Photography in the Dark


Photography in the Dark? Don’t you need LIGHT to take a photograph? The simple answer is YES. The fun answer is “sort of”… and in this class devoted to some very special techniques to literally “paint with light” using portable strobe, flashlights, sparklers and more. Instructor Dan Nelson will enlighten you on how you can create some unique, artistic and incredibly fun images using a variety of methods.

Your weekend begins in the classroom with a discussion on the necessary equipment and instruction on how to use it. Later that afternoon, in a darkened room, you will practice these techniques and work as a team to create some amazing images. The class continues that evening with a field trip to a special destination (TBD) where you and your classmates will practice these techniques out doors; photographing at night. The following day you will all meet once again to review the photographs that were created the previous day, learn a few new tricks and discuss some editing techniques that can enhance the photographs and elevate them to true works of art.

The special techniques covered in this workshop will be (but not limited too);

  • Fireworks Photography
  • Night Photography
  • Painting with Light indoors and out using camera flash units and handheld flashlights
  • Astro Photography
  • Star Trails
  • Sparklers and Wool Spinning
  • Photographing the Moon
  • Stop Motion Photography
  • Balloon Pop Audio Sound Trigger Photography
  • A small portion of this class will be a discussion of editing and post-production techniques. It is recommended but not a requirement that you bring a laptop computer with Adobe Lightroom CC. Students who do not have a laptop with Adobe Lightroom software will still learn a mind boggling amount.

    The Burwell School of Photography will supply all necessary lighting equipment and special effects devises for your use during this class.

    Exploding Balloon
    Exploding Balloon
    Self Portrait - Dan Nelson
    Self Portrait - Dan Nelson

    Your Instructor for the Photography in the Dark Class

    Your instructor will be Dan Nelson.

    Dan grew up in Dewberry, Alberta. His photography career started when Dan and his science teacher started a photography class when Dan was in grade 9. They taught darkroom techniques and processing to grades 7 and up. Dan continued doing this until he finished high school. He was also the yearbook photographer. 

    After finishing high school, Dan was a TV camera man for five years doing studio and on location news work. In the mid-nineties, he moved to Edmonton to be a color dark room technician, working in sales and printing professional photographer's competition work. Since then, and for the last twenty years, he has been working for Technicare Imaging, working with Photoshop and digital lab large format printers.

    Dan is a self taught photographer and has been doing family portraiture, commercial photography and weddings for forty years. He joined the Professional Photographers of Canada in 1997 and received his Craftsman and Masters designations with accreditations in Image Manipulation and Fine Art. He has also judged image competitions for PPOC Alberta and Metro College.

    He has expanded his knowledge experimenting with many different aspects of photography and has taken a special interest in Night Photography.

    You can view Dan's work and services at Dan Nelson Portrait Design

    Star Trails
    Star Trails
    Full Moon
    Full Moon

    What You Will Learn in the Photography in the Dark Class

    • how to photograph at night using long exposures
    • what equipment you need for night photography
    • the technique of painting with light
    • using alternative sources of light to your advantage
    • using a small flash(es)
    • do’s and don’ts
    • look at sample images using all these techniques
    • what problems you might encounter and how to solve them

    What to Expect

    • 16 hours of classroom instruction
    • Weekend classes include a hot lunch on both days
    • Certificate of completion
    • Small group size, limited to 12 participants

    Prerequisites for the Photography in the Dark Class

    Equipment Required for the Photography in the Dark Class

    • DSLR camera with fully charged battery(s) and memory cards(s)
    • Wide angle lens (or equivalent zoom)
    • Telephoto lens (or equivalent zoom)
    • Tripod (if you do not own a tripod, we may be able to arrange a loaner)
    • Cable release or Remote Trigger (if you do not own a cable release, we may be able to arrange a loaner)

    Class Location


    • $275 Canadian Dollars (plus tax).
      • Current currency exchange information between the Canadian dollar and your local currency is available here.

    More Information

    Policies and payment information are available here.

    For additional information, please contact us at:
    E-Mail: Contact us Electronically
    Phone 780-669-1261

    Please read above and if the class you are interested in sold out, please click here to add your name to the wait list