Creative Immersion Photography Retreat
Explore Vision, Mindfulness, Yoga and more in Costa Rica
Every great photograph begins with a spark of inspiration.
Explore your own inspiration, style, and vision during this Costa Rica photo workshop. The photographic opportunities are endless. The wildlife, the people, and the landscapes are beautiful and inviting. The Tico lifestyle makes Costa Rica the perfect place to slow down, get creative, and practice living in the moment. It’s the perfect place to lose yourself in a new experience. It is easy for photographers to get wrapped up in cameras, lenses, and settings and forget why we have all of this gear in the first place. Aperture, shutter speed, and ISO are important to understand, but they are only a means to an end.
What makes the difference between a snap-shot of a bird and a compelling wildlife image? What can you do in the field to increase your chances of success? Can your mindset affect your photography? How can a better travel experience translate into better travel photos? Are you ready to move beyond your tools and focus on creating images that speak to you?
Award winning photographers Rob Knight and Leila Audrey Pagés have designed this photo workshop to be different than your average Costa Rica photography tour. Of course you will visit beautiful locations, meet friendly local people, and see amazing wildlife; and you will have experienced photography instructors to help you make the most of every opportunity. Rob and Leila want to take you further. They want to show you what can happen when you truly tune in to your environment and focus on the images you want to create.
A creative journey…
You’ll explore concepts such as visual storytelling, mindful photography, and photographic intent. Use Costa Rica as a backdrop to engage your creative side while you explore your unique viewpoint. This tour is not just about philosophy though. This is truly a Costa Rica photography workshop. Rob and Leila will provide hands-on instruction, presentations, and demonstrations throughout the week. You will learn photography and image processing techniques to help you create your own compelling images.
This photography workshop was a great experience that provided numerous opportunities to learn more about photography and the local culture. Both the instructors and local guides are very knowledgeable and pointed out things that I would never have noticed on my own.Nicole Widmer
- Seven nights lodging
- All Meals Saturday Night through Saturday morning
- All transportation including Airport transfers*
- All Excursions and park entry fees
- Photography instruction and organized photo shoots
- Digital darkroom tips and techniques
- Experienced local guides
- Loaner equipment provided by LUMIX USA
Your Costa Rica photo workshop fee does not include airfare to Costa Rica.
We strongly recommend you purchase comprehensive travel insurance in case of emergencies. Questions?
There was so many wonderful experiences it is hard to say which was my favorite. The expertise of our instructors was really made it. Nice to be able to ask questions while working instead of a traditional classroom setting.Anne Nettles
In addition to photo instructors Rob Knight and Leila Audrey Pagés, Enrique Molina is on staff to act as our naturalist guide and liaison with the community in Monterrey and La Fortuna. Enrique was born and raised in Monterrey, and he has been a professional guide in this area for fifteen years. His knowledge of Costa Rica’s flora and fauna will amaze you! Everyone involved with this workshop is hand picked to provide you with a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Jan 19-26, 2019 Registration
Costa Rica Photo Workshop Itinerary
2:00pm: Pick up at SJO airport for transportation to the hotel.
6:00pm: Cocktail hour and orientation meeting at the Lava Lizard restaurant, followed by the welcome dinner
Day workshop: “Photography in the moment”
Unleash your creativity! You’ll begin your journey by exploring ideas such as mindfulness, intent, and livingn the moment. Learn how these ideas can lead to a better experience behind the camera, and help you create more personal and engaging photographs.
Day Trip: Nature photography river cruise.
Topics of study include creative nature photography, intent and wildlife photography, telephoto lens techniques, and flash for wildlife photography.
Evening presentation: Lightroom organization and workflow
Horse trek to a private waterfall
You’ll bond with your horse, your amigos, and mother nature as we ride through the rain forest to continue our exploration of mindfulness and creativity. Topics of study include visual storytelling, landscape photography, and mindful photography.
Evening Presentation: Storytelling and the Photo Essay
Tico Farm Tour
You’ll spend the day like a local. Engage with a local family and find out what life is like on a working Tico dairy farm. Topics of study include better travel experiences lead to better travel photography, storytelling, and environmental portraiture.
Evening presentation: Using plugins for creative editing
Rob and Leila will demonstrate their favorite tricks for turning your photos into works of art.
Morning: Arenal Hanging Bridges
The Arenal Hanging Bridges offer a unique view of the rain forest. You’ll shoot various birds and wildlife, as well as beautiful views from suspension bridges high above the forest.
Evening: Visit one of Arenal’s volcanic hot springs for dinner and a soak.
Morning: Photography exercises. Creativity and storytelling
We will spend the morning shooting and exploring around the hotel grounds. You will have assignments and suggestions to bring together what you have learned the rest of the week.
Afternoon: Lightroom live critiques and Q&A
Rob and Leila will help you finish your favorite images and prepare them for a slideshow to be presented that evening.
Farewell breakfast and event conclusion.
Transportation to the airport can be arranged through the hotel.
* We provide bus transportation from the airport in San Jose (SJO). Most flights from the US arrive around noon, and the bus leaves by 2:00 unless otherwise specified. Some guests prefer to fly into San Jose on Saturday and spend the night in case of any travel delays. Your return transportation to SJO airport is not included. Our guests leave at different times and many people extend their stay in Costa Rica after the workshop. Airport transportation can be arranged through the hotel once you arrive on Sunday. Cancellation Policy.
January 19-26, 2019
from SJO airport
Limit: 12 photographers
- A unique exploration of creativity and photography
- Experienced professional photo instructors
- Knowledgable and friendly local guides
- “Off the beaten path” locations
- More shooting with less travel between locations
- Cultural exchange with local people
- Make friends and connect with other photographers
- Improve your photography in real-world situations
- Learn creative post processing techniques with your own images
- Deluxe Accommodations
- World-class meals
Photographer and trip leader. LUMIX Ambassador • Tenba Visual Artist • Adobe Certified expert
Leila Audrey Pagés
Photographer, award-winning documentarian, and trip leader.
A Mirrorless or DSLR camera with interchangeable lenses. Please bring your camera manual.
A versatile mid-range zoom lens (18-55mm, 24-105mm, etc) is fine. You will also want a longer telephoto lens (something 400mm or longer is best) for shooting wildlife on the trip. A dedicated macro lens and a wide-angle zoom lens will also be handy.
For Micro 4/3 shooters, Rob recommends:
- LUMIX G9 Camera
- LUMIX/Leica 8-18mm f2.8/4
- LUMIX/Leica 12-60mm f2.8/4
- LUMIX/Leica 100-400mm f4-6.3
- LUMIX/Leica 45mm f2.8 macro
- Memory cards. We recommend 128GB of storage or more.
- Tripod. Rob uses Gitzo tripods.
- Hot-shoe flash
- Lens cleaning cloth or lens pen
- A good lightweight camera backpack like the Tenba Solstice is recommended.
- Laptop computer or tablet with Adobe Lightroom CC.
- Luminar 2018
- ProShow for slideshows
*free trials are available for all of the above software