Advanced Photo Workshop: New York City

  • 4-day workshop led by a National Geographic photographer
  • Learn new skills to take your photography to the next level.

Expedition Details


Vibrant and alluring, New York City presents an endless array of photographic subjects. From iconic Central Park and Times Square to the hidden treasures of the city that never sleeps, the subject matter of our workshop is as inspiring as its educational components. This advanced workshop is led by a National Geographic photographer and a professional instructor and is designed for advanced photographers and National Geographic Photography Workshop alumni who want to take the next step in their technical and image-making abilities.

Our workshop features lectures and demonstrations on a variety of advanced photography techniques including improving your understanding of exposure and metering, flash photography and mixed light situations, and enhancing your ability to tell powerful stories through your photos.

Is this advanced workshop for you?

  • Are you comfortable with your camera and all of its manual settings?
  • Do you have professional-level editing software (Lightroom, Aperture, Photo Mechanic, Bridge) downloaded onto your laptop computer and are you proficient in using it?
  • Do you seek to further develop your photographic style or voice?
  • Do you have an interest in learning the nuances of flash photography?
  • Are you passionate about taking your photography to the next level?

The following is our planned itinerary; however, our schedule is flexible to allow for spontaneous photographic opportunities.

Itinerary - 4 Days

Day 1 — Thursday: New York City

Arrive in New York City and check into our hotel, or stay at accommodations of your choice. Gather for introductions and an opening lecture and image presentation by your National Geographic photographer. Afterwards, enjoy a reception and dinner with your instructors and fellow photographers.
Optional Accommodations: Conrad New York

Day 2 — Friday: Central Park/Times Square

This morning we venture into Central Park to Bethesda Fountain, whose neoclassical sculpture, known as The Angel of the Waters, looks out over arcaded terraces and lush greenery. This serene oasis amid New York’s urban landscape provides multiple opportunities to put into practice the advanced camera-handling techniques discussed the night before. Then head to the classroom for an edit-and-critique session with your instructors, followed by an introductory lecture on flash. Camera and flash in hand, we'll then make our way to Times Square for an on-location flash demo and time to practice your new-found skills with artificial lighting.
Optional Accommodations: Conrad New York

Day 3 — Saturday: Union Square/Meatpacking District

Located in one of the city’s great public spaces, the Union Square Greenmarket started in 1976 with just twelve local farmers. Now more than one hundred farmers, bakers, cheesemongers, vintners, and florists congregate to peddle their wares. With its electric energy and feasts of color and texture, the market is a perfect spot to practice your new light-crafting skills. Mid-morning we'll head back to the classroom for a working lunch and an edit-and-critique session, followed by a technical lecture. This afternoon’s assignment brings us to the Meatpacking District, once home to slaughterhouses and meatpacking plants and now one of New York’s most glamorous neighborhoods. We’ll gather tonight for a presentation of the weekend’s best images, followed by dinner.
Optional Accommodations: Conrad New York

Day 4 — Sunday: New York City/Home

As the city quietly rises this Sunday morning, we'll meet for a special on-location lighting demonstration, with models and props. Explore small-flash and location lighting considerations such as light quality, quantity, and direction. Learn to apply these techniques by controlling the natural environment and the lighting. The morning concludes with a final question-and-answer session with your instructors. The workshop ends at noon.

Related Trips

National Geographic Expert

Joe McNally

Joe McNallyJoe McNally is an internationally acclaimed photographer whose career has spanned 30 years and included assignments in more than 50 countries. A contributor to National Geographic magazine for more than two decades, Joe has published numerous cover stories, including "The Future of Flying" (December 2003). His assignments have taken him from the heart of India's Diwali celebrations to the deserts of the Middle East to China's Great Wall. American Photo magazine has described Joe as "perhaps the most versatile photojournalist working today" and listed him as one of their 100 Most Important People in Photography. Among his many awards, Joe has been honored as a member of Kodak-PDN Legends Online, and was named a Nikon Legend Behind the Lens. In 2010, he was voted one of the 30 most influential photographers of the decade by Photo District News.

Joe will join the following departure:

Oct 01 - 04, 2015


  • Oct 01 - 04, 2015 (waitlist only)

Expedition Cost


Without Hotel


With Hotel


Workshop prices are per person; price with hotel is based on double occupancy. For a single room, add $850. All workshop costs include a welcome and farewell dinner.

Airfare from/to your home city is not included in the workshop cost.

Featured Expedition Moment

What To Expect

This advanced workshop is led by a National Geographic photographer and a professional instructor and is designed for advanced photographers and National Geographic Photography Workshop alumni who want to take the next step in their technical and image-making abilities.

All participants must bring a digital SLR or mirrorless camera, a laptop computer, and software for organizing and presenting images. The workshop is limited to 25 participants.