Smokestacks and Iron: Night Photography at Alabama's Sloss Furnaces - August 28, 2019 - Atlas Obscura Trips C1FEBA7D-E5F8-4E43-97C6-9A1EFCDF1BF9 Created with sketchtool. F14FCE3B-EF06-411C-95BE-B33AF2E5F507 Created with sketchtool. 74A7FA94-1BB9-47D5-8B14-2D37611D2AFC Created with sketchtool. E627592D-2A42-4495-A796-CCDF7535B7B9 Created with sketchtool. 28C201CB-2EF4-42C4-9F73-1C505BA26AFF Created with sketchtool. 1CC841F9-78D8-4D09-A414-538DA9B893AE Created with sketchtool. 6A84E8F7-BB4F-441B-AA3A-76277FBA39EC Created with sketchtool. BCB685E1-E0B3-4823-8AC0-8CD25044A525 Created with sketchtool. C110AEA3-1199-4E8A-9446-98B3330BB278 Created with sketchtool.

Smokestacks and Iron: Night Photography at Alabama's Sloss Furnaces

from $1,720 per person for 5 days, 4 nights
Reserve a Spot
  • Max Group Size: 14
  • Moderate
  • Communities Up Close

Join us for a deep dive into image composition, exposure, and black and white photography as we explore the imposing industrial remains of the historic Sloss Furnaces after dark, camera in hand. As night falls, we’ll use moonlight and light painting to breathe fire back into these hulking machines. Sloss Furnaces, named for the influential railroad man Colonel James Withers Sloss, was once the largest manufacturer of pig iron in the world, operating from 1882 to 1970. Now a National Historic Landmark, this incredible maze of 20th-century metal machinery stands on the eastern edge of the downtown Birmingham, a striking reminder of the city’s industrial past.

Highlights
  • Expert instructors
  • Iron giants
  • Civil rights history

Itinerary

Itineraries and daily schedules are subject to change. We expect to do everything listed in the itinerary, though the order may be rearranged based on weather or other local conditions.
National Parks at Night
In Partnership with National Parks at Night

What to Expect

Photo Experience & Gear

Workshop participants must have at least basic photo skills, know their cameras well, and be comfortable shooting RAW in manual mode with a DSLR or high-end mirrorless camera. Night photography experience is not necessary, but even folks with extensive experience shooting at night will find this class challenging, stimulating, and inspiring. For more advanced night photographers, we can offer a portfolio review, specific challenges and goals, and guidance in the field based on your areas of interest.

You will need to bring a DSLR/mirrorless camera, a wide and fast lens, and a tripod. A full list of recommended gear will be provided once you sign up! Over the course of our five-day workshop, we aim to increase your comfort and confidence with night photography. Daily lectures on night photography, post-processing, and image review will take up a good portion of our days. At night, we'll roam within the industrial landscape and help you focus, compose, and paint with light—and push you to take full creative control over your images. Come ready to dive into many hours of education, exploration, feedback, and hands-on experiences.

Arrival & Departure

We recommend that you arrive in the afternoon or evening on Tuesday, August 27 to give yourself time to join Tim and Matt for dinner and get settled into your hotel before the workshop begins on Wednesday at 10 a.m. As for the workshop's conclusion, you should plan to depart after dinner on Sunday, September 1. If you'd prefer to depart the next day, you can extend your reservation another night. Note that you'll want your own means of transport for parts of this workshop.

Weather & Activity Level

Birmingham in late August is toasty during the day, with a high of 90 degrees Fahrenheit, so we’ll take things at a relaxed pace during daytime hours, spending much of that time in the classroom. At night, the temperature drops to 70 degrees, perfect for our industrial outings. Keep in mind that this workshop is fairly active. You should be reasonably fit and feel comfortable walking for long periods of time, especially after dark. We'll sometimes be walking on dirt paths and other uneven ground.

Accommodations

We recommend staying at the Tutwiler Hotel in downtown Birmingham, which will serve as the location of our classroom sessions. When making reservations, members of our group will receive a 10 percent discount. Note that breakfast is included in the room cost.

Dates and Prices

Aug 28–Sep 01, 2019
The total cost of this trip is $1,720. A $500 deposit is required to hold your space. The deposit is non-refundable after three days. The final payment of $1,220 will be due by July, 15. All reservations will be final after this date and subject to our cancellation policy. By submitting your deposit, you agree to the trip's Terms & Conditions. Accommodation is not included, but our travelers will receive a 10% group discount at Birmingham’s Tutwiler Hotel.
Included
  • Teaching and mentorship by two talented photo instructors from National Parks at Night.
  • Daily lectures, image review sessions, photo instruction, and post-processing.
  • Two lunches and two dinners, as well as water and snacks throughout the workshop. If staying at the Tutwiler hotel, breakfast is included.
  • Brand-new headlamps for your nightly photo sessions.
  • A great group of fellow Atlas Obscura fans and photographers, excited to explore all that the night sky has to offer!
Excluded
  • Transport to, from, and around Birmingham, Alabama.
  • Accommodation (participants receive a 10% group discount at the Tutwiler Hotel).
  • Breakfasts, three lunches, and three dinners.
  • Photography equipment and gear. (We'll send a list of what you'll need once you sign up!)
  • Travel insurance (recommended).
Trip Price
$1,720 per person