It all began in a little valley …
High Sierra Workshops began leading private photography trips into the Sierra Nevada range in 1992, as an extension of the photography classroom at various colleges and universities. Only a few years later, the small group instruction with a focus on the visual component was introduced and has been the mainstay ever since.
Original workshop offerings focused on the flagship location: “Yosemite Valley in Spring”, along with the off-shoots of “Yosemite in Winter” and “Yosemite in Fall”.
The new millenium saw High Sierra Workshops branching out beyond the geographic boundaries of the Sierra Nevada range, with the introduction of the “Big Sur” and “Redwoods of Northern California” workshops.
In addition, 2004 saw the transition to digital photography in the workshop instruction, striking a balance between the classic film approach of 35mm, medium-format and 4×5 field cameras with the demand for a digital component.
In 2008, High Sierra Workshops branched out even further, partnering with Nikonians Academy to extend the workshop offerings to a dedicated, passionate and enthusiastic organization of photographers. The highly-acclaimed “Visual Thinking” lecture on the mental challenges and approach to ‘seeing’ photography was introduced, along with the first workshop offering outside the boundaries of California: “Alaska: Denali National Park”, in 2009.
The second annual “Ultimate Travel Photography Workshop” sailed in 2011 with a mix of wildlife, travel and cultural photography instruction as the workshop participants explored 11 ports of call in 7 countries in Central America, along with the well-documented Timelapse Transit of the Panama Canal.
A significant expansion of workshop offerings began in 2012 with a “Timelapse Photography” workshop in San Francisco, an “Urban Photography” workshop in Vancouver, Canada, dual “Macro Safari” workshops, the “Santa Ynez Wine Region”, “Premiere Wedding Photography”, along with the return of the “DLSR Video” workshop and the third annual “Ultimate Travel Photography Workshop” to Central America and Galapagos, in a continued partnership with Semester at Sea .
As we move forward into offering an even great depth of workshops with and incredibly talented roster of instructors in the years ahead, we can only look back a few decades to our humble beginnings and remember that it all started in a little valley.