Las Vegas Photography Workshop

March 19th, 2017

We took a trip to Las Vegas so that I could take a Bryan Peterson Photography Workshop and visit with my Mom and Dad. The workshop was Saturday and Sunday, so Mom and I took the workshop while Dad and Veronica relaxed at the hotel. Veronica rented a road bike from Las Vegas Cyclery and had a couple of good rides up to Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.  Monday and Tuesday were spent roaming around, unsuccessfully looking for dragonflies, but getting in some nice hikes.

The workshop was great. Each day was a full day of shooting from early (6am) to late (8pm). Saturday had a mid-day break, but Sunday was only broken up by a leisurely lunch.  Although the web site said there would be 8 participants, we had about 16 people.  I don’t think that had a negative impact on the workshop because it felt like everyone was getting as much (or as little) personal attention from Bryan as they wanted.  Sometimes everyone wanted to be in basically the same spot, so it only took us one round of shooting to realize that sometimes we would have to shoot in waves. Since everyone was a photographer, everyone was attentive to staying out of others’ shots and happy to relocate if needed.

As you might expect, there were a range of abilities in the photographers. It felt like most people were intermediate to experienced shooters, with a couple of people who needed a bit more attention.   I was hoping that we would get to share images, but there just wasn’t time for that.  Beyond just transporting us to various locations around the city and Valley of Fire, Bryan talked about technical topics, e.g. shutter speed, depth of field, etc. and artistic aspects like seeing and techniques for specific images.

Bryan has published a couple of books and done a series of YouTube videos for Adorama – 156 and counting!  Some of what we shot I had seen in his videos or read about in one of his books.  I suspect that everything we did at the workshop is covered in those resources, but it was fun to get out and shoot in an interesting place with some hands-on guidance.  Bryan even arranged for a model, which was a nice change for me since I don’t usually shoot models.

I came out of this with about 50 images that I’m keeping.  This is a much higher count than I usually share, but there was a larger diversity of images that I usually get in a weekend. I mean, how many dragonfly images can you post at one time?  A couple of the images are behind the scene shots of group to give a sense of the event.

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