Night Sky Utah - Moab May 11-14 ADVANCED - miketaylorphoto
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Night Sky Utah - May 11-14, 2018

Moab Session 2 - ADVANCED 4 Day Workshop

Please read our Mission Statement for info regarding Mike's teaching style.

Visit the General Overview & Itinerary Info page for more information about gear specifics, clothing, weather, etc.

This workshop has been designed for experienced night photographers. If you are a Taylor Photography Alumni client or have prior experience shooting and processing night sky images then this workshop is for you! Please contact us with any questions or concerns BEFORE signing up for this workshop. Thanks.

This workshop has been planned around the New Moon cycle to maximize the visibility of the features of the night sky in the surrounding areas of Moab, Utah. The outskirts of Moab have very little light pollution which makes for incredible night photography opportunities. You know that you are in truly dark skies when you can see the Dark Horse section of the Milky Way with your naked eyes. Some of the great attractions in this region of Utah include the impressive features in Arches & Canyonlands National Parks, Dead Horse Point State Park, Goblin Valley State Park and other less photographed spots like the La Sal Mountain range and the Castle Valley area.

In mid-May the Milky Way begins to rise around 11PM and appears as an arc in the sky. We will be set up & shooting before then and for 4+ hours each night. Classroom time will begin at 2PM each day and end around 6:30PM for a long dinner break before we head out to shoot the night sky. You will have a few hours to relax, explore, shoot sunset if you choose, etc.

This is a comprehensive workshop designed for experienced night photographers with an emphasis on post-processing that will consist of 3 nights and 4 days - approximately 12 hours of in the field photography and over 15 hours of classroom tutorials & processing time. Check out our Processing page for some examples of what we will be covering in class.

  • North Window Dueling
  • Group Shot at Broken Arch

In The Field Photography: In all of our night photography workshops we try to cover as much as we can in regards to different methods of capturing stunning skies while including important landscape elements including: single shots, light painting techniques, long exposures for foregrounds and shooting panoramas.

In this workshop we'll jump past most of the basic single shot ideas and go right into the techniques of photographing scenes with post-processing in mind: After a few test shots we'll start taking multiple shots for exposure blending, focal length blending, focus stacking, horizontal & vertical panoramas, star trails and time lapse. Mike and Sonia will help each participant with composition, lighting, troubleshooting, etc.

Classroom InstructionOur classroom time will mainly consist of processing tutorials and techniques via Lightroom & Photoshop and some of our favorite plug-ins to create remarkable images. We will cover Mike's entire digital darkroom workflow from RAW file to finished image.

In most of our workshops we typically spend a half day or more going through every single slider in Lightroom, taking time to discuss what each one does and why it's so important to understand the basics of adjusting highlights & shadows, white & black levels, contrast, clarity, noise reduction, color balance, sharpening, lens corrections, radial & graduated filters, etc.

In this workshop we will quickly go through all these Lightroom features but we'll be spending most of our time in Photoshop with layers and masking to improve your overall workflow and ability to edit images more selectively with complex masking, grouping layers, different blending modes & opacity for layers and brushes, warping & stretching, etc. We will stitch and process panoramas, work more intensely on blending exposures & star trails images and produce short time lapse sequences. Mike will take time to help each participant with their images as we progress through class time. Check out our Processing page for examples. 


May 11: Late afternoon meet and greet, discuss camera settings and features of the night sky - in the field photography 10:30PM - 2:30AM

May 12: 2PM - 6:30PM classroom instruction & image processing - in the field photography 10:30PM - 2:30AM

May 13 2PM - 6:30PM classroom instruction & image processing - in the field photography 10:30PM - 2:30AM

May 14 2PM - 6:30PM classroom instruction & image processing

Home Base: Our home base is the hip and unique Gonzo Inn where we have reserved a block of rooms. To reserve your room, call 435-259-2515 and tell them you are with the Mike Taylor Photography Workshop - Session 2 in May 2018. You are of course free to stay anywhere in the Moab area. Please keep in mind that May is a busy time in Moab and it is not uncommon for ALL the local hotels and campgrounds to be sold out months ahead of time.

Lodging, transportation and meals are not included in the investment amount. We will be carpooling to the photography locations. For our classroom sessions we have reserved a conference room in a building located three blocks from the Gonzo Inn.

More specific information regarding meet up time & location and a PDF covering the essentials of night photography will be sent out to participants via email well before the workshop date. All participants will receive a hard copy of the PDF handout to go over during our meet-and-greet session.

Availability: This workshop is limited to 6 participants.

Physical Requirements: Most of the areas where we will be photographing are short hikes that are within sight of the parking areas. We have tentative plans for a couple of areas that require longer hikes to get to some spots but nothing that should bother anyone who is in decent shape. Just be prepared for some uneven terrain that includes rocks, sand, cacti and some elevation changes. Anyone who has balance issues should contact us before signing up.

Investment: $1799 per participant - Alumni discount of 20% if you've taken a previous workshop with Taylor Photography. A non-refundable 50% deposit is required to reserve a spot or you may pay in full. Due to the logistics and planning of this workshop the full balance is due by February 1, 2018 or your reservation will be subject to cancellation. Please contact us ASAP if issues arise.

If you have a friend or significant other who would like to attend the workshop but not participate, they will still need to register as a participant by paying 50% of the investment amount and sign the required waiver & consent form before we head out into the field. It is important that we have an accurate headcount for each workshop.

If you have any hesitation about signing up, check out the Testimonials page where clients have shared their experiences.

Payment: Use the Paypal buttons below to pay the full amount, a 50% deposit or the remaining balance.

NOTE: If you are not a Taylor Photography Alumni client but DO have experience shooting and processing night sky images, please contact us BEFORE signing up for this workshop so we can quickly discuss your experience level. Thank you! We want to make sure that everyone who attends this particular workshop is on the same page with their shooting and processing skills: In short, if you've photographed the night sky a couple times and know how to shoot within a small group, you're probably good to go. As far as processing goes, if you are already comfortable with most features in Lightroom including radial & graduated filters and know about the basics of layers & simple masking in Photoshop, this workshop is for you!


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