Digital Photo Academy

Learn How To Use Your Digital Camera

San Xavier Mission

San Xavier Mission


San Xavier Mission


The San Xavier Mission, known as the “white dove of the desert,” is the oldest intact European structure in Arizona. A national historic landmark, the mission was founded in 1692. Construction of the current church began in 1783 and was completed in 1797, when southern Arizona was still a part of New Spain.

 The mission is constructed of low-fire clay brick, stone, and lime mortar. The structure is roofed with Spanish colonial masonary vaults, and the inside is designed and decorated in a Baroque architectural style. Within the walls you will find dramatic elements such as theatrical curtain displays, marble, and faux doors – all excellent photographic subjects.

Watch as the reflecting sunlight creates dancing shadows on the outside walls of the mission – take advantage of this decisive moment and create an image you will want to look at for years to come.

Shift your camera settings from color to black & white and investigate the varying tones of black, white, and grey that you can achieve.

The San Xavier mission is a truly breathtaking place to take photos. This architectural wonder is surrounded by beautiful Arizona desert landscape making it an ideal place to develop all sorts of photographic skills. Create abstractions when photographing the Mission through its beautiful surrounding gates.

Learn how to photograph landscape and architecture, as well as how to adapt your camera settings when switching between indoor and outdoor photography.

Your DPA instructor, Martha Lochert or Chris Mooney, will meet you in the open area directly in front of the Mission’s main door. Parking is directly in front and is free.

We will meet at the open area directly in front of the Mission’s main entrance door. Parking is on either side of this open space in front of the Mission.

Please bring your fully charged digital camera, an extra charged battery (if you have one,) and any other photographic equipment you would like to use during the class. Please dress for the weather and wear your most comfortable shoes.

Call Digital Photo Academy at 1 877 372 2231. Lots of people seem to hang up if our welcome recording comes on instead of a live voice, but we promise to return your message within a day or two if you leave one with your name and number.  It would be even better if you included your e mail address as well as the date and city of the class you are considering.  If leaving a voice mail message is not your thing, please email us at or

1950 West San Xavier Road
Tucson, AZ 85746

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