Sunday, 20 January 2013

Canadian Caravan with Ellen Anon in Tofino, British Columbia

Dates: August 10, 2014 to August 17th, 2014

Locations: Meares Island, Pacific Rim National Reserve, Tofino, and other local attractions

Attendees: Minimum of 8, Maximum of 15

Workshop Leaders: Ellen Anon and Kevin Pepper

Fitness Level: Minimal to a higher degree of physical activity involved in this Workshop. The majority of the workshop is contains minor physical activity but we may take optional hikes into the rain forest.

Price: $1295US - This is the fee to attend the workshop. All attendees should make their own travel arrangements to attend this workshop.

Our goal is to answer all of your questions while we spend our time together in Tofino, British Columbia. But because of the nature of this photography workshop, the key learning opportunities will be on:
Key Learnings from Ellen's Book: See It: Photographic Composition Using Visual Intensity:
Ellen will discuss with the group the skills on shooting and optimizing photos using visual intensity to add the wow factor. The information you will learn is based on her book, See It: Photographic Composition Using Visual Intensity. In the book Elen explains that an outstanding image consists of more than just acceptable exposure and sharp focus - the two components that most photography instruction emphasize. A fascinating subject doesn't necessarily result in a good image, and likewise, it's possible to create an impressive image from a mundane subject. How do you capture that perfect image, and more importantly, what makes it great? That's where this book comes in. Rather than wasting time trying one approach after another until something seems right or memorizing a list of rules, discover a new, more comprehensive and yet intuitive way to think about photography and see the world around you by using visual intensity. The quality of your imagery and the speed of your workflow will both vastly improve once you are able to use these techniques to articulate why you prefer one image to another. Mother and son team Ellen and Josh Anon have spent years perfecting their visual intensity based approach to composition, and in this gorgeous, full color guide, they share their techniques with you so that your overall photographic experience, both in terms of time investment and quality of output, will become far more satisfying.
Apertures & Shutter Speeds: We will discuss the different modes on your camera and the effect your aperture and shutter setting have on your images.
Composition: Learn how to improve your photography by applying ‘rules’ of composition.
Outdoor Lighting Techniques: Some great techniques will be explained on how to use light to fill in high contrast outdoor photography.
Night Photography: With an abundance of stars the opportunity for night photography will present opportunities to do long exposure night photography.
Autofocus & Techniques: Here you learn how to keep the focus on your subject whether taking a landscape image or photographing action!
Digital Darkroom: A Photographer's Lounge workshop is the perfect opportunity for any photographer to refine their post processing skills.

Have you ever been to the extreme west coast of Canada? The unique location where you can enjoy the sights of a rainforest one day and be photographing black bears, bald eagles and whales the next... then switch things up and turn inland to photograph snow covered mountains?

Join Ellen Anon and Kevin Pepper on another "Photographers Lounge" photo workshop to this unique land. August is a magical time of year in Tofino; "fog"ust as it is referred to creates spectacular images along the expansive shoreline in the morning hours, animals like black bears, sea lions and yes, even whales are a frequent part of the days activities in the Tofino area.

I will make sure you have the chance to photograph all of these places you expect to capture, but also take you to little known gems for those unique shots the everyday tourist will not capture.

It is in Tofino with us that you will take your photography to the next level with the personal instruction. So come and join us and expand your creative and technical skills through extensive field shoots and informative classes and photo reviews. You and only a maximum of 15 other photographers will share the excitement of our only workshop of 2014 to photograph these memorable sites.

I will say that we do work hard from dawn to dusk and you will return home tired, but satisfied, with the images and memories left on your memory cards. A few things that also need mentioned; this is a photography workshop, not a photo tour. We will be generally photographing during the optimal light of the day, 6am till 10am and 5pm till 10pm. Then during the middle of the day we'll spend the time holding classes and reviewing your photos... but you will also get some down time to spend tiem with your spouse that, if not a photographer, can come for free.
Also, the proper camera gear is very important for a successful photography workshop experience. The gear we suggest includes digital (or film) SLR with a range of lenses from wide angle to telephoto. A sturdy tripod and other items are also essential, and a more complete list of suggested equipment will be provided when you register.

A Typical Day

The Tofino photography workshop will begin Sunday afternoon. We will meet for group luncheon and you will be given an orientation presentation on the area. We will also show you examples of the kind of photographic situations that you will be in, but also make some suggestions on how you should approach these situations.

A final, detailed itinerary will be provided at the workshop dinner. It is always subject to last minute changes to take advantage of the constantly changing weather and light. But we will select our locations from some of the following: Rainforest Hot Springs, Private boat tours, Lighthouse loop, Long beach, Combers Beach, Meares Island, Pacific Rim National Park. We will not have the time to cover all of these locations but will select the ones that provide the finest photographic opportunities at the time based on my experience living in British Columbia

Most of our days will begin well before sunrise. We will arrive at our location 45-60 minutes before sunrise. This will give us an opportunity to photograph in the luminous blue hour. Because Tofino is so large, some mornings will entail driving times of a half hour or more. We will continue to photograph through the morning golden hour, that period after sunrise when the sun is still low in the sky and the light especially warm. For our night photo shoots we will leave the classroom for our afternoon and sunset destinations in time to take full advantage of the afternoon golden hour, sunset and twilight for such photographic styles as long exposure and light painting.

An important part of the Tofino photography workshop is feedback and instruction. As mentioned, we will take advantage of the poor light during the middle of the day to review your photos and offer 'classroom' instruction. In addition to covering such topics as composition and depth of field we will also spend some time on workflow and post processing using Lightroom and Photoshop.


The average daily temperature in Tofino is around 15°C ( 60°F) in July and August, these are ideal months for outdoor activities for photographers. August also sees the second lowest rainfall in Tofino each year and allows the elongated shadows to be visible each morning and night as we walk the expansive shorelines during the golden hours.

Why Tofino?

Tofino is located on the west coast of Vancouver Island in a geographical region called Clayoquot Sound. The area is comprised of over 400,000 hectares of land and marine inlets. Designated as a world UNESCO biosphere reserve, this area also boasts one of British Columbia's most prized nature reserves, Pacific Rim National Park.

The Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations have made Clayoquot Sound their home for several thousand years. The Tla-o-qui-aht Village of Opitsaht (across the water from Tofino on Meares Island) is thought to have been continuously inhabited for at least the past 5,000 years, according to carbon dating of a long-buried stash of discarded clamshells.

Clayoquot Sound welcomes between 750,000 and a million visitors annually. These people migrate here to see what you are about to experience… the other returning visitors. Every year in March and April about 25,000 grey whales pass through Clayoquot Sound en route from Baja to Alaska.

Every April and May there are also hundreds of thousands of shorebirds that stop to gorge themselves on Clayoquot Sound’s nourishing mudflats and sandy beaches before following the whales north. And then there are the salmon. Millions of salmon – five different species in all – mingle and feed in the inshore and offshore waters throughout the spring and summer before the fall rains point them to the rivers and streams where they return to spawn. What these salmon attract is what we are also after… The bears that awake in March and April descend from higher ground to fee along the shorelines, plus the Bald Eagles circle above waiting to dine on the shallow water salmon.

Who Should Attend

You should at least have a good grasp of the functions of your camera. This workshop will benefit the serious amateur to the more advanced hobbyist.

Maximum number of attendees for this workshop is limited to only 15 photographers in order to maximize your time spent with the two workshop instructors.

Investment in your photographic abilities during this workshop is $1295.00USD including taxes.
Here’s how it works: You drive. You book your own hotel rooms (we will recommend hotels or cottage rental locations as we have secured discounts at a few locations for our workshop). You pay for your own meals. We provide photographic instruction and guidance. And, we arrange shooting locations, meeting times, restaurants, and traditional Canadian style meals etc.

We are limiting this Photo Workshop to 15 participants for personalized attention. Spaces do go quickly on our Canadian Workshops... so book your space soon!
Visit to learn more and to book your spot.