Wednesday, April 10, 2019 & Thursday April 11, 2019 1:00 P.M. - 11:00 P.M., Friday 9:00 A.M. - 11:00 A.M.

2019 Astrophotography with Rachid Dahnoun – Wed, Thurs, & Fri

Class description:

Learn to shoot the night sky with celebrated photographer Rachid Dahnoun whose image graces the cover of the National Geographic guide – Night Sky Of North America.

This class will build on basic landscape photography techniques, teach you how to take that process into the field and successfully shoot at night. We will cover:

  • Planning and pre-visualization
  • Shooting and focusing techniques
  • Shorter night exposures to capture the stars and Milky Way
  • Longer night exposures to capture star trails
  • Light painting
  • Taking multiple exposures for blending/compositing
  • Post-processing techniques in Lightroom and Photoshop

We will meet first Wednesday afternoon for several hours of classroom instruction and go over the fundamentals of night photography. Then we will break for dinner and get back together to photograph the night sky. The class will reconvene for Session 2 on Thursday afternoon where we will work on processing our images for a few hours. We will go out shooting on the second night, and then reconvene for a final post processing session on Friday morning.

In the event of cloudy weather we will still learn all the techniques to successfully shoot the night sky but will shift our focus more towards light painting. In this multiple-session class you will gain the experience you need to explore the wonderful world of photographing at night.

Come explore the darkness!

Student equipment requirements:

  • Digital SLR camera and Lens, preferably wide angle and with a wide (f/2.8) aperture
  • Students may consider renting cameras and lenses from BorrowLenses for this class (DISCOUNT LINK TO GO HERE).
  • Tripod preferably with ball head
  • Remote cable release
  • Extra charged camera battery
  • Empty media storage card for camera
  • Laptop computer with Adobe Lightroom CC 2019 and Adobe Photoshop CC 2019 (trials available at and
  • Warm clothes
  • Sturdy shoes
  • Flashlight and/or headlamp
  • Water and Snacks

Prerequisites: You must be comfortable operating your camera in Manual mode, and shooting in RAW. Some experience developing images in Adobe Lightroom CC or with Adobe Camera RAW in Photoshop will be helpful. Please come to class with the app Photo Pills installed on your smartphone or tablet.


Students must be able to comfortably and safely walk over uneven ground on a mostly level hiking trail, which may be covered in dirt and/or mud. Students will be required to sign a liability waiver to participate in this class. As this class takes place in the outdoors, it is subject to weather. If the weather forecast is determined to be unsafe or conducive to photography, students will be notified as far in advance of the class as possible.




Workshop Session Details

Workshop Instructor

Rachid Dahnoun – More than a photographer, Rachid Dahnoun is a visual storyteller who draws viewers into the earth’s wildest places. His award-winning images earned him a coveted spot on the Nikon 100 List composed of the world’s top 100 rising photographic stars—and in fact, nighttime photography is one of Dahnoun’s specialties (the cover of National Geographic’s Night Sky of North America features one of his spectacular Milky Way shots).

A Lowepro Global Ambassador and DroboPro, Dahnoun is both a photographer and a director. His work has appeared in hundreds of publications, such as National Geographic, Backpacker, The New York Times, SKI, Forbes, and Outside. Some of his commercial clients include Microsoft, Time Inc., AARP, Coors Light, Visit California, and Vail Resorts. He also works with non-profits dedicated to landscape conservation: National Parks Conservation Association, The Trust for Public Land, and The Conservation Fund are among his favorite organizations.

An outdoor adventurer at heart, Dahnoun is comfortable working solo, even in harsh winter climates and rainforests. But he’s also an experienced director who can conduct large crews with his trademark blend of efficiency and humor. That affability has made him a sought-after speaker for such events as the Photokina conference in Cologne, Germany and the Tandem Stills and Motion Summit (where he delivered the keynote address). As an instructor, Dahnoun offers photography workshops through Lowepro and other outlets.

Traveling more than 200 days a year, Dahnoun jokes that his business card should read “professional packer,” and as a surfer, snowboarder, mountain biker and hiker, he’s accustomed to toting all manner of equipment. Yet some of his favorite haunts are close to home: With studios in South Lake Tahoe and Healdsburg, California (the de facto capital of Sonoma’s wine country), he logs frequent trips into the Sierra and along Sonoma’s picturesque coastline—often accompanied by wife Regina and his dog Avery.


Instagram: @rachidphoto


Rachid Dahnoun / Workshop