Photo trip 2018 Senja, arctic light
18th - 24th February 2018

Fjords, towering snowy mountains, seemingly endless forests, northern lights and unspoiled beauty under the magical winter light of the arctic. The island of Senja, often referred to as "Norway in miniature", is the best kept secret of Scandinavia.

Indeed, this photo-immersion trip will be about variety. We will photograph strikingly white mountains, forests in the snow, frozen rivers, dramatic shores and isolated villages under the magic of the northern lights, the dynamic Atlantic weather and the never ending twilight of the arctic.

Senja has been voted by Norwegians as the most beautiful place in the whole of Norway and it is no surprise. Overshadowed by the popularity of the Lofoten Islands, Senja has preserved a pristine and authentic environment. Expect to see more reindeers and elks than people! 

This will be an all inclusive Photo Immersion trip conducted personally by Rafael Rojas, Master Hasselblad 2014, and his partner Anca Minican, co-director of Whytake.net. During the entire week we will be based at our ideally placed, exclusive and comfortable apartments, from where we will be able to easily reach all our chosen photographic areas and adapt ourselves to the different weather, light and aurora conditions. 

 

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. By slowing down our pace, we forget about running after photographic trophies and 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.

During our photo trips, we adopt a similar approach to our workshops, with a strong emphasis on tuto­ring, while allowing our participants to immerse themselves with plenty of time out in the field on their own. Rafael’s participants can expect plenty of hands on, one-to-one tuition during the photographic sessions, tackling all aspects related to photography: Vision, composition, visual design, technique, post-processing, workflow, light and weather, the philosophy of photography, information about the landscape, travel logistics, etc. Participants will also have the possibility of seeing how Rafael works, visualizes, composes and creates his own photographs in the field. 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.

We will also hold many critique sessions with reviews of photographs taken by all the participants, as well as post-processing tutorials using Adobe Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop. A special workshop session will be held during our Photo Immersion trip to Senja devoted to night photography, which will be very useful for photographing the magical northern lights and black and white photography, which is specially suited for winter.

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 at our own apartments, ideally placed by the sea and close to the areas we will photograph and where we will be able to talk about photography with views over the ocean. This will also allow us to make the most of the conditions, tailoring our programme to the weather and light we will experience during our trip. 

During this photo trip, we will photograph in all kinds of light conditions: sunrise, sunset, dawn, dusk, day and night. Variety is the name!

 

The place: The island of Senja


Deep fjords, towering snowy mountains, endless forests and dramatic shores under the magical winter light of the arctic and the northern lights dancing in the starry sky. The island of Senja, often referred to as “Norway in miniature”, is the best kept secret of Scandinavia.

Senja has been voted by Norwegians as the most beautiful place in the whole of Norway and it is no surprise. Overshadowed by the popularity of the Lofoten Islands, Senja has preserved a pristine and authentic environment. Expect to see more reindeers and elks than people! Besides a few villages and scattered colourful houses, the place is barely populated and displays a powerful, raw and authentic beauty which will take your breath away.

From our base, ideally placed by the ocean, we will take our time to soak up the soul of the island, visiting, enjoying and photographing the very different landscapes and ecosystems it offers. 

As dawn breaks, an intense blue and purple light floods the horizon. The twilight magic seems to stay forever. The sun rises, illuminating the clouds and the granite snowy peaks, filling the fjord with shades of turquoise, green and blue. Above us, a group of sea eagles hover in search of prey. Cormorants dry their wings on the pier and a distant tiny red house is dwarfed under a massive mountain of granite that towers over the horizon. The snow that fell during the night has covered the landscape with yet another carpet of white, turning the forest into a calligraphic exercise. 

We leave the fjord and head up to the mountains. Up high, a mountain pass leads us into a different world. White, cold, silent and motionless, the mountains loom above us. The frozen lake has become a white sheet of paper. A distant group of trees seems to float in a limbo of white where sky and land become one. A far-off snow storm drifts over the mountains. The dark sky over the white landscape is broodingly powerful.We go through a tunnel and enter yet another different landscape. From above, the view over the fjord is breathtaking. Rugged mountains and sharp peaks reflect in the calm waters of the ocean. The broken shoreline snakes through the landscape like a black ribbon threading between the water and the snow. 

At the end of the evening, a low winter sun skims the horizon, casting a golden light over the summits, painting the snow with tones of yellow, orange and red. As the sun disappears, the sky fills with a profusion of pink and violet pastel colours over a landscape which seems to have been taken from a Dali painting. Minutes later, still under the eerie glow of dusk, the first northern lights dance over the cold waters of the ocean. The silence is intense, only broken by the wind and the sound of our heartbeats.

The mystery and magic of the north is impossible to explain. It has to be lived. Prepare yourself to fall under its spell.

 

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

The Itinerary


Day 1 - 18th February 2018 - Pick up at Tromso

We will pick you up at Tromso (place to be announced) on the first day at 9:00 am. You will therefore need to make sure you arrive to Tromso on time, ideally on the day before (17th february).  We will leave for the island of Senja in the early morning (3 hours drive). We will get to our hotel, have lunch and have our first photographic session during the evening.

Days 2 to 7

During 5 full days we will explore and photograph the most interesting and photogenic areas of the whole island of Senja, conveniently loca­ted close to our home base. 

During this period, dawn breaks at 6:05 am and dies at around 18:05 pm, gi­ving us plenty of hours of warm light due to a sun which stays low above the horizon for the whole day. It will also provide decent waking hours for sunrise photography and also the possibility of  photo­­­gra­phing night scenes of auroras without having to stay up too long. 

Our daily schedule will vary depen­ding on the locations we will visit and the nocturnal activity the auroras may have provided, but a typical day will combine photographic sessions on different places, image reviews on the computer, post-processing sessions and some time to rest.

Day 8 - 24th February 2018 - End of Photo Immersion trip

We will have breakfast together and have a morning photographic session.We will drive back to Tromso, where the phototrip will officially end. We will have dinner together and leave participants at their hotels booked for the evening (not included, to be arranged by participants). You should therefore book your flight to leave on the 25th of February.

 

Included and excluded


Included:

- Tour organised and led by Rafael Rojas and Anca Minican

- "In the field" photography advice, daily briefings, commentary sessions / image reviews, Photoshop - Lightroom tutorials

- Special workshop session on night photography

- Special workshop session on post-processing (Lightroom - Photoshop)

- Special workshop session on basic use of DSRL (for beginners) 

- Single accommodation in exclusive appartments by the sea

- All meals

- Transport during the whole stay in Senja

- Transfers from and to downtown Tromso

- Unforgettable experiences and a lot of fun!

Excluded:

- Photographic equipment

- International and domestic flights

- Any meals other than those stated in detailed itinerary

- Personal expenses: telephone, gifts,...

- All beverages

- Medical and Accident

- Insurance valid for Norway (compulsory for all participants)

- Cancellation insurance (strongly recommended)

- Hotel nights at Tromso (before and after workshop)

- Transfer airport - Hotel in Tromso - airport

 

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. Most walks will be very short as we will be photographing close to the car. Temperatures are not very cold (around 0°), and any person in average physical shape with good clothing and equipment such as that we recommend should not have any problems at all. Please contact us if you have any doubts about the difficulty level of this trip.

Price

3,970 CHF (Swiss Francs) VAT incl.

Single Occupancy Supplement

Single occupancy accommodation is included on this photo trip for all participants, in exclusive appartments ideally located by the sea.

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.

Logistics and Transportation

Transportation will be in a van seating 9 people. Accommodation will be in a number of full apartments by the ocean. Breakfasts will be served at the house. Lunches and dinners will be had packed on route and at the local restaurant respectively. 

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 beauty of Senja. They can also stay at our lovely appartments by the sea during our early morning or evening photographic forays, taking full advantageof the facilities and the beauty of the area. Same rates apply.

Languages

The official languages for this photographic trip will be ­English and French. If you speak any of those languages, that will be enough! In the case whereby we have both languages repre­sented, we will duplicate our group explanations and image critique session in order to cater for the two languages. 

Personal explanations to each participant can be done either in English, French or Spanish. 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 Norway 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! 
Even though we will be 8 people travelling in a van seating 9, we should be able to acco­mmodate all the bags in the van that 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. 

 

Informations about the Weather:


For a place as far north as Alaska and Siberia, cold and unpredictable weather comes with the territory. Yet Norway’s favourable location next to the Gulf Stream keeps the country’s climate milder than expected. Senja Island has a relatively balmy average high of –1°C (30°F) even in the coldest winter months. This is thought to be the largest positive temperature anomaly relative to latitude anywhere in the world. The Gulf Stream brings moisture over western Norway while the inland regions have a drier and more continental climate. Rain and snow in winter is an unavoidable feature of the landscape. If you have the proper gear the sun will be welcome but the snow won’t be debilitating.

We will be travelling there at the beginning of March, when the landscape is more likely to be fully covered with snow. All mountain lakes are frozen and snow is likely to cover the landscape and cling to the trees, reducing the clutter to a minimum. This makes the northern winter the perfect occasion for the photographer who wants to create greatly simplified images full of emotional content, with a strongly marked Zen and minimalist aspect. 

Temperatures should not be too cold, with averages of around -5° during the day, and even above freezing on some occasions. The sun is very low during the whole day, bringing never ending twilight colours to the sky and golden light even at noon. The duration of the day is quite good too, with around 9 hours of sunlight. During the night, a spectacular show will be revealed as the northern lights flood the starry sky. The beginning of March generally offers excellent opportunities to observe and photograph this fantastic phenomenon, offering one of the most magical, incredible and photogenic experiences you will ever have. 

Weather is dynamic and changeable in winter, and the light displays a very special quality. Weather fronts come and go, rolling in from the Atlantic and providing dramatic variable atmospheric and light conditions. Snow, sun, broken clouds, storms and clear night skies can all make their appearance within just a few days, changing the mood of the landscape at every minute, never duplicating the exact same conditions.

One highly important aspect of this trip is the preparation. It is absolutely true that bad weather means good weather for photography. However, nobody can appreciate the atmosphere, mystery and drama of the north, let alone engage in creative photography, when cold, wet or ill prepared. This is why it is extremely important that you bring a good layered system of clothing which will keep you warm and dry. We strongly advise you to bring merino wool thermal underwear (shirt and leggings), a second and third layer of fleece and down (upper and lower clothing) and an outer garment that is totally impervious consisting of jacket and trousers which allow breathing but will keep you dry inside. Hats, gloves and a balaclava as well as good socks will be important too. There is no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate gear and badly prepared trips!

Rafael Rojas

"Learn with Rafael Rojas Master Hasselblad photographer and former University lecturer"

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 prestigious Master Hasselblad 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 is 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

Accompanied by Anca Minican, codirector and cofounder of WHYTAKE.NET - The Global Community of Nature PhotographersTM

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 is 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...

 

Which are the official languages for this photo-trip?
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!

We will be well above the arctic circle... will I freeze to death?
Certainly not. Even though Senja is easily inside the Arctic Circle, the Gulf Stream bathes its shores, bringing fairly warm temperatures considering its latitude. In winter, we may experience temperatures of around -5°C, particularly early in the morning, late in the evening or up in the mountains, but even temperatures above zero can be experienced during the day.

The weather in Norway is Atlantic in temperament; unpredictable and very dynamic. Fronts come and go, bringing highly varied light and weather conditions. This means that snow showers will surely occur at some point during our stay, providing us with wonderful photographic opportunities.

There is an old adage which says “There is no such thing as cold weather, only inappropriate clothing!” Absolutely everybody can comfortably enjoy and photograph the winter wonderland of Senja, provided he/she is well prepared in terms of clothing. As part of the learning experience of this trip, we will assist you and explain how to dress so that you can fully enjoy the magical environment and photograph the treasures of this winter wonderland.

Is this trip available for all photographic levels?
Yes. This Photo 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 a 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. Otherwise, you may also wish 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 Trip to the Hebrides we will hold a special workshop session on the basic technical use of a DSRL for all our beginner participants.

What clothing should I bring?
Good clothing and equipment is essential for this photographic trip. No matter how little you like cold temperatures, if you follow our recommendations you will be able to fully enjoy and photograph with zero problems. It is very important that you bring a layered system of clothing. Here below we list the different necessary elements:

- Comfortable winter boots/shoes for trekking, with a well gripping sole. These boots should be especially suitable for winter. It is very important that they are not too tight, since that will accentuate the loss of heat. We recommend boots specially designed for cold temperatures such as Kamik or Sorel or Baffin.
- Thermal underwear. Merino wool is recommended, such as Icebreaker 260 or 300 shirts.
- Polar fleece
- Down inner jacket, ideally with bonnet
- Outer down parka with bonnet. We recommend parkas filled with natural goose down of 800 or 900. For example, the Batura Summit of RAB or similar.
- Balaclava.
- Chemical thermal packs for hands and feet (optional)
- One or two layers of gloves.
- This layered system should also be used for your lower clothing: Merino wool leggings, down trousers and some heavy duty ski over-trousers which serve to protect you from the wind and snow.
- A pair of thick wool socks allowing some free space between the feet and the boots.

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. For this photo trip, it might be useful to bring a fast lens, particularly wide, which gives good performance wide open (f1.8, f1.4 or at least a good f2.8) for the photography of the Northern Lights. Please refer to the Checklist document where we mention photographic and non photographic equipment necessary for this trip.

Do I need to have travel insurance?
It is a condition of booking that you are insured against medical and personal accident risks valid for the place and time of the Photo Trip. This must include cover for the activities to be undertaken during the trip. We also strongly recommend you take out cover for cancellation and curtailment and baggage cover.

Can I bring my non-photographing spouse or companion with me?
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 beauty of the isle of Harris. Same rates apply as for photographer participants.

Do I need to be very fit to participate?
You certainly do not need to be a superman or superwoman, but as a general guide you should be able to walk or hike with your camera equipment for a few hours each day. Please refer to the details of a particular workshop or Photo Trip to learn the exact level of physical exertion you may expect.

If I have a medical condition will this prevent me from joining a trip?
It is a condition of booking that you disclose any medical conditions. This is essential, as it may affect both your own and other people's enjoyment of the workshop and will allow us to understand the implications relative to the particular trip.

What if I shoot film, can I join one of these Photo Immersion trips?
Yes, there is no problem at all. However, we may not use your photographs during the critique sessions as we cannot see them until they are developed! That being said, you will be able to benefit from the reviews of photographs from Rafael and other participants. What we are able to do though is to offer film users a review/ feedback video, to be made during the several weeks following the photographic trip after you have sent us a few samples of your recently developed and scanned work.

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. 


Can the group turn into a competition to see who creates the best photograph?
No. Our whole philosophy is one of humility and self confidence, of forgetting about the hunt for photographic trophies, and about the need to focus on an individualÂ’s personal vision. That is why the environment and mood we foster in our groups is deeply embedded in these beliefs. In all the workshops and photo trips we have organised during the last few years, we have never seen bitter competition arise between the members of our groups. If one day that should happen, you can be sure we will be the first to make it disappear. Photography should not be a contest, since we are all different, none better or worse.

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J.Bognar - Hungary
  • I thought this photo tour would be a good one, but indeed it's been one of the best, probably the best one, I have ever taken part. Your professionalism is exceptional, the way you treat and give support to every participant is outstanding. Its been a pleasure to me to have the talks with you about photography. On top of this, Anca's attention to all details has been superior. Thanks to her too! Looking forward to seeing you again soon!
  • Sandrine Cavin - Switzerland
  • A photo-immersion trip with Rafael & Anca is not only a great photography experience. ItÂ’s also a friendly atmosphere without forgetting lots of laugh, amazing organizational skills to make each and everyone at ease! I can only recommend to go and experience itÂ’s worth more than words.
  • Phil Fontana - USA
  • This was my first trip with Anca and Rafael and I found the experience way beyond my anticipation. These are genuinely good people. The effort they put to the details of organization and personal attention to each person in the group provided a warm and welcoming atmosphere during the whole time. Not only is Rafael a great artist but he is also a very patient and attentive teacher. I highly recommend a trip with these folks, so much so that I have already signed up for another trip next year.
  • John Erskin - South Africa
  • We were very impressed with the meticulous way in which Rafael attended to the selection of photographic locations and Anca dealt with the logistical side of the trip. We found Rafael and Anca to be delightful companions and, by the end of the trip, real friends. It became apparent during the various image capture sessions, as well as during the image processing sessions, that the secret of RafaelÂ’is very evident expertise is his remarkable attention to detail.
  • Sunil Patel - New Zealand
  • This was my first photo trip and the experience provided by Rafael and Anca was one that has inspired me to go for more. I travelled from the other side of the world (New Zealand) to reach Lofoten with no expectations in my mind as to what I would see and feel. I found the overall learning experience very valuable, challenging my own style of photography and bettering my understanding of processing techniques. Rafael has an amazing eye for structuring photos and he shows you shots that are easily missed by the untrained eye. I would certainly recommend attending one of RafaelÂ’s photo trips.
  • P. Conesa - Spain
  • For me it was an unforgettable trip, largely exceeding my expectations. As a photographic experience it helped me to reflect and look for a more personal, intimate and emotional kind of photography and, as Rafael said so often, look for the photographs inside of my photographs... Thanks my friends.
  • Nathalie Capitan - Switzerland
  • Thanks to Rafael for all the shared knowledge, his enthusiasm, his great sense of humour and the professionalism! I learned a lot, met wonderful people passionate about photography and nature, everything in a very friendly mood. Thanks to Anca for all the attention to detail and for taking care of us all! See you very soon for more adventures together. I am a true fan!
  • J. Van Marcke, Belgium
  • The photo immersion trip was an exceptional experience. Due to the very small group size everyone receives a very personal attention to develop his photographic skills, not only on the field but also the critique sessions and post processing where very helpful. Not only the professionalism of Rafael, but also the other aspects of the trip such as the choice of diversity in shooting locations, the excellent lodging facilities and food, the personal attention of Anca for the “non- photographic” needs of everyone of us, the humor and group dynamism with which Rafael and Anca fuel everyoneÂ’s enthusiasm are the extra assets that made this trip unforgettable. Believe me, these people are 200% engaged and passionate in what they do ! I am really looking forward to go on another trip with them.
  • J. Thies - Germany
  • Anca and Rafael are one of the two friendliest people I know and their good sense of humour makes the trips with them very pleasant. Going out on a trip with Rafael is one of the most rewarding photographic experiences because he readily shares his ample knowledge and experience which will almost certainly make you a better photographer.
  • L. Thomas - USA
  • Rafael took care to tailor his workshop to the needs of each participant, independent of their level. I felt he spent the necessary time with me and always came around to proactively ask and SEE how I was doing. I never felt alone or abandoned. He was sincerely interested in insuring each participant came out with great photographs.

    I was amazed that he did not use his camera during the workshop. That made it clear to me that this was about OUR photographs, not his. This is rare , and I have never taken a workshop were the leader was not spending any time on his/her photographs.

    The entire workshop was well organized and the accommodation and food were above what I expected. He does not skimp on anything.

    He was totally prepared ahead of time, knew the upcoming weather and tailored each session perfectly based on that.

    Therefore, many languages were served. Anca was super-friendly and a valuable part of the entire affair.

    Highly recommended!
  • J.S. Jacquet - France
  • The photo-trip was a real success, with lots of unforgettable moments, both photographing and with the rest of the group. Rafael and Anca are a dream team for this kind of photographic trips. They are always surpassing your needs and expectations, with top-notch photographic coaching and a wonderful kindness.
  • Aubra Franklin, USA
  • The entire trip was perfectly orchestrated from start to finish. Whether a novice or serious photographer, Rafael and Anca masterfully meet each participants needs. I am continually inspired by Rafael's passion for his craft and his unique ability and desire to share his considerable knowledge. It is a gift. Rafael and Anca are the consummate hosts. I left enriched, fulfilled, made some fantastic photographs, and now have memories that will last a lifetime.
  • Yves Curchod, Switzerland
  • Rafael and Anca are jovial, methodical, multilingual and determined organizers, with enormous attention to detail and always striving for perfection, radiating a positive atmosphere. Rafael's photographic eye and qualities as a patient teacher have deeply contributed to the improvement of my photographic work, not only in the field, but also at post-processing. A total success!
  • Jean Cognard, France
  • Not only is Rafael a very talented photographer, but he also knows how to coach and foster his participants' photographic work. His enthusiastic passion for photography is highly contagious! A top-notch photographic trip! Thanks so much to both of you! I am looking forward to seeing you again.
  • Yvonne & RenĂ© Hick, Belgium
  • The itinerary, the places and the timing chosen by Rafael and Anca for this photo-trip made it border on the sublime. Rafael and Anca's attention to detail turned this trip into an unforgettable experience. Congratulations and thanks so much to both of you.
  • Justine Epars, Switzerland
  • Mind-boggling landscapes, an unforgettable group of people, lots of laughs, a perfect organization of the trip and magical souvenirs which made this photo-trip unforgettable! A huge thank you to Rafael and Anca for all these magical moments and see you again!
  • S. Schild - Switzerland
  • Excellent photographic workshops! Personalized and passionate tuition, gorgeous ambiance, field instruction mixed with feedback and critique of the photographs taken...After many workshops made with them, I never stop learning and it is always a great pleasure to come back with Rafael and Anca! All the teaching is tailored to each of the participants and of great quality, and the good sense of humor never abandons Rafael and Anca. The workshops are planned with a lot of thought, and we are always in the right place at the right time. The only problem is...all workshops and trips are quickly sold out!
  • David Meylan, Switzerland
  • I would like to say a huge thank you to both of you for this magnificent photo-trip. The organisation was faultless, the logistics perfect (accommodation and food) and the lessons of photography of an extraordinary quality.

    I must say that I have immensely appreciated this workshop and that I learnt a lot of things. Your contagious enthusiasm and your continuous good mood at all moments were extremely motivating. I encourage you to keep on the good work and I would be looking forward to joining you again in a future photo-trip.
  • Luke Classen, USA
  • Having never been on a photo-trip before I did not know what to expect and was somewhat apprehensive of the anticipated trip...but to my delight and amazement, it was outstanding. Rafael and Anca were the perfect hosts and had made sure that every little detail was provided which resulted in a photo-trip of a lifetime that will never be forgotten. And, I would not hesitate to sign up again for another incredible experience!
  • Marie-Eve Glasson, Switzerland
  • Unforgettable photo-trip, not only for the places chosen by Rafael but for his top-notch organization ! Incredible accommodation in lodges ideally placed to maximize the photographic opportunities. Rafael knew how to pass on to us his passion for photography and his detailed knowledge about all places we photographed. The photographic tuition was perfectly integrated into the different photographic sessions in a very practical way, without it becoming too academic or theoretical !
  • Bernard Dupas, Switzerland
  • Breathtaking landscapes, unbelievable lodges, a perfect organization... Rafael and Anca have offered us a magical photo-trip, out of this time, which remains with you long after it is finished...

    Sharing a couple of weeks with a group of strangers is always a tricky thing...but not a problem at all with Rafael and Anca, who knew how to create a great ambiance in the group and foster the complicity of all its members.

    In terms of photography, the sheer variety of the places chosen by Rafael, his permanent implication and his effective photographic tuition elevated the quality of this experience to a higher level.
  • A. Franklin - USA
  • My wife and I recently spent 5 days with Rafael Rojas touring and photographing while on a private workshop. If you are interested in elevating your photography to another level, I would highly recommend spending some time with Rafael. He is a true artist, has a very unique approach and vision from visualization to the digital darkroom and has the amazing ability to communicate and teach in a very articulate manner. His passion is contagious; it was an incredible photographic learning experience. I am looking forward to our next private workshop next summer!
  • J. Stern - USA
  • The workshop provided me with an intensive, exciting, and highly personal experience. It taught me a lot about landscape photography and technical and aesthetic aspects of photography. It helped me to "see" in a different way, both at the time of taking the photograph and in looking at my pictures after. Rafael and Anca were always attentive to each of our individual needs and delightful company. They set the tone for a warm and fun learning and social experience.
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    Photo trip 2018 Senja, arctic light

    • Place: Senja island, Norway
    • Date: 18th - 24th February 2018
    • Price: 3,970 CHF
    • Deposit: 1,500 CHF
    • Number of Places: 6
    • Language: EN, FR
    available

    phototrip highlights

      Winter in Senja is pure magic. Twilights are never ending and the golden light lingers for hours.  We will still have many hours of sunlight during the workshop.
      Senja is about diversity. We will photograph mountains, shorelines, forests under the snow, the night sky, the northern lights, high plateaus covered in white, isolated colourful houses, a myriad of details, the arctic twilight...
      Get ready for the possibility of photographing the Northern Lights. Senja is ideally situated to observe and photograph this incredible phenomenon as it is much further North than other places such as the Lofoten Islands.
      Senja is a wonderful place to photograph not only in colour, but also in black and white. Patterns, shapes, textures and the unique atmosphere of winter can be ideally rendered in monochrome.

    difficulty level: Easy
    photography level: All

    PDF brochure