Kingsbrae Garden Workshop 2024


Explorations in Creative Image Making

July 8-13, 2024

Location: St. Andrews, New Brunswick, CANADA
Early-bird Payment – Single Room: $5,270 (before January 31, 2024)
Late Payment – Single Room: $5,670 (after January 31, 2024)
Group Size: 6


Email Charles to be placed on seriously interested list for 2025 Kingsbrae workshop.

See Image Gallery and Workshop Details below.

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Image Gallery

Workshop Details

At its heart, creativity isn’t about what someone else thinks.  It’s about what you think, what you get from your work, and what you learn about yourself in the process.

In this intimate immersive photography workshop experience, we’ll explore new ways of seeing and discover unconventional approaches to depicting everyday subjects under Charles’ thoughtful guidance.  Through a series of classroom and field exercises, you’ll learn how to best communicate an experience, thought or feeling in photographic form, as well as the importance of making art to please yourself, first and foremost.

During this 5-day workshop, Charles will encourage experimentation and help you push boundaries, going beyond pure documentation, taking you out of your “comfort zone.”  There will be lots of image sharing and lively discussions about both the art and craft of photography with the hope that you emerge from this experience with fine-tuned visual clarity and synergy of mind, heart and eye.

The backdrop for this self-discovery process will be Kingsbrae Garden, a 27-acre horticultural masterpiece containing more than 2500 species of perennials, as well as a wide variety of trees and shrubs.  Features at Kingsbrae include: a labyrinth, cedar maze, ponds, a genuine Dutch windmill (1/3-scale) and a wooded trail through rare old-growth forest.  Around the site, you’ll also find alpacas, peacocks, pygmy goats, Canada’s first “Jurassic living fossil” Wollemi pine, and numerous splendid sculptures.

Because of its proximity to the mansion where you’ll be staying, there will be daily opportunities to photograph in the garden before, during and after operating hours. (Kingsbrae Garden is located just a few steps next door.)  In addition, due to the small group size, you’ll have the opportunity for lots of 1-on-1 time with Charles through image reviews and personalized help in the field.


• Welcome Reception
• 5-night stay at KIRA* (private room with private bath)
• 24/7 access to the KIRA Studios and Kingsbrae Garden
• 5 buffet breakfasts
• 4 boxed lunches
• 5 three-course dinners
• Gratuity for the KIRA staff

* KIRA = Kingsbrae International Residency for the Arts


• Airfare
• Airport transfers
• Optional travel insurance.  (Strongly recommended.  Please see below under “Cancellation Policy.”)
• Any supplemental food/alcohol purchases while at KIRA
• Other incidentals such as laundry, phone calls and gratuities not already covered


You’ll be staying in a lovely multi-story mansion called KIRA (Kingsbrae International Residency for the Arts), which located within short walking distance from Kingsbrae Garden.  There are six tastefully appointed bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, a large open concept sitting room, dining room and cozy back porch for conversation and relaxation.


All meals will be lovingly prepared by a private chef, and we will dine inside the KIRA mansion where you’ll be staying.  Breakfast will be served buffet style beginning at 6 am (help yourself whenever you wish).  Lunches will be boxed, and three-course dinners will be served at 6 pm each evening, which will allow time for you to photograph for two hours at the golden hour before sunset.  We can accommodate food allergies, but If your dietary preferences require the purchase of specialty items, an additional fee may be charged.


Kingsbrae Garden is located in the resort town of St. Andrews by-the-Sea in New Brunswick, Canada.  The closest US airport is Bangor International Airport (BGR) in Bangor, Maine, which is about 2 1/2 hours by car (not including border crossing time).

Alternatively, you could fly into Saint John Airport (YSJ), which is about a 1-hour, 20-minute drive from Kingsbrae.  Flights to/from Saint John tend to be more expensive, however.

Renting a car would probably be easiest at either airport; however, taxi and limousine services are also available.   Click here for ground transportation options to/from Bangor International Airport.  And click here to learn more about ground transportation options to/from Saint John Airport.

You will not need a car once you arrive at KIRA.  The resort town of St. Andrews is within walking distance; however, the waterfront itself is about a 15-20 minute walk each way (about a mile) and requires walking on some somewhat steep streets.


• Monday, July 8

Check into KIRA.  Check-in hours are 11 am to 4 pm.  Please plan to arrive at KIRA no later than 4 pm.  Welcome Reception beginning at 5 pm on the back porch at KIRA.  Three-course dinner at 6 pm, followed by an informal tour of the garden and optional evening photography.

• Tuesday, July 9 through Friday, July 12

From Tuesday to Friday, there will be both supervised and unsupervised time to photograph in Kingsbrae Garden (next door to the KIRA mansion), as well as informal discussions, field demos, lectures, various experiential exercises, supportive image evaluations, optional portfolio reviews, and assignments designed to help you grow/stretch photographically.  If you wish, you’ll also be given the opportunity to photograph on your own in the nearby resort town of St. Andrews by-the-Sea.

• Saturday, July 13

Optional early morning photography in Kingsbrae Garden.  Closing thoughts over breakfast.  Workshop ends after breakfast.  Please check out by 12 noon.


All skill levels and camera formats welcome, including smartphone cameras.  Participants should also have a basic understanding of exposure, camera operation in modes other than “Auto” or “Program,” and basic proficiency in post-capture image editing software such as Lightroom, Photoshop or Snapseed.


No strenuous activity will be involved in the workshop; however, you should feel comfortable walking at least 1-2 miles per day on uneven ground and climbing stairs in the KIRA mansion if your room is located on a higher floor.  (There are no elevators.)


All workshop withdrawal requests must be in writing and received either by US mail or e-mail and acknowledged by Charles Needle Photography. There are NO EXCEPTIONS TO THIS POLICY, even for medical or family emergencies. Unless otherwise noted, based on cancellation date, the following apply:

• Greater than 91 days before the workshop start date: refund, minus a $300 administrative fee.

• Within 90 days of the start of the program: no refund.

Regardless of when you cancel, if you or we are able to fill your space, we will provide a refund of any payments made minus a $300 processing fee.

We encourage you to purchase refundable airline tickets and trip cancellation insurance. We strongly recommend trip insurance to protect you in the event of an unexpected situation that prevents you from attending the workshop. We recommend Travel Guard or Travelex Insurance Services.

We reserve the right to cancel any workshop if the minimum student enrollment is not met, or due to any COVID-19 or other health concerns. In the event we cancel a workshop, you’ll be notified as soon as possible and be given the option to receive a full refund or apply your payment toward any future workshop within one calendar year from the date of cancellation.

We are not, however, liable for expenses incurred such as airfare or accommodations, and for this reason we also recommend the purchase of trip insurance. The financial liability of Charles Needle Photography shall be limited to the amount paid to Charles Needle Photography for the tour/workshop only and shall not be extended to cover any other associated travel costs incurred (e.g. non-refundable air tickets, visa fees if applicable, clothing, equipment, miscellaneous transportation costs, lodging costs, medical expenses, travel insurance premiums, etc.).  For this reason, we highly recommend trip cancellation insurance.

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