flowering dogwood in the SmokiesImprove your photography, accelerate the learning process and master new techniques during a small-group photo workshop. Workshops offer a chance to immerse yourself into photography with other photographers from around the country who share the same passion. Photography workshops bring you to new locations or let you visit your old favorites. And, you’ll see them in ways that you might not have seen them before. Experiential learning allows you to grasp in days skills that would take months or years to gain from books or lectures.

I’ve been teaching small group photo workshops since 2006. Group size ranges from eight to ten participants. If you want more one-on-one time, I offer private small group workshops for you and your friends.

All skill levels welcome.

I hold the proper permits where required. I’m an authorized permittee of the National Park Service and hold a Special Use Permit from the U.S. Forest Service. On my workshops, I get you to the best locations while minimizing the risks.

My workshops combine classroom time, field time and an image review. Using this combination, I teach you how to master your camera, exposure, filters, how to see and how to capture better photos and how to make better compositions. I find that this combination of teaching methods helps reinforce the learning process.

I also believe learning should be fun and make sure that my workshops are fun.

Find my workshops below, and if you have other questions email me at bryan@bryanhansel.com. I answer every email I receive.


I just had the opportunity to take one of Bryan’s spring waterfall workshops. Before signing up, I had read many of his newsletters, his teaching strategies and student testimonials. It was important to me that if I was going to spend the money and time to do this, that I find an instructor who was interested in how/what we were learning, rather than taking us to a pretty spot and then going off to do his own photography. Having been a teacher myself for 34 years, it was evident right away that Bryan was passionate about both the teaching of photography and photography itself. He was able to get a feel for what level everyone was at and teach to it. It didn’t matter if you were a beginner or a more advanced photographer, I think everyone was able to walk away feeling successful with many new ideas and techniques to improve their photography. There was a good mix of classroom, in the field, and image review time. Interaction and support from fellow classmates was also invaluable. This is the best learning experience I’ve had in years!

Judy from Winnipeg, MB

Read more testimonials from previous workshop participants here.


Subscribe to my newsletter to get tips, read musings and get announcements for photo workshops.

Enter your email below.

2017 Photography Workshops

2017 North House Folk School Photography Classes – 1.5 day classes

2017 Peninsula School of Art Classes – 3 day

Final Payment

2018 Tentative Schedule – Workshops Added Throughout the Year

photographers on a Black Hills photo workshop

2017 Teaching Topics

  • The Elements of Composition: Simplicity, Flow and Relationships
  • How to use my method of composition called Juxtaposition in Landscape Photography to create fine art landscape shots.
  • Bolder processing to maximize the visual impact through emphasizing the flow and reducing flow stoppers.
  • A concrete field technique for determining the proper exposure using your histogram.
  • How to use filters to maximize the exposure range of your image, for long exposures and to make colors pop.
  • Determining depth of field and how to nail sharp focus.
  • Subject related topics.
  • And more…

Refer to workshop descriptions to see specific subject related topics.

Photography Workshop Descriptions

winter photography workshop image

Lake Superior Winter Photography Workshop

In the winter, the combination of all day golden-hour light, sea fog, ice and open water make Lake Superior’s shoreline and tributaries the premier winter photo destination in the Midwest. The best month to photograph the area is February, because the sun sets and rises over Lake Superior and the rivers are solid ice which allows for exploration. During the workshop, we hike up the frozen river valley’s during the day and spend time on the shore at sunrise and sunset. You also learn how to keep your camera running in the cold. This one always fills up quickly, so we often add a second session.


  • February 3-5, 2017
  • February 17 to 19, 2017

Cost: $349
Sign up and More InfoWinter Photography Workshop details

dogwood against olge cabin

Spring in the Great Smoky Mountains Photo Workshop — NEW

Spring wildflowers covering the forest floor, rushing mountain streams surrounded by glowing green moss, cabins flanked by flowering dogwood, freak spring storms covering the mountain tops with snow are just a few of the photographic possibilities in the Great Smoky Mountains in the spring. This four day workshop will focus on areas where the spring is showing off and will compliment my fall workshop by visiting different areas of the park.


  • April 6 to 9, 2017

Cost: $699
Sign up and More InfoSpring in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Des Moines Photography Workshop at Neal Smith photo

Des Moines Photography Workshop at Neal Smith Wildlife Refuge

I’m teaming up with John Gregor of ColdSnap Photography out of Two Harbors, Minnesota to run a Des Moines Photography Workshop at Iowa’s Neal Smith Wildlife Refuge. The refuge has great classrooms, a bison herd, elk, tallgrass prairie, oak savannas and sedge meadows. We’re staging this workshop at a perfect time to kick off your spring and having multiple instructors will give you different perspectives and takes on photography.


  • April 22-23, 2017

Cost: $199 ($189 for members of the Friends of Neal Smith Wildlife Refuge)
Sign up and More InfoNeal Smith Wildlife Refuge Photography Workshop in Des Moines, Iowa

One of several waterfalls at Stairway Portage in the BWCA near the Gunflint Trail. BWCA, Minnesota.

Minnesota Spring Waterfall Photography Workshop

In April when winter’s snowpack melts, it rushes down Lake Superior’s tributaries and over the numerous waterfalls.  The waterfalls thunder, the narrow canyons fill and the ground shakes from the excess water.  No other time of year allows for the dynamic photography of waterfalls along Lake Superior.

  • April 28 to 30, 2017

Cost: $349
Sign up and More Info: Spring Waterfall Photo Workshop Details.

CCC shelter in Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Spring in Theodore Roosevelt National Park Photo Workshop

May in Theodore Roosevelt National Park is when the park comes back alive from a long winter. The golden grasses contrast with the spring green cottonwood trees. The bison and wild horse have calves and the landscape is bathed in fog and golden light. Come experience the park that made President Roosevelt the man he was.


  • May 18-21, 2017

Cost: $549
Sign up and More Info: Spring in Theodore Roosevelt National Park Photography Workshop

bison in the Black Hills.

Badlands and Black Hills Photography Workshop

The Badlands and Black Hills Photography Workshop starts in Badlands National Park. We’ll split our time between the Badlands and Custer. Once in Custer we’ll photograph the Black Hills. Destinations include Badlands National Park, Scenic, Custer State Park, the Needles, Sylvan Lake, Spearfish Canyon and depending on conditions Bear Butte.


  • June 22 to 26, 2016
  • May TBD, 2017

Cost: $799
Sign up and More Info: Badlands and Black Hills Photography Workshop

wild flower

North Shore Wildflower Photography Workshop

In the middle of June, the wildflowers along the north shore of Lake Superior peak. The lupine are starting to appear and the lady slippers bloom. In past years, I offered this as a one day workshop and in one day, we often photographed as many as 30 to 40 unique wildflowers in bloom. The common request was to make the workshop longer. It’s now a full weekend of wild flower photography.


  • June 16 to 18, 2017
  • June 17 to 19, 2016

Cost: $349
Sign up and More Info: North Shore Wildflower Photography Workshop

misty morning sunrise in Iowa

The Bluff Country of Northeastern Iowa Photography Workshop

I’m looking forward to offering another workshop in my old stomping grounds in Iowa. Northeastern Iowa is in the driftless zone, where the glaciers didn’t make everything flat. It’s bluff country over the Mississippi River. Summer is in full swing in July and bluff country is green. We’ll spend four days romping through northeastern Iowa on an adventure to photograph the best part of Iowa.


  • TBD 2018

Cost: $549
Sign up and More Info: The Bluff Country of Northeastern Iowa Photography Workshop

Milky Way above a treeline

Night Skies of the Gunflint Trail

Learn how to photograph the night sky in northern Minnesota. During the Night Skies of the Gunflint Trail we’ll explore some of the darkest locations in Cook County, which offers some of the darkest skies in the world. Combine the dark sky with the numerous lakes, twisted pines, cedar and spruce trees and we have some of the best foregrounds to combine with the night sky.


  • July 19 to 23, 2017 – Format change to 5 full nights

Cost: $699
Sign up and More Info: Night Skies of the Gunflint Trail Photo Workshop

night photography workshop location

Northern Night Skies: Night Photography Workshop – 5 day

Cook County, Minnesota on the north shore of Lake Superior is 92% public and undeveloped land. With a summer population of about 10,000 people mainly living near the shore of Lake Superior, there isn’t much in the way of night pollution. When it’s dark out, the stars fill the sky, the Milky Way is bright and because of our proximately to the magnetic north pole, we get northern lights more often than other areas at the same latitude. August generally has clear nights or nights with lightning and thunderstorms, and this night photography workshop takes advantage of those clear summer nights. For five days, we’ll work on capturing night images and learning how to process them.


  • August 16 to 19, 2017

Cost: $699
Sign up and More InfoNorthern Night Skies: Night Photography Workshop


Grand Tetons National Park Photography Workshop – 5 day

The second weekend in September in the Grand Tetons National Park isn’t yet fall, but it isn’t summer either. The grasses have gone brown and a tree here and there might just show signs of color. It can be stormy (rain or snow), and it can be clear. In the mountains, it’s the transition time between seasons that I love to photograph. It’s also a relatively slow time in the park. I wouldn’t be surprised if we have some of the sunrise locations to ourselves.


  • September 6 to 10, 2017

Cost: $899
Sign up and More Info: Grand Teton National Park Photo Workshop

Oberg Sunrise

Minnesota’s North Shore of Lake Superior Fall Photography Workshop

During late September, the hills and shoreline surrounding Lake Superior turn a mix of fiery red and yellow. The combination of the dramatic shoreline and moody fall weather makes the north shore the best photography destination in Minnesota. During the workshop, we’ll visit the best locations to capture fall colors, visit a maple syrup factory and drive roads that will literally take your breath away. During the workshop, you’ll learn compositional techniques, how to use several filters and how to control your camera to capture stunning fall photos.


  • September 27 to October 1, 2017

Cost: $750
Sign up and More Info: Minnesota Fall Photography Workshop

picture of my Smoky Mountain photography workshop sunrise

Great Smoky Mountains Photography Workshop – Fall

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of America’s greatest and most majestic national parks. During the fall, weathered ridges covered with fall colors literally stretch as far as the eye can see. Streams run down all the valleys and traverse a diversity of biomes. The northern forest intermixes with the southern forest in one of the biologically richest places on the planet. We’ll spend three days immersed from dawn to dusk photographing the fall colors on the peaks and in the streams.


  • October 19 to 22, 2017 – Format change to 4 full days

Cost: $699
Sign up and More Info: Great Smoky Mountains Photography Workshop

Waves wash against the Grand Marais, MN Lighthouse.

Gales of November Photography Workshop

November is the stormiest month on Lake Superior. It’s the month with the best chance of capturing this inland ocean showing off its explosive nature. I lead you on a learning experience to some of the most beautiful out-of-the-way locations for making great storm and lake images. Workshop time is divided between the classroom – learning about metering, manual camera controls, lighting, composition – and the field. Evenings are spent peer reviewing the day’s images. Although there will be some classroom time, expect to spend most of this workshop in the field.


  • November 3 to 5, 2017

Cost: $349
Sign up and More Info: Gales of November Photography Workshop

moonset over the Badlands National Park

Early Winter in Badlands National Park Photography Workshop

The landscape in South Dakota’s Badlands National Park feels like something out of a futuristic movie. Rugged Badlands formations seem to rise abruptly out of the grassy plains and rise into a crisp sky. When standing at overlooks, the terrain unfolds before your eyes. Your eyes follow the lines carved by water for 10s of 1000s of years. December in the Badlands is a time of transition and the perfect time for photography. On this Badlands Photography Workshop, we’ll spend three days photographing the park from sunrise to sunset.


  • December 1 to 3, 2017

Cost: $549
Sign up and More InfoBadlands National Park Photography Workshop

The sun rise lights clouds over Lake Superior and Artist's Point. Grand Marais, MN.

Individual and Private Photography Workshops

I offer personal Minnesota photography workshops and Lake Superior photography workshops targeting your learning needs. The workshops are hands-on in the field. We’ll visit a location and spend time on subjects that you need help with. I’ll teach you my approach to photography and by the end of the workshop, you’ll have the skills that will improve your photography. Select a half-day or a full-day workshop.

Price: 1 person: $225 half-day / $375 full-day
2 people: $280 half-day / $480 full-day  ($140/$240 per person)
3 people: $330 half-day / $585 full-day  ($110/$195 per person)
4 people: $380 half-day / $660 full-day  ($95/$165 per person)
Half-day: A four to five hour private photo workshop starting before sunrise or leading up to sunset. Midday lessons are also available.
Full-day: We meet before the sunrise and shoot for around eight and nine hours or shoot eight hours leading up to sunset. In the winter, that might mean that we shoot both the sunrise and sunset. Total lesson time runs between eight and nine hours.
Weekend: Contact me for special full weekend workshops for four or more people.
Required down-payment: Full payment. 50% of the total is nonrefundable but may be transferred.
More info: One-on-one photography workshops and small ground photography workshops


Start typing and press Enter to search