November 21st - 28th , 2012
© Martin Prihoda. Click here to see how he made it!
Rajasthan is often called the most photogenic state in India, world famous for its art, culture and style. Every year a plethora of photographers, vying for great images, descend upon the cities of Udaipur and Jaipur.
So how can you make your images stand out?
Editorial and advertising photographer Martin Prihoda’s Big Lights Far Away India Photo Tour is designed to do just that. The intention behind BLFA Photo Tour is to take the intermediate/advanced photographer beyond the limits of natural light/speedlights and explore the magical realm of powerful off camera lighting BIG TIME.
© Martin Prihoda
From the photographic perspective, this tour is unique in its approach as Martin brings his advertising and fashion experience to the remote desert towns and forts of Rajasthan. Students will learn how to balance ambient light with powerful strobe light to achieve stylized and powerfully unique portraits.
From the organization and access perspective, we will be escorted by our tour guide Nirbhay Singh, who is a part of the Rajput Nobility and has great knowledge about the culture and heritage of Rajasthan. He will be guiding us through the nuances and ways of this desert land and its very rich heritage.
While most of the tour will be centered on capturing the local culture and personalities, one day will feature a full desert fashion shoot, complete with a professional magazine model and hair/makeup artist. Students will learn first hand what is involved in shooting a fashion story in a remote location.
Working with local operators who know and understand the culture and sensitivities of the area, students won’t have to worry about anything except taking great pictures. BLFA India promises great locations, rustically comfortable hotels and thorough instruction, which will include end of day feedback sessions.
While BLFA stresses off-camera lighting mixed with ambient light to achieve striking images, students will still be encouraged to take natural light shots as they see fit.
Summary of relevant information:
Dates: Nov 21st - 28th (7 nights, 6 days)
Hotels: You will be well looked after in the following premium, beautiful & clean hotels. Some of which are hard to book directly and is facilitated by our local producer.
UDAIPUR--- ROYAL RETREAT.
KORTA --- KORTAESCAPE.
PUSHKAR-- PUSHKAR BAAG.
Maximum number of students: 10
Level - Who should attend: You should be a very confident user of priority & manutal shooting modes. You should be familiar with simple lighting set ups and have had some hands on time with lighting equipment. If you would really like to join the tour but don't have such experience, then consider signing up to our Studio Lighting Level 1 workshop (here) to bring you up to speed. Contact us for a discount on that workshop if you're doing it to catch up with the tour.
Cost per person: $5,000* for single occupancy
Included: Breakfasts, lunches and dinners. Accommodation. Taxes. Transport within India mostly in convertible jeeps during the tour
Not included: Flights; Visas; Transport from airport to Udaipur and from Jaipur to airport; Alcoholic Beverages
* Early Bird: Book by Wednesday Jun 20th and get a 10% discount.
The tour requires at least 4 students to go ahead. If we do not meet this number by Aug 18th, the tour will be cancelled and those who've booked will be refunded in full.
** How to book: please contact us by phone at 04 380 8545 or by email at email@example.com so we can share more information about the tour and assist you with your booking.
Here's a more detailed itinerary of the tour:
Arrival day, Wed Nov 21st: Udaipur
A meet and greet lunch is organized at the hotel so everyone can introduce themselves and also get to know their companions for the next few days.
A short but in depth session/discussion with Martin on light theory, the basics of power packs and key shift photography will take up most of the late afternoon.
Dinner will be by the lake at Dove Cote – this will provide us with a full scenic view of the most valued heritage of Udaipur to enjoy and understand the romance of Rajasthan.
© Martin Prihoda
Day 1 (Thrs Nov 22nd ): Udaipur (city of lakes)
In the morning we’ll be off to shoot characters at the markets: a colorful assembly of grain, vegetable and fruit sellers. Following a classic Rajasthani lunch we’ll explore around the City Palace Museum and enjoy an amazing Rajasthani boat ride at sunset. First time students to India may feel overwhelmed from the chaotic day, but upon arrival to the hotel we’ll all be welcomed with a warm delicious meal accompanied with Rajasthani folk music or performance.
Day 2 (Fri Nov 23rd): Udaipur - Kumbhalgarh
We’ll be up early on our second day to explore the old bazaar in Udaipur. Then it’s off to Kumbhalgarh where we’ll visit a historic fortress from the 15th century. We will break for the day and have lunch in the hotel followed by a photographic session of dance performers or some local tribals dressed in their traditional outfits.
In the evening – Dinner will be served at the hotel with a dance performance by the same performers we photographed in the day.
Day 3 (Sat Nov 24th): Ranakpur & Korta
After an early breakfast we drive off to Korta. On the way, we will stop over at Ranakpur, famous for its stunning Jain Temples. We'll break for lunch in Ranakpur then off to Korta, a small village/town situated in the interiors of Rajasthan.
Upon arrival at around 4pm, we will take a short walk/drive through the village to see and understand the dynamics of life in the village including the caste system, about the diversity in attire based on the professional occupation of its people. All this will be explained by our guide Nirbhay whose family has the highest position of authority and status in this village.
This will be followed by a visit to the shepherd hamlet to shoot the locals i.e. shepherds and tribals. After this session we will witness and Opium ceremony performed by the tribals of the village and will have the opportunity to document it.
We'll cap the jam-packed day in the evening with an authentic Rajasthani dinner along with local music performance.
Day 4 (Sun Nov 25th): Korta
With a professional model and hair/makeup artist, we'll head out to the desert where students will be able to explore the ins and outs of a Vogue-style shoot. Under Martin’s guidance, students will learn about posing, lighting and what it takes to work with top models in remote locations..
Dinner will be served back at the hotel followed by a discussion on the learnings from the trip so far and also a prep talk about what to expect at the camel fair in Pushkar. A local music performance by langa’s will accompany the dinner.
Day 5 (Mon Nov 26th): Pushkar
© Martin Prihoda
We'll hit the road in the early hours towards the major highlight of our tour, the Camel Fair in Pushkar. Its a five hour ride for a worthy sight to behold. With hundreds of thousands of pilgrims, camel traders, gypsies and onlookers descending on this holy town, we will have our hands full with amazing subjects.
We will settle into the hotel and lunch before we head to the fair to walk around and take in the buzz created by the pilgrims in the hundreds, camel traders, gypsies and horse traders.
As the dust raises from cattle hooves in the distance, the warm glow of the setting sun seems to light up the country side merging anything and everything in its fading glory. In the middle of the madness of this fair, Martin will show you how to capture its essence like no one else does. You will have the chance to shoot both freely using natural light and with Martin using the big guns.
Dinner will be arranged on the dunes.
Day 6 (Tue Nov 27th) Pushkar
After breakfast we will shoot gypsy girls in full attire, snake charmers with their cobra's, local traditional puppeteers all of whom will pre-organized for us.
© Martin Prihoda
In the late afternoon and with a bit of dust in our lungs we’ll pickup more amazing shots at the camel fair. We will also explore some of the remarkable temples and hillocks surrounding the holy city.
© Martin Prihoda
Day 7 (Wed Nov 28th): Jaipur
Sadly, all good things must come to an end. We start the day with a goodbye breakfast and drive to Jaipur where we will catch flights back home or continue our individual journey if applicable.
Cancellation policy: Due to this period being a peak season in Rajasthan, we are obligated with the cancellation policy of the tour operators and hotels.
Before Aug 19th: Full refund less 6% admin charge
Between Aug 19th & Sept 20th: 44% refund
Later than Sept 21st: No refund