Volcanoes Sun, Moon

Total Solar Eclipse with Landscape and StarScape Photography at Crater Lake National Park, Central Oregon and the Painted Hills.

with Stephen Johnson

August 16-21, 2017
6 days  $1800

(Lodging and Transportation not included, three nights campsite provided)


Registration by email

Photo-Adventure with Stephen to visit and photograph the awesome Crater Lake National Park in Oregon and take in a spectacular total eclipse of the sun to the north on the last day of the workshop. Extensive help with eclipse prep and photography as well as during our night photo opportunities.

Travel with Stephen to visit and photograph the spectacular Crater Lake National Park in Oregon. Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the United States at 1,943 feet (592 meters) and is located inside the caldera of ancient Mt. Mazama an ancient volcano that erupted and collapsed 7,700 years ago. The resulting caldera eventually filled with rain water and snow melt and is considered to be the cleanest and clearest large body of water in the world. There is a 33-mile (53-km) Rim Drive that encircles the lake with numerous pullouts offering dramatic views of the lake and the caldera walls. For a more intimate look at the lake there are guided boat tours each day and along with a optional walking tour of Wizard Island, a volcanic cone left over from a subsequent eruption.

On August 21, 2017, there will be a total solar eclipse that transits most of the United States. Historical weather conditions indicate that the central Oregon desert has the best likelihood of clear skies. We have a reserved a camping site inside the path of totality, that will allow us day trips during the days prior to the eclipse to various locations nearby. Sites we will visit are likely to be Newberry Crater, the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument Painted Hills Smith Rock State Park and perhaps even Mt. Hood. Our photo prep for the eclipse will be extensive, making sure you are very comfortable with your camera controls, exposure evaluation and exposure correction.

The workshop will be a dynamic combination of a traditional landscape photography workshop while diving deep into the digital age. Technical and aesthetic considerations will be discussed in detail. Our concentration will be on controlling your camera's operation to achieve your desired technical results, while building composition and visual skills to make the photograph what you want it to be. Exposure, contrast, composition, emotion and amazement-all will be part of our excursion into the evolving world of digital photography.

Workshop Links

NASA Eclipse Maps

NASA Eclipse Video Link

Brief Itinerary

Days 1-2 at Crater Lake with field trips, including night photography, optional boat tours, lectures, critiques and work sessions

Day 3 is in transit to eclipse site with landscape photography along the way. We will camp in our reserved site near the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument for 2 nights. Star photography session into the night.

Day 4-5 is exploring the area, critique, photo demonstrations and technical problem solving. Additional night photography.

Day 6 is the Total Eclipse of the Sun. Workshop concludes around noon.

The Workshop
We will spend our first half day preparing for our outings. Topics covered will be optimal digital camera use in a variety of formats, file size and printing considerations. Fieldwork will be around Crater Lake, in the surrounding mountains, and in the John Day Fossil Bed National Monument near the eclipse location. Beautiful views, intensive presentations and assistance will fill our days. During the evening, we will open files, review successes and challenges of the photographs made during the day, constantly going back in the field putting into practice lessons learned.

Digital exposure and dynamic range, color management, printers, papers and pigments, b&w and color, composition, emotion and amazement-all will be part of our ambitious 6-day excursion into the evolving world of digital photography.

Some eye protection precautions are necessary. You should never look at the sun directly. Eye Safety During a Total Solar Eclipse

Students are responsible for their own transportation and lodging for which we will provide details. Arrangements can be made for renting camping gear.


Painted Hills. John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. 2016 and 1987.


To Register
Registration fee must be paid in full to secure a spot in the class. A check is preferred. Please see refund/cancellation policy below.* Lodging arrangements at Crater Lake Lodge will need to be made under our reservation number. Details will be sent on enrollment.
Campsite at the eclipse site provided.

Additional information will be sent upon registration.

Registration by email.


Stephen Johnson

A photographer, teacher and designer, Stephen has been teaching and working in photography since 1977. His books include At Mono Lake, the critically acclaimed The Great Central Valley: California's Heartland and Making a Digital Book. He has run his own photography, publishing and design company since the late 1980s--digitally scanning and designing his photographic books using Macintosh computers since 1988 and photographing in the field with digital view cameras since 1994.

Current projects include With a New Eye, his groundbreaking and historic all digital national parks project, the acclaimed 2006 book Stephen Johnson On Digital Photography, new work Exquisite Earth, ongoing portfolio development and extensive lecturing.

Stephen's pioneering work in digital photography has included software and product development for clients such as Apple, Adobe, Epson, Kodak, Hewlett Packard, Leaf, Ricoh and SuperMac. His work with Adobe includes the creation of the duotone curves shipped with their Photoshop software.

His photographic clients have included the Ansel Adams Publishing Trust, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, and the Friends of Photography. Johnson's photographs have been widely published and collected internationally.

In 1999, Folio Magazine declared the publication of Johnson's digital photographs in Life Magazine to be one of the Top 15 Critical Events in magazine publishing in the twentieth century. Stephen Johnson was named as a 2003 inductee into the Photoshop Hall of Fame, recognized for his achievements in Art. Canon named Steve as one of their Explorers of Light in 2006. In 2007 X-Rite named Stephen as a founding member of their exclusive Coloratti group of photographers and educators honored for their skills in color management.

In 1997, Life Magazine described Stephen Johnson as an artist that "...applies science to nature and creates art." His images create "...an intimacy that brings subject and viewer close in ways conventional photographs cannot." 

The Photographer’s Gallery wrote in 1998: “Stephen Johnson's photography rides on the "bleeding edge" of photography's transition to a digital media. Schooled in the traditions of fine-art western landscape photography, Johnson has taken his understanding of traditional photographic processes and brought those skills to bear on the emerging technologies and aesthetics of digital photography. He has pushed technology companies to rise to the best of what imagemaking can be, and pushed his own vision of how we see and record light in the natural world. This has led him to conclude that the way we have traditionally captured images with silver-based photography has been a poor and distortive view of the real and rich world before our eyes. His photographs look almost "unphotographic" in their clarity and purity of color. He shows us a world we know, but rarely see on paper. His is a truly remarkable vision.”

*Cancellation Policy

This workshop is financially dependent on adequate class registration. Where minimum enrollment requirements are not met, the class will be canceled, and a full refund given. You will be notified at least one week in advance if a workshop is not going to take place. Student initiated cancellations received prior to one month before the workshop will receive credit for a future workshop of similar value, a 50% credit will be given for notice received at least 2 weeks immediately prior to the workshop (a full credit less a $50 overhead fee will be given if another student is able to fill the spot from a waiting list). No credit will be given if canceled less than 2 weeks prior to the workshop. Credits need to be redeemed within one year.

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Last updated on March 23, 2017 . Mail comments to: info@sjphoto.com
Photographs and Text Copyright ©2016, Stephen Johnson. All Rights Reserved.