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Product Specifications

San Jose Camera & Video  On Assignment: Alabama Hills  

Main specs

Name of Class:  On Assignment: Alabama Hills

Length of Session:  Thursday, October 19th thru Sunday, October 22nd

Call for availability or to be added to waiting list.


San Jose Camera & Video-On Assignment: Alabama Hills-Classes
Description Specifications


Name of Class

On Assignment: Alabama Hills

Class Topics

“Nestled beneath the dramatic eastern scarp of the Sierra Nevada the Alabama Hills are a wonderland of granite boulders and arches that provide a feast for the aspiring photographers lens. This rich landscape of sculpted rock creates a spectacular foreground for towering Lone Pine Peak and Mt. Whitney. In this other worldly landscape many unique photographs can be teased out of the countless variety of whimsical shapes and figures created by the weathered rock.”  Paul Dileanis, Instructor


The Alabama Hills have long been a favorite of Photographers and the Motion Picture industry. Hundreds of movies and TV shows, beginning in the 1920s, have been filmed in and around the Alabama Hills. The Lone Ranger TV series, Gunga Din and more recent movies such as Gladiator just to name a few.


During this workshop you will have plenty of time to photograph some of the iconic Alabama Hills locations by both day and night. We will also have time to explore new photographic opportunities with the goal of creating images that express your own unique vision.


In this workshop you will learn tips for daylight and dusk photography, how to prepare and setup your camera for night shooting, plus proper exposure for a starry night sky and the Milky Way.


The emphasis during the workshop will be on shooting.  We will be visiting this area during the dark skies of the New Moon cycle.  The Milky Way will be visible after sunset. There are two afternoon presentations about image processing and planning for night photography adventures. We will be taking a break mid-day to rest up and get ready for the evening field work.


Topics covered:

  • How to focus your lens and use your camera at night
  • Understanding white balance/aperture/shutter speed/and ISO relationships
  • How to reduce noise
  • Equipment for night photography
  • Exposure for stars and star trails
  • Focusing in the dark
  • Reducing noise during long exposures
  • Light-painting techniques
  • Planning landscape and nighttime photographs
  • Using multiple exposures
  • Image-stacking for star trails
  • Processing nighttime photographs
  • Blending image stacks


The Workshop Fee Includes 2.5 days/3 nights of classroom and field instruction.

Lodging, meals, transportation, and park entrance fees (when applicable) are not included in the workshop fee. You are free to stay anywhere in the Lone Pine Area.


Dow Villa Hotel: The Instructor has reservations at the Dow Villa Hotel.  This is where the group will meet for presentations and critique sessions. The Hotel is holding 8 rooms for the workshop until September 28. For reservations visit or call 1-800-824-9317. 


Camping: Camping is free in the Alabama Hills (primitive campsites). Tuttle Creek Campground is $5.00 per night and has pit toilets. 


The workshop is limited to 8 photographers and is open to photographers of all levels; beginning to advanced (You must be at least 18 years of age).
As of 9/17/17 only 3 spots remain. 


Physical Requirements:  Much of this workshop will take place in the field and although the locations we will photograph are easily accessible from the road, you should be prepared for easy to moderate short hikes on uneven rocky terrain in the daylight and after dark. Good health and fitness will help maximize your experience. Paul is certified in wilderness first aid and CPR. Please contact the instructor if you have any concerns regarding the level of physical activity involved in the workshop. Your can reach the instructor via email



Thursday 10/19

  • 4 PM – Meet at Dow Villa Hotel in Lone Pine for workshop orientation.
  • 5 PM – Depart for Alabama Hills Sunset Photos
  • 7:30 to 9:00 PM – Alabama Hills Milky Way, stars and light painting


Friday 10/20

  • 6:15 AM – Sunrise Mobius Arch and Mt. Whitney.
  • 7 to 10 AM Explore and photograph intriguing rock formations and arches around Alabama Hills
  • 12:30 to 2 PM – Dow Villa Hotel presentation “Processing Milky Way Images in Lightroom” followed by image share and critique.
  • 4PM to Sunset – Movie Flat Road arches
  • 7:30 to 9:00 PM – Alabama Hills Milky Way, stars and light painting


Saturday 10/21

  • 6:15 AM – Movie Flats Arches.
  • 7 to 10 AM Explore and photograph intriguing rock formations and arches around Alabama Hills
  • 12:30 to 2 PM – Dow Villa Hotel presentation “Planning and preparing for a Landscape Photography Adventure” followed by image share and critique.
  • 4PM to Sunset – Movie Flat Road arches
  • 7:30 to 9:00 PM – Alabama Hills Milky Way, stars and light painting

Sunday 10/22

  • 6:15 AM – Sunrise Mobius Arch and Mt. Whitney.
  • 11 AM Workshop officially over. Hotel Checkout


Required Equipment:

  • A DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera capable of shooting in RAW format
  • Extra camera body – if you have one
  • Lenses ranging from wide angle to telephoto
  • One wide angle lens should be at least 24mm or wider, and f/2.8 or faster. (You can rent lenses and camera bodies from San Jose Camera for the workshop if needed.)
  • Sturdy tripod
  • Memory cards – at least 32GB in total
  • Remote release or intervalometer
  • Extra camera battery(s)
  • Lens cleaning supplies
  • Camera manual
  • Headlamp (must include a red light) and flashlight
  • Warm/layered clothing, including gloves(it can get very cold)
  • Extra food and/or necessities you may require
  • Polarizing filter (optional)
  • Graduated neutral density filters (optional)
  • Laptop computer loaded with Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop. You will not need your computer during our shooting sessions, but I recommend you bring a laptop to the post processing tutorial. You can install a 30-day trial from Adobe.


Refund Policy:

Enrolling in a workshop is a commitment from you that you will be joining a workshop. Much time has been spent preparing this workshop, acquiring permits and arranging for lodging. Should it become necessary for you to cancel please be aware of the following;


  • More than 14 days before the workshop begins: Your workshop fee will be refunded less a $50.00 administration fee. If I am able to fill your space the administration fee is waived.
  • Less than 14 days before the workshop begins: No refunds will be given and your workshop fee is forfeited. If I can fill your space, your workshop fee will be refunded minus a $75.00 administration fee.

Other Notes:

Workshop content may change from that advertised based on weather, access to shooting locations, and other unforeseen situations. Whenever possible, registered students will be notified ahead of time of any changes.  I reserve the right to cancel any program that does not meet minimum participant requirements, in which case participants will be informed as soon as possible and all money will be refunded. Paul Dileanis and San Jose Camera are not responsible for any losses incurred as a result of a course cancellation. We encourage participants to purchase refundable airline tickets and consider purchasing trip cancellation insurance where applicable

Length of Session

Thursday, October 19th thru Sunday, October 22nd

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