Teaching my Hidden Yosemite workshop last week was so much fun. We had some wonderful clouds to make the skies more interesting, and a great group of people, plus it’s always fun to get away from the roads and into some beautiful areas that you just can’t drive to.
Weather forecasts before the workshop called for clear skies, but our first evening we photographed some amazing lenticular clouds, including two UFO disks over Mammoth Peak, and another formation to the north resembling an Imperial Star Destroyer. Later in the week the sun broke through overcast skies just before sunset and lit up the clouds over Gaylor Lakes, and the next morning we watched sunlight poke through more clouds to illuminate North Peak. And then it snowed. Meteorologists try to predict the future, which is a difficult job. This is one time when I’m glad they were wrong—the clouds definitely made things more interesting.
But the weather was really just a bonus. The main focus of the workshop was teaching and learning. My super-assistant Mike Osborne and I both love to teach, whether in the classroom doing portfolio reviews or in the field working with students one-on-one to refine compositions or understand histograms. I know everyone in the workshop learned a lot—and I did too. When you explain something to others you have to understand it thoroughly yourself. The process of teaching helps increase my knowledge of photography, which allows me to share that knowledge with all of you, which then deepens my understanding—and on and on. If you’ve reached a level in your photography where you feel you can help others, I highly recommend teaching as a way to improve your own skills—even if you’re just helping a friend figure out how their camera works.
Anyway, here’s a mini-portfolio of images from the workshop. I’m already looking forward to doing it again next summer!
Michael Frye is a professional photographer specializing in landscapes and nature. He is the author and photographer of The Photographer’s Guide to Yosemite, Yosemite Meditations, and Digital Landscape Photography: In the Footsteps of Ansel Adams and the Great Masters, plus the eBooks Light & Land: Landscapes in the Digital Darkroom, and Exposure for Outdoor Photography. He has written numerous magazine articles on the art and technique of photography, and his images have been published in over thirty countries around the world. Michael has lived either in or near Yosemite National Park since 1983, currently residing just outside the park in Mariposa, California.