Creative Portrait Photographer :: Portland, Maine - Savannah Daras Creative Portrait Photographer :: Portland, Maine - Savannah Daras

| bali retreat 2019


Calling all creatives and travel bugs!

I am SO excited to announce this retreat, it’s been a long time coming, and it is going to be an unforgettable life-altering experience that I don’t want you to miss out on. -- Savannah <3


Dates: March 10 - 24, 2019

Spaces available: 3 out of 6
Be sure to scroll through this entire page to see pricing info, rooms available, and our itinerary!


Join us on a two week creative + wellness retreat in Bali where we’ll take endless amounts of photos, sun on stunning beaches, visit ancient temples, roaring waterfalls and bustling villages, play with monkeys, eat delicious organic food, relax amongst the magical sounds of sights of Ubud, and advance your photography skills all at the same time! This retreat will be a hybrid of cultural exploration and creative development. As an added bonus, as an experienced Balinese traveler, I know where to find the best vegan cafes, relaxing spas, hidden jungle oases, scooter rentals, how to acquire local currency, tips for avoiding scams and “Bali Belly”, and how to haggle with locals on material goodies.

Who is this for?

Anyone and everyone!
Photographers, Travel lovers, Bloggers, Explorers, Writers, Creative souls and Wanderers alike. No experience necessary.

Oh the places you’ll go!

Each morning we’ll eat a delicious breakfast made fresh for us by our villa staff before heading to our location of the day (time of departure subject to distance and weather). Each day we will visit somewhere new and magical, perfect for capturing the beauty of Bali. Our schedule will remain flexible, to allow for optimal exploration and enjoyment. During our adventures you’ll have the opportunity to take photos alongside me and ask any questions you may have about technique, concepts, or camera settings. We will have an experienced dedicated model along with us each day as well. When we return in the evening, we will go out to dinner in downtown Ubud as a group to wind down and recap on the day. On two of the nights we will have a pizza-fueled editing party where you can receive guidance from me on anything you like and/or watch me edit my own photos, followed by a moonlight swim in our private pool!


One week will be dedicated to our photography workshops and all things photo-related - the second week of this retreat will be available as open ended free time where you can create your own schedule. We will continue to shoot, explore Bali, lounge by the pool, do yoga, adventure, and eat yummy food - but at this point you may want to come and go as you like, spend time with new friends, or enjoy solitary time. The days are yours.

Day 1: Waterfall Wonderland

After settling in, we will gather our scooters and venture to one of Bali's many stunning waterfall locations to swim, shoot, and bask in the jungle oasis, which will be a welcome relief after our long journey to get to Bali!

Day 2: Lempuyang Temple

Lempuyang Temple is one of the most highly regarded temples in Bali, and you've very likely seen it all over instagram. Its powerful presence paired with stunning views of Mount Agung in the distance will make for the perfect shoot location.

Day 3: Famous Bali Swing

If you're not feeling very daring, participating in swinging is of course optional. Our lovely model and myself will happily volunteer so you can capture some of your own surreal shots like this.

Day 4: Tegallalang Rice Terrace

One of the most visited tourist attractions in Bali, and for a good reason too. When you step out off the street you're greeting with panoramic views of endless rice paddies. We will get to walk down into the terrace to explore and shoot among the seemingly endless hills.


Day 5: Sunrise hike on Mount Batur

In order to reach the top of Mount Batur by sunrise, we will need to make a (very) early start. Around midnight we will drive to the base of the volcano (about an hour away from Ubud) and begin our climb between 1 and 2 AM. Once we reach the summit, where we’ll be greeted by a troop of monkeys, we’ll take photos of the sun rising over Mount Agung and stop by the mountaintop shack for a hot meal. After an optional additional hike around the rim of the volcano where we can see steam emerging from the cracks and walk along narrow paths with breathtaking views, we’ll make our descent back down the mountain. You do not need to be an experienced hiker to make this trip, although it definitely is challenging! We will go to bed really early the night before and make sure to load up on a filling breakfast so we're prepared. It's truly an unforgettable experience.


Day 6: Beach Day

After resting and recuperating from our mountain adventures, we will spend a relaxing day at one of Bali's many gorgeous beaches where we can shoot among the crystal clear tropical waters, or chill out and sun bathe (with appropriate SPF of course).


Day 7: Goa Gajah (Elephant Cave)

"Although the exact origins of the cave are uncertain, it is believed to have been built as place for spiritual meditation. One folklore relates that it was created by the fingernail of the legendary giant Kebo Iwa. However, examining its style, the sanctuary was probably dated from the 11th century Bali Kingdom. The complex contains both Hindu and Buddhist imagery, as the cave contains lingam and yoni, symbol of Shiva, and the image of Ganesha, while by the river there are carved images of stupas and chattra, imagery of Buddhism."

hidden walkways through the jungle of goa gajah, inside we will find streams, rivers, and cliffs with steep drop offs

Day 8: (Optional) Group Spa Day!

Ubud is filled with incredibly relaxing (and cheap) beautiful spas that will make you feel like a queen. On our 8th day, to celebrate the complexion of our photo workshops, we will all gather as a group for a much needed blissful spa day filled with massages, rose petal baths, foot soaks, and fresh fruit. (Spa costs not included).



What I’ll teach you:

How to hone your photography skills, whether you’re a day 1 beginner or a seasoned professional, together we will take your work to the next level. I will show you how I take self-portraits, posing techniques both on myself and our dedicated model, gaining confidence in yourself, how to find models to work with, retouching tips and workflow, essential camera settings and how to get the most out of the gear you have (even if it's just your iphone!), best practices for shooting in all of the different natural lighting environments throughout the day ranging from sunrise to sunset, leveling up your mindset and manifesting techniques to bring more abundance into your life. You will learn invaluable one-on-one photography skills, tips, methods, and lessons from a well-known, experienced photographer. Together we will explore, learn, and grow. Not to mention, spending two luxurious weeks in Bali.


me in bali 2015, bonding with a diamond python named Esther!

The Important Stuff:

Dates: March 10 - March 24, 2019
Space limited to 6 guests

3 bedrooms:
Bedroom 1: one queen sized bed
Bedroom 2: one queen sized bed
Bedroom 3: two single beds
Rooms are based on double occupancy, this is ideal for couples, a pair of friends, or individuals who don't mind sharing a room with someone.


Includes:

- 15 days and 14 nights in one of Bali’s most beautiful and elegant Villas
- 7 full days of photography workshops filled with exploring, fully supported with creative coaching by Savannah
- Airport pickup
- Welcome snacks and beverages upon arrival
- Local healthy breakfast every morning
- Driver upon request to and from villa to spots around Ubud
- Custom preset pack for both Lightroom and Photoshop that Savannah uses to edit her photos
- One-on-one time with Savannah to help improve and perfect your skills

Excludes:

- Airfare
- Meals/drinks beyond breakfast
- Scooter/car rentals
- Fees to get into places we visit
- Personal purchases/excursions
- Travel insurance & visas

Investment:

- $1,400 per person

Note: Payments can be accepted via PayPal, Venmo, and check. We are also able to accept payments via Credit Card. We are also happy to work out an installment plan with you.

Deadlines:

$1000 deposit to secure your spot by January 25th, 2019
Remaining balance due by February 20th, 2019
*Please note: spaces are subject to fill quickly!

Fill out the contact form below to reserve your spot, please include a bit about yourself, a link to a social media profile, and why you would like to join us on this retreat! As the demand may be higher than the space available, we want to make sure that we are cultivating a group of like-minded people to share a harmonious space with.





The Space

Two weeks in one of Ubud’s most luxurious villas! Located a short drive away from central Ubud, this peaceful villa offers a private pool, spacious garden, jungle vistas and family balcony overlooking the rice paddies.






You’ll be working closely with Savannah for a full seven days, unlike a traditional workshop which rarely lasts more than a few hours. Alternatively, you will have Savannah’s undivided attention, during which you can ask questions and pick her brain.


In addition to exploring, learning and growing as a creative person, you’ll also meet and make lifelong friends! We are limiting the group to 6 people to ensure each person receives 100% of my effort and attention whenever needed, and to create a close group of new-found friends and creatives. Traveling is a bonding experience and when we’re not summiting volcanoes or taking photos, we’ll be creating a community of like-minded individuals who share similar passions and dreams. Not only will this be a learning experience, but it will shift your mindset and inspire you to make big leaps to create the life you desire!

photo of me taken by the lovely
bella kotak in bali

About Savannah:

Savannah has over 10 years of professional experience as a creative portrait, fine art and commercial photographer. Her work has been featured by many publications including, Vogue Italia, 500px, Dark Beauty Magazine, VSCO, Local Wolves, PhotoBlog, Good Light! Magazine, and Paragraph. In addition, Savannah has worked with well-known brands including, Toyota, Zip Car, Panera Bread, SkinCeuticals, Land Shark, Carfax, Aveeno, Alamo, Bed Bath & Beyond, Mariott Rewards, Portland Press Hotel, Kaplan, Choice Hotels, Virgin Mobile, Nestle Health Science UK, and Palm Breeze. Her photos have also been used to create over half a dozen book covers worldwide.


Savannah’s work is ethereal, dream-like, and focuses on utilizing the beauty of nature while bringing out the inner goddess of her subjects as well as self portraiture. Savannah has a soft yet powerful presence, making her models feel at ease and confident. Savannah can turn an ordinary location such as a simple flower bush on the side of the road into something extraordinary.



Flights

Flights can range anywhere from $700 to $1,200 roundtrip (subject to change depending on where you live), but the good news is, the sooner you purchase your ticket the cheaper the airfare! I just bought my roundtrip flight to Denpasar from Boston for $700, which is actually an insane deal. Most people spend that much just to fly to Europe for a week, whereas you’ll be flying halfway around the world to spend a full three weeks relaxing, exploring, and shooting in one of the most naturally beautiful places on Earth! Bali truly is an absolute dream, the worst part of this entire trip will be that you won’t want to go back home once it’s over (I definitely didn’t the last time I went!)

My personal favorite websites to book cheap flights:

What should I bring?

- Camera
- Laptop
- Sneakers/Hiking boots/Sandals
- Weather appropriate clothing (avg. temp in March 70-85 degrees)
- Cash to exchange for Indonesian currency upon arrival

What level of photography skills do I need?

This workshop is open to anyone with skills ranging from absolute beginner to professional. We are focusing on bringing together a group of people who all share a love for creating, exploring, and growing.

I am so looking forward to creating magic with you!
~ Savannah