FirstLight Workshop

Welcome!

 

FirstLight Workshop brings together some of the world’s most talented photographers in the most beautiful locations in the world to share their knowledge and experience in digital photography. Learn to create extraordinary images and master digital photography under the tutelage of these photography professionals in an environment that will awe and inspire. To learn more about creating perfect digital images, please visit Perfect Digital Photography.

 

 SMITH ISLAND WORKSHOP, OCTOBER 4 – 8, 2015

Few times in your life will you have the opportunity to experience a place like Smith Island on the eastern shore of Maryland.  A step back into time, a place that time seems to have forgotten.  Or, as author Tom Horton calls his book about Smith Island, “An Island Out of Time”. This is an isolated fishing village, a place where culture and landscape collide.  A diminishing culture, the people of Smith Island still harvest the Chesapeake in ways that really haven’t changed in 300 years–all dependent on weather, wind and tide.

PLEASE NOTE: YOU MUST CALL IN FIRST, PLEASE DO NOT REGISTER WITHOUT CALLING US FIRST: 303 730 2894

Moonrise over Smith Island

Moonrise over Smith Island                                                 Olympus E-M1

FirstLight instructors Jay Dickman and Dave Harp will be with you the entire workshop. Tom Horton, our good friend, will provide his knowledge as well as access, via his boat, to the people and areas of Smith that are far off the beaten path.

You’ll arrive early Sunday afternoon, on the Crisfield-to-Tylerton ferry, as this is the only way to reach Smith Island. In the opening presentation, after dinner, you’ll see the work of Jay and Dave. The 4 days of the workshop will be spent photographing the Watermen, as well as the natural and stunning beauty of the area.  Thursday morning, you’ll head back to the mainland.

Inn of Silent Music    Olympus E-M1  12-40mm f2.8

Inn of Silent Music                                                                                Olympus E-M1 12-40mm f2.8

Daily edit sessions will heighten your awareness and ability to “see photographically”, empowering your photography and story telling. And with only 8 students, this provides an unrivalled ratio of instructor to student.   You’ll go back into the field after the edit session with an excitement and understanding of this process, taking your photography to new heights. This is critical anytime you put the camera to your eye and press the shutter, whether a story for a national publication, or photographing your own life, you will come out of this workshop with a far greater understanding of how to tell that story.

PLEASE NOTE: YOU MUST CALL IN FIRST, PLEASE DO NOT REGISTER WITHOUT CALLING US FIRST: 303 730 2894

First morning of workshop      Olympus E-M1  40-150mm f2.8

First morning of workshop                                                                                      Olympus E-M1 40-150mm f2.8

The entire process comes to life with the unveiling of our slideshow at the end of the workshop, highlighting the best work from each participant. Held at the FirstLight headquarters, you will enjoy wine and cheese along with the company your now-friend fellow photographers and the locals that you spent the week photographing.

Nesting colony of Brown pelicans

Nesting colony of Brown pelicans                                                Olympus E-M1  40-150-mm f2.8 w/1.4 converter

A major component of this workshop, that we overlooked promoting before, is the gourmet cuisine. All breakfasts & dinners are held at the Inn of Silent Music & the proprietor, Linda Kellogg, is an incredible gourmet cook. You will be blown away by each of our meals. Lunch is on your own at the charming town food store/café, known for their outstanding crab cakes.

Typical gourmet breakfast at Inn of Silent Music    Olympus E-M1   12-40 f2.8

Typical gourmet breakfast at Inn of Silent Music               Olympus E-M1 12-40 f2.8

Cost for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity is $ 2450.00.  This includes:  Roundtrip ferry from Crisfield, Maryland to Tylerton, on Smith Island.  4 nights lodging, all breakfast and dinners, and instruction over the 3 1/2 days of the workshop.  A final slide show will be made available to you after the workshop.  Not included: lunches, alcoholic beverages, laundry and/or other amenities.  PLEASE READ AND ACKNOWLEDGE THE FIRSTLIGHT POLICIES REGARDING PAYMENT AND REFUNDS

FirstLight will provide accommodations in the small towns, staying in a B&B or a guest home..this is a real location, NOT a tourist destination.  And, for no extra cost, you’ll get to room with another FirstLight photographer. (we do offer single supplements at an extra cost, but most of your time will be spent out and about photographing.)

PLEASE NOTE: YOU MUST CALL IN FIRST, PLEASE DO NOT REGISTER WITHOUT CALLING US FIRST: 303 730 2894

Last day, heading back to Tylerton    Olympus E-M1  12-40mm f2.8

Last day, heading back to Tylerton                                                        Olympus E-M1 12-40mm f2.8

 

On October 29, to register, please call: 303 730 2894

FirstLight Workshop

 PO Box 582

 Littleton, Colorado   80160 – 0582




Where’s Jay?


National Geographic “Wyoming’s Cowboy Country” Workshop, August 9-15, 2015

20150812_Portraits_1164

Wrangler Aidan Garrity                        Olympus E-M1 40-150mm Pro lens “Dramatic Tone” art filter

August, 2015….and we just wrapped up another National Geographic “Wyoming’s Cowboy Country” Workshop. For 10 years, we’ve been making the drive to Dubois in summer, it truly feels like going home. We (Becky and I) started FirstLight in 2003 with the idea of building what we saw as an ideal photo workshop. The print show, the magazine, the assignments, all were part of the FirstLight magic…just ask anyone who attended one of those workshops.

Milky Way from CM Ranch  Olympus E-M1 8mm f1.8 Pro lens

Milky Way from CM Ranch                                  Olympus E-M1 8mm f1.8 Pro lens

Our good friend and regular FirstLight instructor, Jeff Vanuga, and I had discussed with the folks at CM Ranch the particulars of the proposal I was eventually going to write and submit to National Geographic. They accepted this workshop idea, and the rest, as it’s said, is history. We just completed the 7th “Wyoming’s Cowboy Country” Workshop, and it was a fantastic event.

We’ve had several attendees who are repeat participants, and I asked one about what it’s like coming back. Her response was: “it’s totally different each time.” Which is really the best way I can describe the workshop…this is also what I love about the style of photography I get to do, it is constantly changing, nothing is ever the same.

Friday night at the Dubois Rodeo

Friday night at the Dubois Rodeo                                                                           Olympus E-M1  12mm f2  5000 ISO

Our first event on Monday is outrageous…I won’t describe it as some of you may be considering coming to the workshop, and I don’t want you coming in with images in mind that you want to duplicate. Each workshop is a unique event and should be about the individual capturing their own vision. The workshop is constructed so we all shoot the same event…which works perfectly for this style event. One photographer will shoot the session one way, another photographer will bring an entirely different look to the shoot. In the projection sessions that occur daily, everyone is always amazed-and educated-by how differently the work looks.

Horses running by my cabin  Olympus E-M1 40-150 Pro lens

Horses running by my cabin                                                                                    Olympus E-M1 40-150 Pro lens

It was a nice break, coming back in August after the two workshops in the last two weeks of June. The days were shorter, mosquitoes were pretty much gone, and the summer light is always beautiful in Wyoming.

Backstage at the Dubois Rodeo  Olympus E-M1 12-40mm Pro lens

Backstage at the Dubois Rodeo                                     Olympus E-M1 12-40mm Pro lens 3200 ISO

In the workshop, I talk about visual narrative, which includes: sense of place, introducing your characters, bringing in detail, capturing the power of moments and closing your story are a perfect blend for the final event, the rodeo. This “template” of visual narrative translates perfectly to your own style of photography, as it works in capturing the story of your life…

Hope you enjoy the images from this last week of the CM Ranch Workshop, stay tuned.

Preparing for rodeo Olympus E-M1 12-40 Pro lens

Preparing for rodeo Olympus                                                                     E-M1 12-40 Pro lens

Dubois Rodeo   Olympus E-M1 7-14 Pro lens

Dubois Rodeo                                                                                                    Olympus E-M1 7-14 Pro lens

Horses driven across Jakey's Fork  Olympus E-M1 40-150 Pro lens

Horses driven across Jakey’s Fork                                                                             Olympus E-M1 40-150 Pro lens

Horses driven across Jakey's Fork  Olympus E-M1 12-40 Pro lens

Horses driven across Jakey’s Fork                                                         Olympus E-M1 12-40 Pro lens

Wrangler    Olympus E-M1 12 mm f2

Wrangler                                                                                         Olympus E-M1 12 mm f2

Studio Cabin     Olympus E-M5  8mm f1.8 Pro lens

Studio Cabin                                                                                    Olympus E-M5 Mk II  8mm f1.8 Pro lens

One of the real amazing aspects of digital photography: how long exposures can really “open up” the night sky.  The image above is the Milky Way, shot from directly in front of our cabin, Studio, at the CM Ranch.

CM Wrangler Jess Howard   Olympus E-M1 40-150 Pro lens

CM Wrangler Jess Howard after muddy ride                                                              Olympus E-M1 40-150 Pro lens

Afternoon at the CM Ranch

Afternoon at the CM Ranch                                                                                  Olympus E-M1 40-150 Pro lens