Larch Madness and Fall Colors Photography Workshop, 10/5-10/7, 2018

larches • landscapes • fall colors • composition • lighting • post-production instruction

$1,299 + tax per participant  •  Space Limited to 8 participants


Stephen is partnering with fellow outdoor photographer Scott Kranz to co-instruct a unique three day, fall colors photography workshop in Washington's incredible North Cascades and Methow Valley. The larch tree is an icon of the east slope of the North Cascades and peaks in color in early October.  The area provides endless photo opportunities for adventurous photographers looking to capture larches in their stunning fall color display and inspirational scenes of the North Cascades. You’ll not only learn the technical details of landscape photography, but explore the creative process to expand your photographic vision.

Each day will be a combination of photography, learning, and exploration.  It is the best of both worlds - you get to explore and experience the wilderness of the North Cascades and professional photographic instruction in some of the wildest, and most beautiful mountain landscapes in the United States. Few places can compare to the dramatic and rugged beauty of the North Cascades. Combining the sublime Methow Valley and dramatic beauty of the North Cascades, the photo opportunities are limitless. 

Scott and Stephen will teach you their creative process from previsualization, composition, lighting, and image capture, to digital darkroom workflow. This intensive 3-day workshop will include one night of backpacking in the North Cascades (location TBD) and one night at local accommodations in the Methow Valley.  The evening at local accommodations will be filled with further teaching and discussions of the creative process as well as image sharing critique.

The workshop is limited to eight participants to to ensure each participant receives personal attention and guidance. At least 5 participants must sign up for the workshop to take place.

The workshop will be structured to be beneficial to all attendees from beginners to advanced photographers. However a basic understanding of photography will help you get the most out of any workshop.

This is a physically challenging tour suitable for all experience levels.  Participants should be in good physical condition and capable of carrying a pack full of gear up to 5 miles over challenging terrain. 

 Larch trees in autumn, Ingalls Pass area, Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Washington

Discussed Topics Include:

  •  composition

  •  previsualizing images

  •  lighting

  •  exposure, white balance & understanding histograms

  •  filters - polarizers and graduated neutral density

  •  star/night photography

  •  lenses, focal length

  •  aperture & shutter speed

  •  depth of field

  •  camera operation and settings

  •  post-processing in Photoshop and Lightroom

  •  file formats - JPEG and camera RAW

  •   stitched panoramas

  •  tripod

What's Included

  • A personal photography workshop experience along with individual instruction. With a max of 8 students, there will be plenty of time for personal instruction for each student.

  • Prior to the workshop, Scott and Stephen will host a Skype session with each participant to discuss expectations and to learn what you are looking to learn from the workshop

  • Light trail snacks, water, coffee, and tea.

  • Ground transportation between Mazama and the North Cascades hiking and backpacking areas, including to and from the North Cascades hiking destinations we'll be shooting and the Mazama, WA area.

  • Saturday night lodging accommodations in the Mazama area.

  • Large group classroom session on Saturday evening.

  • Certified NOLS Wilderness First Responder on site.

What's Not Included

  • Transportation to and from the Mazama, WA area where we'll meet and where we'll take over transportation from there for the duration of the workshop.

  • Your meals, including all breakfasts, lunches, and dinners. You will be responsible for your own food, apart from the light trail snacks, water, and coffee described above.

  • All backpacking and camping gear for your use on Friday night's overnight backpacking outing, including but not limited to a tent, a sleeping bag and pad, cold weather gear, among other necessary camping gear. If you need to rent gear, we are happy to connect you with a local outfitter to rent all required gear, but you will be responsible for the rental costs for any gear you need.

  • All photo gear. Stephen and Scott can recommend photo gear and where to buy or rent gear for the workshop.

  • Any camping or lodging accommodations not listed above, including any camping or lodging you would like for the Thursday night before or Sunday night after the workshop.

  • All travel insurance and gear insurance.

What to Expect

Each day will bring something different. Scott and Stephen will coordinate to select shooting locations based on time of day, light, and weather. We will let the weather and light help us decide what to shoot each day. Conditions permitting, days will be long as we will plan to get up and shoot sunrise, then shoot until sunset to take advantage of the best light and make the most of each day.

In the evening on Saturday, we'll do an image critique and a lesson in post processing, including RAW processing and conversion, stitching panoramas, or final touches to improve an image.

Some shooting will be from close to the road, while other times we may be hiking to shoot at a prime location.

What to Bring

You'll get the most out of the workshop if you have the following gear and equipment.

  • digital camera with creative modes (Manual, aperture priority, shutter priority and bulb modes)

  • mirrorless or dSLR camera with mirror lockup capability

  • lens or lenses with a range of focal lengths, from wide (24mm or wider) to telephoto (200+) zoom or primes

  • extra camera batteries and memory cards

  • sturdy tripod

  • photo backpack suitable for hiking and carrying personal gear (we can recommend some options)

  • wireless remote or cable release

  • polarizing filter

  • graduated neutral density filters (2 and 3 stop, hard edge)

  • warm clothes including hat, gloves, puffy coat, and raincoat

  • good hiking shoes

  • headlamp

  • reusable water bottle

  • laptop computer

 Scott Kranz   is a full-time commercial and editorial photographer based in Seattle, Washington, specializing in outdoor sports, lifestyle, landscape, and travel photography. Partnering with the world’s leading outdoor brands, Scott’s professional work includes hiking and climbing in the Cascade, Sierra, and Rocky mountain ranges; trekking in both the European and New Zealand Alps; canyoneering and mountain biking in the Southwest deserts; and backcountry skiing among the volcanoes of Japan. View more of his images at  www.scott-kranz.com

Scott Kranz is a full-time commercial and editorial photographer based in Seattle, Washington, specializing in outdoor sports, lifestyle, landscape, and travel photography. Partnering with the world’s leading outdoor brands, Scott’s professional work includes hiking and climbing in the Cascade, Sierra, and Rocky mountain ranges; trekking in both the European and New Zealand Alps; canyoneering and mountain biking in the Southwest deserts; and backcountry skiing among the volcanoes of Japan. View more of his images at www.scott-kranz.com

 Stephen Matera is a professional landscape and outdoor lifestyle photographer and National Geographic contributor based in Seattle. He combines his passion for all things outdoors with a unique creative eye, creating images for some of the world’s leading publishers and outdoor equipment manufacturers. He developed his vision as a natural landscape photographer, and now also applies his creative vision to conservation and outdoor lifestyle storytelling. 

Stephen Matera is a professional landscape and outdoor lifestyle photographer and National Geographic contributor based in Seattle. He combines his passion for all things outdoors with a unique creative eye, creating images for some of the world’s leading publishers and outdoor equipment manufacturers. He developed his vision as a natural landscape photographer, and now also applies his creative vision to conservation and outdoor lifestyle storytelling.