Photo of the Month February 2020

Tom and I want to celebrate the great images being created on our workshops by posting a photograph each month from one of our workshops that best captures the environment or people of that location. With so many great images from Japan and our 2 Texas Birds Workshops, it was hard to choose. We hope you enjoy Alfredo’s image as much as we do. 

Congratulations to February’s photographer – Alfredo Fayard 

Badlands Workshop 2019

The Story:

I love wildlife and photographing birds in particular. When I am photographing birds I usually use my Nikon D500 and a 200-500mm telephoto lens for birds in flight.

This workshop was my first time photographing from a blind. I drove down from Houston so I brought everything with me including a 500mm f4 lens and my new Nikon Z7. I had never used the Z7 for wildlife photography before. The pictures I loved the most came from this combination 500 F4 and the Nikon Z7.

I set up the camera in the blind at Laguna Seca Ranch with this new combination. I took my first pictures and fell in love with the color of the holy berries. I thought “That would be beautiful with cardinals.” At the time there were Green Jays and a few other birds on the perches so I waited for the cardinals to show up.

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Green Jays on the holy berries

I saw that the backgrounds were disappearing (because of the f4 aperture). It reminded me of drawings from naturalists in the 1900’s before there were cameras. The drawings give the sense that there is nothing in the picture except birds and berries. I knew that when the cardinals came in that it would be beautiful.

 

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Photo of the Month – Alfredo Fayard

The Location: 

I loved the variety of birds we saw. Laguna Seca Ranch was the most pictorial of the two ranches. The backgrounds just disappear because of the location of the vegetation. I would like to go back at another time of the year with different flowers and birds.

The roadrunner experience at Santa Clara Ranch was beautiful.

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Alfredo at left photographing at Laguna Seca Ranch

The Data: Nikon Z7 with 500mm F4 EXIF F4 1/1250 ISO 720

Photo Tip from the Photographer: 

I went to the location with one idea of what equipment I would use. But I tried something different. The Nikon Z7 is not known for its speed as a wildlife camera. However, the resolution and details it produced were incredible. I did not realize this until I saw the images on my computer.

On the Horizon:

  • Costa Rica – I have been there several times before. Now I am looking forward to applying what I learned on this workshop to the jungles of Costa Rica,

 

To learn more about the Laguna Seca Ranch  click here

To learn more about the Santa Clara Ranch  click here

 

 

 

 

New Workshop Openings

Greetings from Tom and Cree!

We appreciate you signing up for our mailing list. Our goal is to let our mailing list know first about our new trips. We have just started adding workshops for 2022 and also have a new one for 2021. Here is more information:

2022 Workshops

Norway – Lofoten Islands: this workshop is perfect for landscape photography. We have timed the trip in September for fall color and the possibility of seeing northern lights if the skies are clear.

Texas Birds in Spring: we are just getting back from our February trip to Texas and had a great trip – the trip report will be out soon. In 2022 we will time our trip for late April and early May to have a chance to photograph Painting Buntings – one of the most colorful birds in North America. The first session is already full and the second session is filling fast

Costa Rica in 2022: we are now taking sign ups for our 2022 Costa Rica Workshop…..scarlet macaws, monkeys and macro sessions with dart frogs. This is the perfect follow up trip for participants who just finished the Texas Birds Workshop.

2021 Workshops

Utah Landscapes: Looking for a workshop a little closer to home? Head to Utah with us to photograph the beautiful red rock spires at Bryce National Park. We will also take advantage of the clear dark night skies at Capitol Reef National Park for night photography.

2020 Workshops

There are openings in 2020  on just two trips:

Spain with Strabo Tours in April

Dates: April 21 – May 3, 2020

Old Car City

Dates: November 12-15

If you would like to talk about which workshop is best for you, give me a call at 970-631-9383 or send me an email at creetbp@gmail.com

Why Chile and Easter Island?

Greetings from Tom and Cree!

We have had several inquiries about our Chile and Easter Island Photo Tours in January 2021. People want to know more about our daily itinerary and destinations in Chile. We put together a photo itinerary to show you more, just click on the link below to find out about the perfect January tropical escape:

https://spark.adobe.com/page/Yq3d1YJAtH4D7/

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Plaza de Armas, Santiago de Chile, Chile
Santiago de Chile, Plaza de Armas, main square of Chile capital city

Photo of the Month – December 2019

Tom and I want to celebrate the great images being created on our workshops by posting a photograph each month from one of our workshops that best captures the environment or people of that location. With so many great images from Patagonia, it was hard to choose. We hope you enjoy Patricia’s image as much as we do. Please let us know what you think about our Photo of the Month posts!

Congratulations to December’s photographer – Patricia Solano 

Pattys
Patrica using a low perspective for the iconic landscape

The Story:

I was really nervous and excited for the shoot with all the horses. I was excited about what it may look like. I was nervous because I was surrounded by a lot of talented photographers. In a group I knew I would be vying for space and I am a small person.

I remember asking myself, “Holy crap! How am I going to shoot this?” Because I have done trips with Tom before, I knew I had to be on continuous (auto-focus) and shoot at a high shutter speed. I always shoot in manual so I was not thinking about aperture. I chose the 70-200mm lens to get the vista, but also to be able to zoom in as the horses came running at us.

Pics for Tom Bol Photo of MOnth-2
Gauchos and horses running through Lago Argentina by Patricia Solano

The Location: 

As soon as I got to El Galpon, it spoke to me. It was a combination of the vistas, the horses and the macho men.  The remoteness of the estancia made it peaceful and I just loved the spot. I love Patagonia and El Galpon was my favorite place in Patagonia.

Of course, the gauchos helped!

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Patricia taking a portrait of Pablo with natural window light

The Data: Sony ILCE-7R, 70-200mm lens 1/1000 at f6.3 ISO 1250 manual mode

Photo Tip from the Photographer: 

I am on a steep learning curve as a photographer. I have learned that if you screw up, just forgive yourself. Even if it is a once in a lifetime shoot like we had at El Galpon.

On the Horizon:

  • Return to Cuba – outside of Havana
  • Return to India – the south this time

 

To learn more about the El Galpon Estancia in Patagonia where this photo was taken click here

To learn more about auto focus modes click here

 

 

Patagonia Trip Report

Click on the horse image below or the link to see highlights of our recent workshop in Patagonia. The stunning sunsets, abundant birds and wildlife, and dramatic tango dancers were highlights for us all.

https://spark.adobe.com/page/SbkFFmzlM2i4j/

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We have a few spaces on our Chile and Easter Island Workshop in 2021. We will travel to Santiago and Valparaiso in Chile then on to Easter Island. If you are interested in photographing in South America with us follow this link to learn more:

Chile and Easter Island 2021

 

Photo of the Month – November 2019

Tom and I want to celebrate the great images being created on our workshops by posting a photograph each month from one of our workshops that best captures the environment or people of that location.

Congratulations to November’s photographer – Lee Brissey

 

Chilkat Workshop 2019
Chilkat Workshop 2019

The Story:

On our second day we were photographing a wide variety of bald eagles feeding on chum salmon along the gravel bar of the Chilkat river. While we all captured many interesting images of feeding and bird behavior, this one immediately caught my attention as a poignant image of an instant in time. The eagle talons holding down the spent-out chum salmon symbolized the power of predator. While it happened in an instant flip, I was certain that predator and prey connected in that ageless migration ritual. It’s impossible to look at that image and not get a bit reflective about the circle of life.

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The Location: 

The Chilkat River landscape was exceptional with distant mountains accentuated by fresh snow and wonderful cloud/mist patterns providing an ever-changing backdrop to the scene. When the sun peaked out we had beautiful low-angle back-lighting to illuminate wings of eagles in flight and birds resting on logs and in perches along the riverbank. But in addition to the sights, the continuous sounds of the river burbling by and the endless cries of seagulls and calls of eagles made the place come alive.

Chilkat Workshop 2019
Lee (right) and his photo friend Dennis Garrood (left)

The Data: Nikon D850, 200-500 mm lens 1/1600 at f5.6 ISO 900 Manual mode

Photo Tip from the Photographer: 

The usual advice about being patient and watchful is not new. Some of my best images came out of scenes that emerged without warning and were gone in a flash. I was just lucky. And I learned again to pay attention to the changing light conditions and adjust accordingly.  Periodically step back and adjust to the scene by rechecking whether settings/histogram are appropriate to the conditions.  I learned some of this the hard way again this year.

On the Horizon:

  • Costa Rica in April
  • Bosque del Apache & White Sands in New Mexico

 

To learn about the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve and Haliaeetus leucocephalus click here

 

 

Workshop Openings for 2020

Greetings from Tom and Cree!

We are getting ready for Thanksgiving and will both be out of the country for the first few weeks of December. If you have questions about upcoming trips, the next two weeks would be a great time to get in touch.

Our 2020 Workshop Schedule is starting to fill up. This time of year is popular for new registrations, so we thought we would let you know what is still available for 2020.

Redwoods and Rocky Coastlines

2 Spaces Available  Dates: July 22-26, 2020

Badlands

2 Spaces Available  Dates: May 27-31, 2020

Spain with Strabo Tours

2 Spaces Available  Dates: April 21-May 3, 2020

Old Car City

Half Full  Dates: November 12-15

We have a few spots on our first international trip in 2021:

Easter Island

3 Spaces Available  Dates: January 24- February 1, 2021

If you would like to talk about which workshop is best for you, give me a call at 970-631-9383 or send me an email at creetbp@gmail.com

Chilkat Trip Report

Click on the eagle image below to see highlights of our recent workshop in the Chilkat Eagle Preserve in Alaska. The fighting eagles, sunny mountainscapes and convivial group members were all highlights for this year.

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We have space on our Bosque Workshop in 2021 if you are interested in photographing birds with us. Follow this link to learn more:

Bosque & White Sands 2021