Milky Way Arches ~ Sept 16-19 Workshop

NightScape Photography
NightScape Photography
Public group
Location image of event venue


NightScape Photography Workshop in Arches National Park

3-Day Workshop ~ Dates: September 16-19, 2014

Investment: $899.00 (50% deposit of $449.50)

Overview: Arches is a natural monument paradise. There are fantastic opportunities here for light painting. You'll visit some of the most unique sandstone arches, during three (3) nights of dark skies; and get a chance to do it all over again at sunrise and sunset. But most importantly, you'll learn how to capture your own Milky Way vision!

My workshops are more about shooting than spending time in a classroom setting, although we will have six (6) hours of inside instruction. Much of my instruction is on location while we are preparing to shoot. My workshop are also about having a lot of fun with fellow photographers who share a common passion.

This will be much more than just a night photography workshop. We will also be covering three sunrises, three sunsets and six twilight periods — about 12 hours of prime-time daylight photography and twilight photography. All this, in addition to at about 12 hours of night photography on three of the darkest evenings of the month! You can expect to finish this workshop with a significant portfolio of images you will be proud to showcase.

My goal is to share with my students everything I know about night photography. Nothing is off limits. I will do everything I can to make you a better photographer. I want to give you the tools to apply your vision to night photography.

Class Size: This workshop to limited to only seven (7) participants to help ensure you get the level of attention you deserve. To help create a strong bond within the group, I encourage you to share ideas and help each other learn during the workshop.


• Tuesday, Sept. 16 - 4:00 PM: Arrive in Moab, Utah - our base. We will meet up at the La Quinta Inn (815 S. Main,[masked]) and use this first afternoon and evening for indoor classroom instruction and orientation. This is a "buffer" day for our 3-day/3-night workshop. If the weather forecast indicates overcast conditions on any of the other days and nights, we will postpone our indoor classes and the this time for shooting!
• Wednesday, Sept. 17: Sunrise and early morning photography. Group breakfast (all other meals are on your own). Early afternoon indoor instruction on night photography techniques. Late afternoon and sunset photography. Milky Way night photography with local landscape features.
• Thursday, Sept. 18: Sunrise and early morning photography. Early afternoon indoor instruction on post processing. Late afternoon and sunset photography. Milky Way night photography with local landscape features.
• Friday, Sept. 19: Sunrise and early morning photography. Late afternoon and sunset photography. Milky Way night photography with local landscape features.
• Saturday, Sept. 20: Travel home or extend your stay.

~ A more detailed, hour-by-hour itinerary will be sent to attendees in early September ~

What Will be Covered?

Shooting, shooting, shooting: Unlike many workshops that spend much of their time in classroom instruction, we will spend most of our time traveling to and shooting at some of the area's best locations!

Understanding night exposures: You will learn how NightScape photography is different from regular landscape photography.

Shooting Techniques: In addition to tips for daylight and twilight photography, you will learn how to prepare and operate your camera for night shooting. You will learn how to properly exposure for a starry night sky, including the Milky Way. Topics covered:

• How to focus your lens and use your camera at night
• Understanding white balance/aperture/shutter speed/and ISO relationships
• How to reduce noise
• Many personal tips and special techniques

Night Preparation: You will learn how to find subjects on the night sky, including the location of the Milky Way. Planning the right time to go. How to find dark skies. Finding foreground landscapes that compliment the night sky. Using the right light source to enhance your foreground (light painting), when needed.

Advanced Post Processing Methods: You will be taught new skills in how to enhance your night sky photos. I will teach you how to bring out the beautiful, latent colors of the Milky Way and the night sky that are naturally there —without having to resort to the artificial stimulus of garish saturation increases that some photographers use.

Reference Book: Before the workshop begins, you will receive a personal copy of a 129-page ebook that will give step-by-step instructions on night photography preparation, shooting techniques, post processing steps, and help in locating celestial features in the night sky.

Equipment to Bring:

• A DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera capable of shooting in RAW format
• Extra camera body - if you have one
• Lenses ranging from wide angles to telephotos
• One wide angle lens should be at least 24mm or wider, and f/2.8 or faster. (You can rent lenses and camera bodies at ( for the workshop if needed.)
• Sturdy tripod
• Memory cards - at least 32GB in total
• Remote release or intervalometer (
• Extra camera battery(s)
• Lens cleaning supplies
• Camera manual
• Headlamp (must include a red light ( and flashlight
• Warm/layered clothing, including gloves ( (it can get cold at night)
• Extra food and/or necessities you may require
• Polarizing filter (optional)
• Graduated neutral density filters (optional)
• Laptop computer loaded with Adobe Photoshop. You will not need your computer during our shooting sessions, but I recommend you bring a laptop to the post processing tutorial. You can install a 30-day trial ( from Adobe.

Physical Requirements: Easy to moderate (you must be at least 18 years of age). Most of our photography locations are accessible from your car with very little hiking. There are two exceptions: Delicate Arch (3 miles round trip) and Landscape Arch (2 miles round trip). We will take both of these trails at a slow pace. (For your safety, Royce has taken American Red Cross CPR and First Aid Training.)

Does weather affect the schedule? Definitely! Weather is an uncontrollable factor with night sky photography. While partly cloudy skies can add interest, completely overcast skies will block all the stars in our night scenes and dampen our daylight shoots. Although I cannot guarantee clear skies and perfect conditions, it is uncommon to have several days of poor conditions. Even if the skies are overcast we will continue to go out and learn everything this workshop has to offer. NOTE: Although this is a 3-day/night workshop, I have scheduled us to arrive one extra afternoon and evening early. If weather becomes an issue, we will use this "buffer" time for extra sunset and night photography —otherwise, this will be optional time that we can use for additional classroom instruction, socializing, and preparation. If we decide to use this buffer night for photography, one of the overcast evenings will be canceled (trust me, you will appreciate the extra rest if you've just completed an all-nighter the day before).

Are significant others allowed? Yes, as long as they are not a photographer.

Lodging and Meals: are not included. You are free to stay anywhere in the Moab area. However, we recommend La Quinta Inn ( (815 S. Main,[masked]). This is where our classes will be held. We have reserved a block of discounted rooms under the name, "Royce Bair Group #1615". I recommend that you book as early as possible, as Moab has two major events on the calendar for that week. Discover Moab ( lists 28 other hotels in the area.

Transportation: Each participant is responsible for their own transportation to Moab, Utah. You are also responsible for local transportation to our featured photography locations within the area. You can use your own car, a rental car, or your can arrange to carpool with other members of the workshop.

Getting There: We recommend you fly in and out of Salt Lake City. Driving distance from Salt Lake City to Moab is about 239 miles (about 4 hours).

Entrance Fees and Permits: Each attendee will need to pay for any personal park entrance fees ($25). We have obtained and paid for all necessary government regulatory permits.

Investment: $899.00 per student (alumni receive a 10% discount). A 50% deposit ($449.50) is required to reserve your space. Another $449.50 payment is due by July 16, 2014 (the second payment for alumni is only $359.60). Cancellations with full refunds (less any credit card processing fees) are allowed up to 60 days prior to the start of the workshop. If you cancel within 59 days of a workshop event, and we can fill your spot, we will refund 100% of all monies collected from you, less any credit card processing fees. If we cannot fill your spot, your total workshop fee will be forfeited. No exceptions can be made for this policy. Any cancellation must be in writing (mail or email). Travel insurance is recommended, along with refundable airline tickets.

Testimonials: "Royce did a wonderful and professional job! He was very knowledgeable and more than willing to share his expertise and time answering questions and working with any individual on their particular questions/concerns." - C.Y. Roby

"The Best! Royce is an excellent instructor. He is very thorough, yet makes the technical details easy to understand. He covers each of the camera settings and why they are important. Reviews astronomical information, so you know where and what to look for so you will know when you are on your own.

He covers information that is important as the night progresses. He was there visiting with each person to make sure they understood the instructions and were getting good pictures. Then he follows up the class with additional information and resources. If you are thinking about taking one of his classes - do it! Opportunities to learn from such a master are rare." - Doug Lawrence

Read More Testimonials (

NightScape Blog: If you can't make it to this workshop, be sure to follow my night photography blog ( I'm constantly featuring the work of some of the world's best nightscape photographers, with great behind-the-scenes info and tips. I also provide equipment and software reviews (example: Shooting Stars ( - an eBook review).