"Fishermen on stilts, tea pickers in the morning mist, evening puja mass in the temple of Buddha’s Tooth … fantastic photo adventures are waiting for us in Sri Lanka"
Explore and admire the land of spirits, gods, temples, elephants, tea plantations, fisheries and friendly local people.
Set in the Indian Ocean in South Asia, the tropical island nation of Sri Lanka has a history dating back to the birth of time. It is a place where the original soul of Buddhism still flourishes and where nature’s beauty remains abundant and unspoilt.
Few places in the world can offer photographers such a remarkable combination of stunning landscapes, pristine beaches, tea plantations and waterfalls, not to mention the Buddhist temples and other architectural masterpieces – some of which are listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
- Learn how to approach the unique challenges of travel and street photography. How to capture images of people in their natural environment and how to approach locations and subjects
- Sigiriya – UNESCO World Heritage Site
- Polonnaruwa – remains of the king’s palace; Vatadage temple of worship; giant statue of the reclining Buddha
- Dambulla – UNESCO World Heritage Site with 5 Buddhist temples, carved out of a rock
- Nuwara Eliya – tea plantations
- Kataragama – the local temple encloses all major religions in one huge complex
- Weligama – photographing the typical local fishermen on “stilts”
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN
- Instruction and training in the best photography techniques, including personal hints and advice.
- Composition and focus on lines, golden section, perspective, foreground, background and middle ground.
- How to work in different lighting conditions.
- Portrait photography techniques: depth of field, composition, selecting the best possible available light
- HDR and blue light photography
- Fill-in flash photography
- How to handle equipment with care on location.
- Private hands-on lessons that will help you take your photography skills to the next level.
- How to approach local people in a natural way.
- The secrets behind travel and street photography
- Expert review and constructive critique/feedback of the images taken during the day.
- On request, Lightroom and Photoshop course
- Effective conversion to black and white using NIK Software
- Panorama stitching
- HDR post-production
- Visual storytelling: Learn from the National Geographic Photo Editor-in-Chief how to bring your photos to life
- A Better Moments Certified Photo Instructor is available during the entire workshop to help with camera settings, the basics of composition and to help in general
DAYS 1 – 2: NEGOMBO – SIGIRIYA
Upon arrival to Negombo you will be picked up at the airport and taken to our hotel.
After dinner Arne Hodalič will introduce the workshop and present his magnificent and inspiring work from Sri Lanka.
Participants (those who want to) submit seven of their photos for review by Arne.
Early next morning (5:30 AM) we drive to Lellama fish market, followed by breakfast in our hotel.
After checking out, we take our bus towards Anuradhapura and visit this ancient capital of the Singal kings. In the afternoon, we continue our journey towards Sigiriya.
DAY 3: SIGIRIYA – POLONNARUWA
In the 5th century, king Kasapa placed his high court and palace here in Sigiriya. Resting on a secluded, 180 meter high rock (the “Lion rock”), it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Royal gardens at the foot of the rock provide a glimpse into what was once a glamorous life style. Those who wish may climb to the top, where they will be rewarded with breath-taking views.
We continue our exploration of the past by visiting Polonnaruwa, also a UNESCO Heritage Site. The top attractions here include remains of the king’s palace, the 8 meters long and 4,5 meters high Stone Book (Gal Pota), the Vatadage temple of worship, the Gal Vihara temple with its giant statue of the reclining Buddha.
In the evening, we drive back to our hotel in Sigiriya.
DAY 4: DAMBULLA – KANDY
After early breakfast, we head towards another UNESCO Heritage Site: Dambulla, a village with 5 Buddhist temples, carved out of a rock and decorated with numerous Buddha statues and pictures. This is a great place to practice our HDR photography skills.
We continue towards Kandy and check in to the hotel where we enjoy a few hours of rest before the busy evening photography session. At around 6 pm, we start our blue light photography at the Temple of the Tooth, followed by daily evening mass (puja).
DAY 5: NUWARA ELIYA
Away from the temples and into the lush tea plantations and factories – a perfect contrast. We will focus on women working in the tea plantations and factories, which gives us a great opportunity to practice fill-in flash photography as well as panoramas.
DAY 6: KATARAGAMA
After breakfast, we take the bus to Kataragama and check in to the hotel around noon. Enjoy some free time until 4pm, when we visit the local temple, which encloses all major religions in one huge complex. We stay until evening mass (puja) in the temple and have the opportunity to get some good street photography.
DAY 7: WELIGAMA – GALLE
For those guests who are early birds, we get up at 3am and head back to the Kataragama temple – which at this hour is completely free of tourists and only the most devoted worshippers pray.
After breakfast, we stop first at a picturesque Weherahena Poorwarama temple. We check in to our hotel in Weligama. At around 4pm, we drive to the city of Galle – another UNESCO Heritage Site – for architectural photography, combined with blue light.
DAY 8: COLOMBO
After breakfast, we photograph local stilts fishermen, balancing on poles to make their catch. The bus takes us to Colombo, arriving in the afternoon at the perfect time to photograph the Red Mosque.
Evening dinner will be accompanied by the selection of the best photos from the trip, submitted by the participants.
DAY 10: DEPARTURE
Transfer to the airport will be provided.
BETWEEN HEAVEN AND SEA
March 4-13, 2018
TRAVEL WITH THE BEST
Arne Hodalič is the photo editor of National Geographic Magazine Slovenia. Originally studying biology in Ljubljana, his first trip to India in 1989 changed his professional career when his photos were published in a prestigious Swiss magazine, Animan. Since then he has travelled the world on photo-assignments. He is also a passionate adventurer and cave diver, participating in numerous sailing, mountaineering and caving expeditions. In 2008 he received an honorary doctorate at the University of Ljubljana, becoming a lecturer in photography and photojournalism. His photos and photo stories have appeared in books, exhibitions and many of the world’s most prestigious magazines, among others National Geographic Magazine, Life (USA), Time, Figaro Magazine, GEO, Paris Match, Marie Claire, Die Zeit, Cosmopolitan and Stern.
Number of guests: 8-16
Local transport: Bus
Exertion level: Easy
Meals: All meals included
Type of photography: Travel, Landscape, Street, Portrait
Weather in December: Average 28 °C.
Guiding in: English, German and French
€3.595 per person in a shared double room
€3.995 per person in single room
Hotel accommodation with private bath and toilet
All meals and non-alcoholic beverages
Coaching, teaching, workshops and seminars
Transport to/from Colombo