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Phoenix Arizona Milkyway & Startrails Workshop

Photographing the night sky in Phoenix, AZ can be a truly magical experience. With its clear, dark skies and stunning desert landscape, Phoenix offers a unique and breathtaking backdrop for capturing the stars, constellations, and other celestial wonders. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced photographer, taking advantage of Phoenix's exceptional conditions for night sky photography is a must. From capturing the Milky Way to shooting stunning star trails, the possibilities for creativity and artistic expression in night sky photography are virtually limitless.

Just outside the Phoenix area is known for its clear, dark skies, making it a prime location for night sky photography. During the workshop, I will teach you the technical aspects of night sky photography, such as camera settings, lens choices, and post-processing techniques. You'll also have the opportunity to put your new skills into practice with hands-on shooting sessions, where you'll capture stunning images of stars, constellations, and even the Milky Way arch. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced photographer, this workshop will provide you with the skills and knowledge you need to capture breathtaking images of the night sky.

First 3 Registrants save $100! Use code PHXFIRST3

Dates: June 16-18th

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Class Size: 6

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Spots Available: 1

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Difficulty: Easy

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Investment: $999

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(Link will take you to my Regfox registration page in a seperate window!)

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-"If you're considering attending one of Sean Parker's workshops, let me say as an alumni that after spending a few informative and inspirational days with Sean, you will be prepared to photograph EPIC star pictures of the kind that you now can only dream about. I highly recommend that you book Sean's workshop now!" -Tony Prince

-"This workshop was wonderful to attend. Each individual student got as much assistance and instruction as needed. The opportunity to create dramatic images becomes much easier after working with the Starman, Sean Parker." -Gary Smith

-"After attending Sean's amazing workshop, I took the post processing class. The photo was nice to start, but after learning how to edit, the whole thing popped! It made a world of difference. I would highly recommend his workshops!" - Amy Utter


This is a 2-night workshop opportunity where we will meet Friday & Saturday night. We'll meet a week prior to our date over Zoom for an pre-workshop introduction to go over gear, the itinerary, and learn about each other and our night sky experiences.

When we meet on location, we will spend some time familiarizing ourselves with the location and our gear, then  head out to shooting location. From there we will spend~5  hours under the stars capturing amazing photos! There will be a post processing session / critique in person or after the workshop via zoom as well!

What Will I Learn?

-How to prepare for your shoot.

-Camera & lens overview.

-Camera exposure settings for optimal imagery.

-How to focus your lens at night.

-A general astronomy course so you can easily understand moon cycles, earth’s orbit, how to find the milkyway, planets, meteor showers, etc.

-How to photograph the milkyway, capture star trails, long exposures, and light painting.

-Milkyway Panoramas

-Special tips and techniques such as photo stacking to reduce noise.

-Advanced camera techniques for focus and exposure blending. 

-My successful workflow on PC using Lightroom, Starstax, Sequator, and basic photoshop adjustments. All my photos are single photos or stacked...I do not composite my images and teach hours of layers and masks in photoshop! My workflow is very simple and affective.

-Social Media Tips

What Will I Need?

-A DSLR or Mirrorless Camera that can perform in Manual (M) Mode and user manual.

-At least 2 fully charged camera batteries and 32GBs of memory card storage.

-A WIDE angle lens that is at least 24mm with an aperture of f/2.8 or faster is recommended. I highly recommend variable lenses such as the Tamron 15-30, or a 16-35, 14-24, or 12-24. These lenses are perfect for astro and do not limit you to a certain focal length giving you more photo compositions while retaining prime lense sharpness.  Lens rental is available through www.lensRentals.com if necessary. Click the link above and use code "PARKER15" to save 15%!

-Shutter Release or Intervalometer (Please make sure you check your  camera make/model. Most cameras come with a built in intervalometer nowadays and will work fine for the startrails but not the long exposure techniques.)

-Sturdy Tripod w ballhead (recommended)


-Warm clothes.

-Bug Repellent (summer months.)

-Camping Chair.

-Food and snacks (some provided.)

Workshop attendees will  get an Overview PDF at the end of the workshop and exclusive access to my Facebook Alumni group! In this group I have over 125+ members who have attended my workshop and is a great place to post questions, events, and even meet up with fellow alumni's! 


This workshop will be held in numerous permitted  locations in Tonto National Forest around Apache Junction, AZ. A location like this one yields the most stunning photographs, and sets the backdrop for a truly dramatic composition. Participants will receive a detailed itinerary upon registration. 

-For visitors outside the Phoenix area, I recommend flying into Phoenix airport (PHX)

-Lodging is not Included in the hotel but we will be based out of Gilbert on the east side of Phoenix. We have a special rate with the Holiday Inn. More details sent to participants upon booking.


I welcome all skill levels to my workshops. Please keep in mind that this is not a photography 101 course, so all participants should have working knowledge how to navigate their camera menus and a basic understanding shooting in Manual mode. I keep my group sizes small so I can attend to each individuals needs throughout the workshop and will bring out my camera on occasions to get group photos and a single composition after everyone has gotten their shot. If you're worried about not receiving enough direction or you have never shot the night sky before, please consider taking a Private 1-on-1 Workshop. They might be a better fit for you. 

 As far as physically difficulty is concerned, there is some hiking involved. We will usually be ~.5 miles from the car but some place might require further hiking.  Be prepared to walk on uneven desert terrain.


Post Processing is included in this workshop! If you're interested in learning a customized &  successful workflow from importing, to color and tonal adjustments, sharpening, noise reduction, and exporting to print or web, then this will highly benefit you! Depending on the hotel facilities, we may have to do our post processing via zoom but I intend to do as much in-person processing as possible. 

Investment & Terms

$999 for 2 night participants. Alumni's receive a 15% discount. Use code ALUMNI if you have taken a workshop with me before. Must be 18 or older to sign-up. Prices do not include meals, accommodations, transportation, or park fees. Weather is unpredictable. Weather may compromise our photography shooting conditions but lessons will continue if the conditions permit. A 50% nonrefundable deposit is required to reserve your space in a workshop. If weather does cancel our workshop, the non refundable deposit will be transferred towards another workshop or print of your choice. Reservations must be made at least 3 days in advance. Please read my Terms & Conditions page before registering and contact me for late registration if needed.

What's Included:

– An fun and adventurous workshop in dark sky regions of the Sonoran Desert!

– Quality, professional, photography guiding and instruction

– Post-Processing Session (multi-night participants only)

– A fun, positive, interactive learning environment

– Special Use Photography Location Permits

– A small group size of 6 photographers maximum

– Water & Snacks

Print / Portfolio worthy images

What's Not Included:

– Airfare / transportation to Tucson, Arizona

- Lodging  (Recommendations will be emailed to you)

– Transportation during the workshop (though we carpool as much as possible)

– Meals

– Personal items, souvenirs, passport/visa fees as applicable

– Optional activities

– Trip insurance (highly recommended for any cancellations for both parties)

– Instructor Gratuities 


Click the register button below. You will be redirected to RegFox which is a secure payment website that will process your payment and registration information. You will also fill out a short questionnaire here that will help me get a better understanding of your photography experience and knowledge.  If you have any hesitation about signing up, check out the Testimonials page where clients have shared their experiences. You will receive a detailed itinerary upon registration a couple weeks before the workshop date.


Please visit my Workshop Information & F.A.Q page for more information, frequently asked questions, and general inquiries. If you don't find your answer there, please contact me!

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