2020 Winter Photography Workshop

John Fielder Photography Workshops Information  

2020 Winter Photography Workshop

with John Fielder

in Steamboat Springs, Colorado 

March 14-15, 2020

Saturday – Sunday

$995 per person

Limit 16 people

Join Colorado nature photographer John Fielder on this exciting 2-day winter workshop and let him lead you into the world of white where form and texture are the “focus” instead of color. Learn how to overcome the challenges of winter photography to create stunning images with efficiency, and develop a new appreciation of the winter landscape through vision, technique and detailed preparation.

Steamboat Springs is one of John's favorite mountain laid back and so beautiful.  We'll be heading out of town to make photographs, to Elk River country north and west of the town. Lined with stately cottonwoods, the Elk River itself makes for spectacular river scenes with the ice beginning to reveal crystal blue waters. Closer to Steamboat Lake State Park are miles of ranch meadows as pretty as any in Colorado. Behind all of this lies Sand Mountain to the west and the Mount Zirkel Wilderness to the east. A few of John's favorite autumn color roads are plowed all winter, allowing remarkable images of his favorite tree, the aspen, still in it's winter white splendor. Add a sunset and a sunrise and you will bring home some of the best winter scenes you will ever make!

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 session 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 Lightroom, 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.


Saturday and Sunday, March 14 and 15, 2019


In and around Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Base: Steamboat Springs Community Center,  1605 Lincoln Ave.


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


$995 per person includes classroom sessions, snacks in the field and meals as described in the itinerary.


Accommodations 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.  - Slide lecture “The Art of Seeing.” Continental breakfast provided.
  • 12:30 p.m. - Break for lunch, on your own.
  • 2:00 p.m.  - Depart for field shoot. Transportation provided. Beverages and snacks provided in the field.
  • 7:00 p.m.  - Finish shoot, return to the Community Center.  Dinner on your own.

Day 2

  • 6:00 a.m. - Meet at Community Center. Coffee provided. Depart for morning field shoot. Transportation provided. Box breakfast provided in the field.
  • 10:00 a.m. - Return to Community Center. Hot brunch served.
  • 10:30 a.m. - Editing of photos, critique session and student digital slide show.
  • 1:00 p.m.   - John Fielder booksigning and adjourn.


Workshop classroom sessions are held at Steamboat Springs Community Center,  1605 Lincoln Ave. west of downtown Steamboat Springs.

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

Getting There

Steamboat Springs is 157 miles northwest of Denver, an easy 3-hour drive. Take I-70 west through the Eisenhower Tunnel to Silverthorne, Exit 205 (67 miles). Then, take CO 9 North to Kremmling (37 miles), then west on US 40 to Steamboat Springs (53 miles).

Steamboat is conveniently accessed by air with the Yampa Valley Regional Airport (Steamboat/Hayden HDN) located just 22 miles from town. Year-round, all-jet service is offered. Denver International Airport is approximately 160 miles east of Steamboat. Airport transfers to Steamboat are available from both the Steamboat/Hayden Airport and Denver International Airport.


Please contact the Steamboat Springs Chamber of Commerce at 877-754-2269 or for lodging information.


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 vehicle, 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.

Winter Issues to Consider

It can be very cold early and late in the day at 8,500 feet….sometimes well below zero! But that doesn’t mean that we can’t be comfortable and make beautiful images at the same time….because we always do. You’ll need to dress warmly with standard cold weather gear such as ski caps, ski gloves, down jackets, lots of clothing layers to shed or not, warm socks and boots. We can always jump in and out of the vehicles if need be to stay warm.

Digital cameras use more battery power than film cameras, and batteries don’t work as well in very cold weather; therefore, bring an extra battery and your charger….just in case. As for your camera and lens, cold weather doesn’t affect their operation. If it’s snowing, don’t worry, the seals on your camera are very water-tight; however, fogging of lenses occurs when you take a very cold camera into a warm, humid environment…we’ll work on this at the workshop. Otherwise, consider bringing some lightweight gloves along with ski gloves, although I find it easiest just to work with bare fingers, and then warm them up in gloves in between shooting.

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 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 snow.
  • Footwear that is sturdy, waterproof and comfortable.


  • Sunscreen and lip balm
  • Fleece gloves and hat
  • 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%.

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.
  • His latest project and book is A Colorado Winter (2017).
  • 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-served 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 Steamboat Springs
  • Lodging
  • Some meals
  • Personal expenses, tips

More Information and Registration

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

For workshop information:
Workshop Price $995

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