We’re Going to Cuba! Join Us!!
May10

We’re Going to Cuba! Join Us!!

This is a long overdue announcement. I get emails on a near daily basis asking about when my next travel photography workshop and tour will be announced. And the truth is, my photography partner in crime Jeff Bartlett and I have gone back and forth on about a dozen different destinations, and dates before coming to a decision. We’ve decided to run our next big photography tour in Cuba December 2016! I can’t tell you how excited I am for this. I was in Cuba in October doing some scouting and working with local agencies to see if a trip like this is possible. And, in the end, not only is it possible, but it’s going to be an amazing experience. As you know, Cuba is like a step back in time. I’d say that since leaving Africa 3 years ago it is the most visually interesting country I’ve set my lens on. Every corner of the country is just so photogenic. The landscapes and nature are impressive, the people are some of the most friendly in the world, and the architecture and classic cars are from another era. This photo tour of Cuba will start in Havana on December 4th, 2016. We’ll visit highlights in the country such as Viñales, El Nicho, the Bay of Pigs, Trinidad, and much more. Check out the full 13-day itinerary here. The goal of this particular travel photography workshop, is not to just give you a change to take some excellent photographs with the instruction of professional photographers, but to give you an insight into life in Cuba. We will take some amazing photographs of beautiful things, but we will take away memories far more powerful than any photo. To get the full information on the workshop, head over to this page. There you’ll get information on how to sign up, the costs, and every other bit of information you’ll need. Photos From Cuba Here’s a slideshow of some images from locations this photography workshop will visit.  All of these images were shot in a 3 week period of time. Information for Americans The US government has re-opened its Embassy in Havana, so local support is available in Cuba. There are now direct flights to Cuba from Miami, or there are dozens of daily flights connecting in Central America. The American government has lessened the restrictions on visiting Cuba. However, the rules for travel to Cuba are still very strict. If you have any questions regarding your ability to visit Cuba, please refer to the information provided by your government. Please note that government policies can change, so please keep yourselves informed...

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5 Tips for Starting a Photography Blog
May01

5 Tips for Starting a Photography Blog

Whether you’re an avid photographer who wants to share your passion, or a pro looking to expand your client base, a blog is the ideal place to showcase your work and document your journey behind the camera. Whilst anyone can start a blog, it takes dedication and vision to create an online space that really stands out. Here are some important factors to consider when setting up your own photography blog. 1. Define Your Audience Much like the art of photography itself, behind every good blog is a clear, well thought-out purpose. Firstly, consider what you hope to achieve from your blog – or rather, who you want to connect with: are you looking to create a more personal space through which to share your work with family and friends, or a professional portfolio to attract potential clients? This is the most crucial starting point, and will ultimately determine the content, tone and style of your blog. 2. Get Online Having defined your audience, the next step is to actually create your blog. In addition to coming up with a unique, catchy name that truly reflects your intended style, it’s important to think about where your blog will be hosted. Opting for a hosting package which incorporates WordPress is perhaps one of the easiest ways to create your site, as those offered by 1&1, for example, cover all the technical aspects such as domain name and security whilst making it easy to design a professional-looking blog. Whichever route you choose, it’s crucial to conceive your blog with the user in mind; focus on a visually pleasing layout that is logically organized and easy to navigate. 3. Show Your Best Work With the technical framework in place, it’s time to bring your blog to life. When curating your online portfolio, select the shots that really showcase your individual style as well as your range; you may wish to organize your work according to themes, such as travel photography, landscapes or people. Although it’s important to keep your blog fresh with regular updates and new content, the focus should ultimately be on quality, not quantity. Present your best work – the images you are most proud of – and make it easy for viewers to get a feel for what kind of photographer you are. 4. Add Content Photography will no doubt form the focal point of your blog, but adding relevant content will ensure that your site stands out as much more than just a visual gallery. Bring each album to life by providing the background story – where, why and how were these particular photos taken? Additionally, allow some...

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Tips for Taking Travel Portraits with Examples from Cuba
Nov17

Tips for Taking Travel Portraits with Examples from Cuba

Like nearly every person who has ever visited Cuba, I was captivated by the people from the start.  They are just all so photogenic.  Wandering the streets of towns like Viñales, and Havana, there were just countless people that made for fantastic portrait subjects.  If I had a camera around my neck, I was constantly stopping to ask people for their photos, and only on the rarest occasion would they say no.  Thus, I got a lot of great travel portraits well on my 3 week trip to Cuba. I think that the number one question I get from people – aside from how I make money as a travel photographer – is how I approach shooting images of people in my travels.  Thus, I thought I would put together a quick video and article with some of my tips for photographing people when travelling. Be Confident My first tip is maybe the most important one when it comes to taking travel portraits.  You need to be confident.  Not only do you need to be confident just to ask people for their photos, but you need to exude confidence so that the people you are photographing feel more at ease with you photographing them.  If you are charismatic, friendly, and confident, your subjects will also feel confident. Be Simple with your Gear This is a personal feeling, as I know some people who carry a lot of gear when they’re shooting travel portraits and get great images.  However, I feel like I get the best images if I’m really simple in my gear.  I don’t pack a bunch of lenses, flashes, reflectors, or anything like that.  I find that the more gear you have, the most uncomfortable you make the people you are photographing feel.  For much of Cuba, when I’d go out shooting portraits I used my 50mm f/1.4 as it seemed the least intrusive to shoot with. Composition is Key You can’t just snap photos of people and expect them to be good.  You need to be thinking about the whole image and framing the shot so that it is visually appealing.  For portraits, I tend to look for these following things: Where is the dominant eye? How tight should I crop? Am I cutting anything off that I shouldn’t? Are there any distracting elements? How much depth of field do I want? The Background is Important In portraits, it’s so easy to focus on the person’s face and forget about the rest of the image.  However, with photos of people the background in perhaps as important as the face itself.  And, yes, this goes a lot along with...

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Tips for Seascape Photography in Ilha Grande, Brazil
Sep01

Tips for Seascape Photography in Ilha Grande, Brazil

Seascape photography might actually be my favourite type of landscape photography.  I love the challenge it presents.  Not only do you have to find a cool location, and shoot the right light, but you’re also fighting elements like rogue waves, slippery rocks, and wild weather conditions.  It’s what turns what otherwise might be seen as a “boring, wait for the light” style of photography into an adventure.  I also love the way you can play with the seas with your exposures.  You can create a variety of moods depending on how you shoot the exact same scene – creating wild seas or icy waters. In this article, and the related video below, I visit Ilha Grande, Brazil.  And well I’m there I give you my quick tips for seascape photography.  And, yes, the tips are fairly basic.  However, look for an “advanced” set of seascape photography tips coming in the near future as well. Tip #1: Find a Great Location This tip might seem really obvious.  However, I see a lot of seascape images where people have literally just rocked up to the beach and shot the sand and the water.  For cool seascapes you need to find an interesting scene.  Personally, I like to find rocks.  I feel like the sturdy and fixed nature of the rocks goes really well with the motion of the sea. Like all forms of photography, you can’t just turn up somewhere and shoot.  You need to scout for locations first, and then shoot them in the best possible conditions. Tip #2: Shoot the Golden Hour Photography is the art of capturing light, and great photography is about capturing the type of light that amplifies your image.  In the case of seascapes, I feel like the best light is always found around sunrise and sunset – what we call the golden hour.  This is the time of day when you get great colour in the sky, even exposures from softer light, and the ability to shoot longer exposures.  This is the time of day you’re going to get that “wow factor” from images you create. It should be said, however, that there are certain images that do actually look best in non-golden hour light.  In the tropics, for example, if you’re trying to create a scene of a white sand beach and a palm tree that looks like paradise, it might be best to shoot this in the morning or evening yet outside the golden hours. Tip #3: Find an Anchor for your Images In almost all my favourite landscape photos there’s an anchor.  An anchor is essentially a foreground element that ties the image down....

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The Best Ways to Document your Road Trip
Jul30

The Best Ways to Document your Road Trip

In today’s fast-paced world, surrounded by an abundance of cheap airline flights, it would be easy to think the classic road trip was slowly dying out. After all, who wants to spend hours in a hot, stuffy car when you could be getting to your destination much quicker through other means of transportation? As it happens, the allure of the road trip still endures for millions of travellers all over the world, as they organise their routes with friends and family, working out the best places to take a pit-stop and see some sights. A road trip really can produce some amazing memories, but just how should you go about documenting your adventures so that you can always keep track of the wonderful stories to tell? Here are some of the best ways to make sure your memories stay unforgettable. Take lots of pictures An obvious one, maybe, but when you spend a long time on the road you can forget to take pictures. You’re either too busy driving, catching up on some sleep or getting caught up in exploring your destination. While you don’t want to come across as the annoying tourist who has to get the camera out for every single nice view or statue, you should try to take pictures every now and then just to keep a record of everything. To break things up a bit you could take group shots with other people on your road trip. Keep a diary/blog Of course, all of your photos come with a story, and a diary provides a great way to give them some context. It might seem old fashioned, but writing down what you did during the previous day and explaining your thoughts in a diary are fantastic supplements to your trip. You don’t have to go into too much detail if you don’t want to, but you’ll appreciate a bit of backstory when you look back on your travels. If you’re not prepared to put pen to paper then bring your laptop along, as there are several free online programmes that allow you to keep travel blogs, updating them with images during your trip. Vine Vine is a service that allows you to record short, six second looping videos and send them to friends. It might seem a bit tricky at first, but once you get the hang of the app you’ll be creating new videos like it’s the most natural thing in the world. Coming up with funny, interesting vines that show off your travels and where you are in the world are a great way to keep friends and family in the loop, and you’ll be able to save them to a profile to look back on the memories for years to come. Record videos If a picture is worth...

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Join Me in Peru AND Bolivia for a Photo Adventure
Apr08

Join Me in Peru AND Bolivia for a Photo Adventure

It’s with great pleasure that I announce that I’m now booking a second photo tour in South America in 2015! Since the booking for the first workshop – which is taking place in Peru, May 2015 – has been so successful, we decided to add another date to accommodate the people that couldn’t make the first trip’s dates.  Specifically, we had in mind the many teachers who let us know that they could only come in the summer months.  Well, here’s your chance. Get all the booking info here. A Bolivian Twist This tour, which will run starting July 13th in Cusco, Peru will not be the exact same workshop as the previous, however, as well be adding a Bolivian twist to it all. The tour will commence in Cusco, Peru where we will visit famous Peruvian sites like Ollantaytambo, Lake Titicaca and, of course, Machu Picchu.  From there, we will work into Bolivia and experience some incredible places such as the Uyuni Salt Flats, the Potosi Mines, and the great city of La Paz. All of the places we visit on this trip are tremendously photogenic, and we’re going to have a blast.  I hope you join us! Dates and Prices Start Date: July 13, 2015 in Cusco, Peru End Date: July 26, 2015 in La Paz, Peru Cost Per Person: $2,990usd For more information on the itinerary, FAQs, and what’s included in the tour, please head over to the info page for the photo workshop on Adventure.com What’s a Photography Workshop? I can’t speak for all photography workshops, because everyone operates differently.  However, in our workshops the goal is to have a genuine travel experience well not feeling rushed to take our photos, as well being in the right places at the right time for photography.  Moreover, these photo workshops give participants a look into what life is like as a professional travel photographer.   Our workshops also include 1-on-1 time with the professional photographers to discuss things like photo editing, and to do image critiques.  Of course, a big part of a photography tour is also meeting other people who have a passion for photography. So, whether you’re a professional photographer looking to build your portfolio quickly, an amateur photographer thinking about making the jump to pro, or just a hobbyist that doesn’t want to feel rush in the hobby, these trips are for you. More Information If you need some more information from me directly, you can always get a hold of me on my contact page.  So, if you have any questions, feel free to shoot me a quick...

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