Dates

TBA

4 days / 3 nights

Tuition

TBA

California’s Sierra Nevada mountain range was famously called “the Range of Light” by John Muir for the endless dance that light performs on the range’s peaks. The Sierra Nevada is characterized by massive granite mountains, picturesque lakes and rivers, and rich forests. The scenic and varied landscapes are a photographer’s delight. In addition, early July often brings the monsoon and thunderstorm to the Sierra, making for exciting and dramatic conditions for photography. This High Sierra photography workshop will visit such grand locations as the Mammoth Lakes Basin, Tuolumne and Dana Meadows, Mono Lake, Convict Lake, groves of quaking aspens, and much more. Join us as we photograph the spell-binding scenery of the High Sierra. This multi-day High Sierra photography workshop will help photographers create beautiful photos of the breathtaking and varied landscapes of California’s Sierra Nevada mountains. During this workshop we will be photographing dramatic granite peaks, glacially-fed alpine lakes, fascinating rock formations, cascading streams, and otherworldly Mono Lake tufa towers. Each day is filled with spectacular opportunities as we put you in the right place at the right time to make the most of your photography. In addition to visiting incredible landscapes, this workshop places a strong emphasis on helping you produce striking and powerful compositions, as well as telling a story with your photos.

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Trip Highlights

Stunning Landscapes

The Sierra Nevada mountains boast some of the most dramatic and accessible landscapes in the United States, making it a dream destination for landscape and nature photography.

Monsoon Drama

The monsoon typically comes to the Sierra in early July, bringing incredible clouds and sunsets to the area.

World Class Dark Night Skies

The monsoonal clouds frequently clear in the evening, giving way to crystal clear night skies.

What to Expect

This High Sierra Monsoon Photography Workshop is for photographers of all experience levels, from novice to experienced. In short, this tour is for anyone who wants to explore and photograph stunning scenery with a fun group of like-minded people. The workshop is limited to 5 participants for a small, personal feel.

This is a learning-focused tour, meaning that I make every effort to have you leave the workshop a better photographer. But that doesn’t mean we spend our time in a classroom. On the contrary, all instruction on this tour takes place in-the-field in amazing locations, and is relaxed, constructive, and personal. I encourage understanding your camera’s settings in order to break into new creative realms. There is a strong emphasis on producing striking and powerful compositions, as well as telling a story with your photos.  In addition, the workshop will discuss aspects of post-processing and digital workflow. Topics we can discuss include:

• Transforming your artistic vision into memorable photographs
• Aperture, Shutter Speed, and ISO – their interaction and how to change them for exposure control. And how to use them for artistic expression.
• Metering and getting a correct exposure
• Histograms, how to read them, and how to fine-tune exposure
• Creative depth-of-field effects using aperture control
• Capturing motion within your photos using different shutter speeds
• Timing waves to capture crashing spray, water streaks, and sandy reflections
• White balance and creative coloration
• Creating perspective, depth, and a sense of “being there” in your photos
• Creating powerful compositions with impact
• Composing to control your viewer’s attention in your photos
• Composition: balance, tension, and visual flow
• How to use filters to capture dramatic light or create long-exposure effects
• Low-light and night photography
• How to capture stars, the Milky Way, or star trails
• Light-painting experiments
• Aspects of post-processing and digital workflow
• Shoot planning and how to be at the right place at the right time

Itinerary and Logistics

Getting to the Workshop

This High Sierra Photography Workshop is based out of Mammoth Lakes, a charming resort town in the heart of the High Sierra. Mammoth is located on highway 395, about 5 hours north of Los Angeles International Airport, 5 hours west of Las Vegas, or 3 hours south of Reno. If Tioga Pass through Yosemite is open, Mammoth is about a 6.5 hour drive from San Francisco. For our out-of-state participants flying in for this workshop, here are rough travel times from major transport hubs:

• Mammoth Lakes / Yosemite Airport: 10 minutes
• Los Angeles: 5 hours
• Burbank: 4.5 hour
• Reno: 3 hours
• Carson City: 2.5 hours

Transportation during the workshop

Transportation is not provided on this workshop, though we will make carpool arrangements at our workshop kickoff meeting.

Lodging

The workshop includes 4 nights of comfortable hotel lodging at the Mammoth Creek Inn.

High Sierra Photography Workshop Itinerary

Day 1, Thursday
Arrive in Mammoth Lakes, California in the early afternoon for a meet and greet where we will go over introductions and the workshop itinerary in more detail. Afterwards, we will explore the bizarre and beautiful formations at Mono Lake South Tufa at sunset. And assuming the clouds clear we’ll take time for Milky Way photography as well.

Day 2, Friday
Up early to catch the sunrise at Minaret Vista, then back to town for breakfast and informal image review. We will then make our way toward world-famous Yosemite National Park to photograph the best of the high country in the park.  Afternoon and evening shoots will be centered in the idyllic Tuolumne and Dana Meadows areas. If the clouds clear we will then venture back out after dinner for stunning Milky Way photography.

Day 3, Saturday
Up early to catch the sunrise at Hot Creek, a fascinating volcanic area with excellent views of the Sierra crest. In the afternoon we will hike into the spectacular Gaylor Lakes Basin and photograph the high country splendor of this seldom visited area. Back to town for dinner then more night photography if the conditions are right.

Day 4, Sunday
On our last day we’re up early again to shoot the sunrise at spectacular McLeod Lake. By mid morning the light will likely be too harsh to continue shooting, so we’ll wrap the workshop and head back to town for our final meal together.

This workshop is organized to take advantage of the best and most interesting locations the High Sierra has to offer. However, the exact itinerary and places we visit may change depending on the group and weather conditions.

Weather

July weather in the high Sierra is generally predictable, with warm days and cool nights. However, the high likelihood of monsoonal moisture in the atmosphere means we may encounter thunderous downpours, hailstorms, and infinitely varying light. The variability is one of the things that makes photographing the Sierra at this time of year so dynamic, fun, and challenging.

What you Need

Camera Gear

  • Digital SLR camera
  • Lenses. 16mm-200mm equivalent recommended.
  • A sturdy tripod
  • Comfortable camera backpack you can hike with
  • Filters (ND, Grad ND, Polarizer)
  • Remote shutter release
  • Extra batteries, charger, and memory cards
  • Creativity and a positive attitude

Recommended clothing

Due to variable conditions, we recommend bringing multiple layers of non-cotton clothing (like polypropylene base layers and fleeces), a warm jacket and pants, a warm hat, gloves, warm socks, and good footwear (hiking shoes or boots recommended), with lighter layers for warm days. We also recommend bringing a windproof rain jacket and rain pants. Light colored clothing is recommended as mosquitoes. A wide-brim hat, sunglasses, and a large water bottle will also be indispensable. New Zealand experiences strong UV so sunscreen is also a must. Bug repellent is a great idea but we recommend buying it in New Zealand.

Highly recommended items

  • Camera rain sleeve
  • Flashlight or headlamp
  • Trekking poles
  • Waders for getting out into lakes and streams
  • Mosquito repellent (DEET-based repellents are recommended)

Fitness level

Our High Sierra Photography Workshop is appropriate for photographers of good fitness levels. We will walk approximately 5-8 miles over the course of each day of the workshop, including some hikes of 2-3 miles each way. This hiking may be on rough, steep, and slippery terrain. This workshop may visit elevations as high as 10,500 ft. Walking in the mountains at altitude can be strenuous, especially at elevation. All participants are expected to be able to carry their own camera, personal gear, and water during the workshop. Participants may wish to arrive a few days early before the workshop begins to acclimate to the altitude. In short, please be prepared for hiking high in the mountains.

Costs

  • Workshop Fee – $1,750 USD

    • Includes three nights of Single Occupancy Lodging at the Mammoth Creek Inn.
  • Lodging

    • Inquire about a reduced price for double occupancy lodging.

A deposit of $750 required to reserve your spot. The balance is due 60 days before the workshop.

What’s Included

  • An incredible tour of some the most photogenic sights of the breathtaking Range of Light
  • Quality, professional, 1-on-1 photography instruction on par with your level as a photographer
  • 3 nights of comfortable lodging
  • All park entrance, and permit fees
  • Secret surprises along the way
  • Delicious, endless snacks throughout the workshop
  • A fun, positive, interactive learning environment
  • Small group size of 5 photographers maximum
  • Memories of a lifetime

What’s Not

  • Airfare and ground transportation to Mammoth Lakes
  • Transportation (we will make every effort to carpool)
  • Meals, though the group often eats together throughout the workshop
  • Personal items, souvenirs, passport/visa fees as applicable, and gratuities
  • Optional activities such as gear rentals, extra tours, etc.
  • Trip insurance

Cancellation Policy

For this workshop a deposit is required to reserve your spot. If you cancel at any time, this holding deposit is non-refundable; however if we are able to fill your spot before the workshop we will refund your holding deposit. If we cancel this workshop for any reason, your entire registration fee will be transferred to another workshop or refunded to you at your discretion. We strongly recommend purchasing trip insurance to cover your costs in case of cancellation or withdrawal. If you have a personal emergency such as a medical emergency or a death in the family, please contact us. We are willing to work with you to reschedule or refund your fee on a case-by-case basis. This workshop requires a minimum of 3 participants. In the case of under-subscription we reserve the right to cancel the workshop, in which case your registration will be transferred to another workshop of your choosing. Or we may conduct the workshop with a single instructor.

Testimonials

Bambi W.

“That was a great experience and a wonderful workshop. Thank you so much.

Stacia K.

“Hi! Thank you again for an amazing workshop. You helped me so much, and I really appreciate it!! I feel like I finally know how to use all the bells and whistles on my camera.”

Dan M.

“Josh, thanks again for the spectacular workshop, great learning, and sites.”

Your Instructor:

Josh Cripps

I grew up in the Sierra Nevada mountains and have been exploring their granite peaks and high country meadows since I was a kid. I live in Mammoth Lakes and spend my free time backpacking on the east side, drinking from crystal-clear alpine lakes, and chasing bears away from my dehydrated pasta. I consider the Eastern Sierra to hold some of the most beautiful places on the planet and love helping photographers shoot this wonderful region.

I’m a full-time professional photographer who has spent thousands of hours scouting and shooting in the Eastern Sierra Nevada. Through a combination of theory, philosophy, examples, and on-the-spot feedback, I’ll help you reach those “a-ha!” moments that will take your photography to the next level.

Why Choose This Workshop?

Spectacular Locations
My workshops combine the very best scenery I can find along with in-depth knowledge of the areas we’re visiting. From the coast to the mountains to the desert, my workshops visit some of the most breathtaking landscapes you can imagine. And with hundreds of hours spent scouting and shooting in each location, I know the best times to visit, the best things to see, and the best shots to get.

1-on-1 Instruction at Your Level
I take a three-tiered approach to my photography instruction: Philosophy. Theory. Technique. This means that no matter what level of photographer you are, you can expect to walk away from a workshop with your head bursting with ideas about how to refine your vision and find your own style, an understanding of camera techniques and composition concepts that will springboard your photography, and the actual “How-To” of nailing a shot in the field. And with a relaxed, casual, 1-on-1 approach, you can soak up just the information YOU need to become a better shooter.

Small Class Size
I highly prefer small groups to insure you get ample one-on-one instruction time. Our small groups also help us build camaraderie, plus we can go places big photography tours can’t.

A “Go Happy or Go Home” Attitude
I believe that photography is as much about enjoyment as it is about scoring a keeper for your portfolio. I create a fun and dynamic environment where you can meet other photographers, learn at your own pace, enjoy the beauty of nature, and have a great time while doing it.

I Never Stop Scouting
I’m never content to rest on my laurels. Before and after every workshop I am scouting, scouting, scouting. Whether it’s to find new and exciting locations to shoot or to provide a different view of the old icons, I strive to show you the absolute best places for photography.

Fully Insured and Permitted, Leave-No-Trace Advocates
I take pains to ensure our activities are 100% above board. I obtain all the necessary permissions and insurances required in order conduct our workshops.

I am also a strong advocate of Leave No Trace (LNT) wilderness ethics. I teach responsible photography practices and never sacrifice the environment for the sake of a photo. My goal is to leave our photography workshop locations in better shape than the way we found them.

Questions About This Trip?

  • Free Download! Learn to Create Grand Landscape Photos



    Download this FREE eBook and learn 9 simple steps to create beautiful grand landscape photos like the ones you see in the magazines.

     

    Order a Print of Order Form – Panos

    Ordering prints is easy. Simply select a print type, then choose the size and your preferred payment method. Hit ORDER and your order is sent to me directly. I will invoice you for the order total and then get to work creating your print!

    ~Josh


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    100% Satisfaction Guarantee

    I want buying art online to be a zero hassle, zero uncertainty experience, so I offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all my prints. I personally inspect and sign every single print before it ships and I guarantee it will look amazing when you receive it. Nevertheless, if you don’t love your print, I will refund your payment completely and cover the cost of return shipping.

    FREE Shipping on Every Order

    I provide free domestic shipping to all orders placed within the continental United States. Depending on the size of the print ordered this often goes for Hawaii and Alaska as well. International orders will be charged shipping at the lowest possible rate. Any shipping charges will be shown on the order invoice for your approval.

    Monitor Color vs Print Color
    Unless you own a color-calibrated monitor, chances are your print will look slightly different than the photo you see on your screen. Be assured that I make every effort to have each print look as beautiful as possible. If you need to match a print’s colors exactly, please contact me to arrange a test proof.

    Payment and Security

    For your convenience I offer three choices for payment:

    • Credit Card
    • PayPal

    Positive SSL-Secured WebsiteYou will be invoiced after your order is received. All credit card and PayPal transactions are done via secure payment gateways to protect your personal information. And this site is secured with SSL encryption so that even your mailing address and email are transmitted securely.

  • Free Download! Learn to Create Grand Landscape Photos



    Download this FREE eBook and learn 9 simple steps to create beautiful grand landscape photos like the ones you see in the magazines.

     

    License Request for License Form

    Simply fill out the form below and I will get back to you as soon as possible with a quote.

    ~Josh

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    Please describe your use in as much detail as possible, including:
    - Usage (Advertising, Web, Magazine, Editorial, Print, Display, Retail, etc.)
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    - Countries of Distribution
    - Exclusive License (Yes / No)

  • Order a Print

    Ordering prints is easy. Simply select a print type, then choose the size and your preferred payment method. Hit ORDER and your order is sent to me directly. I will invoice you for the order total and then get to work creating your print!

    ~Josh


    josh2-web2

    100% Satisfaction Guarantee

    I want buying art online to be a zero hassle, zero uncertainty experience, so I offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all my prints. I personally inspect and sign every single print before it ships and I guarantee it will look amazing when you receive it. Nevertheless, if you don’t love your print, I will refund your payment completely and cover the cost of return shipping.

    FREE Shipping on Every Order

    I provide free domestic shipping to all orders placed within the continental United States. Depending on the size of the print ordered this often goes for Hawaii and Alaska as well. International orders will be charged shipping at the lowest possible rate. Any shipping charges will be shown on the order invoice for your approval.

    Monitor Color vs Print Color
    Unless you own a color-calibrated monitor, chances are your print will look slightly different than the photo you see on your screen. Be assured that I make every effort to have each print look as beautiful as possible. If you need to match a print’s colors exactly, please contact me to arrange a test proof.

    Payment and Security

    For your convenience I offer two choices for payment:

    • Credit Card
    • PayPal

    You will be invoiced after your order is received. All credit card and PayPal transactions are done via secure payment gateways to protect your personal information. And this site is secured with SSL encryption so that even your mailing address and email are transmitted securely.