Tag Archives: Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshops

2013 Workshop Calendar

Daffodils & RiverbirchAfter a busy end-of-2012 season, a few days off over the holidays, and an international project just after the first of the year, I’m pleased to announce that I’ve posted my 2013 calendar of photography workshops. I’m again offering a full range of classes this year, ranging from Intro to DSLR Photography for photographers new to the DSLR world, to full-day field workshops that will appeal to advanced and professional photographers.

Please see the full photography workshop calendar over at my dedicated workshop website, PetersonPhotoWorkshops.com, where you can view course descriptions for my Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshops and Studio Workshop Events, and where you can register online.

I am grateful to those of you who helped make 2012 a great workshop year – and especially to those of you who are “regulars” of my workshops (I’m thrilled to have such a high rate of returning participants!) – for your continued support.  Previous workshop participants were sent the calendar a few days early, and I’m pleased to be able to say that initial registration is brisk! My photography workshops do frequently fill well in advance, so don’t hesitate if you’re interested in joining us this year – your paid registration reserves your seat in the class.

Thanks for your interest in my photography workshops – I look forward to crossing paths with you in the field or the studio this year!

Great fun at the Autumn Color Photography Workshops!

Canyon Road

 

Last weekend’s Autumn Color photography workshops at Ledges State Park were great fun, with a fantastic group of photographers on both days. Both Saturday and Sunday started with a bit of trepidation for a few photographers in each group, due to pouring rain as we assembled in the dark to prepare our gear.

For some, it was a first using camera raincoats, and I could see the fear in their eyes as they contemplated stepping out from under the park shelter, into the pouring rain, with thousands of dollars of camera gear. But when they saw the first images on their cameras’ preview screen, those fears subsided quickly! A few who knew their cameras and lenses were sealed even discarded the raincoats and simply toweled off their gear as the rain lightened to a drizzle.

Regardless, within an hour or so on both mornings, the rain cleared completely. And left behind by the storms were gorgeous dripping fall leaves, fabulous saturated colors, and the Ledges streams a little fuller than the day before. All in all…perfect days for these workshops!

My autumn color workshops are always among the highlights of the year for me, as fall subjects in the Midwest are some of my favorite subjects of all to photograph. The colors this fall have been magnificent, and the weekend served up for our workshops this week at “The Ledges” was glorious.

Here a few “behind the scenes” images of our workshop participants at work:

And some of the stellar autumn color photos created by workshop participants:

It’s always such a fine experience to work with photographers of all levels as they seek to improve their skills and learn new techniques. I learn so much from working with these diverse and creative groups of people. Thanks to both the Saturday and Sunday workshop participants for being such fun groups of individuals – I enjoyed working with you!

Workshop Website

I’m pleased to be able to post that my workshop information/registration website is back up and running, with the registration form again fully functional! With several workshops coming up in the next month or so, you can now again register and pay online without having to fuss with emailed registration forms.

My next workshops are the twin October 13 + 14 one-day autumn color workshops at beautiful Ledges State Park in Central Iowa.

Please check out petersonphotoworkshops.com – I hope to see you at a workshop soon!

The Midwest Summer Prairie – June 30 Field Workshop in Iowa!

Coming up June 30 on the lovely Midwestern prairie –  a full day of nature photography field education while photographing summer prairie wildflowers, plants, insects and other fauna, and the classic Midwest prairie landscape! If you enjoy nature photography, please consider joining us for our next Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshop!

This summer workshop is always one of my favorites – we’ll begin very early (before sunrise!) at one of my favorite “hidden gem” locations for amazing Midwest summer prairie  photography – smack-dab in the “Middle of Nowhere” in rural Marshall County, Iowa (near – you guessed it – a town called Marshalltown).  The focus of this workshop is on creating macro images, nature “portraits,” and prairie landscapes.

The objective of this workshop is to help photographers build solid field macro and landscape photography techniques.  We’ll photograph wildflowers such as Purple Coneflower, Prairie Phlox, Prairie Blazing Star, Blue Vervain, White Campion, and numerous others [*see note].  Likewise, in the morning, opportunities to photograph dew-laden insects will likely abound.  We’ll photograph the classic summer prairie, and oak savannah natural landscapes.  Additionally, those who photograph birds may want to bring their bird lens, as well – finches and other prairie birds are common at this location. Participants will leave in the evening with a portfolio of strong photos, new skills, and probably some new photo friends from the area!

[*note: there is no guarantee that we’ll be able to photograph each of these wildflower species, but all are regularly found at these locations during this general timeframe.  Actual blossoms the week of our workshop, of course, will depend on local conditions which vary year-to-year]

Like all of our workshops, group size is kept small to allow individual attention and instruction. Your instructor(s) will not photograph their own work during the workshop – the focus is on helping participants to maximize their photo skills. Instructor photography is for technique demonstration only.

Location

Exact meeting location and maps will be emailed to participants prior to the event – our starting point is approximately 45 minutes Northeast of Des Moines in rural Marshall County, Iowa.

Timing

As with most nature photography, the best shooting times are morning and late-afternoon/evening. We will meet around sunrise, and photograph until mid-morning. The middle, high-sun portion of the day will be used for discussion, hands-on education, and technique practice. We will then again actively photograph when the sun is a little lower in the sky during the afternoon.

What to bring

Photo Gear: A Digital SLR camera, normal- , wide-angle, and telephoto- lenses, and a dedicated macro lens if you have one!  A sturdy tripod and plenty of media cards for a full day of shooting are also essential.  If you do not own a tripod, you will want one, but please contact me before purchasing one!

Appropriate clothing and safety gear: dress in layers. You’ll probably want long pants and long sleeves due to brush, bugs, and burrs part of the day.  Comfortable shoes, hiking boots, or rubber hunting boots (we will be off-trail much/most of the time, and the prairie floor can be very wet). Bug spray. A hat. Sunblock. Rain gear – just in case. Plenty of water.

Please note that the locations we will work may be drenched with summer dew in the morning, and will almost certainly contain a few hazards like burrs and mosquitos – come prepared!

Snacks and bottled water will be provided, but you should also bring water, as well. An option will be available to pre-order a fantastic boxed lunch at nominal cost.

Registration

Feel free to download our full 2012 workshop info here.

Workshop cost is $99 per person and covers a complete day of field instruction, and snacks and drinks.

Please use our contact form to receive complete information and registration materials!

In past years this workshop has filled quickly, and the date is fast approaching – register now to reserve your spot!

Questions?

Please don’t hesitate to contact us with your questions about this fun field event!

Thanks for reading, and thanks for your interest in the Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshop Series!

2011 Autumn Color Workshops

Our popular annual Autumn Color photography workshops are fast approaching – and there are still spots available. This year we are expanding the Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshops fall color events to include another fabulous Iowa location – Wildcat Den State Park!

Saturday, October 15, we’ll be offering our one-day field workshop at the gorgeous Wildcat Den State Park, near Muscatine, Iowa. This lovely state park is conveniently located about 30-minutes West of Davenport, 1 hour Southeast of Iowa City, or 2 hours 40 minutes East of Des Moines. It features a variety of fabulous nature photography subjects, and a historic stream-side mill.

Sunday, October 23, we’ll then be returning to the beautiful Ledges State Park in Boone County (about 30 minutes North of Des Moines) for another one-day field workshop. The Ledges has been a highly productive workshop location for us in past years! This park’s mix of prairie, cliffs, and deep valley streams make a marvelous location for our workshop participants. Central Iowa photographers won’t want to miss this opportunity to shoot with us!

The itinerary for each Autumn Color workshop begins early, with a quick pre-dawn get-acquainted meeting, and then we move right into a very packed day of hands-on photography, creating beautiful fall color photographs until dusk!

Topics covered include both basic and advanced topics of outdoor nature photography, including exposure, selective focus, composition, proper field technique, numerous creative techniques, equipment and gear, and much more.  Our experienced instructors are hands-on and do not shoot their own images in the field; rather, they focus 100% of their efforts on assisting participants to learn proper technique and to create fantastic images. Our goal is to help you return from the field at the end of the day with a collection of publication-quality autumn color photographs including landscapes, close-up or macro images, and evocative artistic images.

Our Autumn Color one-day field workshops generally sell out and have a waiting list! We keep group size small to ensure plentiful individual attention and to allow the group to move from location to location in the park without difficulty. If interested in joining us for one or both days, please contact us right away for more information and to reserve your spot! Please note that our workshops are targeted at SLR users – digital or film.

For more information, please see this link. For questions or to register, please contact us right away! Registrants will receive complete itinerary, details of the day, packing list, and a list of recommended nearby hotels, prior to the event.

As always, thanks for your interest in the Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshop Series. See you in the Field!

June 18, 2011 The Summer Prairie – Workshop Details

Hey nature photographers! Join me for a full day of nature photography field education, while we photograph summer prairie wildflowers, plants, insects and other fauna, and the classic Midwest prairie landscape!  June 18 in beautiful rural Central Iowa!

This workshop meets early-morning (before sunrise!) at one of my favorite “hidden gem” locations for amazing Midwest summer prairie  photography.  The focus will be on macro, nature “portraits,” and prairie landscape images.

The objective of this workshop is to help photographers build solid field macro and landscape photography techniques.  We’ll photograph wildflowers such as Purple Coneflower, Prairie Phlox, Prairie Blazing Star, Blue Vervain, White Campion, and numerous others [*see note].  Likewise, in the morning, opportunities to photograph dew-laden insects will likely abound.  We’ll photograph the classic summer prairie, and oak savannah natural landscapes.  Additionally, those who photograph birds may want to bring their bird lens, as well – finches and other prairie birds are common here.

The exact location of this Workshop will be chosen from among my favorite “hidden gem” prairie locations in beautiful rural Story or Marshall County, depending on local conditions and wildflower blossoms the week of the event.  Exact meeting location and maps will be emailed to participants prior to the event.  Both locations are within 45 minutes of Des Moines.

Please note that the prospective locations we will work may be drenched with summer dew in the morning, and contain a few hazards like burrs and mosquitos – come prepared with comfortable hiking shoes/boots and long pants (or rubber hunting boots), long sleeves, a sun hat, rain gear, and insect repellant!

[*note: there is no guarantee that we’ll be able to photograph each of these wildflower species, but all are regularly found at these locations during this general timeframe.  Actual blossoms the week of our workshop, of course, will depend on local conditions which vary year-to-year]

Timing

For the Summer Prairie workshop, depending on the location from which you are arriving, you may wish to either meet in Ames and carpool to the event, or meet at the workshop location.  Both options will be available to you with details worked out prior to the event.  We will shoot and explore nature photography technique throughout the day.  As with most nature photography, the best shooting times are morning and late-afternoon/evening; the middle of the day will be used for discussion, hands-on education, and technique practice.

What to bring

Photo Gear: A Digital SLR camera, normal- , wide-angle, and telephoto- lenses, and a dedicated macro lens if you have one!  A sturdy tripod and plenty of media cards for a full day of shooting are also essential.  If you do not own a tripod, you will want one, but please contact me before purchasing one!

Appropriate clothing and safety gear: dress in layers. You’ll probably want long pants and long sleeves due to brush, bugs, and burrs part of the day.  Hiking boots or rubber hunting boots (we will be off-trail much/most of the time, and the prairie floor can be very wet).  Bug spray.  A hat.  Sunblock.  Plenty of water.

Some snacks and bottled water will be provided. An option will be available to pre-order a fantastic boxed lunch at nominal cost.

Workshop Cost

$99 per person

See the Workshop Series overview information here, and contact me for complete information and registration materials!

In past years, this workshop has filled quickly, and the date is fast approaching – register now to reserve your spot!

Questions?

Email Mark

Thanks for reading, and thanks for your interest in the Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshop Series!  See you in the Field!

May 7 Spring Wildflower and Landscape Workshop – Details

Topics covered: Macro, Wildflower, Landscape Photography
Prairie Phlox, Iowa

Join me in the field for a full day of nature photography field education, while we photograph wildflowers and landscapes in a lush, Midwest forest setting!

This workshop meets early-morning (before sunrise!)  in Ames, Iowa, and travels ~20 minutes to one of my favorite “hidden gem” locations for fabulous Midwest spring wildflower photography.

The objective of this workshop is to help photographers build solid field macro and landscape photography techniques.  We’ll photograph wildflowers such as Dutchman’s Breeches, Bloodroot, Wild Ginger, Rue Anemone, Spring Beauty, Hepatica, Jack-in-the-Pulpit, May Apple, Sweet William, and Trout Lily [*see note].  Landscape photography opportunities also abound at the workshop location.  Additionally, those who photograph birds may want to bring their bird lens, as well – kingfishers and several other bird species are frequently active at the location of this workshop.

The exact location of this Workshop will be chosen from among my favorite “hidden gem” forest locations in beautiful rural Story County, depending on local conditions and wildflower blossoms the week of the event.  Exact meeting location and maps will be emailed to participants prior to the event.

Please note that the prospective locations we will work, each require some fairly moderate hiking, possibly including a stream crossing to get to the best Virginia Bluebell locations. You’ll want to see and photograph the Bluebells, but come prepared with comfortable hiking shoes/boots or rubber hunting boots!

[*note: there is no guarantee that we’ll be able to photograph each of these wildflower species, but all are regularly found here during this timeframe.  Actual blossoms the week of our workshop, of course, will depend on local conditions which vary year-to-year]

Timing

We’ll meet pre-dawn on the edge of Ames, Iowa, and carpool to the workshop location about 20 minutes away.  We will shoot and explore nature photography technique throughout the day, into the evening.  As with most nature photography, the best shooting times are morning and late-afternoon/evening; the middle of the day will be used for discussion, hands-on education, and technique practice.

What to bring

Photo Gear: A Digital SLR camera, normal- , wide-angle, and telephoto- lenses, and a dedicated macro lens if you have one!  A sturdy tripod and plenty of media cards for a full day of shooting are also essential.

Appropriate clothing and safety gear: dress in layers. You’ll probably want long pants and long sleeves due to brush, bugs, and possibly poison ivy in areas.  Hiking boots or rubber hunting boots (we will be off-trail much/most of the time, and the forest floor can be very wet).  Bug spray.  A hat.  Sunblock.  Plenty of water.

Workshop Cost

$99 per person

See the Workshop Series overview information here, and contact me for complete information and registration materials!

In past years, this workshop has filled quickly, and the date is fast approaching – register now to reserve your spot!

Questions?

Email Mark

Thanks for reading, and thanks for your interest in the Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshop Series!  See you in the Field!

Midwest Nature Photography Field Workshop