For whatever its worth... : LUSENET : Large format photography : One Thread

...I live in Southern California and travel extensively through the State each year. Some of the areas I frequent on a regular basis are the Owens Valley, the desert, Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks...

After reading many of the posts in this forum I wonder if there is an interest for creating "Free" workshops during various parts of the year. The way it would work is like this:

We get a group together, set a time, arrange for accommodations and transportation. We meet, discuss prints, photography, printing, processing, wine and good food...and hopefully have a great time.

Instead of spending money on workshop fees the same amount could cover film, travel etc...

If any of you are interested, feel free to email me... (My Land Rover is looking for company...)

-- Per Volquartz (, April 06, 2002


Interesting idea. Keep me in the looop.

-- Keith Pitman (, April 06, 2002.

I'm interested as well.


-- Anthony J. Kohler (, April 06, 2002.

I'm interested, keep me in the loop. How about meeting at a national park and camping for a weekend plus maybe a couple of extra days? I think the best talk always comes around a campfire. Just an idea.

-- John Miller (, April 06, 2002.

Keep me in the loop


-- Adrian Ng'asi (, April 06, 2002.

I agree with John - doing this in an outdoor setting would be much nicer than sitting around a table....
keep me posted as well, I'd be interested.

-- Matt O. (, April 07, 2002.

Good idea Per..

I'm in So.Cal too...please keep me informed... thanks

-- dan n. (, April 07, 2002.

Although this might be adding a level of complexity to your idea I'd suggest that once you get a few people interested you set up some type of cancellation fee. That fee could be held in trust or escrow at a bank so that no individual would get to use that money and these deposits would be returned to the person once they've shown up.

My point is that when you don't have anything invested in something like this it has no value, so people will cancel without much reason. If they have $200 on the table they won't cancel since there's is a downside. So you may be expecting six and get two and that could cost those two a lot of money!

In my own business I take a $100 deposit for weddings, and that's less than 10% of what they'll end up paying; yet it's enough to get their attention. Before I took despots I found that about 20 -30% of the clients would call and cancel after the wedding had been booked for a few weeks. I was there and they had me, and then they had the ability to keep shopping. If you don't take a deposit or something like that then they have you unless something better comes along. My wife might say "Stay here for Robby’s soccer game this weekend.", but not if I have a non refundable $200 invested! So make people vote with their money.

-- David Grandy (, April 07, 2002.

Great idea, Per. Unfortunately (or luckyly) I live in Italy (more precisely, in Milan), but I was born in Venice and I know Rome and Tuscany very well, so if the going-to-be-set-up "Do-the-workshop-by- yourselfes" group will plan to organize a trip to Italy... I could be your guide.

Buona fortuna.


-- Diego Rigatti (, April 07, 2002.

14 people (incl. these posters) have emailed me.

This will happen!!!

If you are interested email me right away!!!

-- Per Volquartz (, April 07, 2002.

Well, sounds like a fun thing to do! count me in, but I am in Mexico. Central part, if you know San Miguel Allende then you know where abouts I am. The one advantage I can offer is a full fledged Darkroom and knowledge of the area and surrounding states.

-- Jorge Gasteazoro (, April 07, 2002.

There already is group of people who do this...they are called the Western Gatherers. They usually meet in CA. Kerry Thalman, a major contributor on this list is a member of the group. they correspond through an email list, set up trips, share information, etc. I used to be a memeber, but time constrainst made me drop out. I think they communicate on a Yahoo groups list? Hopefuly Kerry or Harold Slavitt will contribute the address, no sense re inventing the wheel...

-- (, April 07, 2002.

Actually it's the Western Gathering, a group of group of West Coast photographers. Their home page is

If you check the History page you'll get an idea of what it's about. Per nailed it in one respect -- the concept of a workshop without a leader or fees (other than your own food and accommodations). However, to me, Per sounded like he was aiming to form a group of LF B&W photographers since "prints, photography, printing, processing, wine and good food" were mentioned. Even though some of our members use LF we are multi-format group who mostly use color positive film. Also we do reach beyond California although 11 of our 17 gatherings have been in California.

-- Garrett Adams (, April 07, 2002.

Please count me in too. I lice in So. California.

-- Hugo J. Zhang (, April 07, 2002.

Garrett is being far too modest. He is the one who pioneered the Western Gathering concept back in 1994. The concept is identical to what Per has proposed - a group of photographers get together in a scenic location for some photography during the daylight hours and enjoy each other's company in the evening. In general, the Western Gatherings (WGs) run Thursday evening through Sunday late morning. We generally try to have a meal in a decent restaurant at least once (usually Saturday evening) and a group "show-n-tell" where we share out work (either prints or transparencies on a light box).

As Garrett mentioned, over half of the 17 WGs to date have been in California, but there have also been a handful in Oregon, one in Washington, one in Utah and even one in Canada. A lot of the regular attendees are from California, but Oregon is also well represented and we have regular attendees from Washington and British Columbia as well.

I personally have attended 11 of the 17 WGs so far, and can state unequivocally that it's a great idea and a whole lot of fun. I've made some great friends and even gotten some pretty decent images. The social aspects of getting together with a group of like minded photographers is what makes the concept fly. It was a great idea eight years ago (thanks Garrett) and still is. As Garrett mentioned the WGs are not format specific (and all formats are well represented). And while we do occasionally spend a little time talking gear, the main emphasis is on creating images and sharing friendship and knowledge. I look forward to every WG and attend whenever my schedule allows.

Per, best of luck with your "Free Workshops", and hopefully sometime you can hook up with the WG crowd for a little shooting and conversation.


-- Kerry Thalmann (, April 08, 2002.

great idea Per,

Keep me informed.

-- lyle allan (, April 08, 2002.


Sounds great!

-- Dave Karp (, April 08, 2002.

I would be very interested in organizing a group in the Portland/Seattle/Vancouver, BC area some time in May. If you are interested and have suggestions for a location please contact me off list.

I would also be interested in day trip get-togethers in the Seattle area.

-- Peter Shier (, April 08, 2002.


You and I have spoken about the Owens Valley, and I am jealous that all of these folks will be able to partake of this workshop with you and I won't because I am stuck here in Minnesota.

I just write to agree with the others that it is a fantastic idea.

Another Group F64 may come out of it. make sure you publish your year's work.


-- Kevin Kolosky (, April 08, 2002.

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