Grand Manan Photography Workshop July 4th-7th 2024

Grand Manan, named by Readers Digest as one of the world’s 7 best small islands, is a beautiful island full of photographic possibilities! Award winning photographer and educator Noel Chenier’s annual photography workshop will allow you to take great images of it all. The fishing villages, lighthouses, wharves and boats. Beautiful sunrises and sunsets. Amazing shorelines. A wide array of geological features-cliffs, rocks, sandy beaches. Early summer wildflowers. Being a maritime island, the weather can be upredictable, which can provide some interesting challenges, but also some amazing opportunities!

This four day workshop is for photographers of all levels, from beginner on up (iPhoneographers welcome too!)
Noel will be guiding you around the various areas throughout the entire island, offering suggestions on settings and techniques to try to capture the best images of every site. Only ever used AUTO mode on your camera?  Don’t worry, Noel will fix that the first day.  Noel will go over settings, shooting techniques, composition, lighting, everything to help you get amazing images. There will also be critiquing sessions during the workshop.

One day will feature a boat trip to Machias Seal Island (weather dependant), where we will photograph the famous Atlantic Puffins, Razorbills, a seal colony on the way back, and possibly see a whale or two!  Even if you aren’t a bird photographer, you will love this. By the end of the workshop you will have galleries of great images.


Thursday July 4th

Arrival by ferry
11am Course Start
11-4pm Shooting
4pm-5pm Supper break
5pm-7pm Critique session
8pm-10pm Sunset shoot

Friday July 5th

Trip to Machias Seal Island (trip is dependent on weather)

Saturday July 6th
Early morning sunrise shoot!
9am-4pm shooting
4pm-5pm Supper break
5pm-7pm Critique session
8pm-10pm Sunset shoot

Sunday July 7th
Early morning sunrise shoot!
Shooting until 3pm
Course wrap up
Depart on 5:30pm ferry


While taking the whole workshop will provide the best experience, we can work with your schedule! If you only want to attend Saturday/Sunday, or just go on the Machias Trip, contact me and we’ll see what we can do!


Machias Seal Island is a disputed piece of rock in the Bay of Fundy  which wouldn’t be special to most people, except for the fact that it is  home to sanctuary for seabirds such as Atlantic Puffins, Razorbills, and Common and Arctic Terns! While bird photography is not something I focus a lot on, my first trip to Machias Seal Island and that hour I spent shooting from the blind was absolutely amazing, and I look forward every year to returning!

You can see some of my shots here:

There is a limit to how many can land on the island. As I had stated, I’m happy to be flexible with the workshop.  So if all the spots arent taken by full workshop participants, I’d be happy to take anyone who wanted to come just for that day!  If you need accommodations, I can see what the Marathon can do for you.

More info on Machias Seal island here: We may see whales and a colony of seals too! PLEASE NOTE: Trip is dependant on weather and might be cancelled. If that happens, one day participants will be refunded the cost.

-You’ll get the most if you have a digital SLR, mirrorless, or advanced point and shoot with Manual(M) or Shutter Priority Mode(TV/S), but iPhoneographers are more than welcome
-knowledge of basic camera functions and settings is preferred, but Noel will be going over the settings to use throughout the workshop! Be prepared to learn quite a bit!
-a TRIPOD is a necessity.  I have an extra one if necessary that can be borrowed, if you are looking at purchasing one, I have recommendations here.
-a laptop or iPad to download photographs to is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, as you will taking a ton of photos and will most likely fill your cards! however, I will have a laptop if needed.  A small USB drive for moving images would also be handy


One participants, all accommodations/breakfast/lunch, single occupancy $1200(inc taxes)
Two participants, all accommodations/breakfast/lunch, double occupancy (dbl bed or 2 singles)  $2000(inc taxes) ($1000 per person)
Tuition only+Machias (Grand Manan residents or those with other accommodations) $750(inc taxes)
Machias trip only $200 (inc taxes)

For those not staying at the Marathon, meals can be included for an extra cost.
Partners/spouses of participants are welcome to join us for supper, but the cost will be extra.
For others attending only part of the workshop, contact Noel to determine costs.

BOOKING FEE: A $300 non refundable booking fee is required by May 30th. This will allow me to ensure spots for the Machias trip and book accommodations.

FULL PAYMENT: Will be required by June 15th to ensure spots and make sure the workshop is a go. Payments can be made in installments up to that date.

Workshop participants will be staying at the Marathon Inn, built in 1871. To keep costs down, rooms for the workshop are housed in the Annex, an older part of the inn. The Marathon certainly has a lot of character, including steep staircases and wonky floors. You can see examples of the accommodations on their site If you wish to upgrade to a better room in the main building, that will be possible for an extra cost. If participants have mobility concerns, we will do our best to make it easier for your stay. This may involve an extra cost.

For participants staying at the Marathon, breakfast and lunch are provided.
Lunch will be a basic packed lunch, with sandwich, drinking box, and some snacks.
Suppers are not included to allow flexibility for participants.
I do enjoy gathering as a group for supper, and the Marathon will provide an amazing meal at a reasonable cost ($25, drinks extra), but participants are not required to join the group for supper if that is their preference.
For those with food allergies or dietary restrictions, please advise and we will do our best to accommodate you.


Suppers are not included in the cost.
Transportation to/from/ferry cost is not included (info below)
If you are getting transportation to Grand Manan with me, there will be a passenger fee for the ferry.
*Final meal while waiting for ferry not included in price*


“Great workshop…exceeded expectations.  You are an excellent teacher. You have the ability to break things down and explain them as well as respect for an individuals style and approach to learning.”  -CW

“You gave an excellent course and it has inspired me to spend more time improving my skills. You shared your knowledge as much as anyone could and with patience. I have told so many people about how great this course is!” -AS

”It was really wonderful and I enjoyed myself tremendously!!  So much so when I got home Sunday night it felt like it had only been a day trip!!!  Met some really nice people and had such a great time.  It really was wonderful and such a great learning exchange. There were so many sites and sounds to take in yet alone try and photograph. It really was an incredible time and I truly enjoyed it all.  I’m still having some down time after it all but would recommend it to anyone!” -BE


Contact Noel to express your interest. Once I have enough to make them a go I’ll confirm final details.  As always, please forward the info to anyone you think may be interested.

Email Noel to register or for more information. Noel can be contacted via phone @ 506-608-6424

You will need to book the ferry for your crossing.

Ferry prices are here:

I have room in my van to transport people from the Saint John area to Grand Manan and back.  If anyone wants to save gas, or they need a ride, let me know and we’ll book you a spot in the Chenier Quest express!


For more information on Grand Manan, head to

Sara Wormell, one of my former students, is an amazing photographer and is from Grand Manan, check out her website for some amazing photos of her home island

I believe you must truly love what you teach to be a great teacher. I have a deep passion for photography, and I want to infect my students with that passion and enthusiam, no matter what aspect of photography they are interested in.

I have been teaching photography for almost twenty years, for both the general public and at the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design, where I am currently a full-time photography instructor.

I have both a Bachelors of Adult Education and a Masters of Education from the University of New Brunswick.

I am a firm believer that each student is different, so I use as many different learning styles in my teaching as possible-lecture, visuals, demonstration, hands-on, storytelling, humour…I even give homework!

For most of my courses, I provide fully illustrated course manuals and notes that cover all the material you are learning.

When it comes to “critiquing”…I always try to focus on the positive. What is good in an image, and suggestions what could be improved the next time. You can see an example of my critiquing style in this video, along with this post on my thoughts on critiquing.

Here is what some of my students have said about my courses:

-“Your passion for the subject is wonderful to see, along with your helpfulness in answering questions and explaining things. The practice sessions, images, the course manual, and individual guidance made this a wonderful experience for me.”-P.Cranton

-“You have a real passion for photography, and it’s reflected in your teaching, and the informal relaxed approach makes the students at ease. You never made me feel that my questions were ‘stupid’, even though they probably were!”-M. Williams

-“Your down to earth approach is refreshing. I was concerned you’d be the professional putting down the amateurs, but the photo critiquing and your help has been valuable! This was the best thing I’ve done for myself in a long time!” -C.Scott


Just ask!