Tuscany during poppy season photography workshop – 2019


I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been to Tuscany and it still amazes me with the beauty I see each time.

For photographers the landscape is special, the light is legendary, villages are glorious, people are friendly and then there’s the wine. And there is no better time to photograph Tuscany than in late spring when fields are ablaze with red poppies.

Join professional photographers Ron Lake and Loren Fisher for a special Tuscany photography workshop as we explore the beauty of Italy’s countryside, medieval villages and spend a day in Florence. Benefit from Ron and Loren’s experience to make unforgettable photos of the diverse Tuscany area including Chianti vineyards, medieval villages, rolling hills and of course, those red poppies.

We take care of all the details, once you arrive in Rome, you don’t need to think about where to go, how to get there or where to stay during the eight days and seven nights we are in Italy. Just show up and be ready to have fun and make great images.


You will get professional photography instruction from experienced pros Loren Fisher and Ron Lake, who have helped photographers improve their images for years. Our group will be small so you will have plenty of time with each pro giving you advice on composition, angle and lens selection to help you get the best pictures possible not only while you are in Tuscany but long afterward. We will work with you as much as you want at every location.

We start with dinner in Rome, but you are free to explore the city during the day if your flight arrives early that morning. We’ll be at the hotel so you can drop off your luggage and we’ll help organize an excursion into the city or enjoy the hotel’s beautiful pool. There is a shuttle from the hotel into Rome which makes getting to the main sights easy. Bright and early the next morning we head north to Tuscany stopping in medieval villages, lush countrysides glowing with red poppies, vineyards and a day in Florence.

The full itinerary is below and you can see it is packed with tremendous locations with plenty of beautiful towns and countryside to photograph. While we want to see it all, we don’t want to wear anyone out. As photographers, we love the morning light so we will be out shooting at sunrise most days. We will take two to three hour breaks from shooting at mid-day as needed, when the light isn’t as nice to catch a nap or refresh. Each day either Ron or Loren will be available during these mid-day breaks for image review or work with you on your photography. You will have time to explore on your own or stick with the group.

What is included:

  • Eight days, lodging for seven nights, each photographer has their own room
  • Workshop adventure
  • 2 pro photographers/guides
  • Photo Walks
  • Breakfast most mornings
  • Small group size
  • Four star hotels
  • Local transportation
  • Professional photography instruction

What isn’t included:

  • Travel to Italy
  • Lunches and dinners
  • Alcoholic drinks
  • Gratuities
  • Non-meal time snacks and soft drinks

Who should Attend

Anyone with an interest in Italy, beautiful landscape and historic towns – your photographic experience doesn’t matter. Most of our shooting locations will be in towns where some walking will be required. There won’t be long, strenuous hiking.


May is a very pleasant time to visit Tuscany, when the temperatures warm up and the cloud coverage and rainfall decrease. The average highs are in the 70’s during the daytime and lows in the 50’s after dark.

May 14-22, 2019

Deadline for registration is Jan. 15, 2019

$3,600 includes single occupancy lodging, transportation and professional instruction.
$3,200 for returning clients
Non-photographers: $500 discount if you share a room with a photographer.

The full fee is required 120 days prior to the workshop.

Maximum group size: 12


Single occupancy hotel accommodations are included. If you want to be assured of single occupancy, there is a limited number available with a $750 additional fee.

Photo Equipment

You’ll want to have a wide angle, telephoto and possibly a macro lens. Make sure you have lots of memory cards, spare batteries and charger and maybe a polarizer filter. Since we will do some night photography, you’ll want a sturdy tripod. We also suggest bringing a laptop to download your photos and a way to have a backup, either on the original cards or an external hard drive. If you aren’t absolutely sure of everything that your camera does, bring your instruction manual so we can help you fix any problems.


Breakfast most days is included. If we are out on a sunrise shoot we might not get back to the hotel while they are still serving, on those days you’ll grab something on the road. You are responsible for other dining expenses. We will be on the move but taking breaks to enjoy the scenery, dining and wine.

Itinerary (subject to change)

May 15: Arrival in Rome. We will meet at the Golden Tulip Hotel, which is less than 15 minutes from Rome’s Fumicino Airport. Our hotel for the first night is 4-star rated with a fabulous pool, tropical bar and modern rooms. You can relax and unwind to get ready for our great photography experience or spend the day exploring Rome. Our first official get together is 7:00 p.m. for dinner at the poolside restaurant and the best part is dinner in on us!

May 16: We depart early to begin our adventure as we head north to Tuscany. We’ll stop in Sovana, a beautiful ancient village built in the 17th century for our first photo shoot. After a fun lunch we drive to the amazing 18th century winery and hotel. The property has a 600-year-old vineyard and the owners will be waiting for us to sample the estate’s wine and olive oil. This will be home for the next few days and photos in the area abound.

May 17:  After an early breakfast at the hotel we will be off to shoot what is known as the Strada Chianti – the road to all the famous vineyard towns. We’ll visit Ron’s favorite, the medieval Chianti town of Castellina in Chianti and also Panzano, Greve in Chianti and tiny Montefioralle. As darkness settles in we’ll have one of our famous tailgate dinners as we wait for the full moon to rise over an ancient hilltop village.

May 18: Today we’re off to Florence. Not only will we photograph the must-see piazzas and other main attractions, we will shoot some of Florence’s lesser known neighborhoods, markets and back streets. After lunch, which will be insanely good if we can get in to the amazing Il Latini, we will shoot from Giotto’s Campanile bell tower down on the Duomo. We make our way back by way of Fiesole which looks out over Florence for the golden hour light.

May 19: Time to head south to the heart of Tuscany, the Val D‘Orcia region and the famously photogenic rolling hills that surround Pienza and Montepulciano. The fields should be filled with beautiful red poppies. We check in at our new hotel, near the “Centro Storico,” the old town. We’ll visit Montepulciano, which is only five miles away and the S roads of Monticchiello (you know, like in “Under the Tuscan Sun,” with Diane Lane). At night we eat at the “to die for“ Trattoria La Buca delle Fate, one of Ron and Loren’s favorite restaurants in all of Italy.

May 20: Today we are up early for the Tuscan sunrise and then we visit some of Pienza’s neighboring little towns like Chiusi and Montalcino. We will take a long mid-day break so you can catch up on sleep or wander over to the marvelous shops in Pienza’s old town. We’ll have an early dinner at the tiny but special Osteria Sette di Vino before going back out to the countryside for golden hour and sunset. One of the special treats of Pienza is Buon Gusto Gelateria, one of the best gelato places in all of Europe. It is a great way to end the day.

May 21: We head out while it is still dark so we can get to one of Tuscany’s truly special places, Podere Belvedere. You have probably seen photos from there as the sun comes in sideways from the left backlighting the building and cypress trees on a rolling tuscan landscape that many say is unrivaled. Then we go down the road to Cappella della Madonna di Vitaleta, the famous church of Pienza. The little church sits on a hilltop out in the field and it looks great in the morning golden hour light. We’ll go back to Pienza, grab some breakfast and take a little rest before going to Montepulciano for vineyards galore, lunch, shopping, tastings and shooting the old town before heading back for an afternoon break. As the evening light glows, we go back toward Montichiello watching the sunset and then we photograph the “blue hour” and try some light painting.

May 22: Our saddest day, the last one. The hardy will go out and photograph sunrise in the fields below Pienza. After breakfast we head back to Rome to make flight connections.

Travel Visa

A passport that will still be valid for at least three months beyond the intended length of the visit is required for anyone wishing to visit France. Depending on your nationality, a visa may be required, but unlikely if you are a U.S. citizen. Go to VisaMapper for more information.

Deposits and Cancellations

A $750 deposit secures your space in the workshop. Full payment must be received by Jan. 1, 2019.

Notice of your cancellation must be made in writing, at which time the following refunds are offered:

  • 120 days or more before workshop: Full workshop refund minus the deposit.
  • 119 to 90 days before workshop: 50% of workshop cost. Your payment, minus the deposit, will be refunded if your spot can be filled.
  • 90 or fewer days before workshop: no refund. Your payment, minus the deposit, will be refunded if your spot can be filled.

No partial refunds are made for unused portions or services of a workshop. Workshops are sold as a package only.

If a workshop is cancelled, you will receive a full refund of any money paid, but I’d have to be on my deathbed before I’d cancel. But if I’m on my deathbed and need to cancel the workshop, I will not be held responsible for your other expenses, such as airline ticket, additional hotel deposit or rental car, that may be associated with the canceled workshop. I suggest you purchase trip insurance to be safe, but I’ve never cancelled a destination workshop and it would take a major catastrophe before I cancel.

For more information and to register, please follow the link to my partner Loren Fisher’s photography workshops website.