Landscapes, Northern Lights and Whales
Come with us to the Norwegian Arctic Circle, and photograph the dramatic Lofoten Islands. We’ll spend 5 days seeking jagged mountain peaks, and then 3 days photographing whales in Andenes. You’ll photograph icy fjords and frozen lakes, rocky seacoast, turquoise water, white sand beaches, rustic fishing villages, and more. If we’re lucky and the weather is clear, we will be treated to some of the best northern lights on the planet. After five days and nights in the magnificent landscape photographer’s paradise of Lofoten, we’ll head even further north into the Arctic Circle, to Andenes, to photograph the Orcas and humpback whales that come into the fjord to feed on the abundant herring. You will venture out into the bay in state-of-the-art watercraft specifically designed for photographing these amazing sea creatures. This workshop will be expertly led and guided by Andy Williams with assistance from Cody Duncan, who has logged more days in Lofoten than most anyone! Most shooting locations are very near to where we’ll park our minivans. You’ll need to be able to walk on uneven and at times slippery ground. There will be some opportunities for the more adventurous types to hike or climb a little bit.
We will teach techniques in: high dynamic range shooting, panoramas, long exposures during the day (and night!), star and aurora shooting, wildlife action, and more. Shooting is our priority, so expect to be out in the field plenty! We will feature image reviews and critiques, and post-processing instruction with Lightroom. Get ready for an other-worldly experience in Norway!
January 19–28, 2018
Keep in mind that our itinerary is subject to change based on weather conditions.
January 19, 2018: We meet at the hotel (we have arranged the rooms) at the Oslo airport late in the day for a group dinner (dinner is included).
January 20-25, 2018: After breakfast, we take a morning commercial flight (we will tell you what flight to book) to Leknes. We’ll base in the beautiful fishing village of Sakrisøy in southeast Lofoten and in the heart of Lofoten, Leknes. The arctic days are short, but the twilight and dawn last for hours, and the quality of light is amazing. In addition, if the skies are clear and the Northern lights come out, we stay up even longer! Some of our shooting locations will include:
- Haukland and Utakleiv Beaches—Vestvågøya bright sand and crystal clear water make Haukland one of the most beautiful in Norway, and we’ll explore the rocks along the shore at Utakleiv.
- Hamnøy is a small fishing village, we’ll have numerous opportunities within steps of our accommodations.
- Olstind is a great viewpoint for sunrise.
- Sunset at Å—this one-letter village is beautiful, and it’s at the southern end of the Lofoten Archipelago.
- More beaches and seacoast: Flakstadoy-Skagsanden, Ramberg, Yttersand, Myrland.
Our precise itinerary is planned—but we are always prepared to change things up, based on weather and light conditions. Of course, each night we’ll be on watch for northern lights, and you can count on being awakened the instant we find them!
Accommodations in Lofoten—we will be lodged comfortably in sea cabins in Sakrisøy, and each cabin has one or two bedrooms, living area and bathroom/shower. In Leknes we have traditional hotel rooms.
January 25, 2018: After breakfast we’ll pack up and head for our morning shoot, and then we’ll take a beautiful drive to Andenes where we will have three nights chasing northern lights, and two days of whale sea safari. We’ll have plenty of photo ops along the way, as the drive is gorgeous!
January 26 and 27, 2018 Sea Safari in Andenes: A few years ago, biologists discovered that herring regularly run into the fjords at Andenes—and so, too, followed hundreds of orcas and humpbacks to feed on them! We will have two safaris to observe and photograph these magnificent creatures up close and personal. Our group will have large ribbed inflatable boats, so there will be plenty of room for us to photograph. Each day we’ll don special life-suits, life jacket, and hop in our boats and photograph these amazing animals. When we’re not on safari for the whales, we’ll be spending time in the digital darkroom critiquing and working on images. Of course, we’ll be on the hunt for northern lights each night! Check out the short video below, and scroll through the images below to get a good idea of what we'll be photographing.
Accommodations in Andenes: we have a hotel right in town, with clean comfortable rooms and private bathrooms.
January 28, 2018: after breakfast the workshop concludes. You will fly commercial from Andenes back to Oslo, where you will arrive in the afternoon. Hotel arrangements have been made for you (not included). Flights home or elsewhere can be made for anytime on January 29, 2018.
What To Bring: In addition to our standard recommendations, you’ll need special items for this workshop: walking spikes for your warm boots, winter boots to keep you warm and dry, long underwear, layers, shooting gloves, warm hat, outer layer and more. You’ll need to know the basics of your camera: how to set things in low-light to no-light, how to set it for auto-bracketing, live view, how to manually focus on the stars. If you need help with this before the workshop, it’s no problem—just ask us for help. Temperatures will hover around the freezing mark, even in January—as these areas are influenced by the gulf stream. You should be comfortable being in the cold—we’ll help you with choosing warm weather clothing.
Our transportation is in two winter-equipped minivans, with plenty of room for us and our photo gear. Lodging is double occupancy, with private bathrooms, we’ll find you a roommate as needed. Single occupancy is available, at an additional charge, just ask.
- Double occupancy lodging (Single available, just ask)
- All meals during the workshop
- All ground transportation during the workshop
- Photographic guiding and instruction from two pros
- Image reviews and post-processing instruction
- Fun, inspiration, and a great time!
What’s Not Included?
Air transportation from your home to Norway and also within Norway. Lodging in Oslo on 19th and 28th of January. Visa or passport fees. Items of a personal nature. Alcoholic beverages. Travel medical, medical evacuation, and trip insurance (recommended!). Anything not specifically listed as included.