Winter in Yellowstone with Juan Pons

“The Serengeti of North America”
Yellowstone has been called the Serengeti of North America and with good reason; it contains the largest concentration of free-roaming wildlife in the lower 48 states. The numbers are staggering, sixty-seven different mammals live here, including grizzly bears, black bears, gray wolves, wolverine, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, pronghorn, linx, elk, bison, moose, coyotes, foxes as well as other numerous small mammals.

Any description of Yellowstone will be filled with superlatives; First National Park in the world, greatest concentration of thermal features in the word, up until recently the largest National Park in the lower 48 states, home to the largest Bison herd in the world, and of course, it is home to, perhaps, the most famous geyser in the world, Old Faithful.

What sets my Yellowstone photo workshops apart
First know that I have been leading winter photo workshops in Yellowstone for 16 years, every year. In Yellowstone it is imperative that you have a guide that knows the park very well. Yellowstone is vast, and you need to know the trends in the animal behaviors to know where to find them and how to photograph them in the bets possible way.

I believe that in order to truly enjoy your time and get the most out of a photography tour and/or workshop you need to have small groups, and a very high ratio of instructors to participants. My Yellowstone workshops are very unique in that the group is very small, no more than 6 participants with 2 instructors, that is a 3:1 ratio! The reason our Yellowstone groups are so small is very simple, I want EVERY participant to have their own door and window out of the vehicles. This provides participants with the best opportunities to capture those images when speed is of the essence in exiting the vehicles and setting up or when it is necessary to shoot out of the window. Additionally I want to make sure you have plenty of room for your gear and warm clothing.

Compare that most other tours were you have one instructor and up to 14 participants in a single van, with no operable windows! With me you are assured to have the best vantage point at all times, and never be held back by sitting in an overcrowded van.

As a photo workshop leader I take my responsibilities seriously. I work closely with the National Parks and I always operate with all the proper insurance, permits and certifications. I am an Authorized Permittee of the Yellowstone National Park.

What you will learn
You will be accompanied by Juan, an accomplished professional photographer, and photographic educator who has a deep passion for the outdoors. I believe that the best way to teach is by demonstrating, and to this end, I will be shooting alongside you, demonstrating my vision, technique and sharing my love and knowledge of Yellowstone. However, my priority is always YOU, and helping you get the best images YOU can get. Additionally, I freely share my equipment with you in order to give you some “in-the-field” experience with some of the equipment you may have been thinking of acquiring.

The biggest advantage of having small groups is the flexibility they provide for customizing and adjusting both the schedule and agenda to suit the interests of the group while being able to maintain the flexibility required by variable weather. This allows us to cover only those topics that you are all interested in, including:

• How to create asthetically pleasing wildlife and landscape photographs
• Storytelling thru natural history photography
• Best use of equipment
• Digital Workflow
• Adobe Lightroom basics
• Image presentations and critiques

What to expect
My workshops are pretty intense, and as such you should not expect this to be a leisurely vacation. My goal is to capture the best images we can during our tour. What this means is that our days are long, typically starting before dawn and ending after sunset. However, we typically will take a long lunch to rest and recouperate.

Within 2 working days of registering for the workshop you will receive a confirmation email with a request for your deposit. Once I receive your deposit, I will email you a registration confirmation as well as the details you will need to book your airfare. I will then be emailing you periodically with any pertinent information about the workshop, including checklists for clothing and gear to bring.

About 6 to 8 weeks prior to the workshop, you then start hearing from us on a more regular basis. At that point I will provide you with detailed lodging and contact information, go over more details of the workshop and get you excited and thinking about the images you want to capture during the workshop. At this time you will also receive from us a list of recommended clothing, equipment and even discounts for equipment you may want to acquire for this once on a lifetime trip.

However, I am always available to answer any questions you may have leading up to the workshop.

What is Included
• All Lodging
• All Meals
• Ground transportation including private Snowcoach
• Snacks and water in the vehicles at all times
• All permits & fees
• Instruction
• Inspiration
• Camaraderie
• A great time

Japan Winter Wildlife with Daniel J. Cox

Encounter and photograph the wild and mystical wildlife of Japan, including the charismatic “hot tubbing” snow monkeys (Japanese macaques) in central Honshu. These fun-loving monkeys are curious and human-like, playing, chasing, and even throwing snowballs at each other like little children in a snowball fight.

We’ll travel north to the island of Hokkaido where bird life dominates the winter landscape. The elegant Japanese crane will dance in and out of our lenses while one of the world’s largest raptors, the Steller’s sea eagle, performs in the sky above us. We’ll also have great opportunities for red fox and deer.

Soak in the onsen next to a playful snow monkey, photograph a pirouetting crane, or just simply have tea at one of the many traditional charming ryokans. Japan will be an unforgettable experience—join us in 2020!

Lofoten Islands Arctic Winter with Juan Pons

In our Lofoten Islands Arctic Winter Photo Tour, we spend a week photographing the best landscape the islands have to offer. Norway’s Lofoten Islands are a near dreamlike landscape of rugged mountain peaks rising directly from the deep blue sea. Located 200 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle, Lofoten is a true land of the midnight sun, where it will circle the summer sky without setting – or not rise at all during the dark months of winter. With the northern lights dancing over the islands from September to April and the temperate currents of the gulf stream softening the deep freeze of the Arctic, Lofoten has become a coveted winter photography destination in recent years. And beyond the landscape, the coast of Lofoten is lined with scenic fishing villages and their traditional Rorbu cabins, often perilously situated on the rocky shoreline.

We will split our base camps between Sakrisøy in the Reine area, with glacial carved granite peaks just outside the door and Hattvika Lodge in Ballstad, Lofoten’s largest working fishing village to this day. In both locations, we stay in traditional Rorbuer cabins, used by Lofoten’s fishermen for generations. From each location, we are only a stone’s throw away from innumerable photo opportunities, and at times, we may simply choose to go and explore by foot. Should the weather cooperate with clear skies, then we’ll have many locations in reach for photographing the dance of the northern lights as they fill the sky over snowy mountain peaks and wild beaches.

Winter Yellowstone with Jennifer King

Our 2020 photo workshop is a special celebration of Winter in Yellowstone. We will be staying inside the park during our workshop so that we may have access to Old Faithful at night. Private Snow Coaches will escort us through the corners of the park for photographing landscapes and wildlife. We also have arranged for a full day of photographing Lamar Valley in search of the wolves. Please join us for INSIDE YELLOWSTONE: A WINTER TO REMEMBER!

Snow quietly falls and covers the trees and the land, and we awaken to a winter wonderland to explore and photograph. Our private snow coach will take you to places where waterfalls freeze, geysers burst with light and steam, and wildlife wanders through the snow covered valleys.

Winter in Yellowstone with Juan Pons

“The Serengeti of North America”
Yellowstone has been called the Serengeti of North America and with good reason; it contains the largest concentration of free-roaming wildlife in the lower 48 states. The numbers are staggering, sixty-seven different mammals live here, including grizzly bears, black bears, gray wolves, wolverine, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, pronghorn, linx, elk, bison, moose, coyotes, foxes as well as other numerous small mammals.

Any description of Yellowstone will be filled with superlatives; First National Park in the world, greatest concentration of thermal features in the word, up until recently the largest National Park in the lower 48 states, home to the largest Bison herd in the world, and of course, it is home to, perhaps, the most famous geyser in the world, Old Faithful.

What sets my Yellowstone photo workshops apart
First know that I have been leading winter photo workshops in Yellowstone for 16 years, every year. In Yellowstone it is imperative that you have a guide that knows the park very well. Yellowstone is vast, and you need to know the trends in the animal behaviors to know where to find them and how to photograph them in the bets possible way.

I believe that in order to truly enjoy your time and get the most out of a photography tour and/or workshop you need to have small groups, and a very high ratio of instructors to participants. My Yellowstone workshops are very unique in that the group is very small, no more than 6 participants with 2 instructors, that is a 3:1 ratio! The reason our Yellowstone groups are so small is very simple, I want EVERY participant to have their own door and window out of the vehicles. This provides participants with the best opportunities to capture those images when speed is of the essence in exiting the vehicles and setting up or when it is necessary to shoot out of the window. Additionally I want to make sure you have plenty of room for your gear and warm clothing.

Compare that most other tours were you have one instructor and up to 14 participants in a single van, with no operable windows! With me you are assured to have the best vantage point at all times, and never be held back by sitting in an overcrowded van.

As a photo workshop leader I take my responsibilities seriously. I work closely with the National Parks and I always operate with all the proper insurance, permits and certifications. I am an Authorized Permittee of the Yellowstone National Park.

What you will learn
You will be accompanied by Juan, an accomplished professional photographer, and photographic educator who has a deep passion for the outdoors. I believe that the best way to teach is by demonstrating, and to this end, I will be shooting alongside you, demonstrating my vision, technique and sharing my love and knowledge of Yellowstone. However, my priority is always YOU, and helping you get the best images YOU can get. Additionally, I freely share my equipment with you in order to give you some “in-the-field” experience with some of the equipment you may have been thinking of acquiring.

The biggest advantage of having small groups is the flexibility they provide for customizing and adjusting both the schedule and agenda to suit the interests of the group while being able to maintain the flexibility required by variable weather. This allows us to cover only those topics that you are all interested in, including:

• How to create asthetically pleasing wildlife and landscape photographs
• Storytelling thru natural history photography
• Best use of equipment
• Digital Workflow
• Adobe Lightroom basics
• Image presentations and critiques

What to expect
My workshops are pretty intense, and as such you should not expect this to be a leisurely vacation. My goal is to capture the best images we can during our tour. What this means is that our days are long, typically starting before dawn and ending after sunset. However, we typically will take a long lunch to rest and recouperate.

Within 2 working days of registering for the workshop you will receive a confirmation email with a request for your deposit. Once I receive your deposit, I will email you a registration confirmation as well as the details you will need to book your airfare. I will then be emailing you periodically with any pertinent information about the workshop, including checklists for clothing and gear to bring.

About 6 to 8 weeks prior to the workshop, you then start hearing from us on a more regular basis. At that point I will provide you with detailed lodging and contact information, go over more details of the workshop and get you excited and thinking about the images you want to capture during the workshop. At this time you will also receive from us a list of recommended clothing, equipment and even discounts for equipment you may want to acquire for this once on a lifetime trip.

However, I am always available to answer any questions you may have leading up to the workshop.

What is Included
• All Lodging
• All Meals
• Ground transportation including private Snowcoach
• Snacks and water in the vehicles at all times
• All permits & fees
• Instruction
• Inspiration
• Camaraderie
• A great time

Churchill Polar Bears with Ken Lee

Every autumn, polar bears concentrate along the shores of the Hudson Bay eagerly anticipating the annual freeze-up which provides them access to their favorite prey, seals. Churchill, Manitoba, on the southern tip of the bay, is one of the first places where the Hudson freezes solid. That’s why Churchill is known as the Polar Bear Capital of the World and the premier place to capture portfolio worthy images of polar bears and other arctic wildlife in their natural habitat. Majestic wildlife, check.

At this time of year, the days are short, but the sun never climbs too high in the sky, so it’s golden hour most of the daylight hours. Great light, check.

We’ve timed this adventure to coincide with the darkest skies of the month. With any luck, we’ll get a shot or two at Aurora Borealis (northern lights) photography. Bonus!

Ken will be right there throughout the expedition to provide tips, critiques, and coaching. Formal instruction, discussions and one-on-one coaching are all parts of the toolkit that Ken uses to help you reach the next milestone on your journey as a photographer.

Practice is just as important as knowledge and you’ll have tons of distraction free time among a small group of like-minded individuals to practice what you’ve learned, refine your skills and sharpen your creative vision.

Winter in Yellowstone with Daniel J. Cox

2019 Winter in Yellowstone Photography Tour – Photograph the “Winter Wonderland” of Yellowstone National Park in the comforts of a private luxury snow coach with wildlife photographer Daniel J. Cox.

Along the snowy trails, we’ll stop to photograph the beautiful landscapes and mountain vistas surrounded by steamy geysers, along with a variety of wildlife, including the majestic elk, mammoth bison, coyotes, swans, and bald eagles. These creatures, big and small, find warmth near many of the thermal areas, creating unique and stunning imagery. We’ve had some years with great wolf viewing and hope to have similar opportunities again in 2019.

The Color of Winter: Techniques to Enhance Winter Photos

The Pool frozen over at sunrise Central Park New York, NY

The Pool frozen over at sunrise, Central Park, New York, NY (HDR compilation of 5 images).

Story & photography by F.M. Kearney

That time is quickly approaching. That time of year when many photographers will pack away their gear and patiently wait for the first colorful blooms next spring. Yet, winter isn’t completely devoid of color, as some might assume. In fact, if you carefully plan what you shoot and when you shoot, you may be surprised at the amount of color you can coax out of this often-overlooked season.

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February Blues

Story and photography by F.M. Kearney

 

Snow-covered trees in Central Park New York, NY (HDR 5-image compilation) © F.M. Kearney

It may be the shortest month of the year, but to some, it can feel like the longest. Many of its days are dull and dreary. The few sunny days there are don’t last that long because it will be at least a month before Daylight Savings Time begins. Even people who love winter may be feeling that it’s high time to pack up the parka. As nature photographers, we find ourselves stuck in a sort of limbo between the last snowstorms of winter and the first blooms of spring. February can be a bit challenging in many ways, but when it comes to photography, it doesn’t have to be a barren wasteland.

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Good Images In Bad Weather

Story and photography by F.M. Kearney

 

Blizzard conditions by reservoir in Central Park.  New York, NY © F.M. Kearney

 

Blizzards – a time to cuddle up by the fire (or a good heater) with a nice hot bowl of soup and watch the wonders of nature unfold from within the confines of your warm home. This may be the ideal way to ride out “bad” weather to some people, but to nature photographers, it’s a golden opportunity to capture some unique images under very unique conditions.

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