“I also believe that if you have light, such as you have here, all ugliness will be obliterated. Since I’ve come to your country, I know that light is holy: Greece is a holy land to me.”
— Henry Miller
The Cyclades are the quintessential Greek islands: white-washed, cubic houses, blue-domed churches, a sea the color of wine and the most amazing sunsets. Add to that some of the most friendly people you will ever meet, gorgeous climate, and fantastic cuisine. What’s not to like?
If you’ve ever wanted to visit Santorini and Milos and come back home with the best photographs you have ever taken, look no more, this workshop is for you!
We are organizing an upscale vacation and photo workshop for a small, selected group of enthusiast photographers between June 4 and June 10, 2017. We will host you in the best hotels on the islands, lead you on location at the best times of day to shoot expansive vistas, seascapes, architecture, monasteries, and narrow village streets.
In the evening, we will give you hands-on training on how to best process your images and do review and critique sessions to help you come home with images that are ready to be printed or put online.
We will visit some of the best restaurants on the islands to let you appreciate the typical Greek island cuisine, with its varied flavors, genuine products and wines.
The cost of the workshop, inclusive of six nights in a luxury hotel, is €2000 (about $2,100).
This a great value package, but to offer you something more, we have partnered with PhotoTraces to give a copy of their Travel Photography Bundle for Adobe Lightroom, containing over 160 presets, for free to every workshop student. This is a value of over $200 and it is for you to keep also after the end of the tour.
During the post-processing sessions, we will show you how to use Adobe Lightroom, in combination with the Rapid Editing System by PhotoTraces, to achieve consistent and beautiful results from the photos you shoot during our workshops.
Even if it’s crowded during the peak season, Santorini (Thira) is an island that cannot be missed. Approaching or leaving the island with one of the ferries that ply the route of the Cyclades island (which we’ll do on our way to Milos) you’ll be dazzled by the multihued layered cliffs that form the remains of the caldera.
The black, brown and grey colors form a stark contrast with the white cubed houses clinging precipitously on the side of the cliffs forming the stunning villages of Fira, Firostefani and Imerovigli.
Exploring those amazing villages via the scenic, two-hour long footpath linking them will let you discover some of the most alluring views and it will be one of the highlights of the workshop.
The small village of Oia on the north coast of the island is a real gem of cycladic architecture with houses hewn into volcanic rock and it is where everybody gathers for one of the most memorable sunset to experience in your whole life. Catching the last light of the day here with a drink in your hand is a truly magical moment.
But we will not limit ourselves to the Santorini that is well-known to tourists. Instead, we will visit some of the villages inland, like Pyrgos and the vineyards that surround it and produce some of the best whites of all Greece, thanks to the volcanic soil. Some very fine organic vegetables, most notably tomatoes and capers (which originate from nearby Folegandros and then spread to all of the Mediterranean) are grown there.
We will also visit the lighthouse at Cape Akrotiri, where the views of the caldera are even better than in Oia and far less crowded.
If you are looking for an unspoilt island as weird as Santorini, from a geological viewpoint, Milos definitely fits the bill. The volcanic past that Milos shared with Santorini has left the island with some unique and, some say, bizarre rock formations, from the dazzingly white tuff formations at Sarakiniko (see photo) to the brightly coloured cliffs at Firiplaka, ending with the stunning coastal scenery at Kleftiko, geology buffs will not be disappointed.
The quarrying of rare minerals with the huge benefit generated to the community has meant that the residents of Milos bothered little with tourism. This is slowly changing, but outside of the peak tourist season from mid July to late August, you will end up with having the island almost for yourself.
Apart from geology, Milos has also plenty to offer: the lively port of Adamas, even if not photogenic by Cycladic standards, is full of buzz and really Greek, with plenty of tavernas to sample local food and enjoying “ouzo therapy”, with a view of the huge caldera of Milos Bay.
The prettiest coastal village is Kilma, with the most stunning example of syrmata: traditional fishermen’s dwellings where at ground floor (10 inches or so above sea level) there’s a boat storage with a brightly painted door and, at the upper level, there’s space for family life. Note that most of these dwellings are hewn into the stone and still used today. There also other very nice examples of syrmata at Fyripotamos and Mandhrakia on the north coast.
Also along the north coast you’ll find the amazing Sarakiniko, or “White Place”, a snow-white inlet with a sandy bottom and countless chalk-like pillars sculpted by erosion. Add to this the fact that a now rusty vessel has been brought ashore by the turbulent Aegean and you’ll end up with a truly otherworldly place to capture with your camera. Further along you will find Papafragas, another scenic coastal scenery where the sea flows under a nice rock arch.