© Terry Eggers

Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Tuscany, Italy

Joseph Van Os assembles some of the most beautiful and professionally run photo safaris on this eye-pleasing planet. Their “Tuscany Alfresco” trip is a landscape photographer’s dream. Sinuous cypress-lined roads, checkerboard orchards of cherry and peach, undulating stone walls cusping stone farmhouses (and entire towns), soaring medieval churches, open-air galleries of graceful statuary: Tuscany is color and geometry, art and edifice, man and nature, gone precisely right.

Oh, and one other exquisite element.
© Terry Eggers

“The light will just take your breath away,” says Terry Eggers, the Seattle-based photographer who will lead the May photo tour. “Tuscany’s morning and evening light, when accompanied by the light foggy conditions, produces some of the best landscape photography in the world.”

Students will experience the importance of timing in an ethereal lesson.

“In Pienza, there’s this ephemeral blue light in the evening,” says Eggers. “For only about 15 minutes after sunset, that fleeting blue light, along with the glow of the old street lamps, makes for truly special photography.”

Twelve students share two instructors on a journey from Florence to Pienza to Greve and beyond. In Florence, students visit the centuries-old Piazza della Signoria, center of Florentine political activity; from hilltops, they’ll gaze down on ancient olive groves and brilliant red poppies.

Eggers knows central Italy, and not just the iconic stops.

“We know a lot of less traveled spots that are pretty special,” he says. “This goes for the photography as well as our stops for wonderful food and wine. It is, after all, Italy.”

May 13 to 23. $4,995. (206) 463-5383, photosafaris.com

Of Note: Participants receive special access on several occasions. At Castello Banfi, a family-owned estate and winery in the Brunello region, students enjoy unique photo ops such as the cask and barrel rooms as well as a five-course lunch.

“By the way,” says Eggers, “each course has a new wine to accompany it.” ?