Common Questions

photographing death valley

Why should I take a Sea to Summit Photography Workshop?

Simple: because we teach you how to take amazing pictures. A Sea to Summit Photography workshop is the best accessory you’ll ever buy for your camera: an accessory that will allow you to take fantastic pictures wherever you go. We break down the art and science of photography into easy, understandable chunks of information you can use every single time you turn your camera on.

What will I learn?

In short, an incredible amount. Our workshops are designed to provide you with an excellent foundation in many aspects of nature photography.

You will learn the basics of camera control, including how to change your aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and white balance for maximum creative effect. You will also learn how to create engaging and powerful compositions by employing the rule of thirds, leading lines, near-far concepts, different perspectives, focal lengths, dramatic lighting, and more.

In addition, you will also learn more advanced ideas such as how to balance light using filters, how to use shutter speed and timing to capture wave motion, and how to tell a story with your images.

What happens on a Sea to Summit Photography workshop?

All of our workshops start with a brief orientation where participants and instructors alike introduce themselves and talk about what they want to get out of the class. The instructors will briefly go over the itinerary and the highlights of what the workshop will cover.

On our workshops we visit locations chosen not only for their incredible natural beauty but also for their ability to help demonstrate specific aspects of nature photography. Throughout the workshop we’ll be giving a series of brief talks to the group on the most important aspects of landscape photography, ranging from the finer points of composition to how adjusting your camera settings can give you incredible creative control over your images. We also spend time discussing and getting you to think about photography philosophies as well as nature dos and don’ts.

In between those mini-lectures we turn the group loose to shoot while we go from photographer to photographer to provide 1-on-1 instruction on the topics they want the most help with. That way we are able to guide everyone through the process of creating a great landscape image from start to finish.

What equipment do I need to bring?

Each participant needs a DSLR, a tripod, and lenses. Wide or ultra-angle lenses will enable you to get the most out of the class, but you are welcome to bring any other lenses you have as well, from macro to telephoto. We also recommend bringing any filters you have, including polarizers, solid neutral density filters, and graduated neutral density filters. Other handy items to bring are remote shutter releases, extra batteries and memory cards, your camera manual, a shammy cloth to wipe down your lens and filters, and a protective sleeve or shower cap to protect your camera from water.

What should I wear?

All our workshops occur outside and can experience variable conditions. Dress in layers and bring a raincoat in case we encounter wet weather.

A special note on footwear: on our seascape workshops we will encounter rocks that are extremely slippery due to algae or seaweed. Wear shoes or water socks that give you good traction even if wet and won’t slip off your feet. Absolutely no flip flops unless you intend to stay on the sand.

Another note for our seascape workshops: It can be chilly near the ocean no matter what time of year, so we recommend you dress in layers. Wear clothes that will stay warm even if you get wet (no cotton!). On our workshops we may get very close to crashing waves so you may even wish to pack a rain jacket. We also recommend bringing a change of clothes just in case you end up getting wet. Another handy item of “clothing” to have on hand is a protective sleeve for your camera to keep salt spray out of your gear. You can get one on Amazon for less than 10 bucks.

Does the workshop price include lodging?

Most of our multi-day workshops include lodging. These ‘shops take place where lodging can be scarce or difficult to find. Therefore we do provide lodging to make the logistics easier for our participants. In these cases the workshop price includes single-occupancy hotel lodging throughout the workshop. Couples or friends willing to share a room simply pay a supplemental workshop fee for the second person.

Some of our multi-day workshops don’t include lodging because they meet where many lodging options are available. In these cases we leave it to our participants to find lodging that suits their needs and budget.

Our single day workshops also do not include lodging, but we are more than happy to make lodging suggestions for those wishing to spend the night.

How about meals?

We don’t provide meals on any of our workshops. However, we will provide snacks and water throughout the workshop and ensure that there are breakfast, lunch, and dinner breaks where you can buy meals. If you have special dietary requirements, please come prepared.

Do you provide transportation?

For our US workshops we do not. Because our participants often come from different directions we ask that each guest meet us at a designated parking area for the workshop. We will carpool from there.

On our international workshops we do provide transportation.

What sets you apart from other workshop companies?

Sea to Summit Photography is run by pros who have a deep knowledge of the areas where we teach. We keep our workshops small (8-10 people max) in order to ensure that every participant receives lots of 1 on 1 time with the instructors. And we have a three-tiered approach to learning which covers the philosophy behind using your camera to create art, the theory needed to put your ideas into practice, and the in-field advice to immediately start making great images.

Will we still go out if the weather is bad?

Most of the time, yes we will. Many fantastic landscape and seascape photos are taken during bad weather because of the added drama and interesting light a storm can bring. However, if conditions are completely miserable or unsafe, we will reschedule the workshop.

Do I have to pay the registration fee all at once?

For our 1-day workshops, full payment is due at the time of registration. For our longer workshops, you have the option of initially paying a deposit. You will be billed for the remaining balance no later than 60 days prior to the workshop start date.

What’s your cancellation policy?

View our full cancellation policy here.

Can I bring some one who is not a photographer?

You sure can! Non-photographers (children, spouses, friends, etc.) are welcome to join us. However, because we undertake some liability for them when they join the group, we charge a companion fee which is 50% of the normal registration fee.

I have more questions!

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