Photo Roadtrip

Dance in France

27th July - 5th August 2018

The Roadtrip

Explore the romance of France with your camera and two amazing professional dancers, in the company of a small, friendly group of like-minded photographers. This is the stuff of memories. Sun-drenched vineyards… majestic chateaux… cobbled village streets…tree-lined avenues… these are just a few of the many beautiful backdrops to this unique road trip holiday. And when you are ready for refreshment, enjoy a glass of wine or a cup of coffee with freshly baked bread and some local cheeses - or maybe sample a regional dish – to complete the authentic flavour of the country.

This is a nine-day photographic holiday which takes full advantage of the rich culture and history of France. As with all our Photo Roadtrips, we aim to give you a truly immersive experience, blending a broad range of dance and fashion genres with a strong and evocative sense of place. Our prime focus is on dance, but you will also have opportunities to shoot fashion, lifestyle, travel, landscape and street photography in locations as diverse as Paris, the Champagne region of Epernay and the medieval city of Rocamadour in the Dordogne Valley.

On our programme of guided shoots, we provide advice and support to match your level of competence and there will also be plenty of opportunities for independent portfolio building. Special attention will be devoted to nailing great dance images and you will learn about lighting, angles, composition  and, above all, timing.The aim is to have a wonderful time; return home with images you are proud of and memories to savour.

You will be one of just six photographers on an air conditioned minibus. Before the trip, we will arrange your personal UK pick-up point to begin the journey. All accommodation on the holiday is single occupancy in a minimum of 3-star hotels.

Travelling with you is the support team: Trainer/Photographer Andrew Appleton; two professional dancers, one also a high fashion model; a driver/assistant; a qualified make-up artist and wardrobe stylist.

The Dancers: From Ballet to Burlesque

We are very excited to be able to present you with two dancers who complement each other perfectly and will offer you a broad range of dance styles to shoot. Our wardrobe stylist is planning a variety of costumes for the trip: she will ensure that both dancers look absolutely stunning, giving your images context, narrative and impact, whatever the location.

Alexa Hilton

Alexa will be familiar to previous Roadtrippers and dance workshop attendees. They will know that she always delivers. She has been on numerous European Roadtrips with us and is a master of interpreting the landscape through dance, whether the location is urban or rural. When Alexa poses for you, she has a grace and serenity which makes it all look easy. With her critical eye for dance, the help and advice she will share with you is absolutely invaluable.

Alexa is professionally trained in classical ballet, tap, jazz and contemporary dance and has bags of experience to draw upon. She has danced in the West End and appeared many times in music videos, on TV and other media. We are fortunate that Alexa has been able to take time out from her role as principal of a busy dance school to be with us in France this October.


Janet Mayer

Our second professionally trained dancer is also an aerialist and high fashion model. Through her work in both the performing arts and the fashion industry, Janet can offer a unique skill set - cabaret meets runway and more. Janet’s dance ranges from high-energy styles such as the Can-Can (how appropriate for a French trip!) to the measured precision of more acrobatic shapes and forms.

Janet has performed in live theatre across the world and on TV shows, commercials and music videos. Her dance credits include 4Music, Coca Cola and the Cannes Film Festival. As an agency-represented model, she has worked with Vogue and Elle Magazine and appeared on Sky TV in Naomi Campbell’s UK series of ‘The Face’. In terms of runway, she has walked for numerous designers for London and Paris Fashion Week.



The Itinerary 

Friday 27th July Leave UK via the Eurotunnel on a 17 seat minibus. There will be 11 people travelling in total so you have plenty of room to spread out. We will catch a very early Saturday morning shuttle which provides a chance to catch some sleep en route.

Saturday 28th July Once we are on French soil, it’s only about three hours to the first pin in our route map. That means we can take a leisurely drive with a stop for breakfast, and still arrive in the Champagne capital of Epernay with plenty of time to explore. Beneath the streets, over 200 million bottles of bubbly are being aged in subterranean cellars and our visit will include a guided tour of the famous Moet and Chandon Headquarters. Above ground, photographic opportunities are everywhere from historic architecture and manicured parks to the rolling vineyards so characteristic of the surrounding countryside.

Sunday 29th July From our base in Epernay, it is just a short drive to the cathedral city of Verdun. While we are there, we will visit the battlefields and the incredible underground fortress, home to 2,000 French soldiers during one of the most costly and bloody battles of World War One.

Monday 30th July Moving on …we travel south from the Champagne of Epernay to the Burgundy of Morvan. Here, in the heartland of central France, are the picture postcard villages and chateaux of our collective imagination - plus The Morvan Regional National Park. Covering an area of 290,900 hectares, it boasts a rich and diverse ecosystem. Forests and farmland; lakes and rivers; peaks and valleys; together they form a haven for many, many species of flora and fauna. Wildlife and landscape photography are the obvious choices here but you will also get an opportunity to shoot some lifestyle and dance with our two models on location.

Tuesday 31st July The next leg of our road trip is into the glorious Dordogne region and this really deserves to be savoured so we are spending three nights in Sarlat-la-Canéda. Think yellow sandstone turrets, cobbled streets, cafés, bars and bistros and you have the market town of Sarlat. It really is rather special. No wonder it’s known as the film director’s favourite! Here you will shoot fashion, lifestyle, dance and maybe even catch the Thursday evening market for some candid street photography. Capture the flavour of the region through your lens but don’t neglect the local cuisine and regional wines which are simply delicious. From here we will explore the lovely Dordogne River valley and, while we are stationed in Sarlat, we will take a day trip to the medieval settlement of Rocamadour which is just 50 kilometres to the south-east. Carved into the mountainside above the Alzou canyon, it is renowned for the complex of religious buildings which are accessed by the Grand Escalier staircase. There will be plenty of opportunities to shoot our two models in this historic location and, before we leave, we aim to capture the sunset which can be quite spectacular.

Friday 3rd August We say goodbye to Sarlat and head north towards Le Mans. En route, we will stop at Limoges, known for its decorated porcelain, Gothic style cathedral and medieval timber-framed houses. We arrive at Le Mans later in the day for an overnight stop. Between June and September the city hosts a sound and light show of amazing proportions and we aim to arrive in time to take in the spectacle.

Saturday 4th August Before we strike out on the 2.5 hour journey to Paris, we will investigate the race track which includes a museum dedicated to the 24 Hours of Le Mans. We plan to hit Paris for a late lunch and then shoot some fashion and dance around the Sacré Coeur and Montmartre area of the city during the afternoon.

Sunday 5th August We want to make an early start on this, our last day of the holiday, so that we can shoot on the banks of the River Seine and around the Eiffel Tower area. Here’s the perfect location for both fashion and dance poses; if you are looking for an iconic shot, it doesn’t get any more French than this. Time, then, to pack up and head back to Calais for our crossing which will get us back to the UK in the evening.

Please note: We make every effort to adhere to the above itinerary although traffic conditions may affect specific timings. If weather conditions affect our arrangements, we may delay or substitute a specific activity.

The Accommodation 

Accommodation will be a mix of 3 star hotel rooms and apartments all on a single room occupancy basis. Please note meals are not included in the cost of the trip however all our chosen accommodation is located near to restaurants, bistros and local shops and amenities.

The Event

The trip runs from the 27th July - 5th August 2018. A valid passport is required. 

This event is limited to 6 photographers


The Gear

You will need a DSLR or CSC camera plus suitable lenses. we recommend lenses that will cover 24 - 150mm on a full frame sensor, a fast prime for low light shooting and a speedlight will also come in useful as would a tripod. But feel free to bring along your kit bag as well as your laptop and plenty of memory cards.

Please let us know if you are a Sony user. If you have any questions regarding equipment, please contact


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  • July 27, 2018 - August 5, 2018
    4:00 pm - 10:00 pm
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