Milky Way Photography Workshop

Instructors: Aaron Dowling & Scott McCook

Milky Way Photography Workshop

Join award winning landscape photographers Aaron Dowling & Scott McCook on this creative weekend of Post Processing, Landscape & Astro Photography at the Pinnacles in Cervantes and the Ice Cream Sand Dunes. With 2 Sunset Shoots, 2 Milky Way Shoots and 2 Post Processing Sessions, we’ll push the creative boundaries in the field and in post. You’ll see two different editing techniques using some basic and many advanced editing techniques to achieve our visions. We’ll cover basic to advanced shooting techniques including panoramic photography of the milky way and several lighting techniques at night to give your images a surreal and beautiful even lighting. 

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Level: All Levels, Beginner – Advanced
Dates: 28th – 30th of October 2016
Price: Sold Out – Register Interest in Future Workshops Below
Location: Cervantes, WA
Maximum Participants: 12 


Friday Night

  • Meeting at the pinnacles, we’ll discuss the evenings activities and run through the workshop notes and answer any questions on getting your cameras set up and ready to go for the nights shooting.
  • We’ll then head off into the pinnacles for our first sunset shoot.
  • Then splitting into two groups to start capturing those epic Milky Way images. We’ll experiment with several ways of lighting our foregrounds, including using our torches to simulate moonlight and get evenly lit landscapes, and having fun with lanterns to create some surreal images, Gandalf may even make an appearance. 
  • After a few hours of shooting we’ll head back to our accommodation in Cervantes for a well deserved rest.

Note: We will spend some time after sunset ensuring that you are able to get your cameras set up correctly to capture the Milky Way (Sharpness & Exposure). 


  • In the morning we’ll gather at the Pinnacles Resort to run through a 3 hours post-processing workshop presented by Scott. Scott will run through his post processing techniques, using both Lightroom and Photoshop. Don’t worry if you don’t use Photoshop, as Scott will show complete editing techniques in Lightroom (which can also be done in Adobe Camera Raw). You’ll see some very creative techniques used to create those amazing surreal scenes that Scott is so well known for. 
  • This will be a hands on workshop, so you can edit your photos at the same time, with full support from Aaron and Scott as we are going.
  • After the workshop we’ll grab some lunch, then relax before heading out to the Ice Cream Sand Dunes for our second Sunset and Milky Way Shoot. 
  • We’ll look for some amazing lines in the dunes to create some amazing sunset and astro images, continuing with the techniques practiced the night before. 
  • After our shoot at the Ice Cream Dunes we’ll make our way back to our accommodation in Cervantes. 

Milky Way Photography Workshop


  • We’ll gather for an early breakfast at the pinnacles edge resort before our second post processing session. 
  • Well gather again for a 3 hours post-processing workshop presented by Aaron. Aaron will cover his editing style, discussing his workflow and creative process used to achieve his end results. Using many different Photoshop techniques including Luminosity Masking. 
  • Farewell to the group on what will most definitely be an amazing creative weekend for everyone. 

Accommodation Options

There are several accommodation options in Cervantes, with a couple of links below. It’s not required that we all stay at the same location. There are several options if people decide to book and stay in groups if they want to save a few dollars.

What You’ll Need

  • Your camera and a wide angle lens, ideally:
    • A 24mm or wider lens for full frame sensor cameras
    • A 16-18mm or wider lens for crop sensor cameras
    • A lens that has a maximum aperture of f4 at it widest focal length, f2.8 is even better.
  • A sturdy tripod
  • A remote shutter release.
  • A torch or headlamp to help you see at night.
  • A laptop with Lightroom and / or Photoshop installed. This is only required if you want to practice editing your images as we run through Post Processing.
  • Camera/lens cleaning equipment.
  • Cold weather clothing, it can get quite cool at night.

Milky Way Photography Workshop

Pre-requisite Skills and Knowledge

There are no pre-requisites for this workshop. An understanding of how to adjust your aperture, ISO and Shutter Speed in manual mode will be helpful, but not a pre-requisite.

What’s Included

  • Two Sunset Shoots (1 at the Pinnacles and 1 at the Ice Cream Sand Dunes)
  • Two Milky Way Shoots (1 at the Pinnacles and 1 at the Ice Cream Sand Dunes)
  • Two Post Processing Sessions (Scott’s Saturday Session & Aaron’s Sunday Session)
  • All props including the famous Gandalf Outfit, Lanterns (please bring a torch, note: we’ll use our torches for even landscape lighting)
  • All Photography Tuition form Scott and Aaron 
  • Notes on Photographing the Milky Way.

Techniques we’ll cover

  • Settings for well exposed and sharp astro images.
  • Panoramic photography of the Milky Way
  • Lighting subjects at night for even landscape light (simulating moonlight)
  • Using small lantern light for more intimate lighting and people in the landscape
  • Basic to Advanced editing techniques from both Scott and Aaron

Milky Way Workshop Image

What’s Excluded

  • Transport to Cervantes and during the workshop, although we will likely be car pooling once we are in Cervantes.
  • Accommodation
  • Park Entry fee ($12/vehicle)
  • Dinners, alcohol and sundry snacks and meals.


You can book your place by credit card using the Add to Cart button below and checking out through Paypal. If you prefer to pay by direct deposit please contact us using the contact form below and we will send through an invoice with bank details for direct deposit. 

Note: Cancellations within 7 days will incur a 25% fee.

After adding the workshop to the cart, you can check out at the top right of the page.

This workshop is sold out, register your interest using the contact form below.

Enquire About The Workshop Below

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