will the workshop begin and end?
workshop will begin and end at Leknes, Norway in Lofoten.
Leknes is the largest town on the island of Vestvågøy
and receives flights daily
does the cost cover?
Photographic instruction and guiding
Lodging based on Double Occupancy for 6 nights - Single Supplement
possible depending on availability
Transportation during the workshop with pickup and drop off
at the Leknes airport
workshop does not include:
Travel / Private Insurance
Any taxes, levies, immigration, duty and visa fees where applicable
is winter and above the Arctic Circle, won't I freeze to death?
maintains a rather mild climate considering how far North
its latitude is. Average temperatures in February hover around
freezing. As the weather changes frequently in the archipelago,
one should have appropriate clothing to handle all kinds of
weather and to maximize your own personal comfort. See the
question below for a recommended personal clothing list
clothing do you recommend?
winter clothing consists of the following:
Down Parka - ideal for Northern Lights photography and for
when one must 'wait for the light'
Waterproof / Windproof Shell Jacket
Waterproof / Windproof Shell Pants
Polar Fleece jacket
Base Layer top and bottoms
Wool Hat, or as we call it in Canada, a 'touque'
Wind stopper gloves - the more form fitting the better to
enable dexterity for camera controls
Over-mitts - same purpose as the Down Parka
Smartwools socks - they do a better job at keeping your toes
warm even when wet, than other types
Sturdy hiking boots - there will be snow, ice and rocky terrain
Crampons / Micro spikes - absolutely essential for Lofoten's
Gaiters - essential to help keep snow out of your boots
Overboots - Waterproof to fit over your hiking boots in case
you wish to get close to the waves on the shoreline
camera equipment do you recommend?
camera you choose to bring, it will love Lofoten. To
get the most of the creative possibilities of your images,
its ideal to bring along either a DSLR or Mirrorless camera
where you are able to control the focus, exposure, ISO, aperture
and shutter speed. If you bring along a film camera then you
will be especially endeared to me.
Lenses are a personal choice as we all 'see' things
differently. A fine selection of focal lengths including wide
angles (~18-24mm), normals (~50mm) and telephotos (~85mm+)
will help you capture most things the way you envision them.
Personally I like to use a wide angle for the Aurora Borealis
to help grab as much sky as I can. Don't underestimate the
importance of good quality glass however. The lens is responsible
for sharpness, edge to edge clarity, colour and contrast accuracy.
A great lens on an inexpensive camera will often yield a better
image than a cheap lens on an expensive camera. Buy the best
glass you can afford. Lenses also depreciate at a much slower
rate than the cameras do - that should tell you something.
A Sturdy Tripod and Head. Lofoten has winds that can
be sudden and fierce. It also has waves that can be sudden
and fierce. Lofoten is also rarely flat. This all being said,
a lightweight, flimsy tripod will be tested at some point
on the tour, and with your expensive camera gear on top of
it, you certainly want to make sure your tripod passes the
test. If it fails and your brand new camera plummets to the
ground, that can be a real bummer.
As we are photographing spectacular landscapes, a good set
of filters is essential to have on hand. I personally carry
a circular polarizing fflter, as well as a set of Lee graduated
neutral density filters for balancing the light in my compositions.
Full, non-graduated neutral density filters are also ideal
for enabling you to get long exposures even in relatively
Release. Depending on the length of time you want your
shutter to be open, a shutter release (wired or wireless)
can be very helpful. If shooting under 30 second exposures,
you can usually opt for using the self timer on the camera
of Memory cards and a portable harddrive or small laptop
if possible for nightly downloads.
supplies. The everchanging weather and splashing waves
will try to wreak havoc on your lens. Cleaning cloths tend
to get wet and useless pretty quickly. Nothing beats old school
lens tissues and fluid. Best of all, they're cheap. Be sure
to get lint free. A good blower and a fine brush will also
help. Sensor swabs (and know how to use them) if you like
to change lenses in the outdoors
Hoods. Bring the correct lens hood designed for each lens
you have, These are ideal for minimizing or eliminating side
flare and for keeping your contrast and image sharp. They
are also effective during a light sprinkle or snowfall for
helping protect your front glass.
batteries and your charger. It's winter after all so your
gear will likely get cold. As such, your battery life will
diminish faster than normal. When we're out photographing
the Northern Lights and your sole battery decides to die,
that can be a real bummer
the Northern Lights guaranteed?
Arctic weather and the Aurora Borealis (aka the Northern Lights)
are highly unpredictable. The Aurora and its intensity are
directly dependent on Solar activity (flares and storms on
the surface of the sun). The greater the Solar Activity the
greater the chance of the Aurora appearing. When activity
is high, we'll need a dark sky and a clear sky to see the
lights when they appear. Lofoten has its moments of clarity,
but the mountainous terrain and the geographic proximity conjure
up all kinds of weather which can produce cloud cover and
possibly hide the Aurora. I'll be monitoring the solar activity
and the predicted cloud patterns to help decide where to try
to view them on the Archipelago (all part of 'chasing the
light'), however there is never a guarantee that we'll see
them. I have a good track record of chasing them down however,
so with a little luck on our side, the Heavens will open and
reveal the greatest light show known.
do I secure my space?