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"A Vanishing Countryside" Photography Workshop

Posted: 10th December 2014

Location: Sites in Eastern PA and Northwest NJ (meet at Pocono Environmental Education Center)
Cost: $140/ea.
Please check back in 2018 or sign up for email updates for future dates!

The Site: We will begin our journey at the Pocono Environmental Education Center (PEEC) where we will be guided in their vans to various undisclosed locations in their vicinity. These locations will consist of abandoned barns, farmsteads and homesteads dating from the late 1700’s until the mid-1900’s. Not only will you be fascinated by the landscapes, but also in the traces of human element that paint the stories of the people who lived at these sites and how they worked with the land. A representative from PEEC will accompany us and can give us more details on the history of the land and the people who lived there. Due to regulations, many of the places will be shot from the exterior only; having visited this area beforehand I can attest that the scenery and locations are so breathtaking that you will get lovely photographs.

Most locations are a short to a moderate walk but expect uneven terrain, with tall grasses and briar bushes. Sturdy shoes or hiking boots are recommended as are heavy denim or duck cotton pants. We will be traveling in a rural area with no places to purchase lunch or take flush toilet breaks. For added ease PEEC can provide a bagged lunch for an additional $8.50 which will include a hearty sandwich, chips or granola bar, a piece of fruit and a bottle of water. If you plan to purchase one please send me a note so I can let them know how many they will need.

The Workshop: During the workshop I will be on hand to help you get better shots - including a basic introduction to infrared photography (this is a perfect environment for it!) and 360 degree panoramas. I know some of you are just taking the tour to see the location, and if that's the case I'll stay out of your way and let you do your thing. Learning to use a tripod, what file format to shoot in, how to compose shots better, what ISO, F-Stop, and shutter speed affect, and how to do things like exposure bracketing are very important to your results. Don't feel afraid to ask me even questions that may seem silly to you. I want you to leave with pictures you're proud of. I've been doing this for a while and want you to learn from my mistakes and successes.

Rules/Safety: You need to be very aware of your safety. I encourage you to always pay attention to your surroundings. It is easy to twist an ankle or trip in some areas, and there are many ticks lurking in the underbrush so we recommend pants, boots, and a long sleeved shirt. You will be asked to sign a waiver before you enter acknowledging that you are entering a potentially unsafe environment and that you will not hold either PEEC or myself liable for any harm that may befall you or your equipment. Obviously the first priority on the trip, even before taking great pictures, is making sure that you are safe - but you will need to be the one looking out for that.

What to bring:
- a bottle of water
- sturdy boots that protect your feet
- your tripod
- a fully charged cell phone
- bug spray (one of our tour guides is allergic to DEET based bug sprays, however, and says it's not effective on ticks anyway)
- your camera manual if you're unsure how to change settings. I can help you find the information you need in the manual but most cameras have their own ways of accessing features and changing settings and that makes things a lot easier.

By signing up you agree to the following terms: Please make sure you check the email associated with your Paypal account for confirmation/updates! Your Paypal receipt is your confirmation, an email will follow with further details no less than a week prior to the event. You will need to sign a waiver to participate in this event, a sample of which can be found here. By signing up for this workshop you agree not to use information attained before or during the workshop to illegally trespass or set up alternate workshops/events.

REFUND POLICY: If you are unable to attend an event and notify me at admin@abandonedamerica.org more than 30 days prior to the event, you will be issued a full refund minus a $40 processing fee. Because of the extremely limited tour spots, if it is within 30 days of the event there are NO REFUNDS UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES except in case of workshop cancellation by Abandoned America. You may give or sell a paid spot in the workshop to someone else if you are unable to attend but admission may not be transferred to another event. There is always a possibility that the workshop may need to be moved to a different date based on severe inclement weather, safety concerns, or site manager's limitations. If this is the case notification will be given immediately and a refund will be offered if attendee is unable to make the alternate date. We cannot be held liable for travel, rental, or other costs incurred by attendee in the event of workshop cancellation. We do make every effort to ensure all events run on schedule. All sales are final.

Any questions? Send me a note at admin@abandonedamerica.org - if the PayPal link is immediately below this there are still open spots.

Please check back in 2018 or sign up for email updates for future dates!

If you are interested in purchasing an Abandoned America print, please follow this link!


Photo comment By John: Do You Have Openings for this Workshop?
Photo comment By Kim: If I were to attend, are there other interesting sites in the area to shoot? I live in Michigan and would love to get out and about after the workshop.
Photo comment By Ali McFadzen: I attended this event a couple of years ago and am super excited to be going again!!
Photo comment By Jack Dunn: Is there a waiting list?
Photo comment By Matthew Christopher: I replied to the comments down here via email also, but there is no waiting list at present, and there's a lot of great nature/rural Americana around the area to photograph after the workshop if you choose to drive around the area.
Photo comment By Nacole Bogden: Are dates going to be added for the vanishing countryside or for Pennhurst? And if so, do you have any idea as to when they might be?

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