2018 Crested Butte Wildflowers & Reflections

John Fielder Photography Workshops


Wildflower Photography Workshop

with John Fielder in Crested Butte, Colorado

July 19-20, 2018 – Thursday-Friday   or   July 21-22, 2018 – Saturday-Sunday

Choose one 2-day Workshop

$850 per person

sub-page-2Join Colorado’s premier landscape photographer, John Fielder, in the wildflower capital of Colorado on a 2-day workshop. Long summer days afford ample opportunity to travel the backroads and explore remote field locations with John. Let him lead you into his colorful world of vast wildflower fields in his favorite – and most secret – places. If snow pack allows access, catch the sunset at Paradise Divide as the last light illuminates Cinnamon Mountain and, the next morning, experience sunrise at Peanut Lake. It never disappoints! Your chances to photograph old ranch buildings and dozens of varieties of wildflowers round out two glorious days, at off-the-beaten-path places you might not discover on your own, 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 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 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.


Thursday and Friday, July 19 and 20, or Saturday and Sunday, July 21 and 22, 2018

Choose one 2-day Workshop


In and around Crested Butte, 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


$850 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. Be sure to reserve your accommodations as soon as you know you’ll be attending the workshop because lodging spaces fill quickly in Crested Butte.

Approximate Schedule

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

Day 1

8:30 – 12:30:

  • Slide lecture “The Art of Seeing.” Continental breakfast provided.

12:30 – 2:00:

  • Break for lunch, on your own.

2:00 – 3:30:

  • Maximizing depth of focus in the field.

3:30 – 8:30:

  • Travel to location for evening field photography. Picnic dinner provided.

Day 2


  • Meet for morning field photography. Box Continental breakfast provided.

5:15 – 9:30:

  • Travel to and from locations for morning photography.

9:30 – 10:30:

  • Hot Brunch provided.

10:30 – 12:30:

  • Editing of photos, critique session and student digital slide show. 

12:30 – 1:00:

  • Book signing and adjourn.                         .


  • Workshop classroom sessions are held in the Parish Hall of Queen of All Saints Church, at Sopris Avenue and Fourth Street in Crested Butte.
  • Field shoots are in easily accessible locations in and around the Crested Butte area.

Getting There

  • If you are driving to Crested Butte from Denver, the trip takes about 4 ½ 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 C-470 South to US-285 South to US-50 West to CO-135 North.
  • The closest local airport is the Gunnison-Crested Butte airport (GUC), a 30-minute drive from the town of Crested Butte. You can also fly there via Montrose (MTJ), about 1 ½ to 2 hours away. The Alpine Express shuttle service offers rides from both airports to Crested Butte.
  • United Airlines / United Express offers daily commuter flights from Denver International Airport, and daily jet service. Check the Gunnison Airport schedule for flight times and more information.
  • Check with https://www.VisitCrestedButte.com for detailed travel information.


If you haven’t already made arrangements for lodging, you can search for accommodations at https://www.VisitCrestedButte.com. Please keep in mind that lodging spaces fill quickly in Crested Butte, so make your reservations as soon as you know you’ll be attending the workshop.  


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) should be made of moisture-wicking material. Staying dry is the most essential step in maintaining comfort. Avoid cotton.
  • Include an insulating layer, such as fleece.
  • Have adequate rain gear, preferably a breathable kind such as Gore-Tex to keep you dry and windproof. Hoods are great. Rain pants will keep you dry when kneeling or sitting in wet foliage.
  • Footwear should be sturdy and comfortable. Hiking boots or trail shoes will work fine and waterproof ones will be appreciated in meadows that are wet with morning dew or rain.
  • Bring hiking shorts for hot days and long pants for cool evenings and mornings.


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

More ideas:

  • Convertible pants
  • Gaiters to keep the bottom of your pants and socks dry
  • Waterproof over-socks
  • Supplex or similar quick drying safari shirts
  • 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.
  • His latest project and book is Wildflowers of Colorado.
  •  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
  • Box dinner, plus beverages and snacks in the field
  • Transportation to field shoot
  • Information on products and services

What is NOT included in the tuition?

  • Transportation to Crested Butte
  • Lodging
  • Some meals
  • Personal expenses, tips

More Information and Registration

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

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