Leave with more than just Memories

All Aurora Expeditions voyages offer an incredible opportunity for all guests, photographers and videographers of any skill level to gain pick up life-long technical and creative photographic tips.

On all expeditions our expert photographers provide unique lectures and presentations as well as tips and tricks to help you improve your skills behind the lens and to help you capture your experience like a professional.

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced photographer it’s quite surreal to be in the company of the world’s best.

Learn how to set up your camera, improve your composition, hone your craft no matter what camera gear you have with informal tuition onboard or during landings and excursions.

Request a quote to book your trip with our internationally-acclaimed photography guides on an expedition.

Snorkeller in Antarctic waters with the Greg Mortimer photo by Michael Baynes

Take your Photography to the Next Level

Richard I’Anson is one of the world’s best landscape photographers with over 36-years experience globetrotting and capturing the natural earth’s most rare and special moments. It’s not just us at Aurora Expeditions that think he’s the best, he’s been awarded Australia’s Top Travel Photographer as well as a plethora of other industry awards.

Richard also gives back. He is a Canon Master, World Nomads Mentor and an Australian Himalayan Foundation Ambassador. Then he finds time to join us on our voyages to impart his knowledge and skill with our guests.

Richard represents Canon Australia as a Canon Master Photographer and shoots with Canon 1D X MkIII DSLR cameras and a range of L-Series lenses.

We spoke to Richard about how being on an expedition voyage with our specialist guides can enhance your photography skills no matter your ability or gear.

King Penguins by Richard I'Anson
King Penguins by Richard I'Anson
Richard I'Anson
Richard I'Anson ashore

Richard, tell us about your history with Aurora Expeditions.

I first went to Antarctica in 2006, but my first trip with Aurora was in 2016 on the Polar Pioneer on an Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia trip.

In 2019 I spent five weeks on the Greg Mortimer on voyages to the Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia. I absolutely love that there is something spectacular to photograph all day, and the days are long!

The obvious big-ticket subjects are the landscapes of mountains, ice and icebergs and the teeming wildlife, but the changeable weather offers dramatic skies and moody seas that offer great photo opportunities on the sea crossing days as well.

What sets Aurora Expeditions apart from the rest?

The thing I love about Aurora Expeditions that is different to other small-ship expeditions is the emphasis on getting off the ship as often as possible for shore landings and zodiac cruises, not matter the weather.

It can’t be hard to take a good photo on our expeditions and in the polar regions, or is it? What are your tips for people on what to pack if they want to get decent photos?

Capturing better than average photographic memories is not hard, thanks to the locations we visit. My aim, and the goal I encourage others to chase, is to capture consistently great photographs of all the subjects we encounter. Assuming people are prioritising their photography, then a DSLR or mirrorless camera with a couple of zoom lenses such as a wide-angle 16-35mm and a medium telephoto 70-200 will suffice for most subjects and situations. However, if you are after frame-filling wildlife portraits and are keen on photographing birds then a 100-400mm is a good choice.

Whilst onboard a trip with you what can people expect to learn, or how will their skills be enhanced?

My aim is to help people take their photography to the next level, whether novice or advanced enthusiast. I’m always happy to help people with camera and technical questions, but once the technical side of photography is understood we concentrate on composition and understanding light, which are the creative, and fun, side of photography and are the keys to capturing unique images.

What has photography given you?

Photography has afforded me the privilege of extensive travel to many parts of the world, but more importantly I’ve been able to delve deep into particular destinations and cultures through repeat visits including the Himalaya, the Indian sub-continent and over the last five years Antarctica and South Georgia with Aurora Expeditions.

What surprised you about photographing the polar regions when you first travelled? What did you have to learn yourself?

I was most surprised by the fact that every landing and every day seemed to be more spectacular than those that came before.

Contact us to book an expedition with Richard I’Anson in 2022. 

Skiers Ascent by Richard I'Anson
Skiers ascending by Richard I'Anson
Brash Ice by Richard I'Anson
Brash ice from sea level by Richard I'Anson

What our Guests say

I was amazed

“I was amazed by photos and I only had a digital camera. I was on an Arctic trip and had two professional photographers onboard. After attending the workshops, my photos were even more awesome.”

Denise B.

Amazing experience

“We took some amazing photos and had an amazing experience.”

Kathleen F.

Antarctica Avalanche guest photo by Lawn M
Antarctica penguins guest photo by Neal B
I learnt a lot

“The colours and contrasts just seem to be more vivid once you go past the Antarctic convergence, so happy snappers like me get some really good pics that need nothing else than maybe a bit of cropping.

“Taking advantage of Scott and Massimo’s experience and knowledge on the best way to set the camera up for the conditions was invaluable, I learnt a lot from them.”

Lawn M.
(photo above: avalanche in Antarctica)

David Attenborough Experience

“A very David Attenborough moment in Antarctica with Aurora Expeditions.”

Denise B.
(photo right: Killer whales)

Learning to slow down

“I learned to take my time. Pressing the shutter is easy, slow down survey the scene.”

Brendan D.

Antarctica Killer Whales guest photo by Carolyn T

Our Photographers Expeditions for 2022

2022 Expert Photography Guides

Scott Portelli

Scott Portelli
Whale in Antarctica by Scott Portelli

Scott Portelli is an Australian multi-award-winning wildlife photographer who has been working with Aurora Expeditions for six years. A member of the Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP), he has captured some of the most powerful polar images on the planet.

“My specialty is underwater, aerial and nature photography,” says Scott. “I have spent the past 15 years exploring the polar regions and photographing some of its amazing landscapes, and wildlife.”

Not only does Scott capture moments in time but he’s also an expedition leader. “I am a polar scuba diver and have worked in the capacity as dive guide and support on various Aurora expeditions.”

He admits feels right at home in the cold frigid waters exploring the ice and marine creatures below the surface which is conveyed through his amazing work. We are so lucky to have him on the team.

In 2021 Scott has added Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year and Bio Photo Contest International Photography award winner to his long list of photographic awards and achievements. 

Scott shoots on an Olympus EM1X and when shooting underwater and uses an Olympus Underwater housing for the EM1 – MKII.


Scott’s 2022 Expeditions


Massimo started his career as a traveller crossing the Ionian Sea, from the South of Italy to the Greek Isles by sailboat at the age of 15. That experience marked him for life. Thanks to his ocean knowledge, Massimo got a job as a fixer for National Geographic, which opened a new vision for his career path, and so he decided to become a documentary photographer for the Society. After 29 years and 83 countries explored for National Geographic, he still loves to travel and explore, even more than before. His passion for photography is the key to open connections with people and Mother Nature. Massimo loves to photograph the truth.

Massimo learned from photographers, working for photographers in the field, so he loves to teach and to give back what he learned and what made him world-famous. “Looking at the planet through a lens is one of the best way to travel and explore new places. Camera does not just immortalise your memories, but it also lets you immerse yourself into a situation that you would not look for,” – says Massimo.

There is no better combination for Massimo than travelling on an expedition ship, where the two sides of his life can merge. He lives between London and Vancouver but, sooner rather than later, he will move back to the Mediterranean to produce olive oil (when he’s back home from the trips) – his new passion. 

Massimo is a certified Polar Guide


Massimo’s 2022 Expeditions:

Massimo Bassano

Antarctica by Massimo Bassano

Quick Photography Tips

Chinstrap Penguin by Richard I'Anson
Chinstrap Penguin by Richard I'Anson
  • Read and bring your manuals
  • Bring lens paper and cleaning fluid
  • Pack your battery charger or spare batteries
  • Pack extra film/tape/memory cards
  • Pack electronic flash/tripod
  • Bring a soft cloth for cleaning lens
  • Bring a waterproof bag
  • Identify subject (look for interesting behaviour as well as beauty)
  • Frame shot carefully
  • Open aperture one-stop when subject is dark
  • Close aperture one-stop in bright light and glare
  • Increase shutter speed when shooting from moving ship or Zodiac
  • Focus carefully and hold the camera still.
  • Respect the rights of people, wildlife and fellow photographers

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*Terms & Conditions apply. Valid on select ship voyages only. Offer is valid on new bookings only aboard the Greg Mortimer or Sylvia Earle which must be booked and deposited by June 30,, 2022. Promotion is subject to availability at the time of booking and capacity controlled. The promotion is only available in conjunction with the back to back voyage discount or the loyalty program offer, and not available with any other offer. The promotion can be withdrawn at any time and is not redeemable for cash. Normal booking terms and conditions apply. To confirm your booking, a completed booking form and non-refundable deposit of $2,500 pp in the booking currency is required within 7 days of reserved berth/s. Additional terms and conditions may apply. Please see full terms and conditions.

^Terms & Conditions apply. Additional 5% discount valid on both voyages but two voyages must connect back to back in terms of dates to be eligible. Offer is valid on new bookings only aboard the Greg Mortimer or Sylvia Earle. Promotions are subject to availability at the time of booking and capacity controlled. The promotion is only available in conjunction with early bird voyage discount or the loyalty program offer, and not available with any other offer. The offer can be withdrawn at any time and are not redeemable for cash. Normal booking terms and conditions apply. Please see full terms and conditions.