White Sands National Monument Workshop
April 12-14, 2019
Class size: 6
Have you ever been to a place so special that no words could do justice? How about a place where it's hard to fathom the beauty in which you are looking at? Whether you have or you have not, I invite you to come join me for a couple of days in one magical place, White Sands National Monument. Located in southern New Mexico, this pure white gypsum dune field sparkles in the sun and has a tranquil beauty to it as stunning mountain ranges provide a dazzling backdrop. Although the dunes may not be the tallest (on average, they are about 20-40' high), their color makes up what they lack in size. Most areas of the park are quite untouched this time of year and we will work with beautiful crests, leading lines, dessert plants and more during our two days of shooting here. Oh, and I may have a surprise up my sleeve for the group as well. Here's a hint: red dress. We will have special access to the park before and after hours so we can photograph each sunrise, sunset and also do some night sky shooting.
What You Will Learn:
- How to create compelling landscape and night sky compositions.
- How to use your camera to its fullest capabilities.
- Focus stacking.
- Creating panoramas.
- Image blending.
- An understanding for light and how to take advantage of it in all conditions.
- How to create star trails and moonlit images (weather cooperating).
- The basics of Lightroom and Photoshop.
- How to successfully light paint.
- How to properly dig your toes into the sand.
What You Will Need:
A DSLR camera body with a wide angle lens.
Note: It is also recommended to bring a zoom lens if you can!
- A sturdy tripod.
- An intervalometer (a cheap one off of Amazon will work just fine).
- A headlamp or flashlight.
- At least the trial version of Lightroom or Photoshop on your laptop.
- Multiple batteries.
- Any filters you may have.
- A .9 or .6 soft grad filter is recommended for your lenses. If you can only afford one, I'd go with the filter for your wide angle.
- A desire to learn, have fun, be flexible, and explore nature!
What's Not Included:
- Flights to New Mexico.
- Hotel accommodations.
- Transportation to shooting locations. We can figure out carpool options at the start of our workshop.
- Meals and beverages.
- My photography knowledge, 24 hours a day during the entire workshop.
- Post production videos that will be sent out after the workshop.
- Lights for light painting.
- All park entrance fees.
- Access to White Sands National Monument before and after operating hours.
- One red dress...not for you guys to wear :)
Where are we staying?
We will be lodging in the town of Alamogordo, located just outside of White Sands National Monument. I will be lodging out of the Holiday Inn Express & Suites. It is not required that you stay at the same hotel, but we will be having our meet & greet here as well as leaving for any outings from here as well.
In order to escape footprints from previous visitors, we may need to hike around 3/4 of a mile out into the sand dunes. This all depends on how much traffic the area has seen recently and how the winds were able to cover up tracks. There have been times after a good wind storm that you could walk 100' in and have great shots, but there have been times that I've had to cover about 3/4 of a mile before finding clear dunes. For the most part, we will walk on flat areas, but there will be times that we will have to walk up dunes. These walks will be taken at a slow and comfortable pace.
Getting to Alamogordo:
The closest major airport to fly in to is El Paso. From there it's about a 90 minute drive to Alamogordo.
When does the workshop start and wrap?
The workshop will begin with our meet and greet at 4PM on the 12th and wrap at 10am on the 14th.