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October 2, 2016 @ 3:30 pm - 6:30 pm EDT

Images of the West: From Saddle to Slumber


One of the most popular requests we get for workshops is to add more cowboy and western photography sessions. So this year we have partnered up with a working ranch nestled in some of the prettiest scenery the area has to offer! This working cattle ranch sprawls across deep canyons and rolling hills, dotted throughout with creeks, woods and ponds. This is a a great opportunity to photograph authentic cowboys, cowgirls, horses, and scenes of the West on a real ranch in a beautiful setting!

In this workshop our focus will be on¬†story telling with your photography, capturing the day’s work and scenes of ranch life as the day winds down and night falls . ¬†This workshop will combine elements of the three previous “Images of the West” workshops, giving you the opportunity capture to action, portrait, and ranch life photos during the session. Opportunities will include Cowboys and cowgirls riding, roping, unsaddling, brushing, and winding down for the evening. ¬†Once dark falls we will have a final shoot we are calling ¬†“Night at the Camp”. ¬† These scenes after sunset will include cowboys and cowgirls with their horses, lit by lanterns, as they settle down for the night. ¬† We are really, really, hoping the burn ban is lifted in time for the Shootout, if so we will have a campfire, also (no guarantees, keep your fingers crossed!). ¬†Throughout the workshop your instructor will share tips and techniques to get great action and portrait¬†shots, as well as how to capture these classic night scenes using both available and artificial light.

Type: Outdoor Workshop

Activity Level: Low to Moderate

Things to Know:¬†¬†By the end of the workshop, it will be dark outside. YOU MUST BRING A FLASHLIGHT!!! No sharing, you have to have your own, we really don’t want people stumbling around in the dark! ¬†We recommend it be a headlamp so you can keep your hands free, but that is not required. ¬†This can¬†also come in handy if you want to do a little light painting after dark.

What to Bring: You will want a variety of lenses, from wide angle to moderate telephoto. For portraits, we recommend something in the 50mm to 100mm range, lenses like a 34-70 or a 70-200mm will be ideal.   For action, we recommend something like a 70-200mm, so you have a bit of reach and can react as the action moves towards, or away, from you. For the night scenes a wide angle with a large aperture is a good idea to let in as much light as possible.  A tripod is always a good thing but hand-holding is sometimes necessary depending on the subject. Flash is a good idea, especially when working in darker areas.


Black Hills State University
1200 University Blvd
Spearfish, SD 57799 United States