The Eastern Sierra

Eighth Annual Photo Workshop with Keith Skelton

JUNE 14 - 17,  2012


This workshop will take you to one of the world’s most photogenic locations: the landscape of the Eastern Sierra Range. We will photograph places such as Bodie, Mono Lake, Silver Lake, and more. This workshop is open to of all levels of photography, using 35mm to large format, film and/or digital. You will be totally immersed with photography for three days of learning and fun.

Early summer is one of the best times to visit and photograph this area. The Aspen leaves are bright green and the streams are rushing with fresh snow melt. Wildflowers abound in the high meadows. For those who have not been to this part of the Eastern Sierras you will be in for a big treat. It is one of the most scenic locations in the world.


This workshop will mostly be about practicing and perfecting your craft. We will have daily discussions about "seeing", pre-visualization, and techniques. You will be shooting sunrises, sunsets, closeups, reflections, night scenes, wildlife and much more. We will also present you a few exercises to help get your creativity flowing. These will be beneficial for all levels of photography experience. We will also spend time reviewing HDR, digital work flow, Camera RAW, and processing digital pictures. There will be some time dedicated to viewing your photography.

Bodie California is one of the best preserved ghost towns in the United States. Bodie is a state park of California, and the exterior is open to the public. There is a minimal charge for admission.

Mono Lake (rhymes with "OH no") is the largest natural lake completely within the state of California. Once endangered when water feeding it was diverted toward the Los Angeles basin, it lost half its volume in the 40 years before an agreement was reached to save it. The best-known feature of Mono Lake are its dramatic tufa (TWO-fuh) towers.

Day 1

The workshop starts Wednesday so we can take advantage of the full moon rising ver Mono Lake. We will meet in Lee Vining at 5 pm. If you cannot make it this day there will be opportunities for moon photography on June 16 as well.

Day 2

We will caravan over to the ghost town of Bodie. We will be there until around noon shooing photos. Since the days are long we can get some rest in the afternoon before heading back out again for evening photography.  Here is a link for more Bodie information.

That evening we will either shoot sunset at Olmsted Point inside Yosemite or a view of the Minarets from Mammoth Lakes.

Day 3

We will rise early in time for a sunrise shoot at Silver Lake which is only a few miles from Lee Vining. As the sun rises it illuminates Carson Peak casting a perfect reflection on the Lake. This makes for a classic photograph. It is also a good place to photograph subtle reflections and moving water.  After our shoot we will eat breakfast at the Silver Lake Resort Cafe which is a step back in time. They serve an awesome breakfast. Later that day we have a number of options including The Minarets or Tioga Pass.

Day 4

Shoot near Dunderberg Meadows, Mono Lake or Convict Lake. We will spend time reviewing pictures and going over Adobe Lightroom photo processing.

Day 5

Sunrise shoot. The workshop will conclude at 10 am.


Even though it will be summer, the evenings and mornings can get cool. Bring a warm jacket.

-Sturdy shoes

-Sun block


-Camera batteries and chargers

-Camera manuals

-Memory cards and /or portable hard drives

-Laptop if you have one

-Plenty of film for film photographers


Workshop participants are responsible their own accommodations at nearby resorts or motels. The most convenient place to stay is Lee Vining, but there are also places to stay at June Lake Loop. Try the the El Mono Inn or Murphey's Motel and Lake View Lodge in Lee Vining. Links to other hotels in town, as well as general information about the area can be found at the Mono Lake website.

Participants are responsible for arranging their own accommodations in Lee Vining.

Mono Lake

A few of the things you will photograph include:

-Mono Lake sunrise at the South Tufas

-One half day at Bodie

-Carson Peak reflecting into Silver Lake at sunrise

-Lundy Creek, Lee Vining Creek, Aspen Trees, Dunderberg Meadows wild flowers.

-Olmsted Point, Mammoth Lakes Minarets viewpoint

-Image review and Lightroom photo processing.

Mono Laker 2010