Over the past 7 years I've been privileged to guide and facilitate incredible experiences for around 400 photographers, spanning 80+ photography workshops all around Iceland, Faroe Islands, and the Adirondacks Mountains (USA). I thank you for joining me in the past on one or more of these photo tours, and I sincerely hope you came away from the trip with unforgettable photos, memories, experiences, and an enhanced photographic skill and passion.
I am pleased to announce that it's time to broaden our photographic location offerings, and I want to let you, my clients, know what photographic adventures newly await should you so choose to embark on another photographic adventure. About one-quarter of my clients are returning ones, and I hope you'll entrust me again to help you discover these upcoming destinations in 2017. On most trips I can usually offer returning clients a discount, so just ask!
Here's all the destinations we're going to in the next year!
Greenland, Aug 2017 (new location)
Norway Dogsledding, Feb 2018 (new location)
Faroe Islands, July 2017 (brand new type of tour/retreat)
Cuba, Nov/Dec 2017 (new location)
Iceland landscape, fall + winter 2017-2018 (multiple trips each season, ongoing past 7 years)
Iceland fine-art/nude modeling, June 2017 (brand new type of workshop)
Adirondack Park (USA), summer + fall 2017 (multiple weekends, ongoing past 7 years)
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Greenland is a must-see destination for any world traveller, and rapidly becoming well-known among photographers for it's out-of-this-world arctic summer light and giant icebergs. I'm pleased to begin leading photo workshops to West Greenland in 2017, as a brand new destination! If you want to photograph clear jewel-like ice chunks on black sand beaches that glitter like diamonds, then Iceland is for you. But if you want to be blown away by the sheer size and number of gigantic icebergs hundreds of feel tall, floating in the Arctic Ocean and cast in warm pink arctic sunset light at midnight, then Greenland is the place for you!
Ilulissat town is the logical starting point for a Greenlandic photography workshop, situated at the outlet of the iceberg-choked Ilulissat Icefjord, which deposits these huge icebergs into Disko Bay where they drift around for years before melting. There is spectacular sunset and sunrise light that shines through the short summer nights, and to best capture this on the icebergs, we'll photograph from private chartered boats cruising around Disko Bay. We'll also travel to several outlying small village settlements around Disko Bay, for an authentic view of Inuit culture and way of living. Here, small colorful wooden houses built on the rocks next to the ocean are very picturesque and great to walk among with a camera. We'll stay two nights in Qasigiannguit, and two nights in another tiny 50-person settlement on the south side of the Ilulissat Icefjord named Ilimanaq. As this is a brand new destination which the ferry boat company was working on establishing the route to, we're a little behind in announcing this trip (but not too late!), of 16-26 August 2017. These are ideal dates as we'll still do late evening sunset cruises to the icebergs, yet still have the chance to see the first auroras of the new season during our short 4-hour nights. Midday light can be quite harsh, so we'll utilize middays for travel between settlements, and rest time at our hotels, and an occasional indoor edit session.
I'm offering limited-time special pricing for our inaugural 10-day Greenland trip, at just $4800 (pre-discount for return clients) all inclusive of private boat charters, boat transfers between 4 different settlements all around Disko Bay (including the distant Eqi Glacier!), all meals, and guiding. (Price does not include flights to Greenland, from either Iceland or Denmark). Greenland is a very expensive country to travel in, so I urge you to check out all the workshops coming here to Greenland for comparison' sake, and I'm confident you'll find this trip covers the Disko Bay the most comprehensively and affordably! More info can be found here.
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Dogsledding through the Norwegian arctic wilderness in the dead of winter, with just you and your faithful husky dog sled team to rely on, with the dancing aurora borealis in the arctic clear nights, and the exhilaration of photographing running dogs and sleds while hanging onto your own speeding dogsled speeding across the powdery snow. Picture that! This tour is for hard-core photographers willing to be out in in extreme cold (-35C) weather, and physically abled, and up for a true arctic adventure, that will surely give you one-of-a-kind images of the arctic winter wilderness and up-close-and-personal photo experiences with huskies and this way of life. We're spending 8 full days dogsledding through the Dividal National Park in a large loop across frozen lakes and through mountain passes.
On this tour, if you're an accomplished or independent-style photographer, we're inviting you to join us at an at-cost basis, as we simply want to share the costs among 4 people, and you pay same as what I pay. We have 2 so far committed to go. However, if you'll want more help in your photography too and are not as advanced, that's fine too, and all we ask is that you give us a commensurate tip at the end of the trip for any photography guiding we help you out with! We're going with a dog sledding company in northern Norway, Husky Lodge, and all the info for this trip is on the company's website, at http://huskylodge.no/hundeschlittentouren/expedition-dividal/. Please let me know ASAP if you're interested in joining us, as we need to put down deposit payments soon.
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In the Faroe Islands this summer, I'm working with yoga instructor and retreat leader Dr. Justina Law, offering a unique yoga + photography retreat for 7 days,July 8-15, 2017. This is different from our normal photography workshops with intensive itineraries, and will feature a more relaxed retreat environment were there will be offered one or two daily hatha and restorative yoga sessions each day, paired with a daily photography outing during the afternoon or evening of anywhere from 3-6 hours. We'll be based out of a single hotel in the capital city of Torshavn, and our daily outings will go to many classic photography locations around the many islands making up the Faroese archipeligo. Faroe Islands is a charming island nation in the North Atlantic ocean, part way between Iceland and Europe, and you can easily fly there via either point. The Faroe Islands offer a peaceful respite from the busy tourism destinations of Iceland, and have quiet idyllic villages nestled between the steep green mountains and the ocean channels running between them. In many ways Faroe Islands feels like Iceland did 10 years ago - still undiscovered by mainstream tourism, quiet country roads with bountiful maritime and pastoral scenery, countless waterfalls streaming down from the grassy fjord valleys, and tall sea cliffs where millions of seabirds and puffins nest in the summer months.
So we'll photograph all these types of locations on our daily outings, plus grass roofed churches, and dramatic panoramas over the fjords seperating the islands. This yoga and photography retreat will be the first of its kind in the Faroe Islands! Justina our yoga instructor has led tens of retreats around the world, and Johnathan will serve as principal outing and photography guide. It's open to really anyone, even non- photographers who just want to relax, do some yoga and explore your creativity through movement , and enjoy Faroe Islands' sights, while at the same time keen photographers will have plenty of opportunities to shoot and receive photography coaching in the field and a little in the classroom, and guidance from a professional photographer. This retreat is also ideal for couples who may have varied interests, where one is more into photography or yoga than the other. This retreat is offered at an incredible value of just $2465 USD, and includes all nightly accommodation, meals, all yoga sessions and all group photography outings, for 7 days and nights! Signup can be done via either leaders' websites at icelandphotography.com or www.ombianceyoga.com/faroes_retreat.htm.
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Cuba is a country in transition and yet stuck in some uncertain past decade, and unlike any other destination I've been to (and I've traveled to 55 countries!). If just placed in a part of Cuba without any reference points, you couldn't tell in what decade you were in. Horse drawn carriage carts with wobbly wheels and bent axles ply their passenger routes through the city, picking up and dropping off passengers at the central plaza, reminiscent of the turn of last century, while blaring out 1990's Latin regeatone music, and across the street are parked a row of 1950's American classic cars in various states of condition, while young Cubans sit on the curb checking their social media on smartphones at one of the town's few public wifi internet hotspots.
During our 2-week trip to Cuba this past November, we found an endless supply of photographic subjects, centered of course around the Cuban people. Poor rural 'campasino' farmers cutting grass along the road and filling up their horse-drawn carts are friendly and happy to pose for photographers, in exchange for maybe a leftover bar of hotel soap you've forgotten about in your bag. And how about photographing a young man that guides horse riding tours, holding the reins of his horse with the last burst of sunset silhouetting him? Of course no trip to Cuba would be complete without exhaustively photographing the American classic cars, which are in all colors of the rainbow and states of repair, and in addition to walk-by shooting, the best photos come from renting these cars at sunrise to pose them on the cobblestone streets or in front of Spanish forts, cast in golden sunrise light before the rest of Cuba wakes up. There's also the limestone hills called 'magotes' which will offer some outstanding sunrise panoramic landscape shots, crystal clear seas, and tropical waterfalls, for the pure-nature lover. Havana is so rich in photographic potential too, with all it's busy streetlife, and old, delapitated buildings with faded patina walls and crumbling cement, and the iconic Malecon seawall were locals fish.
Our photographic workshop to Cuba will be an approx. 12-day trip in November or early December, 2017, although dates are exact yet as we're still in the planning stages. This trip will be unique among any other photographic tour there, because we want to incorporate a huge variety of subjects and locations to photograph, from rural farm life to decaying city architecture, from staged classic cars to tropical landscapes. Too many other photo tours to Cuba only focus on the street life in Havana and perhaps one other city, to the neglect of really getting a feel for the rest of Cuba. We'll be working with a local guide that's fluent in Spanish and his/her own country, and yet also retain that freedom and flexibility that my trips are known for, such as randomly stopping by the roadside to photograph a passing horse cart in sunset light. And we'll arrange a series of opportunities to photograph portraits of real Cubans in their everyday lives, with an emphasis on rural peoples. Havana isn't forgotten; we'll spend a solid 4 days there as well.
If you're interested, please email me and I'll be sure to fill you in on the details as they get worked out and signup details when appropriate. Cost will be very affordable, around $2200 for the whole trip, plus cheap airfare from the USA.
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The autumn season in Iceland is my favorite time of year to be here, where we can photograph local rural farm culture during the sheep roundups, the yellow colors of turning birches contrasting against black lava, the Aurora Borealis once again becoming visible in the night sky, the remote interior Highlands regions still accessible via normal 4x4 vehicle. And Iceland is noticeably quieter after a hectic summer tourist season. This September 9-20, we have our 3rd annual fall photography workshop around the country, starting in the north and following the changing autumn color to the south of Iceland. The last two workshops have been great, full of photo ops, and if you've only visited in winter so far, consider joining us a second time in Iceland this fall! More info can be found here.
Next winter season we'll again be doing a full compliment of workshops around Iceland, so if you haven't yet been here, now's your last best opportunity! Tourism is still rapidly growing, (let's actually say exploding) in Iceland, with 35% annual growth rates, and mid- 2 million range visitor count projected in 2017! It's certainly not the same country I fell in love with years ago, but it's popular for a reason, as Iceland's nature is still as beautiful as ever. In 2017-2018, we're going to only be offering a visit to a more remote and spectacular ice cave away from all the crowds in once-pristine Crystal Ice Cave, and this is just one (but significant) reason to plan your winter photography workshop with us! We're offering some 'classic' itineraries on the popular south coast of Iceland, and on these will stay close to some famous sights so that we can visit them easily in the dark of night or sunrise to enjoy them more to ourselves. Also on offer is an optionally-segmented series of tours completely encircling Iceland, so you can do a combination of individual trips, to comprehensively see and photograph Iceland. Winter 2018 workshops have now just been posted, so it's great to start thinking ahead and book your space now, before the trips sell out as they did this past season!
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In Iceland this summer, I'm co-guiding a fine-art and nude portraiture photography workshop, set in the backdrop of the Icelandic volcanic sands and Highlands. This is totally different than any landscape workshop I've ever offered, of course, but it is exciting to capture the beauty of the human form set amongst the stark contrasts of Iceland's harsh climate. Chief model photographer will be Vinson Smith, a longtime landscape photography client of mine, who is also an accomplished fine art portraiture and boudoir photographer in Atlanta, Georgia. I'll serve as assistant photographer, and location guide, as I've been guiding around Iceland since 2011. We'll have 2-3 models traveling with us the entire workshop, who will work with and pose for photographers in both wardrobe and nude styles. More info on this trip is on a separate website from my main photography page, at www.naturenudesphotography.com . Trip dates are 26-31 June 2017, and includes a full 6.5 days of photography with our professional models, all transportation, guiding, and wardrobe and some lighting gear.
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And last, let's not forget the Adirondack Park of New York State, USA, my home area where I live, which is equally beautiful, in it's own subtle way. The Adirondacks is easy to travel to within a day's drive from anywhere on the East Coast, yet really feels apart from the rest of the state, with it's pristine forests and lakes and quiet mountain scenery. Autumn is absolutely beautiful with vibrant reds of the maple trees, and offers spectacular foliage scenics. Late summer mornings with fog rising off the lakes are another opportune time to visit. I'm offering small solo-led weekend workshops in the Adirondacks in May, August and September (listed at WildernessPhotographs.com). Also, I work with the region's other top photographers including Mark Bowie, in offering our annually sold-out Peak Color fall photography workshop, based out of the Long Lake and Saranac regions this year. (listed at ADKPI.org).