FAQ | FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
For your convenience, I prepared a fully comprehensive list of frequently asked questions. Please read it first, since your question might already have been answered here – if you still can’t find the answers you are looking for, please CONTACT ME, I am always happy to hear from you!
Vieri Bottazzini Workshops is a registered Italian individual company run by me, Vieri Bottazzini. I started operations in 2015, and as I write this (end of 2020) we have more than 55 Workshops under our belt. I am the only tutor, so if you like my photography and our destinations, and if you want to learn how I do what I do, you can be sure that you’ll get me leading your Workshop, not some random instructor. As well, we keep our group size limited to a maximum of three photographers, so you can be sure that you’ll have enough personal time with me during your trip to make the most of your Workshop (see ABOUT VIERI BOTTAZZINI WORKSHOPS for more information). I answer all emails personally and extremely fast, so if you have any questions feel free to CONTACT ME, I am always happy to hear from you.
More, I am lucky to have my wife Zeynep as my expert assistant with me since day 1. She is coming to all our group Workshops and to our Prestige Workshops One-on-One, and she’ll be happy to join us on-demand on our regular Workshops One-on-One as well shall you need an assistant. During our Workshops, Zeynep helps me with the logistics, she does all backstage photography and video and she is always available as a “first responder” if I am busy taking care of someone else.
We are passionate about our work, and very proud of the care and attention to detail we put into organizing the best, most unique Workshops for you.
There are many things that make our Workshops unique. Here’s a short list for you:
– Attendance limited to just 3 people, or One-on-One
– Perfect knowledge of the locations
– Years dedicated to the preparation of every single Workshop
– 25 years of teaching experience at your service
– Over 55 Workshops on our back, with a 9.89/10 customer rating!
– Great communication before, during and after the Workshop
– Image review sessions
– Post-processing sessions
– Maximum comfort
– Best value for money
– Real duration days, shooting on the first and last day of the trip
– And much more
However, I believe that nobody can say it better than those who have been photographing with us before you! Please read our Alumni’s TESTIMONIALS to see what they thought about their time with us.
In the 5 years since I started Vieri Bottazzini Workshops, as I write this (end of 2020) we have more than 55 Workshops all over the World under our belt, working with nearly a hundred photographers.
Overall, I have been teaching regularly since 1992, for about 28 years now. A lifetime! During these three decades, I have been teaching University, including post-graduate, for over 15 consecutive years, so I can safely say that I have extensive experience teaching both on a One-on-One basis and in group settings.
There simply aren’t any Workshop offering you better value for your money out there. Not only that, but if you find another Workshop with attendance limited to just three people and with all the unique features that our Workshops offer, let me know, let alone one that cost less!
Our group Workshops feature a unique limited attendance of three people and have set dates, duration and program. Choosing a private Workshop One-on-One, on the other hand, you’ll be able to customise:
– Workshop’s duration
– Group size
– Workshop’s program
– What to work on
– And pretty much any other detail
More, choosing a private Workshop One-on-One you’ll have my undivided attention, and you’ll enjoy a Workshop completely tailor-made on your level and requirements, whether you are a beginner, an advanced amateur or a professional. You’ll be able to decide how much shooting vs how much post-processing we’ll do, what we’ll work on in the field, and so on. In short, our group Workshops are already unique, but if you want an even better and more exclusive photographic and learning experience, then our private Workshops One-on-One are for you!
Definitely, and very proudly so. First of all, we are carbon-neutral since June 2019. Vieri Bottazzini Workshops is a Proud Partner of Eden Reforestation Project and we’ll fund the planting of 250 trees for each Workshop’s participant, to more than offset your carbon footprint when you join one of our Workshop. We are almost 100% plastic-free and we recycle almost 100% of our garbage. More, we are a Proud Partner of Leave No Trace, and all our Workshops follow the Leave No Trace principles. Last but not least, we are a Proud Member of Nature First – The Alliance for Responsible Nature Photography, and all our Workshops follow the Seven Principles of Nature First Photography.
I said this at the beginning of this answer, and I’ll say it again. We are very proud of the work we do to protect the environment! (See OUR COMMITMENT TO THE ENVIRONMENT for more information).
Definitely photography Workshops. During our Workshops we’ll spend almost all our waking hours together immersed in photography, either working in the field, busy with our unique image review and post-processing sessions or talking about photography and art. During nearly three decades of teaching, I never believed in holding back knowledge, either technical or artistic. During our Workshops, I’ll be happy to share with you everything I know, and together we’ll get inspired and work to create powerful, inspiring photographs of the locations we’ll visit (see ABOUT VIERI BOTTAZZINI WORKSHOPS for more information).
That doesn’t mean that photography or gear is all we can talk about, though! During our Workshops, Zeynep and I are looking forward to enjoying pleasant conversations with you, either during our meals or during our downtime, on any topic you like. Please read our Alumni’s TESTIMONIALS to see what they thought about our time together!
Of course! Very real. I am a registered Italian individual company, my VAT ID is IT01870020433 and my address is Contrada Moline 15, San Ginesio, MC, Italy. I carry professional insurance, and I always have all needed permits required by National Parks and similar, with all the certifications they require.
If we need to cancel a Workshop on our end, for your convenience full refunds are available, with various options.
You can cancel your participation to a Workshop at any time. In case you’ll have to cancel your participation to one of our Workshops due to any unforeseen circumstances, I strongly recommend that you get travel insurance to cover you from losses.
Please read our TERMS AND CONDITIONS for more details.
Safety always comes first, during all our Workshops. No photograph is worth the risk of an injury, or worse, and no photograph is any good if we won’t be there to see it. Please read OUR COMMITMENT TO YOUR SAFETY and refer to our PREPARING FOR YOUR WORKSHOP page for more information on how to prepare for one of our Workshops.
Feel free to CONTACT ME if you have any further questions about safety on our Workshops.
All Workshops are different when it comes to physical difficulties and fitness requirements. Please read our PREPARING FOR YOUR WORKSHOP page for detailed information about our recommended fitness levels, and how to read the WALKS & HIKES and TERRAIN notes in each Workshop’s dedicated page.
Feel free to CONTACT ME if you have any further questions about your fitness level for a particular Workshop.
As long as you are passionate about landscape photography, you are welcome to join us, no matter if you are a beginner, an advanced amateur or a professional. Thanks to our trademark group size limited to 3 photographers only, no matter what your level is you can be sure that you’ll have enough personal time with me both in the field and during our image review and post-processing sessions to make the most of your time together, and that you won’t either slow the group down or be too advanced for the group.
No, not at all. Any camera, digital of film, large format, medium format, 35mm full-frame, APS-C, micro 4/3 will do, as long as you are familiar with it (see PREPARING FOR YOUR WORKSHOP for more information). While I use and love PhaseOne XT and Rodenstock lenses, I have an extensive experience with various cameras and I keep up to date with the market, to make sure I’ll be able to answer any question you might have about your equipment.
To make the most of an intense photographic experience such as a Landscape Photography Workshop, I recommend you to be familiar with your equipment. Please refer to our PREPARING FOR YOUR WORKSHOP page for detailed information. Of course, I will be happy to put my extensive knowledge of most cameras out there at your service if you need assistance during our time together.
Feel free to CONTACT ME if you have any further questions about equipment.
Below you’ll find a short description of the most common types of insurances:
Travel Insurance. Typically covers you when you must cancel a trip due to medical reasons, work-related reasons or family reasons. Coverage can include reimbursement for plane / train tickets, hotels and for the Workshop’s fee. I definitely recommend you consider it.
Medical Insurance. Typically covers you for medical issues, treatment, hospitalization, and more, if and where your regular insurance won’t. Please check whether your insurance covers you in the country where the Workshop is held and / or for the activity you’ll do, and if it does not, I strongly recommend you get medical insurance for the Workshop.
Medevac Insurance. Typically covers your medical evacuation from remote areas to the nearest hospital, or to your home hospital as well. While most of our Workshop destinations are close enough to civilization, it’s always better to be safe than sorry, especially if you have a condition that might require it.
Feel free to CONTACT ME if you have any further questions about insurance.
Attendance to our group Workshops is limited to 3 people, only 3 people and never more than 3 people. That’s the only way we can guarantee you the level of attention you deserve and keep our Workshop’s quality as high as we want it to be.
If you are looking for an even more rewarding photographic and learning experience, then our WORKSHOPS ONE-ON-ONE are for you. Organised on demand, perfectly customized on your level and requirements, our Workshops One-on-One are the top choice among our Workshops! (See ABOUT VIERI BOTTAZZINI WORKSHOPS for more information)
Most definitely! Non-photographing spouses and partners are welcome on all our Workshops for just 60% of the regular attendee’s Workshop’s fee. If you are an Alumnus, to thank you for your continued support I am offering you the opportunity to bring your spouse or partner at a reduced fee of just 40% the Workshop’s fee instead. See our ALUMNI’S CLUB page for more information. Please note that we only accept ONE partner or spouse per trip, on a first-come, first-served base.
For your convenience, we’ll book all accommodation for you, in single occupancy, en-suite rooms unless you request otherwise. For maximum flexibility and for maximum cost transparency, however, accommodation and meals are never included in our Workshop’s fees, and for what I believe to be very good reasons.
Meals. We all love our freedom of choice. When we seat at the table for lunch or dinner, we all want to eat what we want to eat, and as little or as much of it as we like. Someone likes appetisers, someone wants dessert. You might be vegetarian, meat-eater, vegan, pescatarian, or following a particular diet. You don’t want to eat what someone else wants you to eat, you don’t want to pay for what you don’t eat, you don’t want not to have enough to eat because of someone else’s choice of what to give you, and you don’t want to have to pay extra for what you thought should have been included but wasn’t.
Not including meals allows everyone the freedom to enjoy their meals and their time on the Workshop to the fullest, saving people from frustration. As well, it will help the planet by not preparing and potentially wasting food that people might not eat. Thanks to our trademark 3 people group size, it only takes an extra second for the group to order and another second to pay, and I believe they are two seconds very well spent.
Accommodation. We all love our freedom of choice. You might want to stay in a superior room or in a suite, or you might be happy with the most convenient option. You might want to share with someone, or you might not. You might use room service, or you might not care about it. To make your time with us as comfortable as possible and to make logistics as easy as well, the best solution is for us to book you the room you’d prefer, and for you to pay for it, including any extra you’d like to enjoy.
Last but not least, since I must charge VAT and add taxes to all the monies I take from you, if I took your money to use it to pay for your room or for your food, I’d have to add VAT & taxes to it, and your accommodation and food would end up costing you much more than if you’d just pay for it as you go. If nothing else, I believe this is a good enough reason not to include accommodation and meals to your Workshop’s fee.
My aim and my purpose, during any Workshop, is for you to get the best images possible on any given day, and on any given location.
As we know, successful landscape photography depends heavily on the weather, on the light and on the sky conditions. Any given location looks best under different weather conditions, and obviously it is just not possible for me to know in advance how the weather will be like on any given day. As well, contrarily to many other Workshops and photo tours, we have many alternate locations to choose from according to the weather, light and sky on any given day of every Workshop.
Therefore, I much prefer not to publish a detailed daily program on our Website. If I did, I either would have to choose between changing it at the last minute, creating potential disappointment (such as “why aren’t we going to location X today, as written in the program?”), or I would have to keep to a schedule written months in advance even if that did result in bad images in order to avoid discussions.
After years of experience and with over 55 Workshops on my back, I find it best to decide at the very last moment where to go, according to the day’s weather conditions, light, sky and so on. Thanks to my knowledge of the locations, you can be sure that you’ll always be in the best spot at the best time to create the best possible images on any given day.
Yes, most definitely. I always believed that a Workshop, besides being educational, fun and inspiring, should also be as enjoyable as possible. We simply work and function better when we are well fed, happy and enjoying the experience.
One of the benefits of keeping the group size down to a maximum of 3 photographers is that we’ll move quickly in and out of the field, in and out of the vehicle, and that we’ll also be fast when ordering in restaurants. This will let us enjoy the best lunches and dinners available at any given destination without losing valuable photography time.
Of course, in a few rare instances (i.e., going to the Racetrack in Death Valley) there will be locations where carrying packed lunches or dinners will be necessary. In these cases, you’ll be given ample choice of food to choose from, to cater to your preferences and to any special requirements you might have.
No, of course not. To create the best images we can, we need to be well rested. To make your time with us as comfortable as possible, all accommodation is in single occupancy en-suite rooms, unless you have different requirements. For your convenience, we’ll ask you to confirm your preference before booking your room.
As a general rule, the following are included in all our Workshops:
– Tuition, both in the field and during our trademark image review and post-processing sessions
– All Workshop’s transport
– All accommodation’s bookings
– National Park entrance fees and permits, where it applies
– Full support before, during and after the Workshop
– A kit of Formatt-Hitech Firecrest Ultra filters for the group to experiment with
– A SPOT device for your safety
– Water, warm beverages and cookies onboard the vehicle
– And more.
Please check your selected Workshop’s dedicated page for detailed information.
For your convenience you’ll find my general recommendations on every dedicated Workshop’s page, and you can also refer to our PREPARING FOR YOUR WORKSHOP page for more information and tips. Upon booking, you’ll receive my detailed recommendations for the specific dates and Workshop of your choice.
Feel free to CONTACT ME if you have any further questions about what to bring to a particular Workshop.
Weather is the only thing we can’t control. However, what regular people consider “bad” weather is often extremely inspiring for photography. During our Workshops, I am looking forward to putting decades of experience at your service to put any weather to the best use and to photograph as much as possible.
Please see our TERMS AND CONDITIONS for more details.
We accept Credit Card payments via Stripe, PayPal payments, and (for Workshop balances only) bank transfer.
Feel free to CONTACT ME if you need a different payment arrangement and we’ll do our best to accommodate you.
Yes, of course. I use Stripe and PayPal to process your payments and I never have access to your credit card information.
Yes, of course. I am based in Europe, and for your complete peace of mind I am GDPR complying.
No, never. GDPR stipulates that you need to actively subscribe to my Newsletter and that you cannot be added to our mailing list just because you are a Vieri Bottazzini Workshops customer. That said, since I use my Newsletter to keep all my Alumni posted with news, updates and special offers, and since I just send out one Newsletter a month on average, my recommendation is that you’ll subscribe. Plus, once you subscribe, you’ll always have the possibility to opt out with a single click shall you decide to do so.