From start to finish, Luminous Bali was impeccably researched, planned and executed with a rich, full and unique itinerary that left no photographic stone unturned.— Lee Ann Birkenstock, USA
Are you ready for the best Bali photo tour ever created? Ready to photograph HIDDEN Bali on a photo tour jam packed with rare image making opportunities? This is precisely what multi-major award winning photographer & National Geographic contributor David Lazar has personally designed for you. With the help of one of Bali’s finest lensmen & great personalities in Dukun Jawa, along with guidemaster Pande, you are assured of an unparalleled Bali photo tour experience. No hype.
Beyond Bali’s well-worn tourist routes, Luminous Bali is a 2-island, 12-day journey off-the-beaten-path and into the true heart of the Island of the Gods. Bali may be most famous for its lush rainforests, beaches, ethereal green rice terraces & soaring volcanoes, but the island also incredibly rich from a cultural perspective, and people photography will feature prominently as well.
In addition, this unique Bali photo tour offers two very special events to which you will have exclusive or preferred access and freedom to photograph – exciting and colorful buffalo bull races near Negara, and Balinese Dancers and dance performances – Ramayana, Fire, Kecak and Legong. Access is both to private performances, and for portrait sessions in natural settings, forest and rice paddy. There will also be an adventure to the neighboring island of Java, where you’ll have the chance to photograph the otherworldly volcano-scape of Mt. Bromo, as well as native Tengger horsemen & horses with breathtaking backdrops.
“David Lazar and his team at Luminous Journeys know what it takes to put together the perfect photo tour. After ﬁrst traveling with A.P. Soe in Myanmar and then with David Lazar in Bali, I can say they are experts at searching out locations that yield the best photos and are sure to get you there in the very best light… He (David) is very generous with his knowledge of photography and always put our photos ahead of his own. Anyone fortunate enough to travel with David or any of the Luminous Photography team is in for a real treat. I know that I’m already planning out my next trip!” – Susan Flickinger, USA
Luminous Journeys’ “prime directive” is to always put our guests’ image making first and foremost, thereby ensuring the utmost out of your Bali photo tour experience. Any photographer, novice to advanced, stands to gain a quite a lot from working with an outstanding professional and all around great guy like David Lazar.
Be sure to check out this excellent article and photographs about Bali published by Photography Life magazine.
Dates – Sept 27 – Oct 8, 2020
Lead Photographer – David Lazar (See David’s Gallery)
Tour Price – $5750 USD
Single Supplement – $850 USD
Minimum Deposit – $1500 USD
Locations Java & Mt. Bromo, Sanur, Tanganan, Mahagiri, Besakhi Mother Temple, Tukad Unda, Pupuan, Negara, Payangan (Villa is 20 km north of Ubud)
Hotels – 4/5 star, best available in remote locations
Tour Type – Small group photo tour workshop, 5 person minimum, 8 person maximum
Skill Level – Suitable for ALL skill levels, novice to advanced
Physical Difficulty – Light to Moderate, with minimal mountain walking
Transportation – 1 internal flight to Java + Return, late model air conditioned vans w/ plenty of space
Spectacular Mountain Rice Terraces
Traditional Buffalo Race Action Shoot
Java & the Surreal Mt. Bromo Volcano
Gorgeous Monkey Rainforest
The Tengger Horsemen of Java
The Beautiful People of Bali!
Luminous Bali Photo Tour Adventure
A “get acquainted” slideshow with David is followed by your first privately arranged photo shoot in a nearby village. Three lovely Ramayana dancers in full costume will be at your service both on stage and in a rice paddy setting. Also present will be 20 male Kecak & Fire dancers! The big show & shoot follows, then back to the beach for your special welcome dinner.
Rise before dawn to catch the picturesque action of a fishermen’s net catching the rising sun… Breakfast @ the hotel followed by a short flight to Java, drive and trek to incredible Mt. Bromo. No worries, the trekking is easy. Afternoon/sunset volcano-scapes suitable for framing ? Your hotel for the night rests beautifully on the rim of a volcano!
Day 3 – Java – Bali – Of Volcanoes & Horses
I love the smell of Bromo in the morning! Short drive to a new high angle location for a Landscaper’s dream shoot to delight your senses as well as your sensors. Enjoy a hearty breakfast back at the hotel, then it’s time to meet Java’s master horsemen, the Tenger. You’ll get the chance to photograph the Tenger with their horses with some incredible mountain backdrops before the return trip to Bali.
Day 4 – East Bali – Traditional Workshop & Tukad Unda
This morning is a chance to sleep in after the very early hours spent on Java. Late morning visit a Gamelan Workshop for some colorful environmental portraiture with a variety or artisans and percussion instrument makers. This afternoon’s shoot is with local kids at the Tukad Unda “waterfalls”, which is always great fun.
Day 5 – East Bali – Salt Farmers, Bats & Original People
This morning photograph Bali’s salt farmers in action, then head for a facinating temple that houses tens of thousands of holy bats! After a wonderful Balinese lunch we head for Tengannan and the Bali Aga people. The Bali Aga are the island’s original tribe, with only a few thousand of them remaining. Here we will take advantage of the village’s inimitable temple and other unique backgrounds for late afternoon environmental portraits and more.
Day 6 – East Bali – Rice Terraces & the Mother Temple
Another exhilarating sunrise, this time photographing one of the great rice terrace scenes anywhere on earth, backed by the island’s biggest volcano. After breakfast with a glorious view, it will be off to Bali’s legendary “Mother Temple”, Besakih. Afternoon drive to the little visited (good for us!) but fantastic rice terrace area of Pupuan for landscapes, and landscapes with a human element.
Day 7 – West Bali – Pupuan Dawn to the Buffalo Coast
Since rice farmers are not often evident except at planting & harvest, we will have arranged for some to join us this morning in order to add interest and color (other than gorgeous rice green!) to your compositions. Many rice fields are easily accessible in this area, so you are free to roam as you will as well. Breakfast and free time until the drive to Negara on the west coast for late afternoon seascapes.
Day 8 – West Bali – Buffalo Morning, 5-Star Evening
This is a rare opportunity to capture some incredible culture in action images. We will attend a publicly held traditional buffalo race with VIP photography and behind the scenes access. After the race is free time before heading off to the most beautiful Balinese villa you can imagine, complete with spa and world class chef. Be sure and schedule your complimentary 1 hour massage!
Day 9 – Central Bali – Of Kings, Gods and Chiaroscuro
Indra, the King of Gods, is said to have pierced the earth at Tirta Empul to create the spring that feeds the ancient purification baths. Photograph Balinese here and in other ceremonies around the grounds. Fun loving Balinese shooter Dukun Jawa will join. Later shoot at Dukun’s house w/ two Legong dancers, rainforest canopy light, and local kids at jungle river pool.
Day 10 – Central Bali – Arts Fusion & the Digital Darkroom
Early morning at the villa there will be a Balinese style martial arts performance & photography, followed by a breakfast fit for paradise. Then for all those interested, there will be a comprehensive Photoshop/Lightroom session with David. A professional Balinese model will arrive in the afternoon for various shoots around the villa and villa grounds, including rice paddies.
Day 11 – Rice Women, Monkey Forest & Farewell Pool Party
Sunrise at the spectacular Ceking rice terraces as the first rays of the sun break over them. Beautiful & photogenic Ceking grandmas will provide a human element, & engage in portrait sessions afterward. Then explore an off-the-beaten path monkey forest, where macaque families w/ young babies play. Late afternoon at the villa brings your farewell pool party w/ Balinese seafood BBQ prepared by our world class chef. Local child dancers will perform, and gamelan music will play…
Day 12 – Free Time, Relaxed Departure
Since you absolutely will not to want to leave, the villa owner has graciously offered us a very relaxed departure schedule in which to slowly tear yourself away. So if your flight is an evening one, no worries, you may depart the villa as late as 5 pm. In the meantime relax by the pool, enjoy the spa facilities, or get some image processing done. Your new good friend Pande will take you to the airport and bid you a fond farewell. You will miss this place!
*We have great confidence that Luminous Bali is easily the best photo tour workshop ever run on the island, and will be a very pleasant surprise even for you hard core travel photographers out there who think it might be too tame or touristy. It is ABSOLUTELY NOT. If David were not excited about this tour, and if we had not gotten such great feedback from some very fine photographer participants, we wouldn’t be doing it!
**Please note the above itinerary is a brief sample only, with daily shooting schedules subject to change. A fully detailed itinerary and 30+ page information kit concerning traveling for photography in Bali will be sent to all registered participants approximately 100 days prior to tour start date.
***All photographs are by Luminous Journeys photographers or participants. Photo Credit: Day 3 – Rahmad Hidayat. Day 9 – Lee Ann Birkenstock. Day 10 – Richard Beilby
Photographer fees and top English speaking guide
In-country flights, airport & ground transport, inc. airport transfers
All meals from dinner Day 1 through breakfast Day 12
Plenty of bottled water throughout
All entrance, zone and camera fees
Local model/location donations
Extra drinks @ lunches & dinners (1 soda or fruit juice is included)
Trip cancellation or medical insurance
Gratuities – porters, local guide/driver
Indonesia visa fee
End of trip gratuities for photographer tour leader
More Knowledge – Better Pictures