Photography course

Umbria Region, Umbria, Italy

per person

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Holiday Itinerary

Learn the art of photography on this adventurous photography holiday in Orvieto, a stunning hill top city in the heart of Umbria, famous for its white wines and even whiter gothic cathedral. 

Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned pro, a photography holiday course capturing spectacular landscapes, dramatic seascapes, beautiful buildings, lakes and stunning sunsets promises a unique learning experience that will stay with you long after the holiday is over.

Get out and about in a 4x4, explore the delights of Umbria and Tuscany, learn photography and take home images from this beautiful area that you will be proud to show to others.

Who is it suitable for?
- Suitable for all levels from beginners to advanced
- Minimum age 18
- Courses have a maximum of 6 persons in each group, singles are very welcome as you'll meet others with a passion for photography
- The course is mainly focused on digital photography using a digital SLR camera and you will need to bring your own DLSR with you

Who are our guests?
- Holidays are typically made up of international travellers looking to get more from their holiday
- Ages vary, but the typical customer falls in to the 30-60 age bracket
- The majority of our guests are beginners or those with limited experience
- Of course, everyone shares a passion or interest in discovering a new activity or continuing a hobby

Can I bring a non-participating partner?
- If you wish to accompany a friend who is taking the photography holiday but not take the photography lessons, that is not a problem
- Non-participating partners will share a twin/double room with their friend for 6 nights
- The price includes breakfast daily and 2 evening meals also
- Full details and prices can be found under the 'costing and extras' tab
- If there is space in the Land Rover, non participating guests can join a day trip at no extra cost (subject to availability)

When can I start?
- All arrivals are on set monthly dates from May to October

Typical itinerary
Arrival pick up
- Friday is your arrival day
- You’ll be collected from Orvieto train station in the morning and transferred to your accommodation as your course starts after lunch on Friday afternoon
- Please note that Orvieto station is just 50 minutes from Rome Termini station
- Alternatively you can arrive on Thursday evening and add an extra night or nights to your trip with prices from 40 Euros per room, to book any number of extra nights at the beginning or end of your trip, please email

Day 1 Friday – Orvieto and environs in Umbria
- Your course starts early after lunch with a wander around the beautiful city of Orvieto, the home of your photography tutor and famous the world over
- Orvieto like most of the towns in Umbria is an Etruscan city overlaid with Roman, Mediaeval and Renaissance buildings. The mediaeval quarter is so picturesque film crews often shoot here. The city was painted by William Turner who was struck by its site on an outcrop of rock above the Tiber valley and the cathedral is one of the wonders of Italy.
- This evening is free for you to relax and have dinner at your leisure

Day 2 Saturday – Lake Bolsena
- Your course starts early after breakfast and you’ll take a trip in the 4x4 to the dramatic Lake Bolsena only 20 minutes away, to capture the stunning scenery around its shores
- You’ll focus on shooting the working fishing villages with their boats, nets and gnarled fishermen ideal for experimenting with depth of field, vivid colour composition, movement and portraiture
- There are Etruscan tombs overlooking the lake where we practice high definition photography, balancing the gloom within, to the bright Mediterranean light outside
- Dinner is taken at a lakeside restaurant tonight with the group

Day 3 Sunday – Tyrrhenian coastline
- You’ll have the morning in Orvieto to review the results of your photography from yesterday and will work with your tutor as he gives you an overview of how to use Photoshop
- Using a tripod to catch the motion of the waves and take an abstract approach as you photograph bleached white skeleton trees washed up the shore 
- Your evening is free

Day 4 Monday – The hill towns of Tuscany
Pitigliano, Sorano and Sovana

- After a short drive, you’ll spend a relaxing morning on the shores of Lake Bolsena
- After a picnic lunch on the shore you’ll get back in the 4x4 to drive to three hill top towns in Tuscany, these towns are among the most picturesque in all of Italy and all three have been continuously inhabited since Etruscan times, 3000 years of history, a Jewish ghetto until the 1930s
- The view of the town  from the abandoned Jewish cemetery is very moving
- You’ll also have the chance to document Italian life and the people
- This evening is free

Day 5 Tuesday – Mysterious Etruria
- An early start again today with a drive to the Mysterious Etruria, the Etruscan civilization was here while Rome was still a swampy village, most of what the Etruscans have left is cut deep into the volcanic rock, the tufa
- You will explore their sacred ways, cut deep into the rock for unknown purposes This is ideal terrain for photo-stitching, multiple shots joined together to make a panoramic view in a confined space
- The Etruscans loved water and you will spend the rest of the day photographing the waterfalls and streams that are to be found all over this area
- This evening is free

Day 6 Wednesday – Classic Tuscan landscape
- After a short drive, you’ll shoot vine covered hills, hot springs,  lonely umbrella pines, sentinel cypress and characteristic farms and villas - the classic Tuscan landscape south of Siena called the Val d’Orcia
- Dinner tonight will be taken with the group in Tuscany

Day 7 Thursday – Orvieto and Bagnoregio
- Today is the last day of your photography course and you’ll check-out of your accommodation after an early breakfast
- Leaving the hotel early, you’ll photograph Orvieto from the hill opposite as the sun comes up the mist often comes up from the Tiber valley
- Then it’s back in the 4x4 to drive to nearby Bagnoregio an almost deserted town, a sort of mediaeval ghost town  
- After lunch, your photography holiday finishes and you’ll be safe in the knowledge that you will be taking home new found photography skills and pictures to be proud of

What will I learn?
- As you are learning in a small group of no more than 6 people, you’ll have expert guidance and tuition will be adapted to each client’s needs
- You will get to know the basics such as composition, depth of field, lens choice and exposure tips
- Working in manual and Raw as well as use of flash, reflectors and technical tricks
- Tuition in downloading and editing your images using Adobe Photoshop CS3 and Lightroom
- High Definition photography (variable exposure) and photo stitching 
- An overview of Fine-Art printing known as Giclée

Your photography tutor
- Passionate about photography, your British photography tutor Patrick has lived and worked in Italy since 1983 and knows the area intimately 
- With over 25 years experience working as a professional photographer, your tutor has worked in fashion, portrait and advertising
- His work has been published in magazines worldwide and since 2007 he has run his own photography gallery in Orvieto specialising mainly in landscapes
- Patrick will be assisted by an Italian photographer also with 25 years experience and who speaks excellent English

Your accommodation and meals
- Accommodation is in a 17th century palazzo in the historic centre of Orvieto
- Prices are based on 1 person in an ensuite room
- You will have breakfast daily at the palazzo and lunch will be taken out on location
- You will have 2 restaurant dinners with the group included in the price, other nights are free to do your own thing
- Orvieto is a lively town and a pleasure to stroll in as it is almost completely pedestrianised
- WiFi is available in the B&B but not in all the rooms (it possible to go to Orvieto where cafes have free WiFi)

Restricted mobility access
Please find below some information regarding the accommodation and location of the holiday which may be useful when deciding if this is the right holiday for you; should you have an further questions, please contact us and we will be happy to help
- We generally do not recommend this location for those with restricted mobility
- This holiday is based in a mountain village with steps and cobbled streets
- Accommodation is on the 3rd floor of a hotel without a lift
- If a person is able to walk but has 'some' restrictions then we would need further information concerning their needs, and they could perhaps stay in an alternative hotel nearby with a lift, depending on availability

Weather conditions and itinerary
- Your photography tutor Patrick will alter the itinerary if the weather doesn’t offer the best conditions for photographing the area

What should I bring?
- Bring your own camera (with manual), charger, memory cards, tripod, filters and flash if you have them, film if you use it
- Point and shoot if you have one
- You can borrow some photographic accessories such as tripods, flash guns, filters
- Please bring suitable footwear for walking as you will be spending a lot of time exploring the different areas and a sun hat
- A swimming costume is recommended as there will be a chance to swim in the lakes during the shoots