• Bosque del Apache Photography Workshop

Bosque del Apache Photography Workshop

November 13- November 17, 2019. $925. Limited to 6 photographers.

Bosque del Apache Photography Workshop

Bosque del Apache Photography Workshop Overview


November 13-17, 2019. All day Thu, Fri, Sat, Sun.


Field: Bosque del Apache NWR and surrounding local area.

Workshop Level

Low-intermediate to advanced.

  • Experience with DSLR and/or mirrorless camera body
  • Use of lenses with 200 mm focal length or longer

Workshop Cost

$925/person. Limited to 6 participants.


Bathing in the Bosque Light

Workshop Description

The Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge is renowned by photographers around the world for large numbers of migratory birds, spectacular light, and close access to wildlife.

  • Workshop is ideally timed:
    • Coincides with abundant migratory birds,
    • Fall colors,
    • Outside of the busy Festival of Cranes (Nov 20 – 23).
  • Learn how to photograph the Bosque del Apache from a local full-time professional photographer. I know the Bosque very well and photograph it all year round!
  • Special raptor photography session with falcons and hawks.

Flaps Down

Bird-in-Flight Photography

  • Tripod and hand-held technique.
  • Learn how to optimally focus on birds in flight .
  • Incorporate the beautiful landscape in your BIF compositions.

Raptor Photography

In addition to Sandhill Cranes and Snow Geese the workshop will also focus on raptor photography.  The “Bosque” is an excellent habitat for photographing hawks, falcons, harriers, and owls.

  • Special Bird-in-Flight (BIF) raptor photography with trained falconry birds.
  • Unique opportunity to refine your technique in real time.
  • It would take a lifetime in the wild to photograph as many raptors at close range!
  • You will be able to improve your focussing, exposure, and composition technique.
  • Apply what we learn with falconry birds to photograph wild raptors.
  • Practice BIF technique so it becomes second nature to you!

“Locked On: Peregrine Falcon”

Harris’s Hawk Hunts the Brush

Bosque del Apache Photography Workshop

“Fall Huntress, Northern Harrier over the Bosque del Apache”

Landscape Photography

The Bosque del Apache NWR is one of the best places for landscape photography in the world — independent of the wildlife that visit there.

  • Brilliant emotional lighting,
  • Mirror like bodies of water,
  • Colorful foliage provide awesome photographic compositions.

You will learn how to take advantage of this beauty and how to creatively integrate wildlife into stunning landscape images.

Classroom Instruction on Post Processing

Interactive hands-on instruction on image post-processing, photographic strategy, and presentation will occur at mid-day in Socorro.

  • Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop.
  • Useful third-party plugins.
  • Learn complete nature photography workflows

Permitted and Ethical Nature Photography

In Light of Nature Photography is permitted under the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), insured, and operates it workshops ethically with the utmost respect for wildlife and the refuge.

Bosque del Apache Bobcat Stare

“Silver Sentinels”  (1st place in 2015 Bosque del Apache Photo Contest)

Bosque del Apache lit up at sundown


Wednesday Nov 13, 2019 (Optional)

  • 7:00PM – 8:30PM “Meet and Greet” dinner in Socorro.

Thursday,Friday, Saturday November 14-16, 2019

  • 5:30AM meet at the Bosque del Apache NWR
  • 5:30 AM – 9:30 AM Field instruction on the refuge
  • 9:30AM – 11:00AM Break
  • 11:00 AM – 1:00PM Classroom instruction on Post-Processing.
  • 1:00PM – 2:30 PM Break
  • 2:30PM – 6:00 PM Field instruction on the refuge

Sunday November 17, 2019 (no classroom sessions on Sunday)

  • 5:30AM meet at the Bosque del Apache NWR
  • 5:30 AM – 10:30 AM Field instruction on the refuge
  • 10:30AM – 12:30PM Break
  • 12:30 PM – 1:30PM Group lunch at local restaurant
  • 1:30PM – 6:00 PM Field instruction on the refuge
  • If you have to leave early to catch your flight, no worries!

Up Before Dawn

American Badger hunts the fields

Required Equipment

  • Gloves, warm hat, warm boots, parka.
  • Thermos with hot beverage is recommended.
  • Sunhat, sunglasses, sunscreen, water bottle.
  • Headlamp, ideally with a red-light option.
  • DSLR (or mirror-less) camera that you are familiar with.
  • Lenses:
    • 300 mm or longer (prime or zoom)
    • zoom lens (e.g. 70-200/300 mm or 100-400 mm)
    • wide angle lens (e.g. 16mm – 24 mm, 24-70mm
  • Sturdy tripod
  • Extra camera batteries (car charger is recommended)
  • Extra memory cards, card reader.
  • Laptop computer with external hard drive.

Moonrise over the fall colors at the Bosque del Apache

Expected Physical Demands

  • Ability to stand outside in cold temperatures for 1-3 hours.
  • Ability to carry your photography gear for 200 – 300 meters on occasion.
  • The majority of photography locations will be located close to our vehicles.
  • Ability to walk short distances and setup photography equipment in the dark (pre-dawn).
  • Ability to manipulate photography equipment with cold hands in the morning.
  • Restrooms are located around the refuge.

Aplomado Falcon, a favorite of the raptor photography class


  • Students are responsible for making their lodging reservations.
  • Please reserve your lodging early.
    • Check in = Wednesday, Nov 13, 2019
    • Check out = Sunday, Nov 17, 2019
  • The workshop hotel is the Holiday Inn Express in Socorro
  • Meals and lodging are not included in the $925 workshop fee.
  • We will carpool on the refuge.
  • More detailed logistics will be sent to registered photographers.

Please contact us with any questions you have.

Dawn’s early light at the Bosque del Apache NWR

Bald Eagle between the lines of sunrise at the Bosque del Apache


Register for the Workshop

About the Instructor

I am a full-time professional nature photographer.  My images have been published internationally, including magazine covers and have won multiple first-place awards in prestigious photo contests.

  • For the past 27 years I have photographed at the Bosque del Apache NWR.
  • I know the Bosque del Apache NWR very well and will show you how to optimally photograph it.
  • For years I wrote the quarterly “Photo Tips” article for the Friends of the Bosque del Apache newsletter.
  • I served as the Vice President of the Board of Directors for the Friends of the Bosque del Apache NWR.

I have a PhD in Physics / Optics and have published multiple research papers on light. In addition to the science of light I have formal training in landscape painting (pastel and watercolor) and am active in the Santa Fe and Taos art scene.

  • In my workshops I teach both the science and art of nature photography.
  • I teach technique from both landscape and wildlife photography.
  • I work individually with you to refine your specific photography desires.

Respect for wildlife and ethical photography is important to me.

  • I teach how to find wildlife and photograph it without chasing, or disturbing it.
  • I also conduct scientific research (peer-reviewed published) on raptors.

My images are sold in galleries in Taos, Santa Fe, and Albuquerque.

Respect for all abilities is important to me and those that take my workshops.  I foster a friendly and non-condescending atmosphere for all photographers in the workshop!

  • Everyone is here to learn and improve,
  • Photography is constantly changing with new tools and techniques,
  • Staying current is vital to success!

Waiting patiently in the blind

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