Shoot Till You Drop: Waterton Photography Workshop

  By Ryley Smith

 

Are you ready to push your photography to the limit and learn an abundance from two outstanding photographers? Monika Deviat and Joe Desjardins are hosting another Shoot Till You Drop workshop! Just as the name suggests, this workshop is four days of non-stop photography in stunning Waterton, Alberta! With magnificent wildlife, colourful nature, and skies filled with stars, there will be so much to photograph, four days won’t feel like enough!

During this workshop, your days will be filled with landscape photography, wildlife photography, night photography, and portrait photography, along with classroom sessions! Sounding intimidating? Don’t worry! This workshop is suitable for both beginner and intermediate photographers and there will be downtime to socialize with the group.

Shoot Till You Drop: Waterton Photography Workshop
Friday, September 23 to Saturday, September 26, 2022
To register, click here!

Monika and Joe shared some of their photographs and experiences from the previous Shoot Till You Drop workshops and Waterton trips, and it looks like an experience you really won’t want to miss! 


Joe Desjardins – Shot on Canon 1DXMKII with Canon EF500 F4 using at 1.4X Canon teleconverter shooting at 700MM, 1/50 of a second @ F5.6, ISO 640

This was truly an incredible experience for my workshop group and myself. You never know what the weather is going to be like in the Rockies. 

That September we encountered approximately 3 feet of snow, but that didn’t stop us. We ventured out to see what we could create. We came across this bull elk along with a cow elk.  I figured this would be a good time to try a slower shutter speed to emphasize the amount of snow coming down. 

This is the result of that! Don’t let inclement weather stop you from getting out. I always say, “if it’s snowing, I’m going”!

Monika Deviat – ISO400 700mm f5.6 1/1250s. Nikon d850 + Nikkor 500m f1.4 + 1.4x Extender

In the spring of 2021, I spent a lot of time on wildlife photography. Waterton is a fantastic area for wildlife viewing, so I made a couple of trips down south. One of my favourite wildlife images from Waterton is of this sleeping bear. The bear was hard to spot. When I initially thought I saw what might be a little ear, there wasn’t much light on the bear. It was also very far away – this was shot at 700mm and cropped in. As I was shooting, it put its paw over its nose (just like my cat will) and curled into a ball. Who can resist cuteness like that?

I did edit this wildlife photo a little more than I usually would to have a soft surreal feel. 

Joe Desjardins – Shot on Canon 1DXMKII with Canon EF500 F4, 1/1250 of a second @ F4, ISO 2000

Waterton has a population of bears that are diverse in colour. Most of the bears in Waterton are black bears. I say most because I’ve seen a grizzly sow and her cub one year passing thru the park. I have seen more colour “phase” black bears than actual “black” bears.

It is common to see cinnamon, dark chocolate and lighter brown-coloured black bears. In this case here, this mother black bear was a mid-brown colour, along with her cubs. A lot of people will mistake a brown-coloured black bear for a grizzly bear, so knowing the distinct features will certainly help in identifying them.

Monika Deviat – ISO6400 18mm f2.8 15s. Nikon d850 + Nikkor 14-24 f2.8

I was in Waterton during the 2021 Perseids Meteor shower and lucked out with some clear and smoke-free skies. Unfortunately, July and August were quite smokey in Alberta last year. To shoot a meteor shower, I set up my camera to run a time-lapse. High ISO values and shorter shutter speeds help capture some of the smaller and more dim meteor streaks. I ran my timelapse for four hours while relaxing on the chilly beach, listening to my camera shutter click off as a bright streak went by during the one-second interval before the camera took another shot. 

The reflections weren’t perfect while the Milky Way core was still above the horizon. The water did become more still as the night went on, and I even had some images with perfect reflections – a rare occurrence in windy Waterton. 

Joe Desjardins – Shot on Lumix G9 with Leica 100-400 F4-6.3 @280MM, 1/500 of a second @ F4, ISO 800

The curiosity and playfulness of red foxes are something to cherish. I have been lucky enough to witness a few fox families grow up throughout the year. In this photo, we have siblings who finally stopped chasing each other to pose for a few photos.


Monika Deviat – ISO1600 24mm f2.8 13s. Nikon d850 + Nikkor 14-24 f2.8

I shot this environmental portrait for the Dark Sky Guides in Waterton. They were taking a family out for one of their stargazing tours, and I showed up at Red Rock Canyon a little bit before the tour started to set up. For this shot, I put one strobe with a large softbox along the banks of the canyon, pointing up towards the people on the bridge. I tested my settings, trying to find an exposure time that wouldn’t feel too long for people to stand still and let in enough light to get stars in the sky. The flash is quite bright compared to starlight. The “models” got into their pose and held it as still as they could as the flash went off and then for the remainder of the exposure duration. I focus stacked two shots together for the final image – one for the foreground and one for the sky.

For more information and to register for Shoot Till You Drop: Waterton Photography Workshop, click here!

Author:

Ryley graduated in 2018 from the U of C, with a bachelor in Sociology. With a strong love for writing, and having dabbled in photography, she wanted to take her curious mind and put it towards a more fun and creative future. In her spare time, Ryley finds herself camping, skiing, and fishing. She also loves craft beer and interesting food, ideally together.