Wildlife of Yellowstone Workshop
May 7-11, 2016 and September 22-26, 2016
What is the Wildlife of Yellowstone Workshop? Foremost, it is a workshop conducted in Gardiner, Montana, where participants will learn the skills used by professional wildlife photographers, wildlife biologists, and hunters. Some of the topics we will cover include:
- How to photograph wildlife
- Selecting and using the right equipment
- Wildlife biology
- Animal behavior
- Proven skills used by hunters to locate, call, and shoot (with a camera, of course) wildlife, including;
- Calling game animals,
- Camouflage clothing,
- Trail cameras
- Safety in the field
- Ethics of wildlife photography
- Working on assignment with wildlife biologists and researchers
Our goal of the workshop is to make you a better wildlife photographer so when you head out into the field you can apply some of these skills to get great wildlife images.
Small group expedition into Yellowstone Park:
To put into practice some of the skills you learn from the workshop, each day we will enter the park as a group of amateur photographers frequently traveling together in both Yellowstone and Teton National Parks (September only in Grand Teton). Because of park regulations, there will not be any formal training while in the park other than each photographer sharing his or her knowledge with others. Our primary goal is to capture great wildlife photos while sharing our passion for wildlife photography. Understand, this is not a photo tour or workshop conducted in the park and everyone will be responsible for their own park admission fee and transportation. At the end of each day, everyone is encouraged to share their images as we gather at our motel in Gardiner.
Background-Spring: Having photographed Yellowstone National Park for the past 20-years, during the fall, winter, spring, and summer I consider the early month of May to offer an endless opportunity to capture images of wildlife in a fading winter scene. During this time, I frequently locate wolves, bears (black and grizzly), moose, bison (with newborn), trumpeter swans, sandhill cranes, bighorn sheep, coyotes, elk, and pronghorn antelope. During the first week in May, the park is virtually void of the usual crowds and the animals are less wary of approaching roads, enhancing the opportunity of getting many great shots with medium telephoto lens.
Background-Fall: For the past two decades I head off to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks to photograph wildlife and the spectacular and ever changing colors of fall. As a nature and wildlife photographer, to me, fall is one of the most exciting times to visit Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Not only are the parks less crowded, the shorter days and cooler temperatures signal to wildlife that winter is rapidly approaching. It is a time when bull elk can be heard bugling from all corners of the park, a challenge for supremacy in the annual mating ritual. It is also a time to observe and photograph other large mammals like moose, bison, and pronghorn antelope as they begin their annual clash for a mate. With winter rapidly approaching both black and grizzly bears are frequently found during the day searching for that last bit of nourishment before hibernation.
Some of the animals we will be searching for during the fall:
- Elk. There is no question; September is the best time of the year to get great images of the majestic bull elk. The shorter days and cooler temperature of fall trigger their instinctive drive to mate. The silhouette of a bull elk standing on a hill and bugling out a challenge to others is absolutely breathtaking and certainly worth the wait.
- Moose. Early fall in the Teton Mountains is a great time to photograph moose as they are beginning the rut. We will spend a considerable amount of time patiently searching for and photographing these majestic animals.
- Grizzly and Black bears. During the past few years I have been increasingly successful locating and photographing both black and grizzly bears (from a safe distance). To do this normally takes a lot of driving time scouting a couple of areas in the park where I frequently locate these magnificent animals.
- Bison. We will have many opportunities to photograph bison (from a safe distance) and will focus our attention on shooting from many different angles. I usually try and get images of bison in action, including; bulls clashing to gain the dominance for the right to breed, herds of bison crossing a river, and a panoramic shot of large herds sprawling across an open meadow.
- Wolves. For me, wolves are becoming a common sight in the park. During my time in the park I frequently come across wolves roaming in packs or on a recent kill site.
- Landscape. There is no better time of the year to get some of the most magnificent landscape images of Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Each day brings the possibility of changing fall colors, a fresh blanket of snow, or freezing fog hanging over the landscape. We will spend a considerable amount of time in Grand Teton National Park to capture the explosive fall colors of aspen trees as they change to a brilliant yellow.
What’s included in the fee?
- Workshop fee and material
- Daily critique of images (evening)
Transportation is not included in the registration fee and everyone is expected to provide their own transportation and when possible, encouraged to carpool. Also, everyone is responsible for their park admission fee.
I have reserved five rooms at the Yellowstone River Motel, a neat and clean little motel just outside of the park in Gardiner.
I anticipate both the Wildlife Workshop and Photo Expedition to fill up fast so I encourage you to contact me as soon as possible if you are interested at: email@example.com or call (360) 481-4575