Photography Education | Why Should You Attend A Retreat?

When you are considering where to spend your education dollars next year, you might be seriously considering investing in a photography retreat. Personally, I love this idea!


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4 Reasons to Invest in a photography retreat

  1. Hands-on experience

    There is no substitute for in-person, hands-on education. I know how easy and accessible online education has become but there is magic in being in the same room together.

    An in-person photography retreat is a 2-3 day, in-person experience where an intimate group of people will really dig in together. During these retreats it is common to shoot a session together, edit together, learn business strategies and more.

    There is no better way to hone your skills, ask questions and get real, tangible results than when you are in the same room with your teacher.


  2. Building relationships

    The very nature of a multi day retreat is relationship building.

    Imagine a girls trip where you hang out in a cool house together for several days while chatting and eating and playing games and just hanging out. That is what a photography retreat is, plus business and creative education. Yes, it is exactly as fun as it sounds.

    If you have been a photographer for any amount of time, you know that this industry can be very lonely. Having friends who are in the same boat as you, have the same passions as you, and share the same struggles as you is incredibly valuable. Going to a retreat gives you a deep dive into education and you are certain to walk away with some new industry besties.


  3. You need time away

    No matter who you are, where you live or what stage of life you are in, you need a break. There is something to be said about pulling yourself out of your everyday routine and immersing yourself in something new and different. That is what a photography retreat will do for you.

    No laundry. No childcare. No grocery shopping. No homework checking. No meals to prep. No errands to run. The only thing on the docket for those 2-3 days is relationship building and photography education.


  4. Bigger investment equals bigger reward

    A big fear for a lot of photographers when they look at retreat options is the price tag. Yes, they are a big investment. But I can promise you this, the bigger the investment, the bigger the reward.

    After being a photographer for almost 11 years I can promise you that this statement is true. The more you put into something, the more you put on the line, the deeper it will take you and the more committed you will be.

    All I am asking is not to let the price tag scare you off. A photography retreat will change the trajectory of your business. This is one guarantee that I am certain of.


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How to choose a photography retreat that is right for you?

Now that I have convinced you that a retreat is an incredible investment of your time and money, you are probably overwhelmed by all the choices. Googling, “photography retreat” will certainly pull up a ton of options so how the heck do you figure out which one is right for you?

Here are 5 questions to ask yourself when you are researching photography retreats.

  1. Who is leading the retreat?

    This might seem like an obvious question but who is the educator behind the retreat? And more than just knowing who they are, do you like them? Is their business relevant to your business? Are they where you want to be in a few years?

    For example, if you find out about a cool retreat and yet the educator is a wedding photographer who travels internationally, that might not make sense to you as a local family photographer. See what I mean?


  2. What will you learn?

    Look at what the retreat is promising you will learn. No matter how enticing the retreat looks, if the list of topics to be covered and skills to practice aren’t what you need help with, it isn’t a good fit.

    If you know you need help working with film. Or posing clients. Or editing. Or using light. Or business stuff… those are the things you should look for in your retreat research.


  3. Will the images you take be in your portfolio?

    If one of the things you looking for is to hone your photography skills and gain images for your portfolio, confirm with the retreat leader that you will be allowed to shoot images AND keep them in your portfolio. I would hate for you to skip this step and then participate in something and not have those images to use.


  4. Location

    When researching which retreat to go to, think about the location. Do you want to go there? And what is the cost of getting there? How much travel time does it add to your trip?

    You want this experience to be transformational for your business but you also want to have a great time. Do, if you hate the cold, attending a retreat to the Northeast in January might not be a good idea. Or if you know that you have limited amount of childcare while you are gone, attempting to go to an incredible retreat all the way in Europe might not be ideal.

I hope I have proven my point that committing to an in-person photography retreat is a wise decision and can be one of the best things you do for your business. If you are interested in learning more about my intimate retreat and mastermind, Root to Rise, you can do that here.


Not quite ready to commit to an in-person retreat? I get it! You can grab your FREE Photography Business Blueprint below and enjoy lots of free education on my podcast, Shoot it Straight.



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