Anza-Borrego is a vast, stunning desert landscape that few photographers venture to. If you are familiar with Death Valley you will appreciate array of scenery this area provides. From mud cracks with stunning mountains as a backdrop, to gorgeous badlands, interesting rocks formations, and even a slot canyon. There is a lot to appreciate in the desert if you take the time to slow down and experience it.
Arches Night Workshop
“When signing up for a workshop with an instructor that is unknown to you, it is difficult to imagine what you might find. I had seen David’s work and was impressed enough to take a chance on the man. BEST. DECISION, EVER. I learned more about astrophotography in the 3 days of this workshop than in the previous 3 years of trying to muddle through on my own. David covered every aspect from scouting and preparation to shooting, to the all-important post-production. Beyond that, he made all of us realize that we gained a lifetime resource. He holds absolutely nothing in reserve; if he knows it (and he does), he will share it. If you are interested in night photography, please, do yourself a favor, and take one of this man’s workshops.”
“This was my second workshop with Exploring Exposure, and the experience has been top-notch on both. The scouting is great, and David knows where to be at the optimal time. David is an expert in nighttime photography and post-processing, and presents excellent imaging sessions. Relaxed atmosphere. Joined by his partner, Jennifer Renwick, who is an accomplished photographer in her own right. Locations are not only the well-known iconic spots. Ideal workshop for an advanced amateur.”
Arches Night Workshop
“I learned so much in this workshop! This is going to take my night photography to a whole new level! David was flexible in his teaching and scheduling to accommodate both the group and the weather; he gave LOTS of one-on-one instruction both in the field and in the classroom! David is an exceptional photographer with an ability to pass his knowledge along to others! I would definitely take another one of his workshops!”
Private Night Workshop Rocky Mountain National Park
“Anyone can host a class to talk about photography skills, but only a few can actually teach. David does both very well. His extensive knowledge allowed him to handle just about any question I threw at him. I really appreciated being able to explore a little while we were on location instead of it being like a tour not deviating from the purpose.The best part about David’s class is that he is very patient and in no way arrogant. No matter how insignificant my question seemed to me he was always courteous and helpful in his responses. His scouting was top notch. Every stop was amazing.One last thing that really stood out was that even after the class was done, days after, he still would help me with little items on processing. He could have simply ignored me, but he took his time to drop tidbits of info here and there. Very much appreciated.I would definitely do another class to learn more.”
Colorado Fall Colors Workshop 2016
“David and Jennifer were excellent teachers, they focused their attention on the students not on shooting their own photos which most other workshop leaders do based on my experience. They were very organized and did their research in advance so we were at all the best locations for sunrise/sunset. I also liked the small class size which was more intimate, made it easier for logistics and prevented conflict between participants which is common with larger groups. I highly recommend David and Jennifer and plan to take more workshops with them in the future.”
Death Valley Dec ’18
“ This was truly one of the best workshops I have attended. David and Jennifer are attentive, knowledgeable teachers, and two of the nicest people you will meet anywhere. I found the workshop to be an excellent mix of field time and classroom time, and I came away feeling more confident in my ability to take photos with strong compositions, and edit them properly afterward. I will happily take part in future workshops with them any time, any place! ”
“I got to the workshop with a very basic knowledge about night photography … what I learned in these 3 days was far more than what I have read on the internet in 6 months. but the most valuable thing I learned is how to prepare for the night shot … from scouting, weather check, milky way position and time of rise and set ..etc it was amazing and worth every penny spent.”
Colorado Fall 2015
“Over the last two years, it has been my great pleasure to participate in several of David’s photography trips. I’ve been to the Tetons for night photography, the San Juan’s for fall colors, Whitepocket/Paria Canyon/Buckskin Gulch with car camping and, most recently, a backpacking trip to Blue Lakes, Colorado. If I had the time and opportunity, I would, easily, work with David once a month. Should anyone have any interest in photography in the West, I can recommend him with no reservations whatsoever.What I most admire and appreciate about David is his thorough and thoughtful preparation. When we met in the Tetons, he’d already spent weeks in the area on his own exploring and hiking and scouting locations for night photography. Similarly, he’d already backpacked into Blue Lakes before we went with him. He knew what to expect and where and when to look for the best opportunities in that location at that time of the year. The same was true of the trips to the San Juans and the Whitepocket area.I’ve observed David work comfortably with other members of these tours providing both technical ideas regarding capturing an image as well as aesthetic suggestions to others for their images. During the daytime in the Tetons and the San Juans, that is, those locations where we had electricity and roofs over our heads, he presented his approach to post processing in Lightroom and Photoshop that offered me ideas I’d never considered before. It is easy for me to imagine going to a post processing workshop for nature photography with David for several days. I would jump at the chance to learn just that part of the photography experience.I hope to be able to join him on his trip to Zion National Park in the fall and would be thrilled to go to Death Valley with him, though my schedule probably won’t allow it for over a year. He’s spent a lot of time in Death Valley and found locations that are not likely to be on more usual tours there. I’ve truly admired his work from Death Valley.Lastly, David is a good cook. He prepared three dinners from scratch each evening on the Whitepocket/Paria Canyon/Buckskin Gulch trip. His pork chops with sweet potatoes and apple chutney was a memorable meal. One I’d be happy to have again, camping or at home.If you are thinking about a photography trip in the West, it’s hard for me to imagine anyone could offer more than David.”
Slot Canyons 2016
“David’s workshops provide a complete learning experience from the why’s and when’s of a particular photo location to suggestions on how to photograph it and finally the post-processing to maximize the entire experience. This is especially valuable for the photographer who wants to improve his or her skill level and who might have “plateaued” along the way.. David is a skilled photographer who has the teaching ability to bring it all together for a photographer interested in improving all skills from capture to processing. The research he puts in to provide excellent locations is outstanding.”
Death Valley Back Country Workshop 2018
“David and Jennifer did a wonderful job on this workshop. Under the best of circumstances, Death Valley can be a difficult area to photograph. During this trip, getting into back country proved difficult due to extreme weather that seems to be the new normal: think sustained wind speeds of 40 mph for two days; snow blocking, or threatening to block passes around the park; and, abnormally low temperatures for the time of year. David and Jennifer’s new motto should be ‘Plan to Improvise’ because they are very adroit at both. Their knowledge of the area allowed them to shuffle the planned itinerary for the safety and satisfaction of everyone.”
Private Death Valley Tour 2017
“One of the things I admire about David so much is that his success does not go to his head. At no point is there ever a moment where you feel some elitist attitude. David would regularly walk around and see what my wife and I were up to, offer suggestions, and help us with any problems we were having. I always like to ask what other photographers might be thinking, or looking for, when they approach a scene so that I can learn to see things in multiple ways.”
Arches Night Workshop
“This was an amazing class. I learned a lot about night photography and post-processing. David is talented, willing to share his knowledge and very patient. The location was great. Thanks for a fun, informative experience.”
Arches Night Workshop
“I came into David’s workshop knowing quite a bit about night photography. I wanted to take a workshop with someone who didn’t mind sharing everything they know. That’s where David comes in.I have learned so much from David. From the little tricks in the field to post-processing. David does a great job at balancing all skill levels, giving everyone individual attention.Not only did I meet some great people but I feel like I’ve made some lifelong friends.”
Colorado Fall Colors Workshop 2017
“David & Jennifer, your 2017 Ridgway Colorado workshop was exceptional. You exceeded all of my expectations and I could not have had a better time! Your knowledge of the area and willingness to chase the best scenes for your clients was commendable. In a challenging Autumn color year you still provided us with exceptional sites to shoot. Your teaching styles and personalities are complimentary and both of you were patient, exceptionally knowledgeable and also accommodating to the various personalities of the group. It was very nice to see how you made beginner and advanced photographers comfortable. I can’t thank enough and I’m looking forward to attending future workshops.”
Colorado Fall Colors Workshop 2015
“David is exceptionally knowledgeable; he will take you to the right places at the right time, and that is probably the most important factor in photography. He is also one of the nicest persons. He also provides transportation during the workshop which is great; it’s nice not having to drive everywhere myself. Thank you!”
“David and Jennifer are two outstanding people, photographers and workshop leaders. They are there for you and you only. They keep the groups very small and are always available, They know the locations intimately so they always have a plan B to deal with whatever the weather deals us. Just finished two workshops with them in short order (this is my third one with them), and can’t wait for the next trip. Keep up such amazing standards.”
“If you are an advanced landscape photographer looking to quickly jump-start your night sky photography, then I highly recommend David’s program. It takes the guesswork out of taking great photos of the Milky Way, star trails, and the night sky.From advanced planning techniques and tools, great selection of accessible locations, excellent recommendations on equipment and software, classroom training and field work on an end-to-end workflow from camera settings to advanced post-processing in Lightroom and Photoshop, and just the wealth of knowledge and experience that he freely shares, the program is an amazing value for the money!”
A first timer
“I had never attended a photography workshop. My experience was minimal but I was able to learn much and gain a perspective of how photography will fit in my future life. The other participants at the workshop were great and many had attended an Exploring Exposure workshop previously. David and Jennifer were highly supportive but also encouraged me to try things on my own. This was a great life experience.”
Death Valley Backcountry Workshop 2018
“We embarked on a multi-day backcountry camping adventure in DV with David and Jennifer at the lead. Right from the start, we were faced with challenging weather conditions which forced them to reevaluate the original itinerary. They were very professional and diplomatic about explaining the options and included the group in the final decision. We were faced with similar weather challenges throughout the trip and each time they were successful at providing us with the best possible shooting and camping locations given the circumstances, even if it meant long unplanned drives. Thankfully they have an intimate knowledge of DV and the surrounds, which enabled them to work with the cards Mother Nature dealt us. They are very accommodating workshop leaders and provided a very comfortable camping experience, cooking meals and always checking in to make sure everyone was comfortable. In the field, they are available to answer any questions you have and willing to give you as much or as little guidance as you desire. Their teaching approach is not overbearing and they are very approachable. Even though our workshop did not include a formal post-processing session, they still found some time to do some teaching on the subject. Even though they are highly accomplished photographers, they are very personable and down to earth and make the whole experience very fun.”
2018 Death Valley
“ This was my first photo workshop. I didn’t really have any expectations going in but when it was over, I was sad it was over. I had a wonderful time with the group. David and Jennifer are very knowledgeable and patient. The weather didn’t always cooperate but they were flexible in the scheduling and got us out to some really cool locations. The between shoot post-processing sessions were extremely educational. I finished the course a better photographer than when I began. I can’t recommend it enough. ”
Death Valley Workshop 2015
“I cannot say enough good things about my experience in Death Valley with David shooting landscapes. From day one I was reminded that, in addition to all the technical details, it is really all about being at the right place at the right time. It was obvious to me that David had spent a great deal of time in the field researching location and timing. It paid off in a big way as our class was exposed to some really wonderful moments of place and light that bordered on magical. I also learned that getting to that magical moment isn’t always easy. It may require getting up at 3:00 in the morning, driving on dirt roads for an hour or more and setting up in the cold and dark, to be at that special place at sunrise. But the rewards are there and the experiences will remain with me for a lifetime.”
“I am extremely pleased with David’s workshop and would recommend his instruction to anyone interested in night photography. Every part of the class is very well laid out and David does a great job spending time with each student throughout the duration of the workshop.”
Colorado Fall Colors Workshop 2017
“In previous years, I attended several Fall Color workshops led by other leaders. This workshop was the best of all of them. David and Jennifer thoroughly researches, finds, and scouts good photographic venues. They visit them again the week before the scheduled workshop to determine which venues the color will be at its peak during the workshop. Then they adjust the schedule as necessary. During the workshops, we had the opportunity to photograph a wide variety of scenes. David and Jennifer were always very helpful to all of the workshop participants. They made sure we got the opportunity to take great photos and, when necessary, that we got the support we needed to do so correctly. I know everyone learned a lot.”
2018 San Juan Mountains Wildflower Workshop
“This was my second workshop with David & Jennifer and I continue to learn and grow with each workshop. The experience of exploring and photographing the higher elevations of the San Juan Mountains was very special for someone who loves the mountains as I do. David & Jennifer provide a low pressure learning environment for photographers of all levels. They allow you the space to be creative and find your own style while also offering helpful suggestions and technical assistance. In addition to being very accomplished professional landscape photographers, David and Jennifer are very generous, thoughtful and fun people to spend time with. I look forward to attending my next Exploring Exposure workshop! Alan”
“Had a wonderful experience with David and Jennifer in Silverton, CO. Great location for wildflower, waterfall and nature photography. Both David and Jennifer are terrific people who run a good workshop and are attentive to there customers. They offer great advice and their first priority is that everyone in the workshop has a safe and enjoyable experience. I really appreciated them, their knowledge and their help.”
Arches Night Workshop
“David’s Arches Night Photography workshop was exceptional! David was so generous in sharing his expertise with the entire group; no question went unanswered! He also did a suburb job teaching his skills both in the field and classroom setting.”
“David is an extremely talented photographer so I knew I was learning from a professional. He picks the best locations, helps with composition and in-the-field techniques. Learning David’s processing workflow was very valuable and will help me refine my own process to create better images.”
Ice Lakes Basin 2016
“David is not only very passionate and knowledgable about landscape photography, but you can tell that he does his research and plans in advance to maximize the best of what an area has to offer. On our backpacking trip, he scouted out our campsite and the best places to photograph within reach of our basecamp a few days in advance of the trip, so that we can be in the right place at the right time.”
“Great course. David is a laid back guy. Easy to talk to and approach. He is very helpful and will show you things about your camera if you do not know. Knows his subject very well. Would not hesitate to take another course from him and I hope to do this soon.”
Ice Lakes Basin Workshop 2016
“What a wonderful trip to Ice Lakes Basin! David helped plan the trip with several helpful emails ahead of time. Responses to questions were quick and helpful too. On the hike itself, he lead the way while Jennifer brought up the rear making sure we all stayed together as a group. On reaching the campsite, David walked around helping each of us pick out sites for our tents and lending a helping hand setting up tents. I didn’t acclimatize to the altitude very well and both David and Jennifer stayed extremely patient with me because I obviously was not feeling well or thinking clearly. Both of them helped me through my fog and helped me understand what makes good composition in certain situations – and sometimes the necessary tradeoffs to make a certain situation work. I also found it very helpful to watch them scout out a location and see how they worked a location to make something out of it.”
Highly professional and valuable
“I learned a tremendous amount of post-processing. I especially liked learning alternate and better ways of doing things than the beginning instructional books about post processing give. …. The instructors were exceedingly helpful both in the field and in the classroom, making themselves available to everyone. The ratio of instructors to students was perfect. …. They made good use of what was given to us ( marginal weather), so it was definitely not a wash. … The Navajo guides were very good. The locations were amazing. I can see why people keep returning to take the same classes again. We can learn new things each time as our skills improve.”
Great Teaching Environment for ALL Skill Levels
“ I took the Death Valley, Through Your Eye course in December 2018. It was my first photography class, and after this experience, I know it will not be my last. David and Jennifer took time to scout out great shoot sites so that the participants could get great photos. They were super keen to timing, and being there long before the golden hour, and a bit after so that everyone could get great shots. Their style is low key, not persnickety, and they are not asking for perfection. The best part was their ability to adapt to all skill levels and make it worthwhile. They definitely made me, a newbie, feel good about how I could approach a shot, and learn from my mistakes. The post processing presentations allowed a lot of time for questions, examples and time to dive into how to make it work. I feel so lucky to have picked this as my first class, and know that my work will greatly improve, especially my post processing work! I highly recommend David and Jennifer, and really look forward to taking another class with them in the future. ”
Arches Night Workshop 2014
“Aside from all the wonderful technical post-processing learning, the access to the most beautiful places to shoot and the experience of being out in amazingly dark skies, I’d say the best thing about David’s workshop is his total and utter commitment to his students’ learning. I felt throughout the workshop – in the field and in the classroom – that every person’s enjoyment and learning were his #1 concern. Also, the man has the patience of a saint – a great quality in a teacher.”
“First class experience. David and Jennifer provided the exact right mix between support and freedom, instruction and relaxation. It’s hard to imagine a better workshop. I learned about the absolute critical importance of great light. And I realized more powerfully than ever before the importance of careful composition. I am now a confirmed tripod-using, exposing to the right, (for me, black and white) photographer. Be sure to go on a workshop with these gentle, knowledgeable people.”
“A number of years ago, I was lucky enough to study guitar with one of the best guitarists in the world. (Bear with me for a second.) So I’m trying to drain all the information I can from this guy and out of left field he says, ‘There are more important things than being a good guitar player.’ I was STUNNED! ‘HUH?? Like what??’ He replied, ‘Like being a good person.’David Kingham is a good person.All anyone has to do is look at his work and they can see what a wonderful photographer he is. What you don’t see is what a great teacher he is.I am a teacher by profession and one thing I’ve learned is that a person can have all the knowledge in the world but that doesn’t mean s/he can teach it.Not so with David. He has his material well organized and laid out so that each step makes sense as you go along.I went into this class with no knowledge of Night Landscape Photography and learned EXACTLY what I wanted to learn.If you’re thinking about taking one of David’s workshops, do it. It will be worth it. I traveled halfway around the world to do it. You will ‘GET IT.’Do it!!”
Devils Tower Night Workshop
“David’s workshop at Devils Tower was exactly what I needed to take my night sky photography skills to the level. I learned a ton about scouting, planning, gear, software tools, and post-processing. The location was amazing, and I came away with the best night sky shots I’ve ever taken. If you have any interest in this kind of photography, save yourself the trouble and just do one of these workshops. You’ll be glad you did.”
“David walked us through his post-processing procedures using similar images that we captured during the workshop. Watching his approach improved my processing skills immensely. I loved the post-processing sessions!”
Arches Night Workshop
“It was an honor and a pleasure to be a part of the Arches Workshop. Excellent instruction from a proven professional, that is as down to earth as the guy next door. Vast amounts of information were placed before us in an easy to understand format and were explained piece by piece so that everyone followed along. David Kingham you are the Master, I strive to achieve half your knowledge and abilities. It was an honor to attend your workshop and you have helped me to be far better than I was prior to. I will recommend your workshops to everyone I know interested in shooting the night sky.”
Colorado Fall Colors Workshop 2017
“Thank you so much for the wonderful experience I had in Colorado last week!! I’ve done quite a few photography workshops over many years and working with David and Jennifer in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado was truly a pleasure. The chosen locations included both the iconic photos as well as back road locations for a more intimate experience. We had some long days with sunrise and sunset shoots but we all had a great time. Your attention to detail, generosity and well planned itinerary all contributed to a photo workshop experience that was not only great fun but resulted in some potentially great photos. I wish I could give you some constructive criticism but I can’t because I enjoyed it all. Take care and thank you both for all that you did to insure we got great photos and had a memorable experience. Loved the chocolate chip cookies!”
“I participated in the Anza-Borrego workshop this month led by David and Jennifer. It was a very enjoyable workshop and my expectations were exceeded. Both leaders were very welcoming and took good care of every workshop participant. The attention to detail was outstanding and every activity ran very smoothly. Both David and Jennifer have done a great deal of preparation in scouting the best sights providing the group with the best photographic experience possible. David’s professional guidance helped me to take my landscape photography to the next level. I benefited greatly from David’s picture critique session, an innovative workflow discussion and Lightroom and Photoshop sessions. Both hosts are very passionate about their work, nature, and environment and are dedicated to providing the best learning experience to their clients. Thank you, David and Jennifer, for the wonderful experience! Looking forward to the next workshop with David and Jennifer.”
BISTI WILDERNESS WORKSHOP
“This was my third workshop with David Kingham. I learned new things, had a great time, and came away on fire to perfect my craft. I came away from the Bisti Wilderness workshop knowing how to compose better photographs, and with new tools in Lightroom and Photoshop to help my artistic vision emerge. I cannot say enough good things about David and Jennifer. I have sent friends to other workshops and the response is the same. THIS IS A GREAT WAY TO ENHANCE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY SKILLS.”
“I am a professional wedding photographer, and my husband is a hobbyist landscape photographer. We took this course together as something special that we could learn together. It amazed me how well David’s workshop fit both of us: plenty of technical tips and tricks, but enough explanation and examples that my husband had no problem following it. David’s knowledge of both Canon and Nikon, and what needed to happen for good nighttime images absolutely blew us away. The examples were inspiring, and we truly enjoyed the ‘workshop’ portion every bit as much as the ‘field trip’ portion. Not only did we get some very neat images as a reminder of the adventure, but it was amazing to just get to SEE the milky way, when neither of us normally would know how to find it, or what to look for. David helped us to have an adventure, and to give us something that we can do together for years to come!”
Death Valley 2015
“This is the second workshop that I attend under David’s leadership and it was a fantastic experience. I highly recommend taking another class with David as an alum because the perspective is completely different. David’s went above and beyond his duties when he climbed down a steep hill in the dark to retrieve my Canon 70-200 2.8 IS Lens when it rolled down the hill. He retrieved the lens and lucky, it was not damaged. Thank you very much, David I am very grateful.”
“This was my first workshop with David and Jennifer and it certainly won’t be my last (Can’t wait for the Grand Tetons in 2020). Even with the fall colors arriving late in the Ridgway area of Colorado they still managed to find great and interesting subject matter for the group to photograph. They are truly great individuals that do care about the workshop participants and go out of their way to ensure that you have a great and safe experience. They are extremely knowledgeable and they do their utmost to share that knowledge with you without being overbearing. They were always available to answer any questions you may have and offer encouragement when needed. I came away feeling more confident in my abilities and excited about continuing on my photographic journey. David and Jennifer are the best and I am looking forward to future workshops with them.”
“David promises to teach his students everything he knows about night photography, nothing is off limits and he delivers. Ask any question and he will give you a straight answer and teach you how to do it. His post-processing classroom teaching is great.”
“I had a great time and learned a lot attending one of David’s Rocky Mountain Workshops. He shares information about scouting, camera setup and technique, and many specifics on post-processing. David is very familiar with the area and where to get some great night photographs. He has a relaxed personality and it is easy to speak with him about photography.”
Death Valley Experience
“I have attended several workshops, and this one ranks at the very top for several reasons. David and Jennifer are awesome photographers, very passionate and helpful. They are always available to assist you in every aspect of your photography, on the field and in post. They went out of their way to change our schedule because of weather conditions, and that was truly appreciated by the entire group.”
Anza Borrego Sate Park
“ This was my first workshop with David and Jennifer, and I had a great time. Both were very helpful and available for questions and advise. They know the area well and we visited many different locations throughout Anza Borrego State Park and Borrego Springs. I look forward to my next adventure with them and will recommend them to my friends. ”
The student always comes first
“ There are good photography workshops and bad photography workshops, and David and Jennifer are among the best. Small session sizes, extensively researched locations and intimate knowledge of the area, easy going and friendly, and the ability to determine your strong and weak points and work with them to make you a better photographer. They’re not there to get their own photos, they make sure you’re getting the best pictures you can. I’ve seen some workshops where the instructors turn their students loose to fend for themselves, but that’s not what you’ll get here. Always available, and always offering tips without being overbearing, David and Jennifer are the best. ”
Slot Canyons in 2018
“I’ve wanted to capture images in Arizona slot canyons for some time. The workshop hosted by David and Jennifer delivered a full suite of opportunities at the “big name ” locations as well as several not so well known. Their relationships with the smaller canyon managers allowed us opportunities that would not normally be available to an individual just showing up and taking a standard photo tour. In particular was the night session at Canyon X where the managers joined us for a relaxed and fun night full of photography and good comradeship. Another goal on my photo list was to capture the Milky Way. David and Jennifer kept a close eye on weather and timing and had us out at the right spot at the right time to capture spectacular Milky Way images. David and Jennifer are very well organized and low key. They both are eager to ensure a quality experience for all involved. Both were always available for questions and guidance and free to offer advice on specific locations and/or technical set-ups to capture the best images. I rate this trip as one of my best photo workshops and will seriously consider signing up for others with David and Jennifer at different locations. I highly recommend a workshop with these two very professional and easy to like people.”
Slot Canyons Workshop 2016
“The Slot Canyon workshop I attended was well planned, communicated and executed from start-to-finish. The site locations provided for many opportunities to capture some great images. David’s personal attention to the group was excellent. I would attend another workshop and also recommend it to others who are looking for a great experience.”
“ This was a great workshop. A few things that I really appreciated: David sent handouts ahead of time, this allowed me to look over the material and make a point to ask about things I did not understand. Sometimes during the presentation, the amount of information can become overwhelming to process. Both David and Jennifer were easy to approach and ask questions. Like many other reviewers have stated, they are there to help you. I liked that we got to do both, take photographs and edit. I learned quite a bit about Lightroom. The small group size was nice. One felt like, you got the one on one attention time to ask questions. Definitely recommend a workshop with Exploring Exposure. ”
Arches Night Workshop
“Dave has the unique skill to get you out of your comfort zone and learn new things. He’s the Yoda of Photography…which would be appropriate for his star photography. He’ll get you to unlearn what you have learned and develop you into a better, well-rounded photographer. I also appreciated that Dave never assumed you knew something. He took the time to explain things just in case. He’s a great teacher!”
“This was my third workshop with David and Jennifer but my first time to Death Valley National Park. I have attended workshops by other photographers and I feel that you will not find a better environment for learning than David and Jennifer are able to create. They make every effort to accommodate a wide range of experience levels. If you need basic instruction or want space to create on your own they are very sensitive to those needs. I have not found a student on any of the workshops who did not have a very positive experience and a high opinion of their workshops. Along with being very accomplished professionals, David and Jennifer are both genuinely thoughtful, interesting and fun people to spend time with!”
Arches Night Workshop
“I found David to be a very competent, giving individual, not holding back on sharing all he knew about Night Photography, which is substantial. His knowledge was vast and he communicated it in a clear, precise and logical manner, both in the field and in the classroom/post-processing portion of the workshop. If you are looking for a great teacher to provide you with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in your own nightscape photography, look no further.”
Death Valley Backcountry Workshop 2017
“If you are looking for a unique and rewarding photo workshop David’s workshops are perfect for you. David went out of his way to find great shooting locations. There was plenty of time to scout out shots and David was always available to answer questions and give input he clearly put his clients first. He had really great knowledge and experience of the area which is key for a great workshop. I am looking forward to going out on another Exploring Exposure workshop.”
Grand Staircase-Escalante Workshop 2017
“The 2017 Slot Canyon workshop I attended with David and Jennifer was incredible! I’m a fairly type A New York surgeon – I wanted a rigorous learning experience “in the field” to take my amateur skills to the next level. With the time and effort to fly cross-country, I wasn’t looking for a vacation with roadside photo-ops. (I also have a Fuji X-T2 so David’s familiarity with Fuji was an additional factor for me)David and Jennifer are thoughtful teachers and kind people. This starts with their preparation – they had scouted locations, considered the weather, and anticipated lighting/night sky conditions. During the workshop, they were completely focused on instructing us without taking any pictures of their own – we basically had 1on 1 instruction, and they patiently answered my many questions with precise practical answers. During my ridiculously long years of medical training, I’ve seen that poor teachers make simple concepts unnecessarily complex (perhaps out of their own ego) and that gifted teachers make complex concepts elegantly simple (perhaps out of humility and a joy in sharing what they love) – David and Jennifer are in the latter category. This was most apparent for night photography, an area where David is an innovator and master –he was gracious in sharing his knowledge, and it opened up a world of photography I never thought I’d be a part of. Obviously, any group workshop will have people at varying levels – they did a great job of tailoring the experience to each person so we’d all learn as much as possible.Lastly and most importantly, above their exceptional qualities as photographers and communicators, David and Jennifer are good souls – calm in temperament, secure in identity, generous in spirit, all around great to be with – they truly put their students’ interest ahead of themselves, and others’ growth brings them happiness. It would bring me joy to see the Exploring Exposure workshops have continued success…leaving one slot for me of course!”
“David was a great teacher, able to bridge the skill levels of all the students. He led us through the processes needed to successful astrophotography. He also went over many tools need to plan a night time shoot. From finding dark skies, knowing if the moon is too bright and location scouting. I would recommend his workshop to anyone looking to get into night time photography or someone looking to improve their skills and go to the next level.”
Grand Staircase Escalante
“This is my second time going out with David and Jennifer. The thing I like best is how they are flexible and adapt depending on the weather. We ended up doing the night shooting the first two nights when we expected the skies to be clear and keep the sunrise and sunset shoots for when there were clouds. Not only are they helpful they are interesting and amusing, which helps on the longs drives. If you are interested in shooting the southwest I’d check the Exploring Exposure site first.”
What You Will Learn
In the Field
- How to read a scene to create compelling compositions using shapes, lines, visual mass, texture, and more
- Reading weather and lighting conditions to know when to go out on your own in the right light
- How to use apps to scout out your own locations and plan your next shoot
- When and how to use lenses to bring focus to your subject
- How and when to use a polarizer to make colors pop
- Depth of field and hyperfocal distance to help you create sharp photos
- Achieving maximum sharpness using focus stacking
- Creative use of ND Filters to create motion in clouds and water
- Creating panoramas without using expensive equipment
- How to take correct exposures for bright skies; to be later used for exposure blending
- Identifying the best light and how to expose correctly
Post Processing for Beginners
- Making dull RAW files pop in Lightroom and keeping files organized
- Use of local adjustments for dodging & burning, and many more creative opportunities
- Using white balance to create mood in your images
- Properly sharpen and reduce noise for maximum image quality
- Stitching panoramas easily in Lightroom
- Exposure blending using HDR for natural looking results
Post Processing for Advanced users
- Exposure blending using luminosity masks to create balanced, natural looking images
- Focus stacking using Photoshop and/or Zerene Stacker for maximum depth of field
- Blending different focal lengths to correct for wide angle diminishment
- Creative burning and dodging techniques to bring focus to your subject
- Using the Orton Effect to add glow to your highlights
- Creating drama with Light Bleed
- Using Midtone Contrast to make images pop off the screen
- Sharpening for web and print
We encourage you to find your unique style of creativity with focused training based on your style and skill level. You will experience a rigorous learning experience in the field and the classroom to take your photography to the next level.
Our passion is seeing you grow in your photographic journey. We put your interests ahead of our own. Early on in the workshop, we will not photograph at all. Our focus is your learning experience, and we will not run off to chase the light and leave you behind. As the workshop progresses, we will take a few photos in a limited manner. This is so you can see how we approach a scene, demonstrate techniques, and create comradery with the group. Our focus will always remain with YOU.
We understand everyone comes to workshops at different points in their photography journeys. We will be there to guide and help you, whether you are a beginner or advanced shooter. There is always something to learn about photography, and we will do our best to help you find your creative vision.
Above all, we want this to be a fun experience for you. With our small group size, we get to know our clients very well, and we feel like they are part of our extended family. We do this for the love of photography, and there is nothing that gives us greater joy than seeing our clients grow and find their artistic vision.
$995 - (Initial Payment of $495)
What is Included
What is Not Included
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All locations are selected based upon the best time of year to visit the area, whether that is to see the best wildflowers, fall colors, or dramatic weather. We have done the research and planning to give you the best possibility of walking away with an incredible photograph.
During our drives we will discuss weather, how to find dramatic light, planning, etc. This will be more than a photo tour, it will be a learning experience. Out in the field we will instruct you on the proper techniques to create sharp photos, balancing exposure, composition, focus stacking, how to incorporate movement, long exposures and more.
The workshops are limited to 6 participants or less to ensure you get the attention you deserve.
We will provide you with an itinerary, but know that landscape and night photography is all about flexibility, especially being flexible to changing weather conditions. You will learn how to read the weather and select the perfect time and location based upon this.
What about night photography? Most workshops will include at least one night of night photography unless noted otherwise. Again, this will be dependent on the weather, this is the advantage of doing both. If we have clear skies we can change our plans to shoot at night when clear skies are preferred.
The 5 day workshops will be focused on one area rather than quickly moving from one location to the next. We will visit many different locations in this focused area. To understand the weather patterns in an area, you must spend some time there.
Is transportation provided?
Yes! Many of the locations selected require a high clearance 4×4 to reach. All of the participants will ride in our 4×4 vehicles. You will all get to share the experience together without worrying about the logistics. You only need to get to the hotel via taxi, shuttle, or rental car, the rest is taken care of. You are welcome to drive your own vehicle if you prefer.
Is lodging provided?
Unless noted otherwise, no. We typically hold a block of rooms at a discounted rate for the group.
Are spouses/partners welcome?
Yes, but seating is limited. If they come out on location you will have to provide your own transportation, or pay the full price for another seat.
Are these workshops run on the up and up?
We work hard to ensure the workshops are run within all the requirements of the law. We are an authorized permittee with the National Park Service, Forest Service, BLM, etc. We also strive to to keep you safe in such remote locations, David is a certified Wilderness First Responder so you can feel safe no matter where we are.
Will I have cell signal during the Workshop?
Cell signal is extremely intermittent in most of the locations, you should not expect to be connected all the time, at certain locations you may be offline for long periods, enjoy the silence.
Will the instructors take photos during the Workshop?
Early on in the workshop we will not photograph at all, our focus is on you and your learning, we will not run off to make our own photographs. As the workshop progresses, we will take a few photos in a limited manner, this is so you can see how we approach a scene, create comradery with the group, and to show you the same type of images you will be taking for our post-processing session. Our focus will always remain with you.
Will weather cancel the Workshop?
Dramatic weather is when the best photographs are created! Unless there are very dangerous conditions the weather will not stop us, in fact it will encourage us! No rain checks will be given for any weather related circumstances.
What is the cancellation policy?
- If you cancel 90 days prior to the workshop we will refund your initial payment minus a $100 fee.
- 90 days before the start of the workshop, we will refund your initial payment only if we can fill your spot.
- The full balance is due 60 days before the workshop. There will be no refunds on the full amount owed. We will attempt to fill your spot, if filled there will be a $100 administrative fee charged and the rest of your payment will be refunded.
There are NO EXCEPTIONS TO THIS POLICY, even for medical emergencies. All cancellation requests must be in writing and received either by US mail or E-mail. We encourage participants to purchase refundable airline tickets and trip cancellation insurance. We strongly recommend trip insurance to protect you in the event of an unexpected situation that prevents you from attending the workshop. We recommend Travelguard or World Nomads.
We reserve the right to cancel any workshop if the minimum student enrollment is not met. In the event we cancel a workshop, participants will be given the option to reschedule to a later date or receive a full refund. we are not, however, liable for expenses incurred such as airfare or accommodations, and for this reason we also recommend the purchase of trip insurance.
What to bring?
- Your DSLR, nothing specific is required, although we do have a list of recommended gear.
- Lenses – Extreme wide angle is recommended (16-35 range on full frame or 10-20 range on a cropped sensor), a mid range zoom, and a telephoto of at least 200mm. If the workshop includes night photography you will want to take a look at our list of recommended gear for night photography.
- Tripod – A sturdy tripod is necessary, David uses Feisol tripods, but also recommends Really Right Stuff, Induro, and Gitzo.
- Filters – A circular polarizer is the only requirement, but we recommend neutral density filters (10 or 6 stops).
- Misc. – Bring extra batteries and memory cards.
- Clothing – Temperatures before sunrise are the coldest of the day, bring layers of clothing to quickly change for the conditions. If the workshop involves night photography plan on bringing even more warm clothes.
- Food – Snacks will be provided out in the field, for other meals we will go to local restaurants together and enjoy the comradery of the group. If we have a long day in the field we will stop at a grocery store for everyone to pick up something.
We are proud members of the League of Landscape Photographers, which is a group of artists committed to behaving in an ethical manner wherever we are photographing, and encouraging others to behave as stewards of our environment. Our clients must abide by these ethics in our workshops.
Our Code of Ethics:
- I inform myself about all rules and regulations relating to photography when visiting a natural area or public attraction.
- I do not knowingly step onto private property without permission even if the property appears abandoned.
- I stay on designated paths and trails. If there is no trail, I follow proper etiquette by educating myself on the principles of Leave No Trace.
- I aim for authenticity by photographing plants and animals in their natural habitat engaging in their normal behaviors.
- I inform myself about the plants and animals I intend to photograph. I avoid photographing them if they exhibit distress signals, and during times of physical strain or breeding seasons. If my presence is causing stress, I leave the area immediately.
- I help to protect the environment by picking up trash I find when in the field.
- I work to improve my photographic skills by using all my tools when making a composition. I do not move objects, pull plants or otherwise ‘tidy’ a scene. I move my position or wait patiently rather than attempt to influence an animal’s behavior or posture.
- I refrain from baiting (including sound baiting), or placing attractants to entice wildlife or influence their behavior. Also, I remove all artificial attractants I find in wild places that were placed there by others.
- I treat wild animals living in an urban environment, such as songbirds, with the same respect that I accord to those living in the wild. I consider their safety and well being before putting out seed. If I do, I research the proper natural organic food and follow proper procedures to ensure the cleanliness of the feeder to minimize the risk of disease. I locate the feeder to avoid cover for predators as well as potential in-flight collisions with reflective house windows.
- I keep rare species safe and intact by not broadcasting the location of a fragile area, plant or animal. I remove GPS data from my images before sharing them with others.
- I treat all people with respect.
- I am patient and courteous with non-photographers visiting a scene. I am creative and can adjust my expectations of the images I planned to make. I am open to new ideas as they present themselves to me.
- I am aware of my position and how it may interfere with the ability of the photographers and non-photographers around me to enjoy a scene.
- If someone wanders into my scene, I am courteous and will wait for them to move. I will consider adjusting my own position, or kindly asking them to move when they are ready.
- If I see someone violating the Code of Ethics, I will consider talking with them about the possible effects of their behavior. I will only do so if I do not perceive any threat to my personal safety. As an alternative, and if their behavior is particularly egregious, I will consider documenting the situation and reporting them to the appropriate authorities.
- I adopt this Code of Ethics and strive to adhere to these important principles.
- I am an ambassador of ethical conduct in the industry through my own behavior and by sharing these principles with other photographers and the public.
- I know and respect my physical limitations and keep myself out of harm’s way by avoiding situations where my health and safety or the health and safety of others could be put at risk by my actions.
- I educate myself about the weather, terrain, culture and potential hazards before visiting a new area.
- If I am leading a photo group, whether commercially or not, I ensure that the group members are informed about the Code of Ethics, potential hazards and other safety concerns, and that the group size is appropriate given the sensitivity of the place we are visiting.
- I am always forthcoming about my post-processing and refrain from representing my photographs as something they are not.