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Rome Photo Workshop

 

Multi Day Trip Ideas

Day 1 - Arrival in Rome

Day 2
We'll begin the tour at St. Peter's Square. This is one of Rome’s greatest sites, visited by millions of tourists and faithful.The splendid square and colonnade, Bernini's finest work, form a superb entryway to the greatest church of Christendom, dominated by the magnificent Dome of Michelangelo.

It's a short walk from the St. Peter's Basilica to Castelo Sant'Angelo. Constructed by the Emperor Hadrian(117-138) as a mausoleum for himself and his successors, the Emperor Aurelian rebuilt the ruins into a fortress that was eventually connected to the Vatican by a safety passage that runs along the top of the encircling wall of the Vatican. Henceforth, it remained under the control of the Popes who used it as a fortress until modern times. Now it is a museum.

Next, we'll cross the Bridge of Angels to the other side of the Tiber River. This bridge is adorned by some of Bernini’s most beautiful and interesting statues, and leads to the true Centro Storico - The Historic Center of Rome. We'll wind our way through cobblestone streets to Piazza Navona. A marvel of light and sculpture, it is exceptionally long and owes its shape to the ruins that formed it, for under the buildings that surround Piazza Navona are the remains of the Circus Domitianus, Domitian's stadium - a part of which can still be seen.The piazza features many fine old buildings, a beautiful church and three stunning fountains. In the center of the piazza is Bernini's most spectacular fountain, la Fontana dei Fiumi (Four Rivers) erected in 1651. Piazza Navona is an extremely lively place with open-air cafes around it. During the summer, numerous artists draw or paint members of the public for a fee. The place is crowded each day and there are often buskers and sometimes mimes to entertain.

Time to enjoy a fabulous Italian meal! We have reserved a special place at one of Rome's finest and quaintest trattorias, Antica Taverna. Your host, Paolo, will serve you a bubbly proseco champagne even before you find your table. Get ready for the treat of a lifetime! Paolo and his chefs have a very special meal planned for you, complete with the finishing touches of espresso or the Italian specialty, grappa. You'll be talking about this feast for months to come!

After lunch, we will photograph the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, and the Spanish Steps. The Pantheon was begun in 27 BC by the statesman Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa. It fell into ruins but was completely rebuilt by the emperor Hadrian sometime between AD 118 and 128. Its dome was the largest built until modern times. It was dedicated in AD 609 as the Church of the Santa Maria Rotonda, or ad Martyrs, which it remains today. The tomb of Raphael is found inside.

The Trevi Fountain (or Fontana di Trevi) in Rome is known the world over as the fountain where Anita Ekberg cooled off at night in Fellini's film "La Dolce Vita." The Trevi Fountain is also famous as the setting for the popular romantic film "Three Coins In a Fountain." Located in the heart of Rome’s historic center, the Trevi Fountain derives its name from its position at the intersection of three roads(tre vie). It is one of the world’s most photographed monuments in Rome and many visitors agree that, amongthe many ancient buildings of Baroque Rome, the Trevi Fountain is unrivalled as a spectacular aquatic structure. It is a popular meeting or gathering spot for Romans and visitors alike.

The Spanish Steps (or Scalinata della Trinita' dei Monti) are a majestic series of three flights of steps that lead up to the impressive double-bell towered church (before which stands an obelisk). An intriguing fountain sits at the bottom of the steps that always has people around it puzzling over its peculiarities. This is la Fontana della Barcaccia that is set very low, almost at street level, in order to function with the low water pressure that arrives there. The water is potable and you will see people filling their water bottles constantly.

Day 3
Today, we'll get up early and travel by train outside of Rome to a farm in the Castelli Romani where we will photograph outdoors and have a wonderfully private lunch

After lunch, we'll return to Rome but on the way we'll stop off in some of the small villages on route like Nemi or Frascati.

Day 4
For our 4-Night participants, we'll start the day early to catch the sunrise at the Roman Forum (our 6-nighttour participants can sleep in!). Then at 9:00am we'll see The Campidoglio, a remarkable square and an urban masterpiece designed by Michelangelo. At the center of the square stands the great bronze equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius.

Then down into the Roman Forum, the focal point of the city in ancient Rome. It was the center for commercial, political, and civil activities and contained markets,prisons, statues, entertainment areas, temples and monuments built by various emperors. Perhaps more than any other Roman ruin, the Forum with its great temples and arches gives us a glimpse into both the architectural and political power of Rome during the time of the emperors and is the perfect outdoor classroom to make exciting and memorable photographs of one of the world's greatest historic sites. Photographing the forum will surely be one of the highlights of your tour.

Finally, we'll walk out of the Roman Forum to the Coliseum, one of the world’s most famous landmarks and tourist attractions. Although it survives only as a ruin, it still rates as one of the finest examples of Roman architecture and engineering.

The rest of the day is yours to wander and explore Rome. Tony can suggest several excellent places to grab a snack or have a pizza.

Rome after sunset is magical and we would be remiss if we didn't include a special Twilight Photo Session. We'll move around a bit, from one side of the Tiber River to the other, capturing the fleeting light as it gives way to the artfully designed artificial lights that bathe the Castel Sant'Angelo, The Bridge of Angels and the Tiber River. Although large tripods are generally forbidden in Rome, a small table-top tripod will be just perfect for this session. But don't worry! We'll show you an easy way to shoot at night without the use of a tripod.

We've reserved dinner at one of Tony's favorite trattorias. Don't forget to bring your camera as well as your appetite! We won't say "good-by" to our 4-Night participants, rather "ci vediamo" - we'll see you again!

Day 5
For those on the 6-night tour, we'll take an early morning train to arrive in Florence in time to catch the Tuscan morning light that makes this city so romantic. We'll photograph the cathedral of Il Duomo, with Brunelleschi's cupola, an architectural masterpiece that has become the symbol of Tuscany. Nearby we'll see the Baptistery adorned with Giotto's Doors of Paradise - intricately carved in bronze by the great Renaissance genius. Then, we'll visit Piazza Signoria, dominated by Palazzo Vecchio with its commanding view of Florence and the Arno River that winds lazily through city. We'll walk across the famous Ponte Vecchio, lined with miniature jewelry stores and curio shops.

Along the way we'll have a light lunch at The Golden View Ristorante, with a fabulous panorama of the Ponte Vecchio and Arno River, just across from the great Uffizi Museum. Don't eat too much, because in the afternoon, we'll walk upward to the magnificent Boboli Gardens, offering spectacular panoramas of Florence, the Arno River, Il Duomo, and the towers of the Bargello and Palazzo Vecchio. Our train back to Rome leaves in the late afternoon, getting us back in time for a late dinner. Tony can suggest several fine restaurants near your hotel.

Day 6

We'll start the day early to catch the sunrise at the Roman Forum. At 9:00am we'll see The Campidoglio, a remarkable square and an urban masterpiece designed by Michelangelo. At the center of the square stands the great bronze equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius.

Then down into the Roman Forum, the focal point of the city in ancient Rome. It was the center for commercial, political, and civil activities and contained markets, prisons, statues, entertainment areas, temples and monuments built by various emperors. Perhaps more than any other Roman ruin, the Forum with its great temples and arches gives us a glimpse into both the architectural and political power of Rome during the time of the emperors and is the perfect outdoor classroom to make exciting and memorable photographs of one of the world's greatest historic sites. Photographing the forum will surely be one of the highlights of your tour.

Finally, we'll walk out of the Roman Forum to the Coliseum, one of the world’s most famous landmarks and tourist attractions. Although it survives only as a ruin, it still rates as one of the finest examples of Roman architecture and engineering.

The rest of the day is yours to wander and explore Rome. Tony can suggest several excellent places to grab snack or have a pizza.

"Ci Vediamo" - Farewell, until next time

Pricing 375Euro per half day

3,4 and 5 star hotel accommodation available.

About Tony Boccaccio

Tony began his career with National Geographic Magazine in 1971. Since then, his camera has taken him to over thirty countries in as many years - from Iceland to the Amazon.

Like most photographers, he is a series of contrasts: His lens has captured the frozen landscapes of Iceland and the sweltering jungles of the Amazon.

He is probably most known for his beautiful travel photography, yet while working with the human figure, his sensitivity rivals that of the great painters. Indeed, his artistic life began as a young painter trained in the classical manner. He studied classical piano at the prestigious Eastman School of Music and taught himself to play the bluegrass banjo. He lived in Brazil as a teenager and Italy as a college student. In 1995, he returned to Rome, Italy to continue his painting and to learn how to sculpt in the classical manner under one of Rome's most gifted sculptors, Alessandro Nocera.

"Painting was my first passion. and by the time I was 16, I was painting on commissions and selling my work for more than the monthly mortgage payment on our home. I discovered the camera when I was 17. My high school art teacher took me into the darkroom to see how printing was done. When I saw that first image miraculously appear I was hooked. That night I announced to my family that I was no longer going to paint, that I was going to be a professional photographer. My father, old Italian that he was, almost killed me, since I gave half of all my commissions to him. My mother intervened and the rest is history."

While a student at the University of Rochester, he was invited by Kodak to hang out with their photographers who provided him with valuable training and tons of free film and development for four years. This opportunity proved invaluable and eventually led to working with National Geographic Magazine.

From Iceland to the Amazon

While on assignment in Iceland for National Geographic Magazine, he fell off the Surtsey volcano into the Arctic Ocean. It was October and the water was below freezing. His young Iceland guide jumped into the surf and pulled him out unconscious and not breathing. He gave him mouth to mouth and a half bottle of good Irish whisky to revive him. During the same assignment, he crashed in a plane but he and his pilot survived to tell the story.

I put the camera on automatic with a 250 photo magazine and turned it on just before we hit. The camera flew around the cabin clicking away until it jammed at number 86! At Geographic the only thing that counts is getting the shot!

In 1972, he read a small article in the New York Times about the construction of the Translation highway, an impressive road cut across the Amazon jungle. Without hesitation, he dropped everything and headed off into the world's largest rainforest. He survived a forest fire, a boat sinking, a gold miner who tried to have him shot and was lost in the jungle alone for 3 days until by chance a helicopter pilot saw him and brought him back to civilization. He returned 20 years later and spent one year photographing the social and ecological destruction of the Amazon basin for a book that will be published in Brazil next year.

Awards & Publications

CLIENTS ‚ AWARDS ‚ EXHIBITIONS ‚ REPRESENTATION

Getty Images/The Image Bank, Workbookstock, Inc. and Desert Dolphin stock photo agencies represent his photography worldwide. His work is in the permanent collection of fine art of the Neikrug Gallery, New York.

PROFESSIONAL CLIENTS

National Geographic Magazine, Time Magazine, Eastman Kodak Company, McGraw Hill, Saturday Evening Post, Psychology Today, Natural History Magazine, and many international corporate clients.

PUBLICATIONS

Conquering the Amazon: Brazil's Jungle Highway - Gannet Publishing
Where Madness Follows:The Search For Gold In The Amazon Jungle
The Marvels of Animal Behavior - National Geographic Society
This Changing Earth - January 1973 National Geographic Magazine
We're Doing Something About The Weather - National Geographic
The Great Lakes - National Geographic Magazine
The Rebirth of Mount St. Helens - National Geographic Traveler
Am I Free? - Argus Communications
Street Urchins of Colombia - Natural History Magazine
Sports Photography - Eastman Kodak
Hawaii - The Land and the People - Gallery Books, New York
The West - Images of America - Gallery Books, New York
The Kodak Book of 35mm Photography - Eastman Kodak

Client Reviews

The "Rome through a lens" photo tour features Anthony Boccaccio, a well known National Geographic photographer. My tour began early in the morning, when we started at the Spanish Steps with a little group of 5 people. From the beginning on, Tony tried to change our way of seeing. He helped us developing a sense for the shapes of an object, which is very helpful to compose good pictures. He had a look at every picture taken and gave helpful hints on how to improve the picture by changing the perspective, the background or just the angle of the camera by a few degrees. This instantly led to better pictures, which I enjoy to watch over and over again. My change of photographic vision is recognized by friends an family, because they state that my pictures are no longer the boring tourist shots everyone takes, but are going to be art.

Our tour officially ended after 5 interesting hours, but Tony invited us to stay and join his favorite "ristorante" which was located in a quit little street . There we had superb lunch, while Tony told us interesting stories about his life andthe adventures he had been trough while working as a professional photographer for over 30 years.

I liked this tour so much, because it helped me composing good pictures. And after all, you didn't fell like Tony was doing a job. It was kind of a bunch of friends, enjoying Rome together while taking pictures.

I'm already planking to visit Rome again and I will take the Rome Thru the Lens Photo Tour" again. TL

We expected a tour of the most popular sites and a few tips on photography, well, we got a lot more than that.

Mr. Boccaccio is excellent company to start with, and combined with his impressive experience and knowledge of the art and mechanics of photography, he made that day the highlight of our vacation.

We received a very useful and effective crash course on photography as well as an opportunity to see things that are not on the tourist maps, he has succeeded in making us see things in a whole new perspective.

Our photo albums are never going to look the same.

 

Your Time with Tony

Tony Boccaccio
What you will learn

How will you spend your time with Tony?

Doing is by far the best way to learn, and so we will be spending most of our time on-site in Rome making photographs.

What can you expect...

Personalized coaching - Our group sizes are small - a maximum of 6 participants - insuring that you will receive personalized, individual attention.

Out method is simple - Our goal is to help you sharpen your photographic vision, to teach you how to think, observe, and shoot like the pros at National Geographic

What you will learn...

Our hands-on approach will teach you how to compose eye-catching photographs, how to use perspective to your advantage, how to get the best use of light & shadow, how to use color, contrast, and detail to make captivating images.

Also, you will learn:

• Tips & tricks used by the pros to make impressive photographs.

• Understanding your camera and how to get the most out of it.

• Sensing the quality and direction of light and how to capture the magic moment.

• Capturing the "Magic Moment" - the best time and best place to photograph Rome.

• Framing and composing different subjects to make photos with impact.

• How to think and shoot like the pros at National Geographic magazine.

• Practicing the art of visual thinking and photography.

• Tour in English

Carnival at night
venice black and white
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venice scene
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Photographers Workshop in Rome venitian lady
with National Geographics Tony Boccaccio

Tours Dates: On Request May 15th to July 30th, then Sept 1st -Nov 6th

Private Tour Cost up to 4 people: Half Day 395€ Full Day 750€

“At National Geographic, simply taking a picture of a person, place or thing is not enough.  Each image must be created with the intention of telling a story, a human story, one that will inform, captivate, and be instantly understandable to the reader.  In a word, we give a human face to the world.”

Tony Boccaccio began his photographic career with National Geographic Magazine in 1971 and has since photographed in over 30 countries in as many years with a client list that is straight from the Fortune 500. A world-class photographer and teacher, he leads Adventures thru the Lens in Rome.

Let Tony show you how to bring the history of Rome alive through simple yet highly effective techniques. He will point out details invisible to the untrained eye and reveal the best vantage-points on your chosen route. Learn to tell a story through images, take captivating photos of iconic monuments and capture atmospheric images off the beaten track.  Your time with Tony will be especially rewarding because he has lived in Rome for many years, speaks fluent Italian, and knows the locals and the secrets of the city

“Boccaccio’s unique style, his way of seeing the world and capturing it on film is what most impressed us at Geographic. I can’t think of a more qualified photographer to teach the art of seeing, particularly as it relates to photography!”
                            Jack Fletcher, National Geographic Magazine

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If Stones Could Speak

On this morning tour we will learn how to capture in just one photograph the stories personified by myth and stone spanning more than two millennia.

 

tour details

 

Most casual tourists photograph the Coliseum by itself, unaware that the stone walkway next to it is the legendary Via Appia Antica.  The stones are uneven and tourists often complain that it is difficult to navigate. 

What they may not know is that it was across these same stones that the great generals and emperors carried the spoils of their conquests of the Middle East and Africa.   Much of the marble, exotic animals, and slaves that made the Coliseum great first paraded over these stones before entering the Foro Romano.

roman stones

Most tourists snap off a picture of the Coliseum not unlike postcards we’ve all seen. But a slight change of angle can bring history alive in one just one captivating image.

Further along on our route we will discover one of the most distinctive examples or recycling stone, the Teatro Marcello started by Julius Caesar around 44 BC. It is the largest theatre ever built in the Roman Empire which continues to serve as a venue for outdoor concerts. More interesting, the structure itself is a conglomeration of diverse architecture spanning more than 2000 years, from its ancient foundations, 15th Century fortress, 18th Century apartments built by the Orsini family, 20th Century restoration ordered by Mussolini, and today by modernized luxury apartments.

We will make 7 major stops on the tour where we will build the key points of our story with interesting observations en route to allow you to personalize the story the way you see Rome!

pantheon

Where Gods, Angels & Demons Live

Rome is more than inanimate monuments and marble statues. It is a vivacious city shaped over the ages by emperors, artists, and architects who, in building the Eternal City, created a remarkable human story where gods, angels and demons lived.

tour details

On this afternoon tour we will learn how to capture the sometimes humorous and devilish antics of the people that created them and learn about the struggle between the pagan and Christian gods through the centuries.

For example we will visit the Basilica Santa Maria Sopra Minerva, built on top of a Roman temple dedicated to the Egyptian god Isis, and where Galileo Galilee, the father of modern astronomy, is buried. In front of the Basilica we find Bernini’s famous elephant holding up one of the 11 Egyptian obelisks of Rome. Sculpted in 1667, Bernini intended it as a devilish taunt: the elephant’s rear end is pointed at the nearby building where Galileo was sentenced as a heretic (and perhaps tortured) during the Inquisition, almost 35 years earlier.

roman stones

Most tourists photograph the elephant showing the church in the background – a common postcard image. We want to make this story (history) more interesting by putting flesh and bone on it:The more emphatic and captivating image is showing the Palazzo of the Inquisition behind the behind of the elephant!



We’ll discover other landmarks that illustrate this interweaving of pagan and Christian beliefs like the world’s oldest Christian Basilica where pagan gods lived, the myth of the devilish humor of Bernini’s man with his hand raised against the church built by his arch-rival Borromini even before the church was built, Bernini’s angels in front of the tomb of Marcus Aurelia and of course the Vatican – Seat of the Christian World with Bernini’s colonnade symbolizing the arms of the Christian God welcoming people and built over Nero’s Circus where Christians were persecuted by the Roman pagans.

Just as Bernini uses the trick of the eye on the colonnades in St Peters to create a sense of grandeur and scale, we’ll show you how to create the same impact in your photography using the techniques of top professionals.

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Wedding Photography

Imagine getting married in Rome and being photographed by a great National Geographic photographer to remember that special day. Email us for details.

 

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