photo workshops

One-Day Croton-on-Hudson Photo Tune-up on May 25: Photography, Photoshop & Plug-ins

I'm doing a one-day photo tune-up in my "backyard," Croton-On-Hudson, NY. It's a condensed version of my more intensive Croton Creative Workshop, listed on My Workshops page. It's kinda like playing speed chess. We'll get in as much as we can in several short sessions. You will be running around on this workshop, as opposed to the much more relaxed and personal feeling of my standard Croton workshops.

Here is the info (subject to change):
• May 25, 2014. Rain date June 1.
• 9  AM to 6 PM - later if you stay for the optional dinner.
• Only 8 participants.
• Cost $149 per photographer. (Plus small processing fee.)
• Bring your camera gear and laptops.
• Photograph at the Buddhist temple in Kent, New York 40 minutes away. One hour shoot. We shoot here for two hours during my Croton Creative Workshops - where there are fewer people around than on a weekend, which could get busy.
• Lunch (not included in price).
• Process your images in Photoshop (or Lightroom, but I can show you some Photoshop techniques) at local bed & breakfast.
• Short play with plug-ins sessions. You can download from my Save & Play with Plugs-ins page.
• Speedy speedlite session at bed & breakfast. A much longer session (with a model) on my Croton Creative Workshop.
• Early dinner (not included in price).
• Swing by the New Croton Dam for a quick shoot or a sunset walk along the Hudson River. We do both on my standard Croton workshop.

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More images and places to stay.

Space is limited. Shoot me an email if you are interested in this learning experience.

Please note that we will be on a strict time schedule.

Explore the light,

This post sponsored by x-rite. For more information,  and to save up to $40, click the logo below.

One and Two-Day "Rick's Backyard" Digital Photography Classes in Croton-On-Hudson, NY

If you like travel and outdoor photography, as well as Lightroom and Photoshop, I offer two ways to explore your creative vision in Croton-on-Hudson, NY - just about one hour north of New York City.

My one-day workshop on May 25 offers fast paced learning and fun.

My two-day workshops in June and October offer much more in-depth learning at a slower pace and with more time for personal attention – in the field and on your computer.

I hope you can come to Croton for what I call my "Rick's Backyard Workshops."

Explore the Light,

My Mindshift 180° Panorama Backpack Helps Me Gets the Shots

Click images to enlarge.

It was an amazing experience in the Hudson River tonight: That's right! I was actually standing in the Hudson River in Croton-on-Hudson, New York making pictures of the wonderful ice formations. I have lived in Croton-on-Hudson for more than 25 years, and I have never seen a sight like the one I saw tonight. I felt as though I was for in Iceland, where I lead digital photography workshops.

Helping me capture images was my new Mindshift rotation 180 ° Panorama backpack. This backpack offers a totally unique and cool design: it lets you swivel around the belt pack interior for easy access to gear that you can't, or don't want to, put down on the ground – or on the ice. I use the belt pack for lenses and filters, but it's large enough to hold another digital SLR and lenses.

What's more, the backpack is super comfortable . . . and goes well with my red coat! :-)

Click here to learn more about Mindshift backpacks.

All my gear is listed on My Gear page.

I took the opening image for this post with my Canon 5D Mark III and Canon 14mm lens. For the image below, I switched to my Canon 17-40mm lens.

The sunset image above on the left is a HDR shot that I processed in the latest version of Photomatix Pro. The photo on the right is the average exposure of my four-image HDR sequence.

Helping me find the best light, as always, was my Photo Sundial app, which works around the world.

Sure, the wide-angel photo opportunities were awesome. But as I tell my photo workshop students, try to "tell the whole story" of a location. Close-ups helps us do that.

The Hudson Valley is a wonderful location in which to shoot, anytime of the year. In the spring and fall I run a Croton-on-Hudson workshop - where I took the above photographs. Hope you can join the photo experience.

Explore the light,

P.S. I received a few emails about my boots: Muck boots.

It's Travel Destination Thursday. Today: Croton-on-Hudson, New York

Every Thursday I post a favorite picture or pictures from one of my favorite travel destiantions - along with some photo tips. If you have been to the location, add a tip or comment in the Comments section.

This week: Croton-on-Hudson, New York - just one of the shooting locations on my Rick's Backyard Workshop.

There are two major photo locations in Croton-on-Hudson: the New Croton Dam and the river walk.

Dam Photo Tips:
• Bring your wide-angle zoom. Also pack a tele-zoom for close ups.
• A ND filter is necessary if you want to blur the water. Use shutter speeds from 1/5 of a second to several seconds.
• Yes! Bring your tripod.
• Shoot from the top of the dam, the side of the dam, and down near the water. Be careful when you are shooting near the water. It can be slippery.
• Try painting with light at night.
• You'll need a lens cleaning cloth to wipe the spray off your lens.
• When shooting from the lower bridge, be aware of vibrations caused by moving cars. Those vibrations can cause blurry shots at slow shutter speeds.
• As always, expose for the highlights. More on exposure in my

I shot the opening and close for my Photo Philosophy video at the dam.

River Walk Photo Tips:
• Sunset is the best time to shoot, as the sun sets on the opposite side of the river.
• Include an object in the foreground to give your photograph a sense of place.
• When shooting into the sun, try HDR - but know that HDR can ruin the mood of a scene.
• Remove all filters when shooting into the sun to avoid a ghost image of the sun.

Enjoy travel photography? Check out my digital photography workshops.

For more travel and photo tips, subscribe to my blog.

Explore the light,

Find the best light for your photographs and videos - anywhere on the planet - with my Photo Sun Dial app.

For the iPhone and iPad.


Announcing Digital Delray Imaging 2015

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I've been photographing in Delray Beach, Florida for more than 10 years – yet it is still one of my favorite workshop locations. I love photographing in the Historic Colony Beach Hotel, on the "Ave," at the beach, at nearby Butterfly World and at Wakadahatchee Wetlands.

I am returning to Delray in 2015 to run two Digital Imaging workshops: 

January 16 - 18 
January 30 - Feb 1 

The workshop fee is $600. We'll only have 10 students on each workshop - so everyone gets personal attention.

In Delray I'll be teaching HDR, low-light shooting, model photography, daylight fill-in flash - and processing images in Photoshop and Lightroom. I'll also teach Photomatix and Nik Plug-ins.

We'll have our end-of workshop group side show/critique at the Colony Hotel.

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At Butterfly World, where I took many of the photographs for my butterfly book and butterfly apps, I'll be teaching close-up and macro photography and daylight fill-in flash, as well as natural light photography.

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Our small group will  have the opportunity to photograph South Florida's most popular birds at Wakadahatchee Wetlands.

We are also working on a horse photography event for the group.

What's more, there are plenty of great places to eat in Delray. We'll continue the photo learning and fun at group dinners (optional).

I hope to see you in Delray!

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Shoot me an email to get on the info list for this info-pack and fun-filled workshop.

While I am in Delray I am also giving private lessons - shooting, Photoshop and portfolio reviews. Cost is $150 an hour.

 Click here to read some comments from past Rick Sammon workshop participants.

Explore the light,