Making the Most of a Summit Workshop

So you’ve made the big decision to invest in yourself and your photography by signing up for a Summit Workshop, CONGRATS! We are thrilled! 

Summit In-Person workshops are truly life-changing experiences but we’re going to be honest, they’re also overwhelming. You’re meeting new friends, connecting with mentors, and learning from the best in the industry – to top it off, you’re out photographing in a dream destination. Can someone say sensory overload? 

But don’t worry, we totally understand the craziness of these workshops and we’ve compiled tips for making the most of these events. 

Take things one day at a time

It is so easy to be caught up in the schedule and making sure you participate in all the events that you can easily look right on past what’s going on right in front of you. The Summit Team is taking care of the logistics so you can just focus on learning and experiencing the moment. Workshop Director, Chris Steppig frequently tells students to think of each day as a one-day workshop. He’s found that it helps students stay in the moment and truly engage with the experience.

Ask to buy an instructor lunch or coffee

Are you fangirling over a specific instructor? Are you set on making sure they review your images? Each Summit Instructor is thrilled to get to know you and help you learn. Don’t be afraid to take an instructor to lunch or for coffee and pick their brain. Many mentor/mentee relationships have been formed that way. 

Sleep when you get home

Many of the workshops involve photographing at sunrise and sunset and then have lectures, portfolio reviews, and networking events during the day. You will be exhausted by the end. But remember, these are unique events that you won’t want to miss. You’ll always be able to catch up on sleep when you get home! 

Drink plenty of water and eat well

That being said, it is critical that you care for your body and take care of yourself. That means staying well hydrated and nourishing your body. Use the lunch breaks to get a hearty meal that will fuel you. And bring plenty of snacks! 

Get to know the other students

The Summit Community is a wide network of students, instructors, and staff who help and support one another. The cohort of students can become great friends that will last long after the workshop. Students that met at workshops have partnered on projects, hired one another, referred each other for jobs, and helped each other improve their photography skills. So be open and friendly – you never know what will come of it! 

Remember, that you’re not here to create a portfolio

While there are many photographic opportunities at the workshop – you aren’t here to bolster your portfolio, you’re here to learn. Don’t stress out if a shot isn’t turning out as you hoped – instead, take advantage of the instruction being offered. This is the time to try out new ideas and techniques in a supportive learning environment. 

Participating in a Summit Workshop is truly an incredible experience, we’re so thrilled you’re joining us! Just remember to take the opportunities presented to you and have fun! You’re now a part of the Summit Community, that doesn’t end when the workshop is over, this supportive community lifts each other  up all year round. Welcome to the Summit! 

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