Photo-Immersion 2019 Dreaming Andalucia
6th - 14th April 2019

Andalusia is a unique region blessed with some of the most varied natural, cultural and historical values of the world and in this workshop we will discover its most authentic, intimate and extraordinary face. 

For this photo-immersion trip of 8 days, we will be based in two different locations, Montefrío (Granada province) and Ronda (Málaga province), where we will be lodged in two exclusive “cortijos” fully booked for our group (Andalusian white-washed traditional farms, fully renovated into luxurious rural hotels full of charm).  

From here, we will visit incredibly different natural landscapes ranging from never-ending mossy wet forests to barren colourful deserts. Andalusia means diversity, and you will have the chance of exploring and photographing not only the natural landscape, but also some of the most delightful rural landscapes of the whole Europe:  rolling hills dressed in reds, greens and blues, oceans of centennial olive trees, isolated oak trees in fields of wheat, an explosion of spring flowers,...

The cherry on the cake will be the extraordinary Andalusian white villages, improbably perched atop a hill and surrounded by mountains, with a past as rich as their visual appeal and that offer to the photographer incredible possibilities of playing with tone, shape, texture and light and shadow. 

Rafael Rojas, your photographic leader, is a Swiss-Spanish national whose origins are in Andalusia. Get ready to be guided by someone with the knowledge of a local, who will usher you into the real, authentic and genuine Andalucia.  

 

The philosophy of this Photo Immersion Trip


Photography is not the goal, but the path. Nowa­days, we all rush through our life. We travel fast and we see the world without experiencing it. We think that in order to see more, we need to move faster.­ But the truth is that travelling in time and light, ­travelling through mood and weather is often more rewarding. Feelings and emotions, experiences and souvenirs, are not measured in quantity, but in qua­lity. Slowing down makes you connect more with a place. When you slow down, your inner landscape tends to blend with the outer one. And then, magic happens. Life is like a good whisky, and should be consumed in small sips. Photography is the best of the glasses for that whisky.

Apart from our Photo Adventures, which are more focused on exploring the world and experiencing the thrill of discovering faraway places with the help of a camera, our Photo Immersion trips offer a slightly different approach: to slow down our pace, to forget about running after photographic trophies and to focus on creating highly personal work about a specific area for a certain number of days.

We minimise the travel in space to focus on travel in the light, travel through the changes in the weather, travel in time. Every day, we photograph a certain ‘playground' where you will notice that conditions are never the same. Every day, we get a little closer to the spirit of the place. Every day, we make a bet­ter friend. In a way, we focus on a type of internal travel, rather than an external one.

After many years conducting photo immersion trips, we have realized the best way is to allow our participants to immerse themselves with plenty of time out in the field on their own, undisturbed unless they need any help. Rafael and Anca are always available for participants, anytime, anywhere, to discuss technical, compositional, artistic, or philosophic aspects while we work in the field. Participants will not only get a lot of hands on tuition from Rafael during the photographic sessions, but they will also have the possibility of seeing how Rafael works, how he visualizes, composes and creates his own photographs in the field. Rafael will use many of his photographs to explain many concepts in the field, and later on during the post-processing and critique sessions which will take place at our hotel base. You will receive a lot of instruction about post-processing, which is an essential part of contemporary landscape photography.

We want to eliminate all the hassle of travelling so that we can focus on creative photography and maximize our natural immersion in the location. For our entire stay we will be based in 2 different locations, near Montefrío (Granada province) and Ronda (Málaga province). For both locations, we have booked two entire cortijos (typical Andalusian farms) fully renovated, exclusive and isolated amongst gardens and olive trees. This will allow us to make the most of the conditions, tailoring our programme to the weather and light we will expe­rience during our trip, and taking advantage of the huge variety this area has to offer in terms of photographic opportunities.

During this photo-trip, we will photograph in all kinds of light conditions: sunrise, sunset, dawn, dusk, day and night. Most importantly, we will combine a huge amount of different ecosystems and landscapes, ranging from rain forest to true desert, and visit some of the most spectacular white villages of Andalusia. Variety is the name for this trip!

 

For the full detailed information, please download our detailed PDF brochure at the bottom of the right column of this page.

The Itinerary


Day 1 - 6th April 2019 - Arrival in Málaga

You will need to fly into Málaga International airport. We will then wait for you at the Hotel Parador Gibralfaro (4* hotel), where we will greet you and introduce you to the rest of the group. We will spend the afternoon together, visiting Málaga downtown, and have dinner together at the hotel, with incredible views over the whole city and the Mediterranean sea. 

Days 2 to 4 - Granada/Córdoba province

On our second day we will leave early in the morning after breakfast (and sunrise photographic session) towards Montefrío, in the province of Granada. We will arrive in the morning to our exclusive cortijo fully rented for our group, set amidst hills covered with olive trees. From this location, we will visit very different areas of the province of Córdoba and Granada, combining natural and rural landscapes, typical villages, etc. We will not visit the main big cities since that is something everyone can do alone... we will instead focus on the authentic and hidden gems away from the main touristic attractions that will offer an exceptional photographic value and a magical experience.  

Days 5 to 7 - Málaga/Cádiz province

From Montefrío, we will leave early in the morning after breakfast (and sunrise photographic session) towards Ronda, in the mountains of Málaga. We will arrive in the morning to our exclusive cortijo fully rented for our group, truly a place you will never forget! From this location, we will visit very different areas of the province of Málaga and Cádiz, combining natural and rural landscapes, typical villages, etc. Again, we will focus on the authentic and hidden gems away from the main touristic attractions that will offer an exceptional photographic value and a magical experience. We might have some time to photograph still life in our cortijo, if you like the idea.   

Day 8 - 13th April - Arrival in Málaga

We will arrive in the evening to the hotel Parador Málaga Golf (4*), ideally placed in front of the Mediterranean sea and very close to the airport. We will hold our farewell dinner together and say goodbye. 

Day 9 - 14th April - End of photo-immersion trip

After breakfast, the workshop will officially end. You will be able to easily reach the airport (very close to our hotel) in order to fly back home. 


Included and excluded


Included:

- Tour led by Rafael Rojas and Anca Minican

- "In the field’ photography advice, daily briefings, commentary sessions & image reviews

- Accommodation in exclusive lodges in single occupancy 

- Single occupancy for all participants

- All meals and all non-alcoholic drinks

- Transport during the whole stay

- Unforgettable experiences and a lot of fun!

Excluded

- Photographic and clothing equipment

- International and domestic flights

- Any meals other than those stated in the detailed itinerary

- Personal expenses: telephone, gifts,...

- Alcoholic beverages

- Medical and Accident Insurance (compul­sory for all participants)

- Cancellation insurance (strongly recommended)

- Transfers from and to the airport of Málaga (very close to selected hotels)

 

Other details


Photography Level

All photographic levels, from beginners to advanced photographers are welcome. A certain familiarity with your camera will be very beneficial in order to get the most from this photographic trip.

Exertion Level

Easy. None of the places we will visit are far, and they are easily accessible from the car. Although most walks are on good paths or trails, one needs to be able to carry the photographic equipment, so you should nevertheless be of good basic fitness. 
If you are unsure about the suitability of this trip please contact us and we will discuss with you.

Price

4'320 CHF (Swiss Francs) VAT incl.

Single Occupancy Supplement

Single Occupancy accommodation is included on this photo trip for all participants. Couples will be able to share the same room (twin beds, which may be put together).

Payment details

Deposit of 1,500 CHF to secure your place at the time of booking.

Full payment of the photo-trip due 120 days (4 months) prior to the departure date.

Cancellation Fees

Should you need to cancel this Photo Trip, the following fees apply:

- 90 days or more before the departure date: Your deposit fee

- 89 to 61 days before the departure date: 50% cancellation fee

- 60 days or less before the departure date: 100% cancellation fee

It is strongly recommended to acquire travel cancellation insurance. If you need any help, please contact us and we will be very glad to assist you.

Number of People

Very small group limited from 4 (minimum) to 6 (maximum). This number includes photographers and non-photographing partners/spouses.

Accommodation, Meals and Transportation

Transportation will be in a van seating 9 people. Accommodation is in 2 exclusive “cortijos” (typical Andalusian farms), fully renovated and really stunning, completely booked only for our group. Get ready for a culinary feast: typically Andalusian breakfasts at our cortijos, lunch on selected places and dinners prepared by our chef in our cortijos. Andalucia is known for the quality and diversity of its gastronomy! 

Non photographing spouses/partners

Non-photographing spouses and partners are ­welcome on this trip. Even though the dinner ­conversations will certainly revolve around photo­graphy, all locations visited will allow non-photographing partners and spouses to discover and fully enjoy the real, authentic and charming Andalusia. Our knowledge of the area will take you to places you would never find on your own! Therefore, our cortijos, with pool, garden and all kinds of commodities, are a treat in themselves!  Same rates apply.

Languages

The official language for this photographic trip will be ­English. However, bear in mind that personal explanations to each participant can be done also in French or Spanish, as we are bilingual in these other languages. 

A certain international composition of the group should be expected, with all the fun and wonderful implications that brings! 

 

Special Conditions


Visas/Passports

Please ensure:
1) That you have pre-arranged your entry visa if required
2) That your passport is valid to visit Spain and does not expire in a critical date

Health

No vaccinations are mandatory. 
It is a condition of booking that you disclose any medical conditions you might have including allergies or special nutritional requirements. This is essential as it may affect both your own and other people's enjoyment of the trip and will allow us to understand the implications in relation to the particular trip. 

Luggage

Please bear in mind the volume limitation for your photo-bag! We will be traveling in a van of 9 seats, which should be able to accommodate all the bags we normally take for our photographic sessions. 

Insurances

All participants must be in possession of Health and Accident Insurance (with repatriation cover). 
Additionally, we strongly advise you to conclude a Cancellation Insurance. If you need any help with this, let us know and we will suggest some leading companies with which we normally work. 

Rafael Rojas

Rafael Rojas is a fine art photographer specialized in landscape and nature photography. Following a career as an engineer, researcher and university lecturer he made a dramatic change by becoming a professional photographer of nature and landscape, his true passion and vocation. Today, he travels the planet always in search of those fleeting moments when light and land combine to create sheer magic and inspire the soul.
His work has been awarded in the most prestigious international photography competitions, including the Hasselblad Master award, First Prize several times in the IPA International Photography Awards (USA), Px3 Prix de Photographie de Paris (France), Nature’s Best (USA), International Conservation Awards (USA), European Nature Photographer of the Year GDT (Germany), MML International (Spain), Trierenberg Super Circuit (Austria), Panoramic Photographer of the Year Awards (Australia), etc.

His fine art prints, which form part of numerous private collections belonging to individuals and corporations, are often exhibited at international level, in private galleries and museums such as the Smithsonian in Washington and the Burke Museum in Seattle, USA. His photographs are also frequently used by various companies and institutions and are often published for editorial use in magazines including National Geographic Travel, Terre Sauvage, etc.

One of the activities of Rafael Rojas is teaching and lecturing about Nature Photography, which he carries out during his photographic workshops and Photo Trips. This allows him to share and pass on to others his passion and knowledge about nature and photography by means of photographic tuition in locations where natural inspiration is at hand. Rafael uses his former experience in teaching at the university, his contagious passion and a deep experience and knowledge of the natural environment to assure optimal learning and unforgettable memories for all his clients. He has collaborated in the creation of several photography books, including “Visions of Earth” and “Natura” - both from Editions Altus - and is the author of his own line of photography books “A photographer’s vision” which he publishes and distributes from his website in different languages as eBooks.

He was one of the founders and directors of the company WHYTAKE.NET - The Global Community of Nature PhotographersTM. He is also a member of the select nature photography groups “Bouts de Planète” (France) and “Portfolio Natural” (Spain). He works with a panoramic 617 medium format film camera, a Hasselblad 6x6 and a whole Nikon digital system, always set on the sturdiest tripod available. He speaks Spanish, English, French and Romanian...

 

Anca Minican

Anca Minican, the partner of Rafael Rojas, provides a very special touch to all our photographic workshops and trips. Trained as an architect and interior designer, she is a true lover of nature and the wilderness and always accompanies Rafael on his photographic expeditions all over the planet.

Her broad experience in the corporate world, her professionalism and her methodical and serious approach make her a valuable asset for the organization, on-site logistics and the support to customers during our workshops and photographic trips. She also plays a key role in the team building and knows how to create an amicable environment with a personal touch as all our clients can testify!

Anca was one of the founders and directors of the company WHYTAKE.NET - The Global Community of Nature PhotographersTM. She is also co-editor of the whole range of Rafael Rojas Photography books, ensures the representation of our Limited Edition Fine Art prints and manages the photographic library of Rafael Rojas Photography. To summarize, nothing would work without her! She speaks English, French, Spanish, Romanian and quite some Italian...

 

Can I bring my non-photographing spouse or companion with me?
Yes. Non-photographing spouses and partners are welcome to this trip. Even though the dinner conversations will certainly revolve around photography, all locations visited will allow non photographing partners and spouses to discover and fully enjoy the beauty of the area.

Which are the official languages for this photo-trip?
The official language for this photo-tour is English.

However, as the number of participants is quite small, we can tailor the teaching to cater for the particular language of our participants, and speak with them either in English, French or Spanish.

We are used to dealing with international groups in our workshops and photo trips and it is normal to have four or five nationalities represented in the group. Trust us, that is one of the strong points of our workshops and a highly enriching experience!

How many people will attend these Photo-Immersion trips?
A highly reduced number, of a maximum of 6 photographers, will be accepted. The idea is to keep the group at a very individual level, being able to engage in deep discussions as we evaluate our work completed during each day. As Photo Immersion trips are shorter than our Photo Adventure trips, this allows us to focus on each of the participants in a more personal manner.

Can you cater for special diets?
Yes, our accommodation partners can cater for most diets. Please advise us of your preferences at the time of booking on your booking form. 


Is this trip available for all photographic levels?
Yes. This Photo Immersion trip caters for all photographic levels, from beginners to advanced and even professional photographers. However, the truth is that to make the most of the possibilities of this photographic trip it would be best that you already have a certain knowledge of the use of your camera so it is recommended that you exercise a little and become accustomed to your equipment in the weeks prior to the trip. Or you may prefer to enroll on one of our intensive photographic workshops of 1/2 day or 2 days in Switzerland (see availability). In any case, during our Photo Immersion trip we will tackle the basic technical use of a DSRL for all our beginner participants.

What sort of photographic equipment do I need to bring?
In terms of photographic equipment, the choice depends very much on your experience, your budget and your style of photography. There are a few general points though which should be mentioned. Most photographers tend to bring too much equipment to Photo Trips, leading to extremely heavy bags which then become a burden more than a useful tool to experience and photograph the places we visit. Never bring pieces of equipment you are not familiar with to a photo trip, and limit your equipment to what you will need in the majority of cases. Typically, any camera you use normally and a couple of zooms like a 24-70 and a telephoto 70-200 are more than enough for the vast majority of situations.

Please refer to the Checklist document of the detailed PDF brochure where we mention photographic and non-photographic equipment necessary for this trip.

Photo-Immersion trips seem quite deep and intense... Are these trips only for experienced photographers?
No. Photo-Immersion trips are open to everyone and all levels. A good photographer is not someone who just knows how to operate a camera. If you are nervous of the technical knowledge, you will see how in less than an hour we can resolve that aspect. And then, we will discover what lies below the tip of the iceberg...

Why do you offer these "Photo Immersion trips", is it a type of marketing gimmick?
No. Basically we propose activities that we ourselves enjoy, and that we have identified as most suitable to develop what we consider the most valuable aspect about photography; experiencing the world, connecting with it, having something to say and saying it by means of a camera. We realized that, after many years photographing the natural world, we could summarise why we enjoyed it in two distinct ways: Either with the thrill and adventure of slow-paced itinerant trips, or in the quietness and intimacy provided by short periods of discovery of a particular environment. What we offer to our clients is what we have found we enjoy the most ourselves, and that is why we propose both Photo-Adventure as Photo-Immersion trips...

back to top

 
Pages:     1 2 >

Photo-Immersion 2019 Dreaming Andalucia

  • Place: Andalucia, Spain
  • Date: 6th - 14th April 2019
  • Price: 4,320 CHF
  • Number of Places: 6
  • Language: EN, FR
few places

phototrip highlights

    Andalucia is authentic, genuine, true and unspoiled, combining striking natural scenery with some of the most beautiful and history loaded villages in the World.
    The places we will vi­sit are all about diversity. Wet forest, true desert, rocky mountains, rolling hills, olive trees, colourful farmlands, perched villages atop improbable hills, the ocean...This will be like experien­cing several trips in one!  
    The natural light in Andalucia is typically strong and colourful but can also be soft and delicate. We will enjoy a wide range of light and weather conditions, making the landscape show a different face every day and night. 
    Rafael was born in Spain from Andalusian parents and knows this part of the world like the palm of his hand. You will get to places that not many people know, enjoy superb lodging and food and live a truly genuine Andalusian experience.

difficulty level: Easy
photography level: All

PDF brochure