Sydney ICM Cityscapes, Seascapes, & Lights of VIVID Retreat
8-12 June 2023

a collaboration between Lesley Whyte and Stephanie Johnson
in association with Women in Photography and ICM Photography Magazine

Sign Up on the Women in Photography Website
(this workshop is open for all genders)
Registration Page

ICM Sydney Cityscapes, Seascapes, & Lights of VIVID Photography Retreat

Join Lesley and Stephanie on our inaugural annual Australian ICM Photography Retreat which this year is based at Sydney and is timed to coincide with Sydney's Vivid Festival of Lights.  Three nights will be dedicated to the Vivid Festival, and one night we will enjoy a dinner cruise with the chance to capture amazing ICM images of the light displays at Darling Harbour and Sydney Harbour. 

This four-day, four-night workshop retreat focuses on cityscapes, seascapes, and lights as mediums for you to learn how to create abstract images using Intentional Camera Movement (ICM).


  • Morning workshop on ICM with Stephanie, plus lots of 1:1
  • Street Photography mentoring with Lesley, who is a multi-award winning photographer and Australasia's only female street photography mentor
  • Two half-day processing and print preparation workshops
  • Printing of two of your images in A3+ and packaged for you to take home
  • Lots of on-location image reviews
  • Two-hour pre-tour Zoom workshop to meet Stephanie and Lesley, plus get to understand the basics of ICM
  • Manly seascapes workshop, including capturing images of surfers in action
  • Sydney laneways and cityscape workshop
  • Two Vivid-by-night walks
  • Vivid dinner cruise
  • Sunset shoot photographic session
  • Sydney Harbour Bridge evening photographic session
  • Sydney Harbour Bridge sunrise photographic session  
Piccadilly Circus, LondonPiccadilly Circus, London


  • This will be a great learning environment with expert guidance, instruction, and personal attention. The adventure caters to all levels, from beginners to advanced photographers, but you should have a basic understanding of your camera’s settings.  You will leave this adventure with new skills, new friends, inspiration, and some really, stunning creative photos.  Of course, we will have time for photo reviews and printing of two of your favourite images to take away, ready to frame.


Thursday, 8 June 2023 

  • After checking into the hotel, we meet in the foyer at 3:00 pm.  
  • Time to get to know each other and go through camera settings, ISO, aperture, and shutter speed, plus use of filters.  
  • You’ll also receive your Opal card with lanyard which is topped up with $50 for all your train & ferry trips this weekend.
  • You'll also receive a beautiful A5 photo diary – be sure to take this with you for all our outings and jot down the settings you’ll need.  
  • Tonight we walk to dinner, continuing our chat about settings, the itinerary, and getting to know each other more. Dinner is included.

Friday, 9 June 2023

  • After breakfast, we start with a workshop on ICM. 
  • Once we are all comfortable with the process and settings, we’re off to Circular Quay and head to Manly on the ferry to capture ICM seascape images, which include surfers in action, while maybe not good for the surfers, let’s hope for some really stormy weather.
  • Fish & chips for lunch while we sit on the steps of Manly’s beach.  
  • After lunch, we head back to Sydney where we walk the laneways for some amazing street photography opportunities.  
  • Tonight we walk to dinner and dine at one of Lesley’s favourite restaurants before continuing our walk to McMahons Point to capture ICM evening images of Sydney’s Harbour Bridge lighting spectacular, as well as (if you’re keen some) long exposure images of the ferrys zipping across the harbour.  
  • Board our ferry, and off we head to Darling Harbour for a magical night of capturing the festival of lights.  
  • Breakfast, lunch & dinner included.

Saturday, 10 June 2023 

  • No sleep in this morning, as we’re being picked up early so we can capture images from a really special vantage point at Balls Head.  Here, we are looking to capture ICM images of Sydney’s Harbour in blue hour and the sun rising over the Harbour Bridge.  
  • After such an early start, we'll enjoy a sumptuous cooked breakfast at Coal Loader Cafe.
  • We head over to Redfern for lunch, where Lesley will take you through the art of Street Photography. Plus, if the fire engines are around, we will likely be able to capture images from within the Redfern Fire Station (this is always a treat)!
  • Before we head out for our dinner cruise, we have time to freshen up and a quick battery recharge.  
  • Tonight you will have the most amazing vantage point to be able to capture ICM images of Sydney’s Festival of Lights from onboard our boat while we also enjoy a beautiful dinner harbour cruise.  
  • Breakfasts, lunch & dinner with wines included.

Sunday, 11 June 2023 

  • A little sleep in this morning, as we’ll have breakfast and lunch in Sydney’s central area. 
  • Spend the morning walking and exploring the Queen Victoria Building, which has the most amazing architectural photographic opportunities. This is your time to get creative, and if you enjoy long exposure you’ll have a ball with this location.  Plus, also capture some absolutely awesome ICM images.
  • This afternoon we spend time processing our photos in preparation for printing.
  • Plus, we’ll need charge our batteries, as tonight we’re exploring more of the VIVID light festival’s light structures.
  • But, before dinner, we head to Bangaroo and set up for sunset over Sydney’s upper harbour.  
  • Breakfast, lunch & dinner included.

Monday, 12 June 2023 

  • We'll enjoy breakfast at our hotel this morning.
  • Then, it’s printing of your photos, carefully wrapping them in acid free paper, and storing in the cardboard tube.  
  • Next is our farewell lunch.  We'll raise a glass of bubbles and toast our newfound photography techniques and friends.
  • After lunch, it’s time for those goodbye hugs!  
  • Breakfast & lunch included.


  • Four nights in a twin-share accommodation at North Sydney View hotel, which affords the most amazing harbour views.
  • 3 nights of VIVID photographic opportunities.
  • Transport to all activities outlined: train, ferry & mini-van.
  • Cooked breakfast, lunch & two course dinners as outlined above – alcohol is at own cost.
  • Two photography review sessions.
  • Lots of photography mentoring by Stephanie & Lesley.
  • Printing of two of your favourite images on Epson P706 SureColour photo printer.  Printed in A3+ on professional photographic paper, includes tube and acid free paper to transport your images home without being damaged.
  • Women in Photography Alumni $150 discount applies if you’re a member.
  • A5 photo diary, which is invaluable for making notes on where you’ve visited, plus also a quick reference camera setting guide on the front.


  • Return airfares to/from Sydney.
  • Transfers to/from View hotel in North Sydney – hotel is 150m walk from North Sydney train station making it easily accessible from Sydney’s airport.
  • Morning and afternoon teas.
  • Alcohol, drinks, or snacks not outlined above.
  • Purchases or spending of a personal nature, including room laundry, room service, and mini-bar items.


  • NZ$4,300 – with accommodation
  • NZ$3,200 – if you would like to find your own accommodation but join us for all the other activities,
    • All prices quoted are NZD
    • Camera gear & equipment list available here
    • Limited to a maximum of 15
    • NZ$500 deposit secures your place.  If you want your own room, just an additional cost of $400 for the four nights is payable with your final payment.
    • Book now by paying your deposit – balance of payment is due 21 days prior to departure.
    • We recommend you purchase Travel & Pandemic Travel Insurance to provide cover should you not be able to travel.
  • Secure your place by clicking “REGISTER” on the retreat webpage - 2023 Sydney ICM Cityscapes, Seascapes, and Lights of Vivid Retreat, the balance payable 21 days prior.
  • Want to know more about this retreat – contact [email protected]



  • If you choose to cancel your booking, your deposit is non-refundable unless we fill your place.
  • If we have to cancel, we will give you a full refund, or you can have your deposit transferred to any of our other events.
  • Full payment is due 21 days before the commencement date and is thereafter non-refundable in the event of your choosing to cancel, unless we are able to re-fill your place.


Women in Photography has the necessary protocols in place to operate under the Covid-19 Protection Framework red, amber and green levels. For your safety, that of your fellow passengers and those leading leading Women in Photography’s events, we are have robust processes in place to ensure that we can operate safely at red, amber and green levels of the COVID-19 Protection Framework. Click here to know more about this policy and the requirements of you as an attendee.