Centennial Valley Photography Workshop

Have you ever thought: 'I wish, just once, I could take a picture that looks like that?' (That, by the way, is an American Avocet.) I have! More times than I can count.

Yes, I take a LOT of pictures. I post many. However, rarely do I catch 'just' the photo I want - and even less often is the lighting, the clarity, and the composition everything for which I had hoped. In fact, I can not remember the last time all three came together for the perfect wildlife photo opp.

That is why I find Ron Bielefeld's photography skills so awe-inspiring. That is what makes the workshops he is offering so attractive.

Bufflehead Female With Young

Many invest great sums for camera equipment they never learn to really use. If we are going to point-and-shoot, why not use our cell phones or cheap pocket cameras? Do we really think merely owning an expensive camera guarantees high-quality photographs?

Then there is subject stress. In our attempt to 'capture' the perfect image, I wonder how often we antagonize? Thus learning from someone who understands the pitfalls, the equipment, and the wildlife just makes good sense!

Yellow-Headed Blackbird Female

Last week I introduced Ron Bielefeld, a biologist and skilled nature photographer who is offering two photography workshops in the Centennial Valley - spring and fall 2013. Ron brings many skills to the table, but, first and foremost is his knowledge of wildlife behaviors. This allows him to approach his subjects without harassing them.

Take this Yellow-Headed Blackbird Female. It is uncommon to catch her going about her normal daily activities. These flighty birds live in the middle of a marsh. Look closely at Ron's photo. The bird is at ease! If you love wildlife, this alone is worth the price of the workshop.

Trumpeter Swan - Adult

Yet, these photography workshops offer so much more. Under Ron's tutelage you will learn:

  • How to capture birds "doing what they do naturally" without false stimulants or rigging.
  • How to capture the 'little' details which will make your photographs come to life.
  • How to get large, frame-filling images which capture the details (and provide a quality enlargement).
  • How to reduce your dependence on weighty and awkward tripods.
  • How to prepare yourself for quick reactions in any shooting condition - thus catching more quality images.
  • How to use Photoshop to make your photographs even better.
  • How to critique your images and use what you have to improve future photographs.

American Avocet in Flight

Furthermore, Ron clearly has the skills to stand behind his claims. I encourage you to click on anyone (or all) of these photos. While they have been reduced to load quickly, their detail is amazing!

Ron has compiled an irresistible package:

  • A price which will not break your pocketbook. Nothing worth having is free, but Ron is a regular working guy who knows the value of a dollar. Thus his prices are very competitive.
  • Teaching ability honed over the past 20 years.
  • Twenty years experience as an avian biologist. Thus you will not only learn photography, you will away better understanding your subjects. This knowledge will get you in closer more.
  • A hard working philosophy which will get you to the best location at the best time for the best possible shooting opportunities.
  • Affordable basics. Yes, shots like these require a large lens (Ron uses a 500 mm with a 1.4x teleconverter), but I have seen his students use rented lenses attached to a decent (but by no means high end) camera body - and, they have returned with jaw-dropping photographs!
  • One-on-one attention. Ron's groups never exceed three students. Everyone receives individual attention and instruction. How's that for getting your money's worth?

Marsh Wren on Reed

Green-Tailed Tohee

Many amateur photographers understand lighting is key. Few know 'what' light is best. Ron will teach you.

Can you think like a bird? Does it matter? Thinking like your subect is necessary for quality wildlife photographs. Birds are flying creatures living in a world more three dimensional than ours. Sometimes we must think outside of the box to capture them in their element. Ron will show you how.

Mountain Blue Bird Male

Mountain Bluebird at Nest

Most birds are small and all move quickly. It takes skill to determine the proper shutter speed and setup to capture the best images. Ron's photos prove he understands how this is done. He can teach you a method which will allow you to set and change exposures in an instant. Just this one technique will ensure you capture more well exposed images than ever before.

Northern Harrier In Flight

If a photographer has the skill to capture crystal clear, full-frame, quality images of birds in flight living their 'every day' lives, they have developed their skills far beyond the norm. If they understand the techniques required to capture these illusive creatures blended with the skills to teach others, they are worth listening to. If they are willing to share their skills, knowledge, time, and techniques with YOU - at a very competitive price, why not take a second look?

Bull Moose In Velvet

Just in case your interests run to the four-footed beasts of the field - Ron's lessons reach across the gap. Once you learn to photograph, with skill, our flighty feathered friends, you will be equipped to capture the furry beasts with much greater ease and skill.

Are you tempted? Want more information? Drop us a note or give us a call. We'll put you in touch with Ron. You can also contact him directly through his website Whistling Wings Photography. Whatever you do, don't wait. This is an opportunity too good to miss. Ron is only offering two workshops with a maximum three participants each in 2013. Do not wait. They will fill quickly.

Lady of the Lake

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