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Picture Editing

Leitchfield, Ky. | Grayson County | OCT 18 - 22

June 1registration opens

$700early bird registration | $800 after August 31

Sept. 30registration closes

How do you manage the process of editing thousands of gorgeous pictures as they are unloaded off dozens of little plastic memory cards, while the creators of these images run off to their next assignment? Where do you begin when the photographer wants to take the story in one direction and you think it needs to go in another direction? How do you make good choices about content, layout and design across multiple platforms while keeping true to the story? This is where the editing begins.

With a coach-to-student ratio of approximately 1:4 the Mountain Picture Editing workshop participants, along with some of the best visual editors in the country, help guide a team of photographers through the storytelling process. They select photos, craft them into visual narratives and design the layout for a book publication.

To complement your days and nights of editing and collaborative production, each evening there are inspiring presentations by the coaches from all forms of visual journalism. Any downtime you may have is spent soaking up the knowledge of your passionate coaches and maybe getting a few hours of sleep.


 

"You have to encourage picture editors to be a lot of things these days. We’re leading them through the whole process. We try to teach people how to tell good stories; that’s going to always be a skill that journalists have to have. It’s about having the faith that things are going to work out and visual storytelling is going to stick around forever."

Mick Cochran, Frm. Director of Photography, USA Today | Picture Editing Coach


 

What we do

Each October, a group of visual journalists set up shop in a different community in Kentucky to document life and culture in a way that is rarely attempted. Raw and live, it’s all about the people and their stories, not the institutions. It’s called the Mountain Workshops, and dozens of students and professionals from around the country swoop in for a week every year to garner new skills and fresh inspiration.

It’s a crash course in visual journalism.

Participants can choose from one of three options for the week. Photojournalism, the original workshop at Mountain, has always been a big hit, but Video Storytelling is increasingly in demand. If you wish to increase your knowledge in other visual skills, the Mountain Workshops can deliver. Picture Editing pushes a traditional skill set of image selection and book design into the digital age.

Three workshops held in one location, in one week, with a constant flow of new ideas and one-on-one guidance by the top professionals in their fields, all add up to an intense five days of high-octane education in visual communication and storytelling.

Apply Now

2022 Picture Editing Coaches

Max Gersh – The Indianapolis Star

Twitter: @pd_cameraman

Insta: @gershphoto

Max Gersh is the senior visuals editor at The Indianapolis Star, where he works with photojournalists, reporters and editors to set the visual report for Indiana’s largest daily paper. 

Aside from daily news coverage, Max works with his team to produce engaging community photo stories every week. This work helped him earn the National Press Photographers Association’s award for Newspaper Editor of the Year for papers under 100k circulation in 2021. 

In the past two years, Max has worked with IndyStar and USA Today to coordinate coverage and edit major sporting events including The Indianapolis 500, The Masters, Tokyo 2020 Olympics, the entire 2021 NCAA March Madness and the College Football Playoff National Championship. 

Before moving full time into the editing realm, Max worked as a staff photojournalist at papers in Indiana, Illinois, Florida and Tennessee. He has nearly 15 years of experience in the industry. 

He lives in Indianapolis with his wife, Erin. When not working, you can usually find him on two wheels, exploring the world on his bike. Max is a Kentucky native, born and raised in Louisville.

Denny Simmons – Evansville Courier & Press

denny_is_he

@dennyzimmonz

Denny Simmons has been working for 23 years at the Evansville Courier & Press and The Gleaner (Henderson, Ky.) serving as visuals coach/photographer. Past positions include picture editor at the News Sun (Waukegan, Ill.), picture editor at the St. Joseph (Mo.) News-Press and photographer at the Jacksonville (Ill.) Journal-Courier. Simmons was named NPPA's Best of Photojournalism Photographer of the Year (Smaller Markets) in 2008 and Runner-Up 2018; Best of Photojournalism 2021 Newspaper Picture Editor of the Year – Runner-up (Smaller Markets); and was inducted into the Scripps Hall of Fame in 2011. He has also been Indiana POY thrice and currently serves as its president. He was awarded the title of College Photographer of the Year for work done in 1992 while attending the University of Missouri. Simmons is married to Penny and they have two adult kids and Indy, a 15-year-old beagle, who wishes she could still jump up on the couch.

       

A sneak peak behind the Mountain

What we do

Each October, a group of visual journalists set up shop in a different community in Kentucky to document life and culture in a way that is rarely attempted. Raw and live, it’s all about the people and their stories, not the institutions. It’s called the Mountain Workshops, and dozens of students and professionals from around the country swoop in for a week every year to garner new skills and fresh inspiration.

It’s a crash course in visual journalism.

Participants can choose from one of five options for the week. Photojournalism, the original workshop at Mountain, has always been a big hit, but Video Storytelling is increasingly in demand. If you wish to increase your knowledge in other visual skills, the Mountain Workshops can deliver. Picture Editing pushes a traditional skill set of image selection and book design into the digital age.

Three workshops held in one location, in one week, with a constant flow of new ideas and one-on-one guidance by the top professionals in their fields, all add up to an intense five days of high-octane education in visual communication and storytelling.

A sneak peak behind the Mountain

Housing

You are required to provide your own lodging and dinning arrangements during the Workshops.  Because of the remote location of the Mountain, there is limited housing options available, so we recommend that you reserve your room as soon as possible.

Our headquarters, Rough River Dam Resort State Park has a limited number of lodges available for workshop participants. To reserve a lodge room, contact the resort directly by calling (270) 257-2311 and indicate that you are a PARTICIPANT for the 2022 Mountain. You cannot book these rooms online; the resort has blocked off the entire resort for our use. (If you try to book online it will only indicate the resort is sold out, phone reservations only)

If you are into rustic camping, the Rough River Dam Resort State Park is offering tent-camping opportunities along their airport runway for $10 a night. You will be able to make use of the pilot’s lounge and shower facilities.

On Highway 79 near the State Park entrance is St. Clair Motor Lodge, a recently remodeled hotel.

In Leitchfield, about 18 miles from our headquarters, the Hatfield Inn has approximately 30 rooms. 

There are many AirBNB and VRBO options available. Search "Falls of Rough".

Once you have been accepted AND paid to attend the workshop of your choosing, you will be invited by your registration email to join a PRIVATE Facebook group for all the 2022 participants. It is in this social space that many of our workshop attendees coordinate hotel and optional transportation arrangements.

Extremely Important

This area of the state is a popular destination location. This time of year attracts a large amount of hunting and fishing enthusiasts and rooms can sellout quickly. It is important that you reserve your room as soon as possible (we suggest as early as July) to guarantee you have housing close to our headquarters. We do not offer refunds due to lack of nearby available housing.

Travel

The nearest airports are Louisville (SDF), a 74-mile drive or Nashville (BNA), a 127-mile drive. We have noticed drastically different rates depending on where you are coming from, so be sure to shop around for the best deals.

You will need to have a vehicle for the workshop and there are car rental places at the airports.

If you are in the Picture Editing workshop you may be able to share a car rental with others in that workshop to commute from nearby hotels, restaurants, and ground transportation from the airport to the headquarters and back. The participants in the picture editing do not travel for their assignments but will need to provide their own transportation for all other activities. If you are in Picture Editing and you book a room at the resort, you will not need transportation during the week, everything is within walking distance.

Keep in mind that the video and photo storytelling workshops will require working at various locations each day and it is mandatory to have your own car during the week.

Dining Options

The headquarter location at The Lodge at Rough River has a dining hall, Grayson Landing, and will be offering buffet style as well as menu options for all our participants at their published rates. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

There are several other local locations for dining while attending the Mountain.

Lake House Restaurant

14033 Falls of Rough Road

Falls of Rough, Ky.

phone: 270-257-2020

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

Open Thurs-Sun

 

Little Daves

9536 KY-259

McDaniels, Ky.

phone: 270-902-4400

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner

 

Porgies

406 S. Highway 79

McDaniels, Ky.

phone:  270.257.3021

Hot Dog and Soda Shop

 

Tom & Al’s

8637 S. Highway 259

McDaniels, Ky.

phone:  270.257.3050

 

Headquarters location and tentative schedule

Rough River Dam Resort State Park

450 Ic-1003, Falls of Rough, KY 40119

GOOGLE MAP LINK

Tuesday, October 18, 2022 (all times CDT)

  • 7:30 AM Registration opens
  • 8:00 AM Vendor tables open
  • 10:00 AM Meet the coaches in the picture editing space; overview of the week, past, present, future
  • 11:00 AM Lunch on your own and gear/vendor visitation
  • 12:30 PM Attend the opening festivities
  • 1:30 PM Our picture editing participants join their assigned photo team as it meets with its coach
  • 2:00 PM Return to picture editing room to begin the editing photo stories, InDesign instruction, exercises
  • 6:00 PM Dinner on your own
  • 7:00 PM MWS evening presentations
  • 9:30 PM Meet with Photo coaches and teams; prepare list of stories
  • 11:00 PM Lab closes

Wednesday, October 19, 2022 (all times CDT)

  • 10:00 AM Meet in picture editing space; discussions around ethics, choosing pictures, storytelling
  • 11:30 AM Check in with photo coaches to update progress of stories
  • 12:00 PM Lunch on your own
  • 2:00 PM Editing exercises, discussions, beginning book layouts
  • 4:00 PM Check in with photo coaches
  • 5:00 PM Dinner on your own
  • 7:00 PM MWS evening presentations
  • 9:30 PM Meet with Photo coaches and teams. Work on list of stories and/or book layouts
  • Midnight Lab closes

Thursday, October 20, 2022 (all times are CDT)

  • 10:00 AM Meet in picture editing room; storytelling workshop, continue book layout and revisions
  • 11:30 AM Check in with Photo coaches
  • 12:00 PM Lunch on your own
  • 2:00 PM Photo editing exercises, continue layouts
  • 5:00 PM Dinner on your own
  • 7:00 PM MWS evening presentations
  • 9:30 PM Meet with Photo coaches and teams. Work on list of stories.
  • 1:00 AM Lab closes

Friday, October 21, 2022 (all times CDT)

  • 10:00 AM Meet in picture editing room; group discussion, photo yoga, continue page edits
  • 11:30 AM Check in with Photo coaches
  • 12:00 PM Lunch on your own
  • 2:00 PM Photo editing exercises, continue layouts
  • 5:00 PM Dinner on your own
  • 7:00 PM MWS evening presentations
  • 9:30 PM Meet with Photo coaches and teams. Work on list of stories
  • 2:00 AM Lab closes

Saturday, October 22, 2022 (all times CDT)

  • 10:00 AM Meet in picture editing room; finish page edits
  • 12:00 PM Final card drop and Workshops group photo
  • 12:30 PM Group Lunch
  • 2:00 PM Final touches done to page layouts
  • 4:30 PM All page design, final edit deadline
  • 6:00 PM MWS final presentations
  • 9:00 PM Vendor sponsored pizza party
  • Midnight Workshop closes

Apply Now

What You Do

  • Making story assignments
  • Creating a visual narrative for print and the Web
  • Using images ethically
  • Crafting design aesthetics of photo stories
  • Experience the pressure of a well-managed and guided production deadline of your pages using Adobe products on a Macintosh platform that is provided for you
  • Learn strategies to build trust with photographers
  • Use personal and public critiques to improve your editing skills
  • Collaborate with visual journalists of different skill set

What You Gain

  • The narrative organization and design for the annual Mountain Workshops book
  • Moments of learning that rapidly propel your skills forward
  • A network of friends, colleagues and connections that will remain a part of your life throughout your career
 

Who Should Come

  • Pre-professional or early professional visual storytellers looking to increase their knowledge in the art of storytelling
  • Any visual journalist, NGO, visual editors or commercial videographer in need of inspiration or a week away to experience visual immersion to rejuvenate their passion
  • College students interested in learning more about the subtle art of editing and telling long-form visual stories about communities and the people who live in them