Bodie/Mono Lake Evaluations

Blue Bar

Global Preservation Projects asks all participants for feedback in the form of evaluations at the end of each workshop. The evaluations are both numerical giving a percentage approval rating and written so comments can be added. The form is kept the same for all workshops so a yearly over all rating for all locations can be obtained.

Evaluation Report July 24-28, 2005 Workshop

Overall workshop approval rating 95.8% - Exceptional

“An hour or two for a panorama shoot at a location such as Bodie would be great! The building and their setting in this high desert terrain would be an impressive “Pano” shot! ”

“Provide coffee & aspirin.”

Quality of handbook to prepare you for workshop approval rating 96%

“Well laid out, good basic information. Helped in preparation for trip. However, I did not receive the “Photographing Bodie” book before the trip.”

“Suggest rank order composition factors by importance not alphabetical.”

“It helped to read and prepare. No other workshop we've gone to has given us advanced info to study. A bit intimidating at first but appreciated during the workshop.”

“Incredibly thorough; we've attended several workshops, and Tom's handbook exceeded (by far) any handbook from any other workshop. It was exceptional in its breadth as well as its depth – from f/stops to sun charts to Photoshop instruction. This handbook will be a valuable reference even after the workshop.”

“The handbook provided excellent information to prepare for the workshop.”

Quality of Pre-workshop phone & e-mail instruction approval rating 80%

“Not applicable as I had no phone conversation with Tom prior to trip. However I wish I had availed myself of the opportunity.”

“Our phone contact with Tom was limited, but he was always available and willing to answer questions once we'd signed up for the workshop, he always e-mailed a contact number and travel plans should questions arise and we needed to call him. He's accessible and willing to answer all questions.”

“Tom was quite helpful & responsive to my concerns.”

Quality of instruction by Thomas I. Morse approval rating 96%

“Outstanding. Not only have I improved my understanding of the technical side of photography, I have greatly improved my ability to better compose pictures.”


“Toms' method of teaching puts everyone at ease – Novice to experienced – he makes an effort to know each student and teach to each ones needs.”

“Tom uses proven teaching methods as he teaches to all skill levels in the workshop. His demo shots work to instruct as well as to stimulate each participants own personal vision. He allows participants to enforce Their learning by offering the opportunity for each participant to instruct others (with Tom's close supervision so instruction is correct). Additionally Tom's gentle encouragement and feedback provide a comfortable learning environment.”

“I have learned a tremendous amount about composition - - - depth- - - lighting as well as the use of Adobe Photoshop to finalize my images – Great job.”

Quality of on site instruction approval rating 98%

“Very well done. Instructing one participant and then having that person instruct other's is a very good way of reinforcing the lesson.”

“Photographic shoots & instant feedback superb. Improvement – find more comfortable place to allow all participants to experiment in Photoshop on own laptops, i.e. Classroom.”

“I will add that Tom has ceaseless energy and a great sense of humor ”

“More than I would expect – ever! I especially appreciated the hands-on help and the preparation work done by Tom.”

Quality of photographic locations approval rating 100%

“Hey! It's Bodie.”


“Tom knows Bodie and put us in the right place at the right time.”

“The access to Bodie before and after hours and to Bodie interiors is priceless – We were able to catch the magic hours for light as well spend hours shooting interiors which are not accessible to the public. It was an incredible privilege to shoot Bodie with Tom Morse as guide. The Night shoot was phenomenal as well.”

“The inside shooting was awesome!”

Quality of planning shooting time approval rating 98%

“It always seemed to take longer to get the photos than was planned – This is probably due more to participants than anything else though.”

“Truly one of the best workshops we've been to. An excellent learning experience not only about photography but also about the history of Bodie. We saw many things in Bodie that one would never see as a tourist.”

“3 interiors in one morning – WOW!! The workshop provides a great deal of shooting time. Tom's enthusiasm and tirelessness kept all participants buoyed despite sleep deprivation and energy – sopping heat and altitude.”

“Tom made the most of our time – helping the class members to understand the balance between perfection, expectation & reality.”

Quality of PhotoShop demos approval rating 96%

“An assumption was made that everyone was familiar with or had a copy of Photoshop.”

“Daily demos on photo composition, lighting (use of angles), bracketing, exposure, use of reflectors & diffusers was superb! Much more than I expected.”

“Very through. The hands on demos are the best.”

“Tom's “Three step” processing was fun to learn and provides a quick, clean processing for 90% of all photos. It will cut my “optimizing” time down significantly!!”

“Great! I spent the afternoon working on my photos using the info from the demos – these demos gave me the excitement I needed to learn about my software!”

Camera West & Leica Bodie Workshop

Evaluation Report July 18-22, 2005 Workshop

Overall workshop approval rating 99.9% - Exceptional

“Tom (Morse) is an excellent and enthusiastic instructor and immensely talented photographer. I am very appreciative of the opportunity he gave me to come to Bodie and shoot with him. I'd love to take another workshop with him in the future.”

“GPP has taken a lot of time to make sure that everything goes right from start to finish through out the trip. GPP really inspires people to get into photography and to have a great time in doing so. I enjoyed seeing Toms (Morse) views of different subjects and his techniques used in the field. I received a bonus by learning some hands on techniques with adobe photo shop. I hope to have some more time in the future to take more of his well planned courses/ adventures.”

“The one late night photo session was a little long due to I was using a film camera while others were using digital cameras. But over all it was still a fun experience at the night photo session, just hope the image turns out or I'll be back next year with a digital camera. It would have made it a lot easier if I was using a digital camera.”

Quality of handbook to prepare you for workshop approval rating 100%

“Handbook provided valuable pre-trip planning info easy hotel research information with recommendations for most convenient to Bodie needed to do early trips & frequent trips in & out of the park.”

“The handbook was very well written and informative. It contained information about the dates, conditions of shooting in Bodie, and most important to me, a separate handbook on digital photography. I was prepared for the experience and referred to the handbook as needed.”

“All printed material was 100% professionally put together and easy to read/understand.”

Quality of Pre-workshop phone & e-mail instruction approval rating 100%

“Tom (Morse) was very courteous and prompt in responding to my questions about the workshop. His enthusiasm for photography shows and made me very excited to come out to Bodie and shoot.”

“All phone questions were described 100%.”

Quality of instruction by Thomas I. Morse approval rating 100%

“Tom (Morse) provided most of and factual information about our subject matter enriching the photographic experience in all areas. Tom worked with each participant based on their skill level.”

“I appreciate learning by doing. I have taken many photo classes and workshops and rate this as the best. Tom (Morse) was very receptive to being peppered with questions and answered them very clearly. He gave us every opportunity to shoot what we wanted and offered helpful feedback on composition and exposure. I especially wanted to learn about diffusers and reflectors. We shot exteriors as well as interiors, sunset as well as sunrise. We shot at least 30 hours in 4 days and I have several strong images to choose from.”

“Received very high quality instructions by Tom (Morse) every step of the way. His assistant also was very nice to deal with and helpful all the way. All instructions were easy to follow and well thought threw before the instructor presented them to me.”

Quality of on site instruction approval rating 100%

“I believe workshop participants worked with great respect for the property we made images of/at. This was due to Toms' (Morse) concern for safety, respect for the workshop historic value.”

“All on-site instructions were clear and right to the point. Very easy to follow and understand.”

Quality of photographic locations approval rating 100%

“We photographed sites that are here now but probably not for the long term future. Beautiful settings as well.”

“Bodie is amazing. Tom (Morse) encouraged us to attend the general historical talk upon arrival and the stamp mill tour before we shot it that afternoon. I'm very interested in the history of place before I photograph, so I enjoyed them.”

“The photographic locations were excellent from start to finish. The locations were set up designed and presented to the group and well organized. Tom (Morse) has gone above and beyond the average steps when it comes to the quality of photographic locations and has developed high standards in doing so.”

Quality of planning shooting time approval rating 99.5%

“We were able to photograph buildings that we were interested in. Sometimes one or other times 3 per shoot. Linger as long as time permitted.”

“I don't like to get up before sunrise, but did it 4 days in a row. Only something as interesting and beautiful as Bodie and Mono Lake could get me out that early. I thought the workshop locations were wonderful. We were lucky enough to photograph a double rainbow over the town on a day I thought was lost to rain.”

“Tom (Morse) has scheduled more than enough shooting time. I was able to photograph everything that I needed to with the time allowed.”

Quality of PhotoShop demos approval rating 100%

“Tom (Morse) pointed out areas most suitable for shooting based on the light of the day & season.”

“Tom (Morse) took the time to go over several different Photoshop techniques, including merging images (to handle overly contrasty situations, and stitching images to create panoramics. We brought our computers and had the opportunity to learn these techniques by teaching them to fellow participants (which ensures we know how to confidently and competently improve our pictures.)”

“The demos were set up and presented very professional at all locations. Tom (Morse) made every effort to explain step by step why and what he was doing. Tom (Morse) presented his perspective of the subjects very well at every photo location.”

Bodie September 2004

Overall rating 91.9%

Quality of Handbook 90.0%

Quality of Digital Hanbook 90.6%

Quality of Instruction by Thomas I. Morse 90.0%

Quality of on site instruction 95.0%

Locations 94.4%

Quality of Planning shooting time 95.6%

Quality of Photoshop Instruction 89.4%

Bodie September 2002
Overall rating 93.5%

"I provided very high scores in each of the above ratings because of the amount of information I learned in a short time. I would highly recommend this workshop."

"Keep up the good work!"

"Enjoy the workshop every time & recommend it enthusiastically to any photographers I know."

Quality of Handbooks 92.5%

"Very good handbook being available on the Internet was helpful for pre workshop perpetration."

"Good notes. Excellent for reference for future shooting. Pre reading helpful with follow-up lectures."

"Complete, comprehensive. Exactly prepared us for the workshop."

"Well designed to prepare for workshop. It had all the important information including the Bodie "do's & don'ts" so that no one errs and thus jeopardizes the program. Great tips on clothes, things to bring, etc."

"Well written and detailed."

Quality of Instruction by Thomas I. Morse 97.7%

"A lot of instruction to digest. Not too technical. Good teaching technique, understandable"

"Instructions were very through and informative. Will be putting to use many of the concepts learned."

"Yes, good explanations."

"Knowledgeable of techniques, conditions & equipment."

"Tom is really committed to helping us get great shots and understand the techniques."

"Tom is great reservoir of wealth about Bodie, western ghost town, the eastern sierra region and the best photographic opportunities available therein. Tom is a genuine pleasure to be around and extremely helpful in photographing these areas."

Quality of instruction by Tom Brichta 91.3%

"Tom was of great help in providing me with tips and answers to many questions I had during the workshop. Tom provided me with a much better understanding of the benefits of Leica lenses with APO correction through out the full zoom range."

"Personality. Non aggressive approach"

"Very helpful."

"Tom is really fun & laid back-he must be from California. Not pushy about Leica & helps me even with my Nikon."

" Tom helped me substantially in the use of my M6 on this workshop. He is extremely knowledgeable about the M6s operation and thus really helped me."

Quality of on site instruction 96.3%

"Excellent instruction by example from Tom and students."

"The workshop instructors were clearly coming from experience, practice and provided a great depth of knowledge, that was useful and informational"

"Very helpful & available to everyone."

"Got us to the right place at the right time."

"We're prepared in advance of the shoots, knew what to expect & could ask questions."

"As I am a neophyte photographer, I was extremely pleased with the quality of the on-site instruction and the willingness to help me get the right shot. Scott Scholz was very helpful in this regard as well."

Quality of Diffusion & Reflector instruction 96.3%

"This has solved the lighting problems I was having - answered a lot of questions."

"Great hands on experience with examples of various methods."

"Turned average shots into spectacular ones."

"Great to learn new techniques, but how can I do it when I'm alone??"

"The shots would not have been possible without the diffusion & reflector assistance and Tom's marvelous access to the buildings shoot sites/times."

Quality of Planning shooting time 95%

"Very fast, the sun would not stand still."

"Very well planned and timed!"

"Had too much waiting time between shoots"

"Impossible without workshop access."

"We maximized shooting at the right times. Tom really knows where to be & when."

"While it would be a dream to have unlimited time and access to the Bodie buildings, I understand the real world constraints. Given this, Tom has done a fantastic job of selecting sites. Great job. Thank you very much."

Quality of Ranger Talk N/A (63.3%) talk not done as scheduled; those that did attend a later talk did so at a very bad time which disrupted a very tightly scheduled day.

Quality of Mill Tour by Thomas I. Morse 91.4%

"It would have been great if the ranger had showed up but, Tom did a real good job. Nice perspective to tell it from."

"Ranger was not available for Mill tour Tom Morse gave tour and was excellent."

"Informative but long, probably would have been more enjoyable if we weren't carrying all our gear."

Quality of Night Shoots 98.6%

"I never thought about shooting at night but this experience has opened up new possibilities."
"Very informative."

"A new experience."

"Great experience."

"Learned great techniques that I hope to do in other areas."

"Well instructed to the layman in terms all could understand."

Availability of Leica equipment for your use 95%

"I had the opportunity to try the M7 & M6 along with an assortment of wide through 90mm lenses. I was impressed with the quality and ease of use. Looking forward to seeing the results."

"Too "soft sell""

"Tom Brichta explained the equipment & allowed us to try it out. Nice gear."

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