2020 Brilliant Fall Foliage in Historic Telluride

John Fielder Photography Workshops Information

Brilliant Fall Foliage Photography Workshop

with John Fielder in Telluride, Colorado 

October 2, 3, and 4, 2020

Friday – Saturday – Sunday

$1,495 per person, Limit 16 people

Join Colorado’s premier landscape photographer, John Fielder, on a colorful 3-day fall foliage workshop in the San Juan Mountains around Telluride, where autumn delivers layer upon layer of color. Fresh snow dusts peaks under blue skies, while golden aspens, yellow cottonwoods, orange willows and red sandstone hills add explosions of color to the high country. Follow John along his favorite backroads as vast ranches stretch out in magnificent valleys. Shoot reflection images in high altitude lakes and ponds, look up to capture the towering yellow aspens rising against blue skies, and photograph horses grazing in snow-kissed meadows. This is your opportunity to discover the heart and soul of nature’s beauty in the Colorado high country with John.

This Workshop offers a well-rounded and highly resourceful educational experience, appropriate for any level of outdoor photographer, but especially for beginners and intermediates. The program consists of a slide-based lecture, field shoots in beautiful locations and interactive critique sessions on participants’ laptop computers. A full, yet comfortable, schedule optimizes field time and helps facilitate the absorption of invaluable, professional information. John will also discuss post-processing of your images with computer programs such as Adobe Photoshop, and do live demonstrations.

No participant should feel that he or she is not qualified to attend. Limited enrollment gives all participants quality time with John Fielder and ensures that each person gets the specific instruction needed based on their individual level of experience. Fellow pro nature photographer, Gary Soles, assists John at most workshops, further ensuring individual attention. A group-based critique session allows students the chance to learn from others’ work, while personalized field instruction addresses the photographer’s needs related to both understanding camera functions and techniques of composition.

Transportation to field locations and some meals are included.


Friday, Saturday, Sunday, October 2, 3, and 4, 2020

In and around Telluride, Colorado


Seeing and photographing the natural landscape and taking each participant to the next skill level, using critique and instruction

Who’s It For                       

Photographers of all skill levels; limited to 16 participants


$1,495 per person includes classroom sessions, snacks in the field, meals as described in the itinerary.


Are not included in the Workshop. Refer to Lodging Information, below.

Approximate Schedule

Please be prompt so you won’t miss any great information.

Day 1

  • 8:30 a.m. - Welcome and check-in. Breakfast served.
  • 9:00 - Introduction, general information, lecture and slide show presentation.
  • 12:30 p.m. - Break for lunch.
  • 2:00 - Depth of field lesson. Depart for field shoot. Transportation provided. Beverages and snacks provided in the field.
  • 7:00 - Finish shoot, return to hotel.

Day 2

6:00 a.m. - Meet in hotel lobby. Coffee provided. Depart for morning field shoot. Transportation provided. Box breakfast provided in the field.

9:30 - Return to hotel. Hot Brunch served.

10:30 - Editing of photos, critique session and student digital show.

12:30 p.m. - Break for lunch.

2:30 - Depart for field shoot. Transportation provided. Beverages and snacks provided in the field.

7:00 - Finish shoot, return to hotel.

Day 3

6:00 a.m. - Meet in hotel lobby. Coffee provided. Depart for sunrise field shoot. Transportation provided. Box breakfast provided in the field.

9:30 - Return to hotel. Hot Brunch served.

10:30 - Editing of photos, critique session and student digital show.

12:30 p.m. - Book signing and adjourn.


Workshop classroom sessions are held at Mountain Lodge Telluride, 457 Mountain Village Boulevard in the Town of Mountain Village, on the south side of the Telluride ski resort, overlooking some of the highest and most magnificent peaks in the San Juan Mountains.

Field shoots are in easily accessible locations in and around the Telluride area.

Getting There

Telluride and Mountain Village are 67 miles south of Montrose, 127 miles south of Grand Junction, 125 miles northwest of Durango. If you are driving to Telluride from Denver, the trip takes about seven hours in perfect weather. Add 30 minutes to one hour if you are coming from the Denver airport. The basic driving directions are I-70 West to Grand Junction, then US 50 South to Montrose, continuing to Ridgeway, taking US 62 to Placerville, and following the signs to Telluride. Then, follow the signs to Mountain Village. The headquarters hotel, Mountain Lodge Telluride, is ¼ mile beyond the guard gate, on your left.

Several airlines provide transportation from Denver to Montrose or Telluride; flight time is about an hour; and shuttles are available.

Visit or call 888-605-2578 for more information.


If you haven’t already made arrangements for lodging, here are suggestions.

Mountain Lodge Telluride ( )is the headquarters hotel for Workshop classroom sessions and the meeting place for departures to field shoot locations. Call 866-368-6867. Please inquire about the John Fielder Photography Workshop group rate. Note that there is a fee for overnight parking at the Lodge.

Other suggestions:


Transportation to and from the field shoots is available in two SUVs that we have arranged. We may need your assistance and might ask independent drivers to take an additional passenger or two in their own vehicles, if the need arises. We don’t anticipate any difficult or hazardous driving conditions.

Booksigning and Portfolio

John Fielder will be happy to autograph any of his books or calendars that you bring to the Workshop. In addition, we will have a limited supply of his latest books available for purchase.

If time permits, John will review and critique a small portfolio of your previous work after the Workshop.

Camera Equipment

  • A 35mm digital SLR or Mirrorless camera is recommended and please bring your laptop for the critique session for multi-day workshops. Lenses should cover the zone between no less than 18 and 135mm for non-full sensor (such as APS-C) cameras, or 28 and 200mm for cameras with full size  sensors, plus tripod and cable or remote release. (Your two-second shutter release is a good backup plan!) We highly recommend bringing a point and shoot, too. They are so easy to use for close-ups and more flexible for hard-to-position compositions. You have invested a lot in this workshop. The last thing we want to happen is that your experience comes to a halt because of an equipment failure. Although we can work through many situations with equipment problems, it is best to make sure your camera, lenses and tripod are working properly. Please run tests of your equipment, especially if it has been in storage.
  • Canon and Nikon brands are best, but we can work with anything. Most brands do the exact same thing and have the same controls. In addition to the lens focal lengths mentioned above, you can achieve more extreme depth of focus, very useful for wildflower compositions, with even wider-angle lenses down to 10mm for small sensor cameras and 16mm for full size sensor.
  • Tripod - We recommend the Manfrotto brand for ease of use and quality. They make two sizes, the smaller of which works fine for most SLR setups, but for taller people and those using longer focal length telephoto lenses, we recommend the larger tripod. Pistol grip heads are best. Your local camera store can set you straight.
  • Camera Pack - Lowe Pro packs are best, but Tamrac brand runs a close second. Choose packs no larger than what you need for your camera gear. The most useful packs have a separate upper compartment for water bottle, snacks and raingear. Many have space for a laptop computer, which is great, but it will not be necessary for you to bring it into the field.
  • Laptop Computer - The critique session is important. You have a limited amount of time to edit your photos in preparation for the critique; therefore, you should be proficient downloading images from your camera, working with folders, and if you have time, processing your images with programs like Lightroom and Photoshop before the critique. (This is not mandatory!) Any brand of computer is fine.
  • B & H Photo online is a good reliable resource from which to get gear, but we do recommend Mike’s Camera in Denver and Boulder for a complete selection of gear. Their prices are very close to those of B & H, and they give great service and have lots of stock. Their prices are very close to those of B & H, and they give great service and have lots of stock.
  • Click HERE for more camera ideas.

Other Things to Think About

While we like to think that we know about everything photographic, we are occasionally stumped by the odd piece of equipment. Bring your technical manuals with you, not only to the classroom, but in the field as well. Read these manuals carefully before arriving.  Become familiar with your equipment prior to the Workshop because it will help you concentrate on the concepts we will teach you.

Make sure you have extra batteries and that those in the camera are fresh. Bring your charger!

Clothing and Personal Items

  • The most enjoyable part of the Workshop is time spent in the field. It is not only a refreshing change from the classroom, but the best classroom of all. We will be in the field at different times of day and in various types of weather. It is important to bring the right kind of clothing to remain comfortable. Creativity, mental focus and productivity are greatly affected by physical comfort.
  • Weather in the Colorado mountains can change several times during the day. Be prepared.
  • For optimum comfort, it is best to dress in layers, which enable quick adaptation to varying weather conditions.
  • Base layer (next to skin) made of moisture-wicking material. Staying dry is the most essential step in maintaining comfort. Avoid cotton.
  • Insulating layer, such as fleece.
  • Adequate rain/snow gear, preferably a breathable kind such as Gore-Tex to keep you dry and windproof. Hoods are great. Waterproof pants will keep you dry when kneeling or sitting in wet foliage/snow.
  • Footwear that is sturdy, waterproof and comfortable. Hiking boots or trail shoes will work fine and waterproof ones will be appreciated in meadows that are wet with morning dew, rain or snow.


  • Sunscreen and lip balm
  • Fleece gloves and hat
  • Cap or hat with visor
  • Sunglasses
  • Small flashlight or compact headlamp
  • Advil or aspirin, etc.
  • Water bottle
  • First aid kit

More ideas:

  • Gaiters to keep the bottom of your pants and socks dry
  • Mole skin or similar blister prevention


If you are coming to the mountains from a significantly lower altitude, it is important to think about the potential affects of altitude on your body and to take some simple steps to make your stay as comfortable as possible. Preventative measures taken before and during your stay will help avoid problems associated with altitude sickness. Although most people may only experience some shortness of breath with a little exertion, others are more prone to headaches and sleep disruptions, fatigue, nausea and decreased appetite. You will also notice the aridity -- the humidity hovers around 20%.

Here are some tips

  • Drink extra fluids, such as juices and Gatorade with copious amounts of water, a few days before and during your entire stay. Staying well hydrated in the dry mountain environment is very important to offset the effects of altitude.
  • Avoid over-exertion and get as much rest as possible.
  • Eat lightly.
  • Drink a lot of water, but do it slowly.
  • Limit alcoholic beverages. One drink at altitude equals two drinks at sea level; alcohol promotes dehydration.
  • Ask for a humidifier in your hotel room.

About John Fielder

  • John Fielder has worked tirelessly to promote the protection of Colorado’s open space and wildlands. His photography has influenced people and legislation, earning him recognition including the Sierra Club’s Ansel Adams Award in 1993, and in 2011 the Aldo Leopold Foundation’s first Achievement Award given to an individual. He was an original governor-appointed member of the lottery-related Board of Great Outdoors Colorado, and speaks to thousands of people each year to rally support for timely land use and environmental issues.
  •  John often talks about the politics of the environment in his Workshops. If you think you might be offended by his views, you might want to consider a Workshop taught by a less committed photographer!

Notes, Terms and Conditions


While the basic Workshop format is set (classroom lecture, slide show, field shoots), the schedule is subject to change to meet the needs of the group.


We reserve the right to determine acceptability of weather conditions for field shoots. If weather interferes, additional indoor programs may be held.

Cancellation Policy

  • Your payment is non-refundable if you cancel for any reason. However, your payment may be applied to a future Workshop provided that we can fill your reserved space with someone from the wait list. If we cancel the Workshop, your payment is fully refundable.
  • Sometimes unexpected circumstances cause you to cancel or interrupt your Workshop.  For that reason, we recommend trip cancellation/travel insurance, available from your travel agent or online.
  • Arrangements for this Workshop are based on 7 persons enrolled. Should the number fall below this minimum, the Workshop may be cancelled, in which case you are entitled to a full refund.
  • Your payment serves as your acknowledgement of this policy.

Wait List

A wait list is formed on first-come, first-serve basis. If space opens, we call the first person on the wait list. If that person declines or doesn’t respond, the second person is called and so on until the space is filled.

What IS included in the tuition?

  • Workshop instruction, group and individual; critique session; materials; etc.
  • Meals as listed in the itinerary, plus beverages and snacks in the field
  • Transportation to field shoots
  • Information on products and services

What is NOT included in the tuition?

  • Transportation to Telluride
  • Lodging
  • Some meals
  • Personal expenses, tips

More Information and Registration

Book Online Now. Space is limited. Full payment secures your enrollment.

For workshop information:
Workshop Price $1495