San Luis Valley Photography Workshop, Colorado. March 16-20, 2022

4 full days, small group size limited to seven participants, COVID-19 safe practices and proof of COVID vaccine required.

San Luis Valley Photography Workshop focussing on landscape and wildlife photography.

Sandhill Cranes performing courtship and pair-bonding dance

Bird-in-flight photography of raptors

Two-nights of moonrise photography around the time of a full moon

Small group to provide ample individual focus on your photography goals

Field sessions and post-processing sessions

Required COVID-19 Safety Practices for All Participants

  • All workshop participants must wear a mask at all times (no bandannas) to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
  • All workshops participants must be fully vaccinated for COVID, proof of vaccination is required.
  • Carpooling is not allowed during the workshop.
  • Mid-day classroom instruction will be offered in a large meeting room at the hotel with a maximum of 7 people.
    • We will implement strict social distancing.
    • Students will be seated at individual tables with maximum separation (> 12 feet).
    • If you prefer to participate in the classroom sessions remotely, from your hotel room, on Zoom, that is fine.
  • Students will use their same desk each session, desks, computers, and furniture cleaned frequently.
  • Social distancing and mask usage will be required for indoor and outdoor activities.
  • We will order food to go and picnic outdoors for breakfast and lunch.
  • If the COVID-19 pandemic worsens to the point where we cannot safely conduct this workshop, I will fully refund your registration fee.

Agenda

Four full days.

  • Wednesday, March 16, 2022

    • 2:00 PM Meet and Greet at the Windsor Hotel, Del Norte, Colorado followed by late afternoon/evening photography in the field
  • Thursday – Sunday, March 17-20, 2022

    • 6:30 AM – 9:30 AM
      • Sunrise photography in the field
    • 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM
      • Breakfast break and photography instruction in the field
    • 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM
      • Bird-in-flight photography in the field
    • 12:30-2:30 PM
      • Hands-on post-processing instruction at hotel
    • 2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
      • Break (naptime)
    • 4:00PM –  7:30PM
      • Afternoon – Sunset photography in the field
      • Moonrise photography March 16, 17, 18th

Skills you will learn and refine

  • Manual exposure to beautifully expose difficult lighting situations.
  • Exposure bracketing and post-processing to create realistic HDR images
  • Moonrise planning and implementation in the field
  • Focus-stacking for deep depth of field landscapes
  • Landscape panorama field and post-processing techniques
  • How to acquire a sharp focus on birds-in-flight
  • How ethically photograph wildlife and minimize disturbing them

My teaching approach focuses not only on how, more importantly, on why.  If you can learn the reasons for using a given technique, you will apply them for years to come — versus memorizing settings.

Includes

Wildlife and landscape photography sessions each day.  Three nights of moonrise photography weather permitting.

In-depth bird-in-flight (BIF) photography sessions

Hands-on classroom labs on post-processing, composition, and strategic planning of  your photography

Classroom sessions will be at the Windsor Hotel in Del Norte, Colorado

Not Included

Airfare, transportation, lodging, or meals.  Light snacks and refreshments will be provided in the field sessions.

Windsor Hotel Del Norte Hotel Colorado

Fine dining is available at the Windsor Hotel.

Bistro Barbara at the Windsor Hotel, Del Norte Colorado

The Windsor Hotel is a beautifully restored historic hotel with large clean rooms

The Windsor Hotel has a discounted block of rooms for our workshop, please let them know you are with the “MacKerrow Photography Workshop” when booking with them. Please book your lodging soon as the Windsor Hotel does fill up quickly.

COVID-19 protective masks must be worn inside the Windsor Hotel. Proof of COVID vaccination is required.

For those interested in camping there are nearby locations in the National Forest and campgrounds in the San Luis Valley.

Please contact us for more information on camping locations.

Suggested Photography Equipment

  • A long lens with a maximum focal length of 500mm – 600mm
  • Zoom lens 100-400mm
  • Wide-angle lens 24 mm
  • DSLR camera body(s)
  • A sturdy tripod(s)
  • Extra camera batteries
  • Extra memory cards
  • Laptop, card reader, external hard drive

Workshop Level

  • Experienced beginner to advanced photographers
  • Curriculum:
    • Strategic planning using solar and lunar calculations, and light conditions
    • Manual Exposure
    • Exposure Bracketing
    • Hand-held and Tripod Bird-in-Flight Photography
    • Autofocus settings and technique
    • Lightroom and Photoshop Post Processing
    • Ethical wildlife photography practices
    • Finding wildlife for photography

Fitness Level

  • Able to walk 1/2 mile with photography equipment
  • Able to stand in the cold (sunrise and sunset) for  1 hour
  • We will be close to our vehicles.
  • Altitudes ranging from 7,500 – 9,000 feet

Northern Harrier Photography Sessions

  • The workshop is timed well with the courtship period of N.Harriers
  • Multiple sessions on bird-in-flight photography of N. Harriers
  • Refining your focussing technique to capture sharp images
  • Harrier behavior
  • I have been photographing harriers in this area for 12+ years and it is my favorite location for them

Sandhill Crane Photography Sessions

  • Sandhill Cranes use the San Luis Valley to reestablish their pair bonding via an elegant dance
  • We will photograph the crane dance in front of a beautiful snow-capped mountain backdrop
  • In past workshops, we have been able to photograph the crane dancing at many different close locations

Great Sand Dunes Photography Sessions

  • We will photograph the Great Sand Dunes from a variety of locations to capture stunning landscapes
  • The majority of our dune photography will be done using long lenses
  • For those interested, we can also wade in Medano Creek and do some dune hiking.  Bring extra water shoes/sandals for Medano Creek

Moonrise Photography Sessions

  • We will have three moonrise photography sessions, weather permitting
  • The moonrise photography sessions require a sturdy tripod and headlamp
  • The moonrise photography sessions will include instruction on how to plan your moon shots

Raptor Photography

  • In addition to a high density of Northern Harriers, there are lots of other raptors we will photograph
  • Other species that frequent this area during this time include
    • Golden Eagle
    • Bald Eagle
    • Rough-Legged Hawk
    • Red-Tailed Hawk
    • Great Horned Owl
    • Prairie Falcon
    • Peregrine Falcon
    • American Kestrel

Registration

Important

  • Please read the terms and conditions, and the COVID-19 requirements, and then check the boxes that you have read these, and then the payment dialog box will appear.
  • This confirmation e-mail includes important directions and links to workshop material.
  • Please let me know if you did not receive the confirmation e-mail.
  • Upon registration and payment, you will promptly (1-2 minutes) receive an e-mail confirmation.
  • Thank you for registering for your photography workshop!

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