Photo Workshops and Tours

Chris Nicholson is a leader and instructor of workshops and photo tours. He is also a partner and workshop leader with National Parks at Night, a group of five photographers (including Gabriel Biderman, Tim Cooper, Lance Keimig and Matt Hill) who lead night-photography workshops throughout the park system.

“Chris is a great teacher. Patient, supportive and right there if we had questions.” — Karen G., New Jersey


Upcoming Workshops

Scotland—The Hebrides

Scotland—The Hebrides Photography Tour, May 13-23, 2018

Come explore and photograph some of Scotland’s most interesting places and dramatic landscapes on this first of National Parks at Night’s photo tours of the islands of Scotland. The Hebrides are a widespread and diverse archipelago off the west coast of the mainland. The culture of the residents has been affected by the successive influences of Celtic-, Norse- and English-speaking peoples. We will spend our time on the largest of the inner Hebrides, the Isle of Skye, and the largest of the outer Hebrides, Lewis and Harris. The history of these islands is ever-present in the landscape in the form of Neolithic, Mesolithic and Iron Age archaeological sites. We will explore cultures past and present along with the stunningly diverse landscapes we’ll encounter along the way.

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Redwood National Park

Redwood National Park Night Photography Adventure Workshop, June 25-30, 2018

Redwood National and State Parks is composed of three distinct environments—a rocky coastline with steep cliffs and the ubiquitous coastal fog, upland prairies, and of course the magnificent redwood forests that give the park its name. During this workshop, you’ll have the opportunity to develop your night photography skills in all three.

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Blue Ridge Parkway

Blue Ridge Parkway Night Photography Adventure Workshop, July 29-August  4

The night is falling, and the road is calling. And we will be there, driving and photographing America’s greatest scenic byway. When the sun fades, we’ll bring our cameras along the 469-mile ribbon of national parkland that stretches atop mountain ridges, through farming communities, past historic cabins and mills, alongside meadows and more, while the stars and moon gently shine on the great blacktop river called Blue Ridge Parkway.

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Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park Night Photography Adventure Workshop, September 15-20, 2018

Within the wilds of Rocky Mountain National Park lie alpine lakes, boulder-strewn tundra, aspen groves that turn gold in fall, and a Milky Way so radiant that you’ll feel you could reach to the sky and brush it with your fingertips. We will venture together into the mountains to photograph all this and more, in one of the most wondrous landscapes in all the national parks.

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Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark

Sloss Furnaces, November 15-18

The focus of this night photography workshop will be a deep dive into light painting, composition, and black and white photography. Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark is an incredible hulk of 20th century metal machinery located on the eastern edge of downtown Birmingham, Alabama. Don’t expect to see many stars in the city, however we will use moonlight and light painting to breathe fire back into the furnaces.

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Death Valley National Park

Death Valley After Dark: Astronomy and Photography in the Backcountry w/ Atlas Obscura, December 5-9, 2018

Designated one of the world’s best Dark Sky Parks by the International Dark-Sky Association, Death Valley National Park boasts some of the most striking scenery and brightest constellations in America. Our intrepid crew of night photographers and novice stargazers will be joined by accomplished astronomer Tyler Nordgren and National Parks at Night photographer Chris Nicholson for backcountry exploration and learning.

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For future workshops, subscribe to the Photographing National Parks newsletter to be among the first to see the announcement.

Private Workshops & Tours

Chris is also available for private photography tours, workshops or tutoring in any of the 59 national parks or other beautiful spaces. Topics covered are limited only by Chris’ knowledge-base and whatever the participant(s) would like to learn. For more information, please contact Chris directly.

Past Workshops

Iceland South Coast

Iceland South Coast Photography Tour, March 12-20, 2018

This photo tour will take us along the famous south coast of Iceland, where we will experience the capital city of Reykjavik, bizarre geothermal landscapes, magnificent waterfalls, glacial lagoons, an ice cave, and, with luck, the northern lights. Iceland has seen a huge surge in tourism in recent years, and we will strive to find a balance between getting you to the most important locations, but also some off-the-beaten-path places that are much less visited but equally as interesting.

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Olympic National Park

Night Photography Adventure Workshop in Olympic National Park, September 17-22, 2017
Photograph on the rugged mountains, in the vibrant rainforests and along the pristine coastline of Washington state’s Olympic Peninsula, in one of the most beautiful and diverse national parks in the U.S.

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Olympic National Park

Night Photography Adventure Workshop in Olympic National Park, September 24-29, 2017
A second week in one of Chris’ favorite national parks! Photograph on the rugged mountains, in the vibrant rainforests and along the pristine coastline of Washington state’s Olympic Peninsula, in one of the most beautiful and diverse national parks in the U.S. Details will be announced soon.

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Cape Cod National Seashore

Night Photography Adventure Workshop at Cape Cod National Seashore, May 21-24, 2017
Photograph the open sand dunes, regal lighthouses, quaint cottages and quiet seaside villages of Cape Cod National Seashore, one of the natural gems of New England. Lance Keimig and I will be leading this mid-spring workshop during the prime of Milky Way season, and during the dark skies of the nights leading up to the new moon. Though we will cover night photography in general, there will be an emphasis on lighthouses and Milky Way panoramas.

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Cuyahoga Valley National Park

Night Photography Adventure Workshop in Cuyahoga Valley National Park, May 7-12, 2017
Cuyahoga Valley is one of the most visited national parks in the country, and also one of the most unique. It combines stunning natural scenes with rural features, such as railroad depots, farms, historic structures, covered bridges and old cemeteries, granting the photographer a nearly endless buffet of subjects to photograph at night.

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Joshua Tree National Park

Night Photography Adventure Workshop in Joshua Tree National Park, April 21-26, 2017
Joshua Tree National Park encompasses sections of two different deserts—the Mojave and the Colorado—both full of opportunities for remarkable images. Chris will join Lance Keimig in this park with diverse land features and legendary dark skies—ideal for a memorable night photography workshop. Workshop archive page:

Death Valley National Park

Night Photography Adventure Workshop in Death Valley National Park, November 15-19, 2016
One of the darkest skies to be found in America, full of extreme conditions and opportunity for remarkable images. This class is for those looking to expand their photographic horizons, recharge their creative batteries, share ideas with friends and colleagues, and to go home with some exciting images from this unique landscape. Workshop archive page:

Acadia National Park

Night Photography Adventure Workshop in Acadia National Park, May 2-6, 2016
This late-spring workshop in Acadia National Park will entail five nights of photographing some of the most beautiful scenery on the New England coast. The experience will begin under a waning crescent moon, and will culminate under the dark skies of a new moon and the peak of the Eta Aquarids meteor shower. Celestial conditions will be perfect for photographing the Milky Way over iconic Acadia scenes such as Eagle Lake and Monument Cove. Workshop archive page: