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August 7–11, 2019 | Tucson, AZ

REGISTRATION NOW OPEN

 

Photography Trips & Workshops

The Southeast Arizona Birding Festival has many opportunities for nature photographers to hone their skills in the field or the classroom.  All workshops held at and field trips depart from the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotels near Reid Park unless otherwise noted.

 

Meet Our 2019 Photography instructors! See their full bios

Steve Gettle – professional photographer, work exhibited throughout the world.

Brian Gibbons – photographer and professional tour leader for VENT.

Dano Grayson – adventure travel and science photographer.

Henry Johnson – birder and photographer from Tucson, with a focus on Mt. Lemmon.

Kevin Karlson – author, professional tour leader and wildlife photographer/instructor. Photography books include The Birds of Cape May and Visions: Earth’s Elements in Bird and Nature Photography, and six photographic laminated foldout ID guides for Quick Reference Publishing.

Ben Knoot – photographer and professional tour guide for Tropical Birding.

Lisa Langell – award-winning photographer, work has appeared in Arizona Highways, Ranger Rick, Phoenix Home & Garden, Images Arizona, Arizona Wildlife Views.

Steven Siegel – videographer with work appearing in The Nature Conservancy, National Geographic, James Currie’s Birding Adventures TV, The Today Show, “The Big Year”.

Stephen Vaughan – photographer and ornithologist, work appeared in National Geographic, Audubon, and Arizona Highways.

Brian Zwiebel – photographer and professional tour guide with Sabrewing Nature Tours.

Free events below require a separate registration. Paid events require registration on the main Festival form.

 

Madera Drip Photography with Brian Gibbons

  • 5:00am–12:00pm
  • $120/person
  • Difficulty: 2 (Cool morning will quickly turn into a warm day, close-toed shoes, long pants and long sleeves, sun hat and sunscreen recommended. Some walking over uneven, rocky terrain expected.)
    Join us for a very early departure to a bird photography location, Madera Drip, in the famed Madera Canyon of the Santa Ritas. Montane oak juniper woodland ensures a good variety of birds. We will be largely sedentary in the early morning while we wait, in blinds, at a drip and feeders that are maintained for wildlife. Hummingbirds, Orioles, Woodpeckers, Sparrows, Doves, Finches and a variety of early migrants are all possible at the drip as well as other wildlife. When the morning activity wanes we will check the woodlands nearby for other activity. We may also visit another feeder setup at Santa Rita Lodge. Limited to 9 participants. Recommended Equipment: DSLR Camera, telephoto lenses, tripod, binoculars.

Hummingbird Videography Workshop with Steve Siegel

  • 9:00am – 12:00pm
  • $25/person
    Do you marvel at the jaw-dropping high-tech movies of hummingbirds that you see on TV?  Stop marveling and start shooting. The video functions available in many digital cameras and all camcorders today give amazing slow motion of rapidly moving subjects.  It’s not just the 80 beat-per-second wings, but the fluid movements of the rest of the body that make these tiny birds so enthralling. Add ever-changing iridescent color and you have a real show.  Join bird videographer Steve Siegel to learn how to shoot hummingbirds in slow motion.  We will also discuss video techniques used in shooting other types of birds, both in flight and perched.  The classroom session will be illustrated with lots of video clips.  A companion field workshop on hummingbird videography is also available. No participant limit for class session, but field workshop portion is limited to 8 participants and you must sign up separately.

Easy Digiscoping with Carl Zeiss Sports Optics at Reid Park with Richard Moncrief

  • 9:30am – 11:00am
  • FREE with registration
    Learn about simple ways to use a spotting scopes to take beautiful images of the natural word! Includes us of both smart phones and mirrorless camera systems. We will also take a look at post processing of your images. Reid Park will give us opportunities to use these techniques on multiple species of waterfowl, Neotropic Cormorant, and Vermilion Flycatchers. We will meet at the Reid Park parking area on the west side of the zoo (map here). Limited to 20 participants.

Editing in Adobe Lightroom with Ben Knoot

  • 12:30pm – 1:30pm
  • $25/person
    Join Tropical Birding Guide, Ben Knoot, in this one hour long editing workshop in Adobe Lightroom. Ben will guide you through basic editing as well as some tips and tricks to help you further your post-processing skills.

Hummingbird Photography Workshop with Stephen Vaughan

  • 2:00pm – 5:00pm
  • $25/person
    Hummingbirds can flap their wings up to 80 times a second, which can present quite the challenge for a photographer. This is the perfect opportunity to learn the specialized techniques needed to create stunning images of hummingbirds. This workshop includes both a classroom discussion and field instruction to maximize your learning experience. The field instruction is limited to eight participants. We will cover ambient light, fill-flash and high-speed flash photography techniques. Join professional nature photographer Steve Vaughan for this fantastic opportunity to experience the joys of photographing these flying jewels. Recommended equipment: Digital SLR, TTL flash, tripod and a telephoto lens capable of focusing close enough the fill the viewfinder with a 5 x 7 inch object. You can email Steve at StephenHVaughan@Gmail.com if you have questions. No participant limit for class session, but field workshop portion is limited to 8 participants and you must sign up separately.

Hummingbird Photography Field Workshop with Stephen Vaughan at Ash Canyon B&B

  • 6:00am–2:30pm
  • $120/person
    This trip is one of the field counterparts to the hummingbird photography class. Hummingbirds can flap their wings up to 80 times a second, which can present quite the challenge for a photographer. This is the perfect opportunity to learn the specialized techniques needed to create stunning images of hummingbirds. This field portion will be limited to 8 participants from the workshop and will be traveling to Mary Jo’s Ash Canyon B&B in the Huachuca Mountains. We will cover ambient light, fill-flash and high-speed flash photography techniques. Join professional nature photographer Stephen Vaughan for this fantastic opportunity to experience the joys of photographing these flying jewels. Recommended equipment: Digital SLR, TTL flash, tripod and a telephoto lens capable of focusing close enough the fill the viewfinder with a 5 x 7 inch object. You can email Steve at StephenHVaughan@Gmail.com if you have questions. Lunch included. Limited to 8 participants.

Hummingbird Videography Field Workshop with Steve Siegel at the Paton Center

  • 6:00am to 2:30pm
  • $120/person
    This field workshop is new for 2019, and offers the opportunity to hone your video skills with rapidly moving, constantly changing subjects…hummingbirds at the feeders of the Paton Center for Hummingbirds in Patagonia. We will be shooting in ambient light capturing the changing colors of the birds as they move about, and shooting for slow motion. How slow you can get will depend on the frame rates possible with your camera. This field workshop will be combined with a separate classroom session where we will discuss techniques to optimize and present your footage. Join bird videographer Steve Siegel to see how video can open new vistas in your nature imaging. Recommended equipment includes a digital camera with video capabilities or a camcorder. Also a tripod. A telephoto lens is desirable, and a telephoto zoom in the range of 100 to 400 mm is advantageous. Please be familiar with the basic video functions of your camera. There may be opportunities to film other birds at the Paton Center. Please e-mail Steve at RM4BIRDS@YAHOO.COM with any questions you may have. Lunch included. Limited to 8 participants.

Creative Flat Lay Photography with Lisa Langell

  • 10:30am – 12:00pm
  • $25/person
    Flat Lay Photography is such a fun, creative type of photography that has infinite possibilities. It is a wonderful option for days when the weather, light or subjects for traditional nature photography are not ideal. It can even be done indoors. The purpose behind this type of photography includes stock imagery, greeting cards, business cards, posters, advertising/marketing, wall art, and more. The sky’s the limit with what you can do. You will learn:
    1. The concepts and principles of flat lay photography
    2. Techniques for shooting flat-lay images of high quality
    3. Lighting tips
    4. Indoor and outdoor options for flat-lay
    5. Important principles for the proper composition and layout of your flat lay design
    6. A few key post-processing techniques that will elevate the look and feel of your work without changing the integrity of your image.

Action Photography: Advanced Techniques for Nature Photographers with Steve Gettle

  • 12:30pm – 2:00pm
  • $25/person
    Want to learn how to go beyond simply making static portraits of your subjects? With today’s auto-focus exciting stop action photography is now accessible to virtually every photographer. We will discuss using just a camera and natural light to create stop-action images of subjects on the move, such as birds in flight and running animals. We will cover such things as, exposure techniques for action, optimizing your auto-focus system, acquiring initial focus lock, tracking your subject, basic camera trigger systems, other equipment, and much more.

An Artistic Photographer Lies in All of Us with Lisa Langell

  • 2:30pm – 4:00pm
  • $25/person
    Photographers want to be more innovative and creative, but often mental barriers “prevent” the creative process from happening. One of the biggest mental blocks is simply believing, “I’m not a very creative person.” This session breaks down those barriers in a really fun and logical way! You’ll learn how to apply the creative process and develop patterns that will bring more joy, innovation, success, creativity and happiness to your photography! This session will help you:
    1. Learn how even those who feel they “are not artistic” can actually BE artistic and creative
    2. Understand “imaginative skill” and how it develops
    3. Learn about the “Mash up” formula
    4. Debunk the myths about artistry and creativity
    5. Learn a few tips and tricks for post processing
    6. Exercise your creativity through real-world examples and activities we will complete during the session
    7. Inspirations to take with you

Hummingbird Photography Field Workshop with Stephen Vaughan at Paton Center

  • 6:00am – 2:30pm
  • $120/person
    This trip is one of the field counterparts to the hummingbird photography class. Hummingbirds can flap their wings up to 80 times a second, which can present quite the challenge for a photographer. This is the perfect opportunity to learn the specialized techniques needed to create stunning images of hummingbirds. This field portion will be limited to 8 participants from the workshop and will be traveling to the famous Paton Center for Hummingbirds. We will cover ambient light, fill-flash and high-speed flash photography techniques. Join professional nature photographer Stephen Vaughan for this fantastic opportunity to experience the joys of photographing these flying jewels. Recommended equipment: Digital SLR, TTL flash, tripod and a telephoto lens capable of focusing close enough the fill the viewfinder with a 5 x 7 inch object. You can email Steve at StephenHVaughan@Gmail.com if you have questions. Lunch included. Limited to 8 participants.

Introduction to Bird Photography Workshop with Ben Knoot at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

  • 6:30am – 11:00am
  • $100/person
  • Difficulty: 1 (Flat walking trails at museum. Drive time to location approximately 35 minutes)
    Want to get into bird photography but don’t know where to start? In this introductory course, Tropical Birding Guide, Ben Knoot, will guide you through some of the essential pieces of information you’ll need to get your photography started. This class will not necessarily focus on an abundance of top quality images, but will instead focus on basic methods and techniques for in the field bird photography. The class will begin with a 30min presentation at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel near Reid Park (festival venue), then we’ll drive to the iconic Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. Your way is paid for at this outdoor museum which has 230 animal species, two bird aviaries, and plenty of wild birds of the Sonoran Desert as well. Limited to 9 participants.

Birding Photography with Henry Johnson

  • 10:00am – 11:30am
  • $25/personThis class is an introduction to birding with a camera, with an emphasis on tools and techniques, both in the field and when you get home. You will learn how to approach equipment choices and techniques in the field to make getting images a rewarding addition to birding, and not a chore. Learn some techniques for image processing when you get home to make your images the best they can be. This class is designed for any skill level, including those non-photographers considering adding a camera to their birding gear.

Advanced Photography Workshop with Kevin Karlson

  • 12:00pm – 2:30pm
  • $25/person
    Digital photography allows us to take our photography skills and techniques to higher levels every year, but many photographers disregard or don’t know about basic lighting principles and compositional balance that all art forms rely upon. This workshop covers a number of topics that will elevate your photography knowledge and skills while increasing your artistic input. Flight and action techniques and exposure compensation on the fly using manual exposure are covered, as well as basic and advanced light awareness, synchronous panning, and compositional basics of balance and creative cropping. Wildlife and bird photography are emphasized, but landscape and close-up examples are also covered. Basic camera functions will not be discussed in this workshop. This workshop is advanced in nature, so knowledge of your camera settings is required.
    *The first 15 photographers who sign up and agree to bring 3 images for critique by Kevin and other participants will share their work with the group, who will comment on how they would have processed the images differently according to the workshop and their own preferences. The only criticisms will be violations of basic artistic principles of balance and composition, with other comments involving different personal preferences of style. This is a fun exercise for learning and sharing your work with others.

Photographing Birds – From Backyards to Field, Forest and Jungle with Steve Gettle

  • 3:00pm – 4:30pm
  • $25/person
    Bird photography is a challenging and rewarding genre of photography. This talk will cover everything from creating a backyard photography station to travelling the world in pursuit of our avian subjects. With such a diverse subject matter from hummingbirds to raptors and waders bird photography requires a diverse skill set. During this course Steve will share with you the many tips, tricks, and techniques he has learned from over 30 years of photographing birds around the world.

Transforming Nature Photography into Modern Decorative Art with Lisa Langell

  • 3:30pm – 5:00pm
  • $25/person
    Your photography–transformed! Photographers think a great deal about composition, light, subject matter and more when they create an image. But do you, as a photographer, think about the final home for the image? Or how to make your images more marketable, unique, and desirable for today’s consumers? What about simply making your work more unique and “current” in ways you haven’t thought about? This session will take you on a virtual journey from the field to the finishing room where you will learn how to:
    1. Get inspired by thinking differently about what you shoot, how you shoot it, and why.
    2. How to start thinking like an interior decorator.
    3. What’s on-trend today in nature photography?
    4. Apply principles and techniques for capturing images that will result in compelling artwork
    5. Look for the hidden opportunities that are right before you out in the field
    6. Think photographically in terms of color palates and collections
    7. Completely expand your horizons, subjects and creative ideas you bring to your portfolio
    8. Discover what’s lurking in your “sock drawer”

Birding Photography Field Workshop with Henry Johnson

  • 6:30am – 3:00pm
  • $120/person
  • Difficulty: 1 (Maybe some uphill walking but mostly at feeders. Drive time to location approximately 45 minutes)
    For this workshop we will travel to Mt Lemmon at the instructor’s cabin to practice the principles reviewed in the Birding Photography workshop. At 7500 feet expect to see Yellow-eyed Juncos, Acorn Woodpeckers, Steller’s Jays, Pine Siskins, Black-headed Grosbeaks, White-breasted and Pygmy Nuthatches, plus hummingbirds and a possible warbler or tanager. Lunch included. Limited to 8 participants.

Transitioning into bird and nature photography: Making informed decisions about gear and your budget with Lisa Langell

  • 10:30am – 12:00pm
  • $25/person
    As an increasing number of birders and nature enthusiasts are turning to photography, the choices can be overwhelming for gear and accessories. This session is designed to remove the “intimidation factor” and help educate those new to photography – and bird photography – about various types of gear. The goal is to help participants know what gear is essential, what isn’t, and the purpose of the various tools—all in a friendly, supportive and positive
    environment. Participants will learn:
    1. The basics of the main categories of cameras available, as well as the pros and cons of each type of camera–from point-and-shoots, DSLR and mirrorless cameras — and even digiscoping.
    2. Participants will learn basic terminology of camera gear and its purpose
    3. Important information about how to best determine your needs so that you select the gear that’s right for you
    4. Tips for selecting tripods, tripod heads, and truly helpful accessories will also be provided—all with a practical, budget-minded perspective so that you get what you need without over-buying gadgetry.

Editing in Adobe Lightroom with Ben Knoot

  • 12:30pm – 1:30pm
  • $25/person
    Join Tropical Birding Guide, Ben Knoot, in this one hour long editing workshop in Adobe Lightroom. Ben will guide you through basic editing as well as some tips and tricks to help you further your post-processing skills.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellations received on or before July 1, 2019 will be refunded less a 10% processing fee. No refunds will be issued after July 1. Tucson Audubon reserves the right to cancel or revise any event for any reason. If it becomes necessary to cancel a paid event (field trip or dinner) for which you have a reservation, we will notify you and issue a full refund. No refunds will be issued for no-shows.

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Tucson Audubon Society
300 E University Blvd. #120 Tucson, AZ 85705

Mason Center
3835 W Hardy Rd.
Tucson, AZ 85742

Paton Center for Hummingbirds
477 Pennsylvania Ave.
Patagonia, AZ 85624
520 415-6447

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Tucson Audubon Society
300 E University Blvd. #120
Tucson, AZ 85705

Mason Center
3835 W Hardy Rd.
Tucson, AZ 85742

Paton Center for Hummingbirds
477 Pennsylvania Ave.
Patagonia, AZ 85624
520 415-6447