Happy Friday! The Grand Teton workshop is a wrap & it was fantastic, to say the least. Never before have we had such great luck with finding wildlife, bears in particular. We were blessed by the presence of Grizzly 610 and her three second-year cubs. Not only is 610 a hero mother, she is a tough survivor—in early October she was struck by a car, but came out of it OK. Born in 2006, She is a famous bear with her own Instagram and X accounts with thousands of followers (including me). Bison abounded, moose were off foraging in the lakes and willow thickets, and birdlife was all aflutter. Of course, the landscapes were breathtaking, with robust fall color.
All-in-all, a fantastic workshop full of variety and most importantly, great company. Check out what’s coming up this spring and take a trip with us!
A few spaces remain to join Art Wolfe next month for our Southern Sierra workshop! This is a great opportunity to hone your skills on beautiful fall color under professional instruction while making new friends, enjoying delicious meals together and most importantly, getting out and enjoying nature before winter rolls around.
If you need more motivation, here are five reasons to join Art in California this October:
1. Skill Enhancement: Whether you’re a beginner looking to grasp the fundamentals or an experienced photographer aiming to refine your skills, our workshop offers a tailored experience for all levels. Learn about composition, lighting, exposure, and post-processing to enhance your photography prowess.
2. Autumn’s Splendid Palette: Fall is a time of breathtaking transformation, and our workshop takes you to some of the most picturesque locations where the foliage comes alive with hues of red, orange, and gold. Capture the vibrant beauty of autumn under the guidance of a life-long professional.
3. Exclusive Access: Benefit from Art’s extensive network and insider knowledge as you gain access to exclusive shooting locations that others can only dream of. Get the chance to photograph iconic landscapes in a way that’s uniquely your own.
4. Creative Vision: Art Wolfe is known for his unparalleled ability to see and capture the extraordinary in the ordinary. Learn to think creatively, see the world through a different lens, and expand your creative vision.
6. Memorable Experience: Beyond photography, you’ll create lasting memories as you explore this remarkable national park, forging a deep connection with nature and its wonders.
After eight years away (even though it’s only a 5 hour drive), I led a small group of avid photographers through the rolling hills of grain in the Palouse. This is an area of graceful landscapes shaped first by nature then by man, subtle shadows cast by passing clouds, and opportunities for challenging abstracts. We were unaffected by the recent fires in the area, much of the smoke had dissipated, but it was constantly in the backs of our minds. Many families have lost their homes in Spokane County wildfires this summer, if you would like to help please donate to Red Cross Disaster Relief.
There’s no place like Katmai, there’s no place like Katmai, there’s no place like Katmai. I wish it were that easy to be transported to this extraordinary living laboratory of Alaska’s brown bears. This year we had better than ever photographic opportunities with the bears. From afar with our 100-500mm lenses set at the upper end of the focal length we witnessed at-times violent interactions between older siblings over salmon, tender moments between protective mothers and their cubs, and diverse birdlife of the tundra and waterways. The landscapes are vast and glorious, the wildlife abundant–truly a privilege to behold!
I’ll be heading back to Katmai next summer for two workshops – take your pick and join me next year! Save a few hundred bucks with early bird pricing through October.
For anyone looking to join an upcoming workshop here in the Pacific Northwest, I’ve extended the early bird savings on some upcoming workshops though the weekend – save a couple hundred bucks and join me in one of two very different locations!
The first opportunity begins August 17th, with a small group photography retreat on the Oregon Coast. While I’m often leading a group in Abstract Astoria, this is an opportunity to explore new locations in a small-group setting of five travelers. While any workshop I lead will include a healthy dose of finding abstractions and unique points of view, this one will focus more on the breathtaking seaside landscapes that the coast has to offer.
The following trip brings us inland, to the Palouse of Eastern Washington. Often referred to as “The American Tuscany”, the Palouse is home to breathtaking landscapes, turn-of-the-century farms and rolling hills of gold under blue skies. It really couldn’t be much different from the mossy, rocky, misty shores of Oregon. I’m looking forward to the juxtaposition of exploring these varied locations back to back!
All of this follows my Katmai bear workshops, both of which only have one or two spots left available – make this year your year to go and claim one of them and capture your own amazing shots of one of America’s signature wildlife attractions.
If I don’t see you on a workshop, have a fantastic summer! If you need inspiration for photography goals, peruse the blog – I’m sure you’ll find something to spark an idea!
Summer is here! It’s been relatively cool in the Pacific Northwest recently, but I’m not complaining as it also hasn’t been overly rainy, making for good conditions to spend some time working in my garden recharging the batteries after what has been a busy 2023.
The year started off on the road in Bangladesh and Thailand, with the later providing shots of clouds of bats emerging from their tunnel colony that will be in my upcoming book Wild Lives, releasing this fall. From there it was off to Japan, and then a later engagement in the northern mountains of India in search of the elusive snow leopard for that same project.
Of course, it wouldn’t be spring without workshops here at home in our beautiful United States. Perennial favorite Abstract Astoria was once again on the agenda and if a more creative and/or abstract workshop is on your to-do list, there are plenty of upcoming events and workshops coming up on both U.S. coasts to check out.
We went coast to coast, with workshops in Joshua Tree, Moab, and the Great Smoky Mountains.
Finally, a specially mention for everyone who joined me at my home in Seattle and then for our Creative Sessions weekend. We had a great time, and I look forward to doing it again in the future. Enjoy the photos and have a fantastic summer!
This past spring I returned to Moab, Utah with a great group of workshop participants that were graciously receptive to my teaching goals in such locations – shooting the unobvious! It’s easy to come to a place like this and shoot the arches and other well-known landmarks. I can recite ad nauseum the camera settings I might use while we sit around waiting for perfect light and re-create the same shot you’ll find on postcards as you head out of town. That’s not why I come here and certainly not why I choose to lead workshops here.
Places like Moab, Astoria, and other significant locations around the country and the world are attractions for a reason, however— so I recommend people get those shots if they want them, of course. In these popular locations it’s much easier to find lodging and great food versus some remote and obscure spot on the map, so they make great places to hold these workshops. However there is so much more to be seen in the details, reflections, and abstracts to create new and unique one-of-a-kind images as well, and that’s where I like to focus my time and my teaching.
Enjoy the video, and check out my upcoming workshop offerings!
Unless you’re new to checking out the blog (Welcome, if so!) you’ve heard of my popular Abstract Astoria Workshop. It’s been a consistent destination for us year after year, and for good reason. As the oldest city on the west coast, Astoria is a venerable Scandinavian-inspired burg with an abundance of character and old-school charm. Culinary delights are around every corner, and on those corners you’re bound to find museums, breweries, and even old forts— abandoned, but ripe with photographic opportunity.
This makes it an easy choice for a recurring abstract workshop. Not only are the traditional vistas, shores, and surrounding forest great opportunities for your standard fare travel photos, the aged concrete bunkers, rusted logging equipment and waterways of moiré patterns nestled in amongst the greenery and culture make for an amazing trifecta of creativity, photography, and hospitality.
These are just some of the reasons we keep going back— and why this workshop has so many repeat clients. We’ll be heading back next spring, and now is a good time to plan your trip as this one will assuredly be a sell-out as usual! Check out the events page for this location and more.
Summer is near, and I’m feeling it in Seattle! Coming off a fantastic weekend workshop that began last Friday evening with a meet and greet at my home, I came away feeling invigorated after working with everyone who joined.
We added some smaller-group workshops to our events page – and they immediately sold out. If this is something that interests you, we will work with you to figure something out when my schedule allows. The up-side of these smaller trips are more one-on-one time as well as having accommodations and transportation resolved for you.
For the spontaneous adventurer who can get themselves here at the end of the week, one spot remains to join us on the Olympic peninsula. Who is us? Myself, my long-time shooting partner Gavriel Jecan, and office superstar Libby Pfeiffer who assembles these fantastic opportunities.
The Columbia river gorge is one of the most iconic locations on the west coast, and there are a few spots left to join Gav and myself here in early June. While we will have plenty of opportunities to capture the vistas, waterfalls and temperate rainforest of the area our goal here is to use this naturally beautiful location to dial into the abstract. This is something I’ve taught myself to do over decades, and there’s nothing I enjoy more than teaching it to you.
Before the summer wraps up, I’ll be returning to Katmai, Alaska – home to the bear that adorns the cover of my upcoming book, Wild Lives. We’ve been working with the same folks on the ground (and in the air!) for a long time now, and I always look forward to the two weeks we spend teaching workshops here. We are fast approaching the time of year when the last few spots for these opportunities fill up – so don’t miss out and sign up today!
Teaching what I love to do is my passion and the breakthroughs that happen on our workshops are, simply put – awesome. Being able to pass on a lifetime of learning is why I do this!
This past weekend we had a great workshop in California’s Joshua Tree National Park. As expected after the state’s record rainfall this winter, the wildflowers were out in force and the cacti were blooming which made for some unexpected hummingbird photography. However, it’s Joshua Tree’s eponymous yuccas and ancient granite formations that I love to explore.