Peru Photography Expedition
From its breathtaking natural landscapes to its charming people in their vibrant hats and shawls, Peru is a place that will tug at your heartstrings – and have you pointing your camera at every turn.
After this expedition, not only will you come away with a real passion for Cusco and Machu Picchu – having discovered it with a photographer’s eye – but you’ll also learn all the ins and outs you need to take and sell amazing photos.
This focus of this expedition is to improve your photographic skills and show you how to get your images into magazines. Whether you have little experience and modest equipment or you’re already a talented amateur photographer, you’ll really benefit.
The bottom line is: You don’t need to have a $1,000 camera to take photos you can sell for $150, $500, or more. And this May 22-27, 2015 in Peru, we’ll show you exactly how it’s done.
Instructor Efrain Padro is a full-time professional photographer specializing in travel photography. On the ground, over these six days, with Efrain right by your side, you’ll discover everything you need to:
- Capture the best possible pictures every time – no matter what kind of camera you have
- Get dramatic improvements in the photos you take, without having to digest your camera manual
- Take a great shot each time, thanks to pro tips on composition, shooting at different times of the day, and how to get great photos under compromised conditions
- Make your photos even more saleable in a matter of minutes with just a couple of photo editing tweaks
- Discover how to research and find the appropriate magazines to market your work, including the best places to get started
- Use Efrain’s insider advice to prepare your submissions and maximize your chances of selling your pictures
- Return home with the skills and know-how to sell the photos you take on this trip
On a camera-in-the-hand, boots-on-the-ground expedition like this, you’ll learn in a fun way among new friends, and you’ll absorb the skills faster than you could ever imagine!
In your down time, you’ll have a chance to weave your way through bustling markets and take home some wonderful treasures. You’ll also want to savor some traditional street fare like anticucho (deliciously cooked meat on a skewer—though you might want to give the “cow heart” variety a miss), salchipapa (a sliced Peruvian hot dog with fries, smothered in ketchup, mayo, mustard, and aji sauce) or the ever-present and popular roast pork sandwich.
You’ll benefit from unique one-on-one instruction on a daily basis, both during shoots and in review sessions. It’s this kind of learning experience that can improve your skills in record time. You’ll also learn about which types of subjects sell best for editorial in magazines, including architecture, people, landscapes and still life (food, signs, etc.).
Almost every day, there’ll be special group photo reviews, where you’ll learn what you’re already doing well – and what you can do to improve your photos and bump up your success.
When the expedition is over and you’ve returned home, you’ll have access to pre-recorded videos that show the ins and outs of photo editing software like Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop – so even your less-than-perfect shots can be sold for a byline and a check.
To turn 2015 into the year you transform your life, join us in Cusco and Machu Picchu and learn how you can pursue your photography passions – and get paid to do it!
Day 1 (Friday)—Introductions and Short Presentation
We’ll meet in the afternoon in the hotel lobby to enjoy a cup of coca tea and get right down to business. After introductions, an overview of the upcoming schedule and looking through some of Efrain’s favorite shots of Cusco, you’ll be eager to get out and explore. But before you do, he’ll take you step-by-step through the right camera settings and show you how you can use your camera to turn an average vacation snapshot into a photo worthy of wall space and a magazine cover.
Later in the week, you’ll also learn what you need to be a magazine travel photographer – and how to go about finding a market for your photographs.
You’re a free agent for dinner tonight, but if you’re up for it, some of us will be hitting a restaurant near Cusco’s historic Plaza de Armas.
Day 2 (Saturday)—Qorikancha and Sacsayhuaman
This morning you’ll wander with the group through the cobbled streets of Cusco, where Spanish Colonial architecture meets the ancient Inca walls, to reach Qorikancha, or the “Temple of the Sun.” You’ll enjoy playing around with your camera at the most important place of worship in the Inca Empire. The Inca temple has been converted into the Church of Santo Domingo, but the interior still features the best example of Inca architecture in South America.
This afternoon, you’ll get an extra special South American treat: a chocolate truffle making class at Choco Museo, the Cusco chocolate museum. Together, we’ll make and photograph chocolate truffles in one of the best cacao-growing countries in the world. Of course, you can either offer your truffles as gifts to friends, or keep them to eat yourself!
But that’s not all. We’ll wind down the day with a twilight shoot at the Plaza de Armas, and you’ll have a chance to explore more local restaurants and bars (depending on your energy levels).
Day 3 (Sunday)—Pisac Market and Inca Ruins
This morning, we’ll head to the charming colonial village of Pisac to photograph its colorful Sunday Market, which featured both an artisans market and a locals market. Here you can feast your eyes (through your lens) at alpaca clothing, carved wooden figures, and leather goods in the artisans market, while you’ll find fresh fruits and vegetables, flowers, dyes, and more among the locals’ offerings.
Pisac’s Sunday Market is also a great place to photograph Quechua Indians dressed in traditional clothing, and even get a glimpse of local elders as they arrive at the church for a mass in the Quechua language. You’ll also find some pretty special gifts for friends and family back home.
After lunch, we’ll make our way to the Inca ruins above town. Best known for agricultural terraces, the Pisac ruins also boast a ceremonial center, temples, and spectacular views of the Urubamba Valley below. After our visit to Pisac, we’ll take our van back to the hotel in Cusco, arriving late afternoon.
This evening, we’ll unwind while looking at our photos with another group review and lesson at the hotel.
Day 4 (Monday)—Ollantaytambo and Machu Picchu
Today we’ll head to the village of Ollantaytambo, the best example of Inca city planning with its narrow cobblestone streets flanked by Inca granite walls. Inhabited since the 13th Century, “Ollanta,” as the locals call it, is located in the shadow of the Ollantaytambo Ruins and represents the only place where the Incas won a major battle against the Spanish conquistadores. Here, you’ll climb the ruins’ terraced hillside, visit its temples and housing complex, and enjoy panoramic views of the Urubamba Valley and the town below.
After lunch, we’ll hop a train to Machu Picchu, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the best known archaeological site on the continent. Our 90-minute train ride will take us through the spectacular river gorge as the Vilcanota River cuts its way down towards the Amazon. Our ride ends in Aguas Calientes, a small village with a funky vibe that serves as the base for visitors to Machu Picchu.
After checking into our hotel, we’ll take a bus to Machu Picchu, the fabled Inca city that was never found by the Spaniards and virtually forgotten until its “rediscovery” in 1911. Inside the citadel, you’ll spend some time photographing the site’s many ancient temples, housing complexes, plazas, tombs, baths, and more. Imagine yourself, camera (and expert) by your side as you capture the magic of Machu Picchu in your own unforgettable images. What an amazing experience!
After this jam-packed day, you can relax at your own pace, with dinner at one of the restaurants near the hotel. Warning: This is not a night to stay out too late.
Day 5 (Tuesday)—Machu Picchu and Cusco
This morning, we’ll be up early to catch the very first bus to Machu Picchu. You’ll get to experience the awe-inspiring beauty of Machu Picchu at first light from the famous overlook offering the “classic” view of the ancient ruins. After a full morning of exploring and photographing Machu Picchu, we’ll take the bus to Aguas Calientes to grab some lunch.
Next we’ll return to Cusco, where you can relax in your hotel room and select some images for our final group review and lesson.
Day 6 (Wednesday)—Chinchero and Urubamba
This morning, we’ll drive about 30 minutes to the Village of Chinchero for a weaving demonstration by Quechua women artisans. The weavers will explain how they prepare, dye, and finish the wool, how they make soap, and more. You’ll be free to photograph the entire process. Afterward, you’ll have the opportunity to buy some of these beautiful textiles directly from the artisans.
After visiting the weavers, we will drive another 30 minutes to Urubamba, where we’ll visit the ceramics workshop of world-renowned potter Pablo Seminario, who has developed a unique style by combining ancient forms and techniques with a modern aesthetic. While at the shop, you’ll be free to photograph artisans working on different stages of making ceramics. Afterward, you’ll have time to stock up on ceramics from the gift shop.
You’ll have time to get lunch at a restaurant in Urubamba. After lunch, we’ll drive back to Cusco, arriving late afternoon.
Before dinner, we’ll have a presentation on how to get your work published in magazines, with tips from Efrain on how to find magazines, how to approach them, how to submit your work for maximum impact, and more.
To end the evening, we’ll get together for our farewell dinner (on us) at Chicha, one of the best-loved restaurants in town.
Day 7 (Thursday)—Departures
Fly home from Peru, or extend your visit in this extraordinary country and do some exploring on your own.
Note: Our workshop schedules are always subject to change due to weather, construction, and other unpredictable events. The primary focus of this workshop is on photography and areas that are good for travel photographs.
Efrain, who’ll be your guide in Peru, brings with him many years of photography experience. He’s created a systematic approach to learning photography that anyone can follow without fancy equipment or years of training. The information you’ll gain at this workshop could, quite literally, change your life!
Pricing and What’s Included
Full Price: $3,897 per person
Early Bird Discount: Save $300 with our Early Bird Discount when you sign up before February 20. Pay just $3,597* with this $300 Early Bird Discount.
(*Note: Additional discounts may apply. You can click through to the registration form below to learn more.)
Easy Payment Plan: If you’d like to take advantage of our easy payment plan, you can register today for just $800 down.
Here’s how it works:
- Reserve a seat on the expedition for just $899 when you put your name on our attendee list by February 20 at midnight.
- When you do, you’ll automatically lock in the discounted workshop price of only $3,597* – a full $300 savings for you! (*Note: Additional discounts may apply.)
- For each of the three months to follow, we’ll bill your credit card for $899. So you spread out the payments comfortably between now and when the workshop starts in May.
The registration fee for the workshop includes:
- Admission to six days of intensive class sessions geared to produce photos you can sell
- All walking photo tours, plus optional sunrise and night shoots
- Special presentations and live demonstrations by highly regarded photographer Efrain Padro, plus plenty of attention and hands-on help in the field
- Transportation to and from all photo shoots
- Six nights’ hotel accommodation
- A special farewell dinner at a favorite restaurant in Cusco
Your Registration Does NOT Include:
- Meals not listed already listed above (allow $20 a day, depending on whether you want fine-dining experiences or local eats)
- Airfare to and from Peru
- Airport transfers
- Equipment – you must bring your own camera and accessories (e.g., memory cards, tripod, etc.)
To ensure you get plenty of time with our expert Efrain, this expedition is limited to 12 people only. In fact, this may be the only photo expedition we ever offer in Peru. We strongly urge you to sign up today. It could be years before you get another opportunity to explore Peru with such a small group of like-minded people – and with an expert photographer by your side!
Efraín M. Padró is a full-time professional photographer specializing in nature and travel subjects. Born and raised in San Juan,... [Read More]
About our expedition trips:
“These workshops are a wonderful opportunity to travel to a new locale and explore while learning a new skill.”
– Sandra M.
“The workshop was fun. I learned a lot. I met interesting people, and I became excited about trying to make money from photography. The workshop is an excellent value and provides information that is difficult to acquire in other ways. It was an excellent opportunity to try different kinds of photography.”
– Susan H.
About the expert:
“Efrain is very knowledgeable and easy to talk to. He explains everything so that you understand, and he has a lot of patience.”
– Linda Brooks
“Efrain was wonderful – so easygoing and helpful. He spent so much time helping everyone one-on-one. He also has a great teaching style – he’s super humorous. I loved him!”
– Lynn Michels
“Efrain is very knowledgeable and approachable, very involved with students and willing to share his secrets. He gave the best tips of the trade.”
– Joy Spring
“Efrain Padro was a 10! He is a very dynamic speaker and brought great new knowledge and ideas on getting published.”
– Sarita Simmons
You’ll find this expedition fast-paced and fun, and you really will see this destination in a way you never could as a regular tourist. We have a full itinerary planned for each day and most of the workshop will be done out and about on foot, so you’ll need to be prepared for high activity throughout the week.
What to Bring:
- Your passport
- Your camera
- Spare batteries and charger (plus an adapter and/or transformer if needed)
- Spare memory cards
- Your laptop
- Extra memory or external hard drive, if you have one
- Layers and comfortable shoes for walking
NOTE: This is a high-activity expedition with daily walking on uneven ground and some hills and stair climbing. Also bear in mind that Cusco and the surrounding area are located at high altitude.