The Vancouver Gathering

In Craft & Vision, News & Stuff, Photographically Speaking, The Craft, Vision & Voice, Vision Is Better, Workshops and Events by David22 Comments

On the weekend of August 17-19, I’m inviting 20 people to my home in Vancouver to share a weekend of photography together. We’re skipping the fancy marketing on this one and just calling it the Vancouver Gathering.

The Gathering is not really a workshop, that implies work, but I know it’s going to get called one. This is a chance for 20 like-minded and like-hearted photographers who won’t have a chance to travel with me to places like Italy, Nepal, or Africa, to get the best of my teaching in person, here in North America. The weekend will be dedicated to talking about photographic expression, and how we accomplish that in camera, in post-production, and in the larger context of our bodies of work. There will be a lot of discussion, a lot of laughter, and a lot of time to think about what we do, why we do it, and yes, how we do it.

Here’s the broadest strokes. On Friday, August 17th, we’ll begin with a wine and cheese reception at the Loft, my home. It’ll be cozy, because my place isn’t very big, but we’ll all fit. On Saturday morning, after you’ve been out shooting on your own for a couple hours, you’ll join me at the studio of Kevin Clark, just downstairs from me, and we’ll begin our teaching time together, all day Saturday. On Sunday, we’ll do it all again. On both Saturday and Sunday there will be optional dinners (each one will have room for 10 participants, so you’ll be on your own for one night. We can make some killer recommendations if you want to explore the food scene here) at one or two of Vancouver’s nicest restaurants. We’ll help you book accommodations, if you need them, and we’ll assist you with airport transfers if you’re coming in from another city. If you want to come early or stay late and take a couple days to photograph in and around Vancouver, we’ll help you with that too. But don’t come hoping to build your portfolio, come hoping to learn about the visual language that you need to understand before that portfolio can become something unique and amazing.

Speaking of portfolios, I’ve opened 7 spaces – 4 on Friday, and 3 on Monday, to do portfolio reviews, talk about your creative journey, or discuss branding, in fact pretty much anything you want, but there’s only seven one-hour slots.

This is not a Photography 101 crash-course. I’ll assume you know how to use your camera. In fact, I don’t even care if you bring a camera; this is not that kind of weekend. We’ll spend more time talking about photographs themselves than we will about how to light a model or use a tilt-shift lens. The stuff we talk about will be on the artsy side of things. We’ll talk about vision, and voice; about the language of photographs. We’ll talk about light and lines and the elusive moment. We’ll talk about how to make the most intentional photographs we can make. Sure, we’ll talk apertures and shutter speeds, critical focus and composition, and yes, there’s even a session that involves Lightroom and post-production, but my goal this weekend is bigger – I want to pour some fuel and strike some matches. I want to set fire to some imaginations and get you asking bigger questions than simply, “What should my aperture be?” or “How do I read a histogram?” I’d love it if you left this weekend together fired up about photographs themselves, as well as the reasons and methods we use to make them.

This isn’t for everyone, I know. But we’ve set aside a weekend for those of you who keep asking when I’ll be doing something closer to home, and this is it. If you want to be a part of it, I’d love to see you.

To learn more, and to register, check-out the details page.


  1. Anna Epp

    Of course, the weekend I can’t go 😉 Will look out for others as I know this will be loads of fun and info! Not that I wouldn’t want to join you in Africa, Italy or Nepal but Vancouver is a bit easier with family there and all.

  2. Olivia

    Oh, how I wish I could do this! However, circumstances just won’t allow this in my budget or in my time (you would know that I have already committed to sing in church on the 19th–something I rarely do anymore). I am ready to take some next steps with my photography, but just now sure how or where or even this point when.. . . . Sigh . . .

  3. Linda Taylor

    Ditto on the “Can. Not. Wait”. Glad the portfolio review can be about the portfolio that I don’t have. I will be much happier discussing big picture stuff. Kind of a pun there???

  4. Maïeva Voyage

    Hi David,

    You don’t know me but I’ve been reading you for years (I bought several of your books and (e)books).
    I’m really admirative of your work and your background.

    For this photo gathering: what a pity I’m so far away! I would have loved to join this event.
    I hope you’ll organise other encounters like this one in the future (I’ll organise my timeschedule differently).

    Hope you the best,
    Maïeva Voyage

  5. I-Gene Leong

    Hey David, looks like we finally get to share that beer you talked about a few years ago. :) Looking forward to it, though I haven’t yet figured out how I want to get to Vancouver, or how long I’m sticking around!

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  7. Adair Dammann

    oh heck. Im working that weekend. Please wander down to Seattle so that I can actually meet you! thanks, and keep writing/teaching/mentoring….and Shooting!

  8. Author

    Seesan – Any level photographer is welcome. It might be a little challenging if you’re very new to photography, but you’d learn a lot. It’s VERY sold out now, but there will be more.

  9. Miguel

    Hola de nuevo David, yo me refería más al tratamiento de las imágenes que al de los textos.
    La fotografía del niño hindú delante de las velas. Al verla en tu blog, es tan distinta a la que aparece en el libro. el contraste entre los colores cálidos y fríos es mas bonito y con mejor resultado que la imagen que aparece en el libro. Aun siendo la misma la calidad es mucho peor.
    Mi pregunta es pues; ¿ como controlar que no pierdan calidad las imágenes al reproducirlas en publicaciones? Estas variaciones, aunque sutiles hacen que la imagen no sea la misma.

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