San Francisco Night Owls Workshop

Night Photography

Take a photographic journey of San Francisco after dark! All skill levels will enjoy this “eye opening” in-field workshop. Whether you’re a newbie to the world of night photography, or have done it for years and are simply looking to get a few tips on composition (and hang out with a great group of people), this workshop will give you what you need. Just because the sun has gone, it doesn’t mean your day of photography has to end! This workshop is designed to teach you what you need to know in order to head out and photograph the world at night. We work on using long exposures to properly expose a scene and bring the glow of the city to life in your images.

Night Photography is fast becoming one of the most popular forms of digital photography. Join the award winning Aperture Academy team as we take you on a journey of San Francisco after dark…we’ll shoot at fantastic locations such as Treasure Island, the Palace of Fine Arts, The Embarcadero and Lombard Street!

We will meet in Sausalito, have a quick orientation, and begin our journey just after the sun has set. We’ll start by photographing the iconic Golden Gate Bridge from several amazing vantage points, and we’ll move on through the night, helping you properly compose and expose images you can be proud of!

With Marin in our rear view mirror, we’ll head into the city to photograph a couple views of the Bay Bridge, lights along the piers, and whatever else the city throws our way before going deeper into the city to work on longer exposures in and around Lombard Street.

One of the nicest aspects of night photography is that our images are not dependent on a “good sunset” or sky “conditions” in order to be spectacular. Every location offers a chance to be great, every time we visit. The possibilities are endless! Depending on conditions and time of year, the route and locations we photograph may change. But, no matter where we end up, you’ll be sure to receive the same quality, personalized instruction we offer at all of our workshops.

See you there, Night Owls!

What’s Included in Your Workshop

  • Hands-on Instruction by 2 or more professional photographers
  • Transportation during the workshop
  • Water (snacks for extended workshops)
  • A $24 Commercial Use Permit Fee (*Aperture Academy is mandated by local, national, and international agencies to obtain commercial operation permits for every location we conduct workshops, as well as maintain the appropriate amount of liability insurance per each agencies requirements. Permitting is required and allows the financial means in preserving these beautiful locations our students have, and will continue to enjoy for years to come.)

What’s Not Included

  • Transportation to/from Workshop starting location
  • Instructor Gratuities
  • Meals during workshop breaks

What To Bring

  1. Your digital SLR camera. If you have two bodies, bring both. This is a digital photography class, but if you have a favorite point-and-shoot or old film camera you like, bring it along, and if time permits, you can use it as well.
  2. Lenses. Try to cover a range from very wide (17-20mm), for landscape images, to zoom ranges (100-400mm) for wildlife. It’s not uncommon to see wildlife on workshops (even those structured for landscape instruction), so it’s best to be prepared, if possible. We also encourage you to bring other lenses, like a macro or fish-eye lens if you have them, because there are always endless creative possibilities to be found on our workshops.
  3. Tripod. This is a necessity for ALL our workshops. It can be windy in many of the areas we take you, so the sturdier your tripod, the better. If you haven’t purchased one yet, you can e-mail our instructors; they would be happy to assist you in selecting a tripod that is perfect for you.
  4. Extra batteries. Bring at least 1 or 2 extra batteries. Cold temperatures and long exposures can drain batteries very quickly. There is no worse feeling than arriving at the last spot of the night for sunset and having a dead battery.
  5. Extra memory cards. Our instructors will show you the benefits of shooting in RAW format, which is a better method for photography, but takes up more space on a card. Having multiple memory cards will be to your benefit.
  6. Clothing & shoes. Bring layers of clothing you can add if/when temperature and wind conditions change, and they can! And wear good, comfortable walking shoes!
  7. Lunch, or money for lunch. And snacks. On two and three day workshops, we provide snacks and water. On one day workshops, we stop for lunch at a local food establishment where you can purchase food or eat what you have brought for yourself.
  8. Your sense of adventure! We want to teach you what it is YOU want to learn, and have you come away with some good images. And, since the nature of outdoor photography means we’re subject to weather conditions, which we can’t control, sometimes we must be flexible with the itinerary. So, come ready for anything. Because we are dedicated to do everything possible to ensure you’re in the best places at the best times to get amazing images.
  9. Your Thinking Cap! Show up ready, because you’re going to learn! Some tips: make sure to read the workshop details before you arrive, so you know what to expect, and what to bring; bring a list of questions you want to ask the instructors; check the weather forecast so you’re aware of possible weather changes; and most importantly, show up with a brain that is ready for learning, and we promise we’ll fill it up with as much information as you desire!

Safety, Confidence, Being Prepared

Aperture Academy is a professional organization dedicated to safe, quality, positive experiences for our students, and a responsible stewardship for the breathtaking locations and beautiful wildlife we enjoy at every workshop.

We work with the United States Department of Interior, the National Park Service and the US Forestry Service to obtain all the proper permits to operate safely, conscientiously and legally. We carry much more than the required minimum of insurance, and our skilled instructors are certified as Wilderness First Responders, in CPR, as well as in the Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics program. They are qualified and rated to drive Class B vehicles. And, have we mentioned that each is an accomplished, successful professional photographer?

Every “ApCad” member is dedicated to ensuring our students receive the best care and guidance possible, so each of them have the opportunity to get the most remarkable, enjoyable and enriching photography experience available anywhere in the world.

Refund Policy - Workshops & Class Cancellations:
Because we rely on student attendance in order to schedule instructors, book essential travel arrangements, acquire permits and arrange lodging discounts, we must adhere to the following policies for all students:

If for any reason you need to withdraw from a class or workshop, you must notify Aperture Academy:
1 Day workshops: prior to 90 days before the date of your class or workshop.
2-3 Day workshops: prior to 120 days before the date of your class or workshop.
4+ Day workshops: prior to 150 days before the date of your class or workshop.
Within this time period we will refund your registration fee, minus a 25% cancellation fee.

If notification of cancellation is made less than 90 days before the start of the class or workshop, there is no refund.
No refund will be made for withdrawal after any class or workshop begins.
Aperture Academy is not responsible for cancellations due to medical emergencies.
In the unlikely event that a class or workshop is cancelled by Aperture Academy, all fees may be refunded in full or may be transferred to another workshop that is scheduled within 12 months of the cancellation.
In the event of a class or workshop cancellation, Aperture Academy is not responsible for reimbursement of any travel, lodging, equipment rental or any other related expenses. We recommend purchasing travel insurance to cover any non-refundable registration fees, travel, lodging, equipment rental or any other related expenses.

Workshop Deposits:
Any class, workshop or studio reservation that requires a deposit payment to guarantee a date of participation is non-refundable.

Instructor Availability:
In the rare event a scheduled instructor is unavailable, a replacement instructor will be available without disruption to the workshop or event. While we make every effort to abide by our curriculum and schedules, we can not guarantee that assigned instructors will always be available, however, there will always be a qualified and experienced professional instructor ready to provide you with the superior quality photography experience that our students have come to expect from Aperture Academy.

If for any reason you wish to transfer to a different workshop, you must notify Aperture Academy:
1 Day workshops: prior to 90 days before the date of your class or workshop.
2-3 Day workshops: prior to 120 days before the date of your class or workshop.
4+ Day workshops: prior to 150 days before the date of your class or workshop.
You may only make one transfer at a charge of 25% of your workshop/class fee. We reserve the right to allow or prohibit any transfer, at our discretion. You must register and attend a new workshop within 12 months of the transfer.
There are no exceptions to our Cancellation and Transfer Policy.

Aperture Academy Photography Workshops

Aperture Academy will teach you how to be a photographer on any of over 100 on-location photography workshops. Whether it's landscape, wildlife, or portrait photography, learn how to get the most out of your images. We also offer one-on-on private instruction in our state-of-the-art studio.
You will receive comprehensive digital photography instruction from award-winning photography instructors!

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