Adventure Photography, with Colby Brown and Stan Moniz


Wow! What a crazy year we have all had. Between dealing with this pandemic, the uncertainty within the economy, and the lack of travel over the last few months, I think it is safe to say that none of us predicted we would be here at the start of the year. I know I didn’t….

Way back in February, my good buddy, Stan Moniz, and I reached out to B&H with an idea to film a video project for photographers up above the Arctic Circle, in the Lofoten Islands of Norway. The goal was to put together a video mini-series that covered nearly every facet of a photo adventure. We covered everything from the gear we brought with us, to how to research and plan for your own adventure, to in-field tips and tricks and much more. We walked you through how to capture everything from waterfalls to seascapes and even covered both the in-field and post-processing side of creating time-lapse videos of the Northern Lights.

But after we all collectively experienced the last six months together, I suppose you can see where this is going. Right as we finished this project, the world began to shut down, and to be 100% honest, it just didn’t feel like the right time to release the series, so we put it on hold, until now. So, while International travel is still currently on hold, at least for U.S. citizens, there are many beautiful local destinations worth exploring and capturing that you can safely experience today. While this series was shot in Norway in winter, it was always geared to give you the knowledge, tools and inspiration to start planning for your own photo adventures, wherever they might be.

Photographer Colby Brown carefully composing his next photograph.
Photographer Colby Brown carefully composing his next photograph

To give you a little taste of what to expect in this video series, let’s spend a few minutes helping you plan your next adventure. While most people don’t want to admit it, one of the most important aspects of any photo adventure is often found in the planning and research stage. This is important not just because you need to know the kind of weather you will be experiencing, but also the kind of images you want to capture.

While Instagram has become a bit of a love/hate relationship for many photographers these days, it can be one of the best real-time location research platforms, as well. For Stan and me, we use it to not only get a feel for what kind of images have been shot at a given location, but also to get real-time updates on what a location looks like, often on the same day we are searching on the platform. By using the search feature and selecting the “Recent” tab, you can now tell if fall colors are about to pop at a specific location before you venture out or whether a certain trailhead you want to explore is still open. Because so many people use Instagram, it can be a cash cow of information for photographers to help you make those important last-second decisions.

Using Instagram can give you a preview of the location you intend to go photograph.
Using Instagram can give you a preview of the location you intend to go photograph.

Once I am finally out there in the field, one of my favorite approaches to landscape photography is to avoid being an “anchor.” What does that mean? Too often I see photographers search for the perfect composition at a given location, only to find something they like and then literally sit in that one spot the entire time they are there. While I can appreciate that level of dedication to that one composition, the reality is that those photographers will only come away with a hundred different versions of the exact same shot once the light has faded. Instead, try to be more agile and adaptable. When possible, I want to scout out three or four different unique angles of a scene so that I can jump between them depending on the light I am experiencing. This way I can maximize my time out in the field by coming away with a large number of different photographs and scenes from a single shooting session.

Colby Brown and Stan Moniz checking in from the Arctic Circle.
Colby Brown and Stan Moniz checking in from the Arctic Circle

To learn more about our adventure above the Article Circle and how to plan for your own adventures, be sure to check out our mini-series, which you can find below or on the B&H YouTube Channel today!

How to Plan a Photography Adventure

Photographers Colby Brown and Stan Moniz show you their tips for planning an adventure photography trip, such as their favorite apps, location scouting, camera gear, and travel essentials.

Landscape Photography Tips for Better Photos

Photographer Colby Brown shows you his landscape photography tips while on location in Norway.

How to Shoot and Edit a Time-Lapse Video | Northern Lights

Photographer Stan Moniz shows you the camera gear, camera settings, and editing tips necessary for time-lapse video. You can also read about his technique in How to Create a Time-Lapse of the Northern Lights

Adventure Photography with Colby Brown and Stan Moniz | Recap

That’s it for this series! Here’s a quick recap of all the fun.



Really enjoyed this information and will try to use it next time out...currently shooting with Nikon D850 but have considered moving to Sony A9 as I shoot wildlife and sports...thanks for the info...

Glad you enjoyed the series and we sincerely hope you have a lot of fun shooting with your new kit!

Excellent information... Pre Ordered the new A 7c today can't wait to explore it's capabilities.  the 12 to 24 G 2.8 nice. I don't have one but I feel it's as good as any in the world... it's on my new wish list. Time to retire the 16 - 35L 2.8 I like the wide side

Always useful to hear from the pros and what they do. I would say there is nothing wrong with sticking with the D850, but the a9 is a great camera if you need the extra speed and don't need the resolution.