during prime light. Only participants confident with their ability to compose should consider continuing on to Joshua Tree NP.

Deposit Amount: $300.00 due at time of registration. This deposit becomes non refundable 90 days in advance of the workshop.

Full Payment of the workshop is due 60 days prior to the start of the workshop. If final payment is not received when due, we reserve the right to treat the reservation as canceled, please review the cancellation policy on the registration page.

Death valley National Park

This workshop does involve some hiking into the dunes and cross country walking to arrive at certain shooting locations, while other shooting locations will be just beyond the parking lot. The hiking may be deemed easy to moderate activity based upon one's condition. Walking surfaces beyond the parking lot are generally uneven, hiking boots are recommended; bring old beat up boots as the environment is rough on shoes. One doesn't have to be in tip-top shape, but one's enjoyment will be enhanced by good health and preparation. Please consult with your doctor before attending our workshop.

Proper hydration is a must with outdoor activities. We will provide bottled water in the field.

Be prepared for possible temperature extremes and sudden changes in weather. Be aware that mornings can be cold and midday very warm. Often we will be out in darkness before sunrise and after sunset, please bring a flashlight.

More Information

LODGING: The workshop is being held during high season, lodging often fills to capacity months in advance. Participants need to contact lodging directly and reserve their room upon registering for the workshop, if not earlier. Even if one has not registered for this workshop but is considering it, we recommend making reservations (be mindful of the cancellation policy).

In Death Valley we have several rooms reserved. If you're having difficulty securing reservations, please let us know; we may be able to provide a room (additional fee). For details, call 719-635-6268.

TRANSPORTATION: Most people flying to this workshop will find flying into Las Vegas, NV (about 2.5 hours to Death Valley; about 4 hours to Twentynine Palms) to be the best choice.

Driving Conditions: We will usually be driving on paved roads and well maintained dirt roads, however, our itinerary takes us to The Racetrack to photograph "the moving stones". The road to The Racetrack is a bit rougher, sometimes requires an SUV or other capable higher clearance vehicle. For this reason we recommend renting a higher clearance vehicle. Note: Road conditions vary from year to year and roads can close due to rain (mud). Andy will provide participants with a hand radio to communicate while driving. When possible we prefer that participants car pool with each other to help limit our impact and get to know the other participants. If you wish to share a vehicle with another participant during the entire workshop, please let us know and we will put you in contact with others who wish to do the same; coordinate travel arraignments directly with them.

Death Valley National Park
Death Valley Photo Workshop Location

Equipment Recommendations: Bring all camera equipment including the camera's manual. We recommend using a polarizing filter with many photographs on this workshop. To blur cloud motion on a bright day, consider bringing a 9 or 10 stop neutral density filter, this filter can be the screw on type. Andy does not recommend variable ND filters. Andy combines images of various exposures in post processing (HDR). Andy will be happy to teach participants his field technique for capturing high dynamic range images (requires a cable release with some cameras). A lens range from 16 mm to 200 mm after the lens multiplication factor is recommended. However, we think participants should bring their entire range of lenses. We recommend shooting with a sturdy outdoor tripod that can adjust from standing height (without cranking up a center post) to very close to the ground. This type of tripod does not have attachments from part way down the legs to the center post; i.e. the legs can move independently. Please use a cable release or know how to work the camera's timer delay to avoid camera shake. If you have Photoshop questions, then please bring a laptop with Photoshop loaded and updated.

The Fine Print

We do not guarantee the weather. Workshop fee does not include transportation, lodging or meals. Maximum number of participants is 10.
Our itinerary may fluctuate year to year. We may not visit every location at the same time it was visited in previous years. We require an acknowledgment of risks be signed before going into the field. We will send the acknowledgment of risks upon registration, please return it at the start of the workshop.
In the event Rocky Mountain Reflections Photography, Inc. (RMRPI) cancels a workshop due to unforeseen circumstances such as inability to obtain permits, instructor injury, death… Then, RMRPI will refund fees collected by RMRPI for the affected workshop. In the event of a natural disaster, government closure or other happening of this nature that causes a workshop to be canceled, RMRPI may be unable to refund workshop fees. If this happens then funds collected by RMRPI will be applied as credit toward a future workshop of the participant’s choosing. RMRPI will not be held responsible for other expenses (airline tickets, hotel deposits, rental car…) that may be associated with any canceled workshop.
Death Valley Photo Workshop

Joshua Tree National Park

Death Valley National Park
Spare Camera Batteries
Camera's Manual
Lots of Memory
Extra Shoes and Socks
Hiking Boots
Warm Clothes
Oh Yes! Don't Forget the Camera

Death Valley Photography Workshop

2012 Death Valley Workshop Photo
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Death Valley Photography Workshop

Rocky Mountain Reflections Photography, Inc. is authorized by the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, to conduct services in Death Valley & Joshua Tree National Parks.