Digital black and white photography workshop

16th - 20th May 2016 - Blue Mountains

5 inspiring days to explore & develop your Black & white vision

Want to shoot jaw-dropping black and whites?  Spend a week with Len Metcalf, one of Australia’s master fine art photographers, and learn the trade secrets from someone who knows.  Len has been producing stunning black and white images for over 20 years and sharing his expertise in boutique classes and workshops for over ten years. 


Enjoy Len’s gentle, supportive teaching style as you participate in twice-daily class sessions tailored to your needs.  You can read more about class topics below. 


Throughout the workshop you will receive professional guidance and advice while shooting at a variety of locations.  You will also receive valuable feedback on your photographs from your group in critique sessions.  


Theory and technique are practiced, developed, nurtured and grown through a series of practical shoots and class sessions.  Over the week you will be encouraged to experiment with new techniques and venture into undiscovered creative territory.


NB: This tour includes day workshops but not accommodation, so you are free to choose accommodation that meets your needs and budget.  Read on for more information on local options.  If you would prefer a small boutique tour with accommodation included, please consider Len’s Blue Mountains Photography Tour.



Our lesson topics are flexible and can be varied based on the needs and interests of the group.  Below is a list of past and potential lesson topics for this workshop. 


  • Black and White - specific lessons
  • Analysis of black and white masters
  • Composition in black and white photography
  • Processing raw images in Lightroom and Silver Efx Pro 2
  • Creating depth in photography
  • Equipment for digital black and white photography  
  • Long exposure and soft water landscapes
  • Snow photography
  • Morning mist photography
  • Wildflowers
  • Creating sharp photographs
  • Golden and blue hour photography
  • Composing with tone and line
  • Natural abstracts
  • Safety for mountain photographers 



16th - 20th May 2016


1/55 Waratah Street Katoomba



To join this workshop Len asks that you have basic camera handling, operations and processing skills.  If you’re not sure if that’s you, please contact Len

If you are a complete beginner and would like to participate in one of Len’s Boutique Photography tours you might like to consider his Blue Mountains Photography Tour.






From Sydney, head west along the M4 towards Penrith.  Join the Great Western Highway and follow the road as it weaves its way up into the mountains.  You might like to stop for a cup of tea or coffee in lovely Leura on your way! 


By Train

The train ride from Central to Katoomba takes under two and a half hours and offers some beautiful views as you climb into the mountains.  


By plane

Fly in to Sydney airport and arrange for us to pick you up at the airport and transfer you to our accommodation. We can return you back to the airport after the tour. 




There are many varied accommodation venues in Katoomba, from caravan parks and camp grounds, through back packers, and B&B's to amazing exclusive hotels.  All within a short walking distance from our Waratah Street Studio.  Here are some convenient suggestions to suit any budget.

CLOSEST ACCOMMODATION (within easy walking distance - maximum five minutes walk):

ACCOMMODATION A LITTLE FURTHER (moderate walking distance 10 - 20 minutes)

Len Metcalf discusses with Carolyn Abbott how he got into digital black and white photography.


If you would like more advice about accommodation, please contact Len for a personal recommendation.



Minimum 3

Maximum 10




We rise with the sun (or maybe before!) to capture the gentle morning light and the sunrise over the mountains.  After a few hours of shooting we will return to our classroom for morning tea.  

Your daily theory sessions follow, with a delicious lunch break provided by Len.  In the afternoon your second classroom session is held. Afterward you will have time to relax, process images, chat to others in the group or simply enjoy the beauty of the area.  

The second shoot of the day begins in late-afternoon and continues until dusk.  We will travel further a field in the afternoons. This is an opportunity to practice the theory and techniques covered during the day in the ever-changing evening light.  After dark it’s your time to use as you choose: rest, reflect, dine and delight in lovely Blue Mountains.




This is a gentle trip, which requires a low level of fitness.  There will be a small amount of walking to and from shooting locations, occasionally on uneven surfaces with steps and inclines.  If you have any doubts about your ability, please contact Len directly.  He is a qualified wilderness guide and will assess your fitness and mobility and find a solution for you.    

The weather at this time of year is anywhere between 25 degrees Celsius and 10 degrees Celsius with the average around 18. You can expect rain, mist, sun and overcast days.



Some possible locations include:

  • Rainforest
  • Tumbling creeks
  • Small and large waterfalls
  • Green moss covered scenes
  • Alpine gum trees (yes the Blue Mountains has stands of snow gums)
  • Ferns
  • Board walks
  • Old rustic and historic buildings
  • Gum trees
  • Mosses and lichens
  • Cliffs
  • Waterfalls
  • Canyons

NB:  Shooting locations change yearly based on the interests of the group.



All of your tasty morning tea’s, afternoon tea’s and lunches are provided by Len.  We can cater to dietary needs such as gluten free and vegetarian, please let us know in advance.

Breakfasts and dinners are not included in the workshop and can be enjoyed at your accommodation or at one of the cafes, restaurants and pubs in and around Katoomba.   



Courtesy transport is provided from our class venue to all daytime shooting locations.  With most groups we have car pooled to make shooting times more flexible and meeting closer to your accommodation venue.

If you require transport for the whole workshop please discuss this with us prior to booking your accommodation venue.

If this will be a limiting factor for you, please contact Len directly to discuss your options. 



There are a few key things that you will need to get the most out of the week:

  • Camera equipment
  • Tripod
  • Laptop or tablet with latest Adobe Lightroom software (recommended)
  • Installed specialist BW conversion software Silver EFX Pro 2
  • Breakfasts, dinners and personal snacks.
  • Wet weather clothing
  • Clothing for cold temperatures & wet climates (pack an umbrella)
  • Travel and medical insurance + Ambulance cover for duration of tour
  • Day pack/camera pack
  • Accommodation plans

Len Metcalf is a qualified and experienced trekking guide with 30 years of experience guiding groups to remote destinations.  He knows what you need to keep yourself comfortable in the harshest environments on earth.  Click here to see his winter packing list now.




  • Five days of tuition and shoots
  • All lunches
  • Morning and afternoon tea
  • Free access to Len’s School Forum and Notes
  • Courtesy transport from classroom venue to shooting locations
  • National Park fees
  • Plenty of time to shoot at each location
  • Suitable for all levels from absolute beginners to professionals
  • Gain valuable insights into computer processing software that will make your photos sing
  • One-on-one instruction and guidance from fine art photographer and veteran educator Len Metcalf (see his bio here)
  • Len’s unique and gentle teaching style, which supports you and helps you develop as an artist
  • Calm, relaxing atmosphere, encouraging engagement and connection with the landscape
  • A positive environment, which encourages group learning, advice-sharing and support
  • Develop a photographic community and make new friends

NB: Some shoots may be led by approved Len's School outdoor photographic guides. Multiple shooting locations may be provided each day.



  • Accommodation
  • Breakfasts and evening meals
  • Photographic equipment (cameras, lenses, tripods etc.)
  • Clothing specific to the weather
  • Travel insurance.   Please click here for more information.  



“Thank you, Len. It’s been a wonderful week in your beloved mountains. You’ve been the perfect Pied Piper - a mine of information, freely given, a knowen of beautiful places, an unobtrusive and supportive teacher, sensitive to everyone’s needs, one of life’s truly good people. ”

— Sarah Fitzherbert

“Thanks again for a very enjoyable and informative workshop and the individual assistance you gave me during the week. I’ve received nice compliments on the photos you printed for me. I’ve said to people that while it was a landscape photography course, I see being in the Blue Mountains, seeing and experiencing it close-up as a bonus from the workshop.”

— Graeme Masterman

“Thank you for a wonderful week of enrichment and immersion into the environment of the Blue Mountains. As a visitor to the area I would never have had the opportunity to visit so many out of the way places without your expert local knowledge. Your gentle approach to all activities allowed me to move at my own pace both physically and photographically. I had a truly wonderful week and know I learnt so much about my photography in all aspects. I believe I have improved some of my skills and hope to continue to use and develop those techniques you have assisted me with. Thanks for the opportunity to use your equipment and experiment with various lenses etc. My week in The Blue Mountains has inspired me to get out more frequently and use my camera at any opportunity.”

— Michelle Thomas

Click here to read more testimonials.


Digital Black and white photography workshop INVESTMENT

AUD $1795

AUD $500 deposit will secure your place.

NB: Full payment is required 8 weeks prior to the workshop.