Aosta Valley Photography Workshop
Mont Blanc, Matterhorn and Co. - The giants of the Alps
Mountains have always inspired awe and a sense of majesty in mankind.
Have you ever dreamed of having a chance, one day, to be staring right in front of the giants of the Alps? Does Matterhorn, Mont Blanc or Monte Rosa move a chord in your soul?
The territory of Valle d'Aosta, the smallest region of Italy, is completely mountainous, and the highest and most famous peaks of the entire Alps range such as Matterhorn, Mont Blanc, Monte Rosa and Gran Paradiso are all standing here, so close one to each other that two days are in most cases sufficient to see and photograph them all. One single word is all what it takes to describe this area: wonderland.
Lake Blue, Breuil Cervinia
The tiny Lago Bleu lies at the feet of what is probably the most photogenic mountain in the world. The Matterhorn is only the third highest peak in the Alps, but certainly the most famous one thanks to its unmistakable look.
It is a glacial lake placed at the center of a beautiful plateau at more than 2000 meters of altitude in Valdigne, one of the many side valleys of Aosta Valley. The view from this place is dominated by the breathtaking majesty of the Monte Bianco range, the highest peak of the Alps and Europe, with its 4808 meters of altitude.
Lake Combal, Val Veny
The name of this place is a bit misleading, as instead of a lake there are streams and small ponds. However, there was actually a big lake there some century ago, but after decades of floods its bed is now almost completely filled up with debris. Making this plateau as one of the highest swamp in the world I guess. The Pyramides Calcaires are a wonderful mountain formation at the top of the Val Veny and are part of the Monte Bianco range.
Gran Paradiso National Park
The northern part of the Gran Paradiso National Park lies in Aosta Valley, and it features gorgeous alpine scenarios such as glacial lakes, roaring rapids, forests, woods, marshlands and prairies.
Tete d'Arpy forest
The Tete d'Arpy is a gorgeous forest of larches and evergreens, and it's the perfect location fo breathtaking views of the whole Mont Blanc range.
Lake and glacier of Miage
The Miage Lake is probably the only one of this kind in the entire Alps range, encircled by the homonymous glacier and the moraine produced by the glacier itself. The Miage glacier is the larger in size and length among the almost 100 glaciers in the Italian side of the Monte Bianco range. It originates right from the top of the Bianco at 4800 m. and has its front at an altitude of only 2050 m.
The glacier is covered with debris which continuosly fall in the lake together with portions of ice, producing a carachteristic sound like pop-corns in the pot. All in all, an amazing place to explore and enjoy.
The lake and the glacier front are placed at the top of the Val Veny.
The final section of the Rutor's waterfalls feature huge jumps of water in narrow gorges and canyons. The Rutor is a mighty glacial stream originating from the Rutor glacier in Aosta Valley.
A long and narrow valley at the foot of Monte Rosa and Matterhorn, famous for the Place Moulin Lake, the biggest lake of Aosta Valley.
Example of a typical
day in the field
Very early morning
Transfer by car to the Orco Valley in Piedmont and to the southern entrance of the Gran Paradiso National Park. We will park the car at the 2612 meters of altitude of Col del Nivolet, a pass lying in the heart of the National Park, linking the two Italian regions of Piedmont and Aosta Valley.
The Gran Paradiso National Park is the largest wild area of Italy. This park is located in the Western Alps around the border between Piedmont and Valle d'Aosta, and it is truely a playground for nature photographers. Many species live there, such as chamoises, ibexes, marmots, eagles, hawks, foxes and, recently re-introduced, grey wolves and bearded vultures.
rest of the day
We will spend the morning and part of the afternoon shooting panoramic views as well as close up in this wonderful plateau, and then we will climb up to Lake Rosset and Lake Leità for photographing the whole Gran Paradiso range reflected in the calm waters of these two beautiful glacial lakes, waiting for sunset up there. With a bit of luck, we will have a chance of photographing some of the wild species living there.
if the sky is clear, as it often is in summer, we will have a chance of photographing star trails and some beautiful night-scape with high ISO settings. This area is just perfect for night photography because, being completely surrounded by high peaks, there is very little light pollution.
We will sleep at the refuge "Rifugio Savoia" of Colle del Nivolet, ready for another stunning sunrise shooting session by the lakes on the following morning.
Why should I take an Italy Photography Workshop with Paolo De Faveri?Simple: because you will learn how to take better photographs. Consider a Paolo De Faveri's Photography Workshop as an invaluable add-on to your gear: a tool that will teach you how to take wonderful photos wherever you go. We make the art and technique of photography simple to understand by breaking it down into easy pieces of information that you will find useful to apply every time you will be in the field.
What will I learn?Well, a whole lot, you can be sure. Paolo De Faveri's workshops are designed to help take your creativity to a new level. Through a combination of both in-the-field image sessions and class/lecture sessions on many different topics both technical and artistic, I want to get you to start thinking differently as an artist and spark your artistic vision. key features always include: - master the basics of landscape photography - learn how to compose effectively no matter of the subject, from macro to grand vistas - learn how to photograph with challenging lighting, such as at sunrise and sunset - learn about when and how to use filters - explore advanced photography techniques such as long exposures in broad daylight and image stitching for panoramic compositions Check the lessons section in this website for an exhaustive list of topics usually covered in my in-the-field and classroom sessions.
What happens on an Italy Photography Workshop with Paolo De Faveri?All of my workshops start with a brief Introduction, a presentation of the daily schedule and the technical and artistic goals of each day, followed by questions and answer session for getting to know each other, assessing the level of knowledge of the group, each person's goals and expectations. On average we will spend from 8 to 10 hours a day in the field, every day in a different location, having big fun in chasing the best possible light and scouting the area looking for images that capture the innermost beauty of the amazing world around us. My tours are a mix of adventure and teaching, and they are not intended as only formal teaching and instructions They are more about wandering in some of the best natural or urban environments I know and getting fully immersed in photography. A "learn by doing" kind of education, as I answer questions and solve problems as they arises, completed by a debriefing in the evening when we will thoroughly review and critique together the work done in the day, and we will analyze in details basic and advanced techniques of image processing.
What will I learn in the classroom/webinars?Check the lessons section in this website for an exhaustive list of topics usually covered in my classroom sessions and webinars.
Does the instructor shoot over the workshop?Yes, I will be shooting during the tour/workshop, but in a limited capacity as participants needs come first of course. I often take pictures right along with the students inspiring them to learn to see an image the way I do. Much of my shooting over the workshop is meant as direct field demonstrations aimed to improve student's creative vision and technique.
How advanced do I need to be?Anyone, no matter of how advanced he/she is, will find my workshops to be a great learning experience. The majority of my students are usually somewhere between intermediate to advanced amateur up to semi-pro and pro, but many beginners attend too. You should in anycase be at least familiar with your equipment and its operation. Always bring your camera manual for quick reference in the field.
What kind and how much equipment should I bring?The essential photo gear you should have with you is listed here below. This gear is highly recommended for taking full advantage of the instructions you will receive in my workshops. - tripod - dslr camera - a good quality zoom lens covering a focal range length of at least 28 to 100 mm - enough storage cards for at least 16 GB - extra camera batteries - camera bag or backpack - camera user's manual
Will weather ever force us to change the workshop's schedule?Bad weather always provide unusual and harsh conditions that contribute unique drama and mood to our images. So the answer is no, normally. We only stop shooting and/or move elsewhere if an element of danger arises.
Is transportation included?Usually yes, it's included, unless when stated differently in the workshop description. For group tours we will use vans/small buses for our daily transfers from the hotel to the shooting locations and back. For private/small groups workshops I will drive my own car. Of course, you have to arrive on your own to the hotel/lodging.
How should I dress?I recommend to come prepared for anything and bring an extra layer of warm clothes with you. Here is a list of clothes/accessories you should always dress/have with you when shooting outdoor: - trekking shoes if you shoot in a natural environment; a pair of very comfortable - and possibly water-proof shoes - if you shoot in a urban context - wind/rain proof jacket - pile pullovers - gloves - headdress - head lamp and batteries
How do I register for a workshop?Simply use the pre-registration form available in the pages describing each workshop and compile every field of it, letting me know about the workshop of your choice, the number of participants, the desired dates and duration, etc. I will be back to you right away for confirming the availability and with the instruction for booking. To validate your reservation, you will be asked to pay the 35% of the workshop price as a deposit.
What is your cancellation policy?All my workshops are subject to the following Cancellation Policy: - If you cancel within 30 days before the workshop start, you will be refunded the deposit minus 100,00 € as administrative fee. - No refund will be issued for cancellations received with 30 days or less remaining before the workshop starting date. Please note that there is no exception to this policy. For this reason it is strongly recommended to purchase refundable plane/train tickets only and endow yourself with a trip cancellation insurance. All cancellation request must be in writing.
Details and Requirements - Key FeaturesNumber of students per workshop: minimum 1, maximum 3 students Duration: minimum 3, maximum 7 days 5 or, even better, 6 days is the recommended length, as it is indeed the ideal timeframe for putting together a very effective itinerary, there are long distances to cover as the Ardeche is quite a big region Workshops Availability From March thru November Difficulty Easy. Most of the shooting locations are directly accessible by car. A few of them require short hikings of no more than 1.5 kms one way, on easy trails with moderate elevation gain. The trail along the Ardeche River Gorges is not difficult but long and demanding in terms of stamina required. It can be added as an option, just ask What's included - full time in-the-field tutoring and instructions - at least one image processing class (min. 2 hours) per workshop - all transportation during the workshop will be provided with a rented car/van. included in the price What's not included - Travel costs for reaching the accommodation, hotels/B&B rates, meals and beverages are not included in the cost of admission unless specified. - Excursion boats - Entrance tickets to archelogical sites. museums, etc. - Lodging costs of the instructor Insurance All participants must be in possession of a valid Health and Accident Insurance with repatriation cover.
About your Photography Instructor
Ciao! My name is Paolo.
I have been a full-time professional landscape, nature, travel and architecture photographer since 2007. Since then, I have planned and led hundreds of private one-to-one and small groups photo workshops and tours in some of the best looking regions and cities of Italy and France.
My pictures have appeared in calendars, books, travel magazines, brochures and as wall art in offices, hotels, restaurants and corporate venues. For more info please click here