French Alps 2021
June 25–July 2, 2021 (8 Days)
with Co-leader Enrico Fossati
This all-inlcusive trip features spa hotels on both sides of the border between France and Italy in two regions of the French Alps.
French Alps 2021
June 25 – July 2, 2021 (8 Days)
With co-leader Enrico Fossati
There is now ONE SPOT available in this previously sold-out workshop!
Click on the tabs below to view each topic.
- About the Workshop
- What to Bring
- Physical Requirements
- Safety Preparation
- What's Included
- Payment and Terms
- Airport Transfer
- How to Reserve Your Spot
This all-inclusive French Alps adventure will take us through majestic scenery on both sides of the border between France and Italy. We will begin our trip in a charming French hamlet of the Hautes Alpes, where we will enjoy the craggy peaks, waterfalls, streams, and alpine lakes of one of the most picturesque valleys of Europe. After three nights in this southern region, we will head north to the Graian Alps, basing ourselves in a four-star hotel on the Italian side of the Mont Blanc massif. Here we will enjoy views of the formidable forms of Mont Blanc, Europe’s highest mountain, and other distinctive peaks around it. While in this northern region, we will also visit a series of glacier-fed waterfalls that cascade down a total of 2,300 feet, we will stand on the snowy surface of the Glacier du Géant, and we will visit an azure glacial lake fed by the Vény Glacier to photograph the spires of rock jutting into the atmosphere overhead. The trip will also include a generous post-processing session conducted in the comfort of a hotel conference room.
You will have the benefit of two instructors for guidance through these spectacular locations and for the entire process of making compelling photographs, from in-field techniques to post production. Whether you are a beginning photographer or a seasoned pro, we are committed to helping you to produce memorable photographs of the French Alps for your portfolio. Topics of instruction include the art of composition, utilizing different qualities of light ranging from the subtle to the dramatic, maximizing dynamic range and depth of field through exposure bracketing and focus stacks, in-field techniques for advanced blending (exposure blends, perspective blends, focal-length blends) and for other creative solutions. Learn master processing skills and discover how to make your images more compelling and rewarding. Instruction goes far beyond the basics, but those who desire help with the fundamentals of photography will certainly be accommodated. Due to the small ratio of participants to instructors, you will enjoy a more intimate experience, having more time to work with the instructors on an individual basis.
All lodging, meals, and transportation between locations is included in the cost of this trip. We will also provide transportation from Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) on June 25 and back again on July 2 (one shuttle transfer running each day). All seven nights of accommodation will be in spa hotels (one 3-star and one 4-star) with single-occupancy, en-suite rooms.
Bring your spouse! Two non-photographer spots are available for this workshop at a reduced price: $2950 per non-photographer (double-occupancy accommodation for this arrangement). Non-photographers must agree to defer to the photographers at all time (staying well out of view so as not to interfere with the photography or the instruction) and must agree to use no camera that is more substantial than a smartphone.
Erin Babnik is known for her expressive style of photography and for her adventurous approach in the eld, both of which she developed over years of exploring unique locations in Europe and North America. She has devoted much of her time to the Alps, gaining great knowledge of the region’s diverse array of massifs, independently discovering seldom-seen, highly photogenic vantage points above the typical valley destinations. Her photographic expertise, her location knowledge, and her extensive teaching experience combine to provide an expert level of instruction, delivered with great dedication and enthusiasm. In her writing and public speaking engagements, Erin explores topics of both philosophical and instructional value, making her one of the most notable voices among the current generation of landscape photographers. She brings this same joy of discussing ideas to interactions with her workshop participants, offering a unique dimension to the workshop experience.
Enrico Fossati is one of Italy’s premier fine-art landscape photographers, with a reputation for creating highly memorable images that exude a profound sense of mood and mystery. His interpretive approach to mountain scenery in the Alps makes magic out of weather conditions that would keep many photographers indoors, and he has a proven ability to find beauty in scenes where it could easily be overlooked. Enrico is the author of two popular educational videos on post-processing techniques for landscape photographers and teaches photography workshops worldwide.
• Your Camera. You can choose to use any camera you like, but a digital camera with full manual control and interchangeable lenses is highly recommended and will give you the best experience.
• Lenses. There will be opportunities to use any and all focal lengths, so bring all that you can carry, wide to long. If you want to carry only two lenses, an ultra-wide-angle zoom (such as a 16-35mm) and a 70-200mm zoom would be good choices.
• Tripod. We will often be shooting in low light, requiring longer exposure times.
• Filters. Generally all you will need to use is a polarizer and neutral density filters. Although, it is possible to get great shots without either.
• Other gear. Several batteries, plenty of memory, a remote trigger, lens cleaning supplies.
• Trekking poles are highly recommended for greater comfort and balance on the trails.
• Clothing & shoes. Weather conditions in the Alps during this time of year can be quite cold at sunrise. Bring insulating layers: a good set of base layers, mid-layers for warmth such as fleece and down. A shell jacket and quick-dry hiking pants will help to protect against the elements as well. Good hiking boots or shoes are advised along with a warm hat and gloves.
• Snacks and hydration. Maintaining energy and hydration is very important when out in the wilderness. Energy bars, nuts, seeds, and water are recommended. At times we could find ourselves in very remote areas, hours from the nearest store, so it is a good idea to have a stock of snacks packed when you arrive.
• Willingness to learn and discover.
All of our hikes will be day hikes, meaning that you will not need to carry much more than your camera gear. Sometimes we will be away from our hotel for many hours at a time, so you should have a backpack that can carry some additional clothing layers and a picnic meal in addition to your gear. Hiking will rarely exceed distances of two miles or 400 meters of elevation gain to reach our shooting locations, and the trails are well protected from steep drops. Nonetheless, we do recommend that participants wear boots that provide good ankle support, and we strongly encourage you to bring trekking poles to improve your comfort and balance on rocky trails.
While adventure and great photos are our main goals, your safety is a priority along with treating the land that we travel on with respect, practicing “leave no trace” ethics. Erin and Enrico are seasoned backcountry travelers, and Erin is certified by Wilderness Medical Associates as a Wilderness First Responder (WFR). In order for participants to have a comfortable experience where they can concentrate on the photography, it is highly advised that you have proper attire consisting of non-cotton outdoor dedicated clothing, including an assortment of layers to keep you warm down to the occasional temperatures of slightly below freezing.
- Shuttle transfer from Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) on June 25 and back again on July 2 (one shuttle transfer running each of those days).
- Transportation between workshop locations.
- Seven nights of lodging in spa hotels in single-occupancy, en-suite rooms (one 3-star, one 4-star hotel).
- Three meals per day (some are picnic meals in order to maximize our time out in nature).
- Guidance to unique photography locations in the Hautes Alpes and Graian Alps.
- In-field instruction (composition, compensating for high dynamic range, focus stacking, shooting for advanced blending techniques, etc.).
- Processing instruction including everything from raw processing through to sharpening for web and print: blending exposures using luminosity masks, focus stacking, the Orton effect, artistic finishing touches in Photoshop, and much more.
- Guaranteed adventure.
- Travel and cancellation insurance.
- Snacks, beverages, and other personal purchases.
COST: The cost of the workshop is $4950 and includes everything listed in the “What’s Included” tab. PAYMENT: A non-refundable deposit of $1650 is required to reserve a space on this workshop. The final balance of $3300 is due and payable 45 days before the workshop begins. Full payment is due at this time, and there will be no refunds on the full amount owed if you cancel after final payment. However, If we find another client to fill your space, you will receive a full refund, minus your non-refundable deposit. Payment can be made using the sign-up button of this web page using a credit card or via PayPal. If you would like to pay by another method, use the contact form on this page to ask Erin about options for sending a personal check or bank transfer. INDEMNITY WAIVER: All participants are required to sign a standard workshop indemnity waiver: here.
CANCELLATIONS: We highly recommend that you obtain travel/cancellation insurance for all workshops (it is inexpensive, and it works!). Because cancellations require us to re-open enrollment and/or to engage in additional promotional efforts to fill the workshop on short notice, our policy is that there will be no refunds of the deposit. The balance (minus the non-refundable deposit) is refundable up to the 45-day deadline. Thereafter, the balance is also non-refundable, with one exception: if we find participants to fill all canceled spaces and the workshop is ultimately full when it begins, then you will receive a refund of the balance within two weeks of the workshop’s conclusion. The deposit remains non-refundable. All refunds are subject to a 4% processing fee.
After a 2:45pm rendezvous at Milan Malpensa Airport on June 25, we will depart for a charming Hamlet in the Hautes Alpes in France, arriving at our first hotel in time to get settled before enjoying an orientation dinner. We will spend our first three nights in the nicest hotel in the village, a three-star spa hotel that puts us as close as possible to the many natural attractions in the area.
On June 28 we will transfer up north to the Graian Alps and will check in to our four-star spa hotel there. This hotel will be the base for our outings for the rest of the trip and will be where we will hold a substantial processing session in the comfort of the hotel conference room.
Transfer back to Milan Malpensa Airport will follow breakfast on July 2, getting us back to the terminal by about 1:00pm with good road conditions.
Please note that our exact plan for each day will be based on that day’s weather conditions, which can vary a lot in the mountains. Each of our base hotels puts us in position for a large variety of options in their respective areas, and we will plan each outing to maximize the photographic potential of each location that we visit.
June 25, 2021: 2:45pm Will have a 2:45pm rendezvous at Milan Malpensa Airport on June 25. July 2, 2021: Returning to the airport by about 1:00pm Transfer back to Milan Malpensa Airport will follow breakfast on June 27, getting us back to the terminal by about 1:00pm with good road conditions. Please note that there is one transfer for the group in each direction (one from the airport on June 25 and one back again on July 2). If you would like a private transfer at any other time, we can arrange it for you at your expense.
Use the sign-up button on this page to place a deposit with a Credit Card or via PayPal. If you would like to pay by another method, use the contact form on this page to ask Erin about options for sending a personal check or bank transfer.
Watch the video:
- June 25 – July 2, 2021 (8 Days)
- With Erin Babnik and co-leader Enrico Fossati
- Limit of 8 participants
- Two Non-Photographer Spots Available (Bring your spouse at a reduced price!)
- Full-board (Single occupancy rooms in spa hotels)
- Shuttle transfer from Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) on June 25 and back again on July 2
- Transportation between workshop locations
- Guidance to unique photography locations
- In-field instruction
- Post-Processing instruction session
- Seminar on Composition and Creativity
- Awesome adventure!
ONE SPOT LEFT
There is one spot left in this workshop!
Ask Erin anything about this workshop:
You can download the Indemnity Waiver for this workshop here: