SOLD OUT – Please contact me to be on the waiting list and to get news about future expeditions
The High Arctic. A place that is steeped in adventure and thrilling to the senses. Ever since I returned from my first trip to Svalbard in 2011 this magical place has been calling me back and I’m excited to announce this unique Svalbard expedition that will take place in the autumn of 2013.
Join me and two other world-class photographers – USA’s Charles Glatzer and Ireland’s Peter Cox – as we voyage through this remote and beautiful place. Kevin Raber from Phase-One will be joining us with plenty of Phase-One gear for participants to try out and use.
From our floating base on a comfortable expedition ship, chartered specifically for this workshop, we will explore the dramatic landscape and seascape of the region. Photographing the magnificent polar bear – the largest (and most charismatic) land predator on earth – is our main objective. Nowhere else can the polar bear be seen more reliably in its natural habitat. We will also hunt for walrus and the other wildlife. Dramatic glaciers, plunging cliffs and drift ice will also be present.
Dates for 2013 are:
- August 24 – September 3, 2013
Read on for more details, or download the PDF here!
Our voyage takes place in Autumn. For photographers this means the sun is lower in the sky and the quality of the light is softer and gentler. Contours in the landscape are revealed and dramatic portraits of the animals are possible. The sea ice has retreated and may grant access to the eastern part of the archipelago, where few people ever set foot.
If ice conditions allow, we will complete a circumnavigation of Spitsbergen, teh largest island in Svalbard, or explore the spectacular island of Nordaustlandet. This unique expedition will be totally dedicated to the interests of nature photographers. We have full control of the itinerary and the only passengers on the ship will be members of this workshop.
We also have an experienced expedition leader and knowledgeable naturalist guides along with us. There will be lectures on board and ashore from photographers and naturalists alike to make sure you get the absolute most from the experience.
This trip is about improving your photography as well as visiting one of the most remote places on Earth. Myself and the other instructors will be out shooting with you every day, helping you get the shots you’re after and introducing you to new ways of seeing, so you get images you never thought of before. You’ll be spending 11 days with others who are just as passionate about photography as you are. You’ll leave with great images and an increased understanding of how to get better photographs for yourself in the future – whether it be in the High Arctic or anywhere else in the world.
Accommodation and food
Our ship for this voyage will be the comfortable M/S Quest. It was built in Denmark in 1992 and completely refurbished in 2005 for a career as a small and comfortable expedition ship. Quest takes 53 passengers in 26 cabins, all with sea view and private facilities. The ship has spacious observation decks and much of our photography will take place from the ship or the small fleet of Zodiacs that we’ll have for our use. The expert guides that accompany us will watch out for our safety when we make landings and hike on the tundra.
In the dining room you are treated to delicious meals in between landings and in the panorama lounge you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the surrounding landscape. The ship has spacious observation decks where you can enjoy the beautiful vistas and search for exciting wildlife.
Travelling with this small expedition ship offers a more relaxed and informal atmosphere and a much greater focus on the destination than is the case with larger vessels.
All meals are included.
Due to the nature of the location, we will keep the itinerary flexible. The ship will go where the ice allows and where we are most likely to encounter polar bears and other wildlife. We will aim to make daily landings via the fleet of Zodiac craft and offer different levels of hikes on the tundra. With the number of Zodiacs on board we have the possibility of splitting the group up into areas of subject or interest.
The Instructors: Charles Glatzer
A world-renowned professional photographer for more than 28 years, Chas is one of the most respected, knowledgeable, and sought after wildlife photographic instructors/speakers in the United States. His work has been celebrated internationally with over 40 prestigious awards for superior photographic competence demonstrated through photographic competition, advanced education, and service to the profession. He owns Shoot the Light and hosts Instructional Photographic Workshops throughout the United States and abroad. His images are recognized internationally for their lighting, composition and attention to detail. Chas’ diverse photo background provides workshop participants and seminar attendees with an unparalleled resource.
A nature photographer from Iceland with over 20 years of experience as a working photographer. He leads photography workshops in Iceland and as one of Europe’s leading wildlife photographers he contributed to the Wild Wonders of Europe project. Daníel is widely published and his latest book is Iceland Landscapes. He brings to the tour an intimate knowledge of Arctic wildlife and an experience of photographing in Svalbard.
A professional landscape photographer – one of only a handful in Ireland. He was the only Irish photographer to travel to Iceland in 2010 to photograph Iceland’s Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption.
In his own words: I hold an Associateship qualification from the Irish Professional Photographers Association (IPPA). I’m also a Qualified European Photographer, a distinction held by less than 20 photographers in Ireland (as of February 2011). I won the IPPA Landscape Photographer of the Year award in 2007 in both the portfolio and single-image categories, and have placed highly in several international photographic competitions.
I have a passion for both photography and for teaching. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced photographer, I make sure to pitch my lessons at your level and to ensure that you understand what’s being taught. My goal is for you to leave not just with great pictures and fond memories – but with increased confidence and ability too. I teach year-round, both private and group workshops and courses – all on digital landscape photography.
Your Fitness Level:
This workshop will cater to all fitness levels. Depending on weather conditions and interest, there will be some moderate hikes to the interior, and there will be an alternate programme for those that don’t wish to participate in those.
Some people have expressed concern about the difficulty of getting in and out of the zodiacs from the ship. This is not an issue – there is a gangway at the ship’s waterline that you simply step from into the boat – no gymnastics required.
You’ll be expected to bring your own camera equipment as well as cold weather gear. Temperatures in Spitsbergen average around 6 degrees centigrade (43 fahrenheit) during the Summer months. Thermal underwear, a good warm middle layer and windproof outer coat and pants are required, as are waterproof boots (a solid pair of Wellington boots for example). After you’ve booked, you’ll receive an equipment checklist with required and recommended gear.
The price of this workshop depends on the cabin type selected. The prices are listed below. The fee must be paid in US dollars. In the table below, the letters correspond to the cabin types in the deck plan.
There is a limit of 47 participants on this workshop.
Cabin Type Price (per person in USD)
Triple cabin (F) $7,490
Twin cabin (E) $8,490
Twin cabin plus (D) $8,990
Double cabin (C and B) $8,990
Single cabin (A) $13.900
Cabins are provided on a first serve basis. The triple cabins on deck three have upper and lower berths. All other cabins have two lower berths or a double bed. In your cabin you also find a desk with chair and storage space for clothes and equipment. The superior cabins on deck three and four are spacious and have a separate sitting area and TV/DVD.
RATE INCLUDES: 10 nights on board the M/S Quest. All meals. Three world class photographers on hand for tuition and discussion. An experienced Expedition Leader and knowledgeable naturalist guides. Lectures on board and ashore. All shore excursions and activities by Zodiac. A detailed post-expedition log.
NOT INCLUDED: Flight to/from Longyearbyen. Hotel in Longyearbyen the night before the expedition begins. Travel and cancellation insurance. The customary gratuity to the ship’s crew. Personal expenses such as bar and shop charges.
To secure your place, a deposit of $2000 is required within a week of registration. A second deposit of $2000 will be required by the end of November 2012 and the final balance is payable by the end of May 2013.
Cancellations up to the end of November 2012 will forfeit the first deposit of $2000. Cancellations after that date will forfeit the entire deposit. Cancellations from the end of May 2013 will forfeit their entire payment. However, your fee will be refunded, less a $1000 cancellation fee, if your berth can be resold.
Sign Me Up!
If this trip sounds perfect for you and you’re ready to embark on an eleven-day odyssey of magnificent wildlife and beautiful landscapes with friendly and competent instruction, then contact me to secure your place now. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.
You can download the PDF here for offline viewing if you wish.