November 5th - 8th, 2023
Join us for autumn in the cypress swamp. A unique experience as we photograph compelling, autumn scenery in the cypress swamps of east Texas. Towering bald cypress trees draped with Spanish moss create breathtaking, intimate scenes in the bayous, sloughs and ponds of Caddo Lake. To further immerse the group in the character of the area our lodging will be in a historic hotel in the charming old town district of Jefferson, Texas.
FOCUS: Explore and photograph breathtaking fall colors in Caddo Lake, Caddo Lake State Park and Big Cypress Bayou.
ADDITIONAL: Photographing in a cypress swamp is a unique experience and challenges one's ability to compose photographs. We strongly recommend participants bring a laptop to download photos in order to help with compositional review/improvement during the workshop. On the first two days we will schedule time for image review midday and after dinner.
The workshop starts on Sunday, November 5, 2023 at 2:45 pm with introductions and a brief meeting. At 3:30 pm the group will leave the hotel for the first photo location.
LODGING LOCATION: Historic Kahn Hotel, 123 West Austin Street, Jefferson, TX 75657. 903-601-4471
Check-in Sunday, Nov. 5, 2023; Check-out Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023.
The workshop ends after evening photography on Wednesday, Nov. 8th, 2023.
Check-in time is 2:00 pm. We have reserved a block of rooms for the group. Participants should secure one of these rooms by calling the hotel directly and requesting one of the reserved rooms for "Rocky Mountain Photography".
MORNING: Expect to be at a photography location for the start of civil twilight and we'll stay there through sunrise. We will go to breakfast afterwards.
MIDDAY: On some days we will have time for image review and post processing assistance.
EVENING: We have scheduled dinner in a restaurant, each day, after the evening's photography.
EXPERIENCE: Intermediate and Advanced - During part of this workshop we will photograph from kayaks making it difficult to instruct at the beginner level.
GROUP SIZE: Target number of participants is 6.
EFFORT: Moderate - When photographing from kayaks one should be prepared to spend 3+ hours in the water at one time. No toilet, watch the coffee.
One must help move one's kayak from the water to it's storage location.
When photographing from shore our shooting locations will be just beyond the parking lot, a 5 minute walk.
KAYAKING: We will be photographing from kayaks for 1.5 to 2 days. Generally, when kayaking the pace will be leisurely. Participants will enjoy paddling and photographing at their own speed, relaxing, resting and spreading out as needed. We will provide radios to participants so they can contact Andy or other group members.
CONDITIONS: Be prepared for temperature fluctuations from chilly to warm and sudden changes in weather.
INCLUDED: Workshop fee includes kayak rental and state park entrance fees.
FIRST RUN: The 1st run of this workshop, Andy may be photographing.
AIR TRAVEL: Most people flying to this workshop will find flying into Shreveport, LA to be the best choice.
Driving time from Shreveport, LA to Jefferson, TX is about 1 hour.
DRIVING CONDITIONS: Mostly paved roads. A standard rental car will be sufficient. When possible we prefer that participants car pool with each other to help limit our impact and get to know one another.
RECOMMENDATIONS: MORE WORKSHOP INFORMATION
FOR CADDO LAKE AUTUMN: Andy believes the most critical lens to have is a long zoom, something like a 100 - 400 mm or 70 - 300 mm after lens multiplication factor (LMF). Wider lenses such as 16 - 35 mm and 24 - 70 mm after LMF may rarely be useful. However, as always we think participants should bring their entire range of lenses, just in case :).
TRIPOD: To ensure a comfortable view above a boardwalk railing, participants need to verify their tripods hold their cameras at least 55 inches or higher above the ground.
TRIPODS and KAYAKS: When photographing from kayaks many will prefer to hand hold, Andy does. Some may try to use a tall tripod. Placing a tall tripod in the shallow swamp water, at the edge of one's kayak, does expose it to muck at the bottom of the swamp, for this it may be best to use an older, less favorite tall tripod.
FLASHLIGHT: We will be out in darkness before sunrise and after sunset, please bring a strong flashlight.
MORE: Water proof hiking or rubber boots are recommended.
Getting in and out of kayaks can be a wet process so bring a shoe that works for this. Andy also recommends having a dry bag to put the camera and lens in while entering and exiting the water and gaining a feel for the kayak.