CHILKAT BALD EAGLE PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP | HAINES, ALASKA
Grab your best camera, warmest coat and join me for a photography workshop in the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve! What has been reported to be the largest gathering of bald eagles anywhere in the world, the Chilkat river valley is arguably the best place on the planet to capture outstanding photographs of the species and an incredible place for a photography tour. Located near the gorgeous town of Haines, Alaska, the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve is sandwiched between snow-capped mountains which can provide some of the most awe-inspiring views in the United States. To top it off, the action at this location is truly unique. During the month of November, the bald eagles within the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve become increasingly aggressive toward each other, often fighting over salmon. This makes for incredible photographic opportunities. In addition, some of the best flight and portrait photography of bald eagles has been shot within the borders of the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve due to the somewhat fearless nature of the bald eagles who migrate to the location each winter. Join us for a tour and see why National Geographic and BBC have chosen Haines for several of their bald eagle documentaries.
THE CHILKAT EXPERIENCE
the shot list
Nobody comes to Alaska in November for the weather. You want to capture some great photographs. I can help.
BALD EAGLES FIGHTING
A constant fight for survival pits one against another, creating a scene that has been covered by news outlets such as BBC and National Geographic. Alaska’s Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve is the best location in the world to capture this action!
EAGLES IN FLIGHT
The background of the Chilkat River Valley changes regularly. One minute you’ll have a blue haze to provide a unique mood to your images. The next could be a snow filled scene that captures the true spirit of Alaska.
BALD EAGLE PORTRAITS
Many inhabitants of the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve are fearless. Unlike the lower 48, you’ll likely have several opportunities to capture tight, frame filling portraits for your portfolio.
Alaska’s Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve is surrounded by some of the most picturesque snow covered mountains you’ll ever witness. Making the eagle part of the landscape helps to provide scale and adding depth to the scene.
CAPTURE BREATHTAKING PHOTOS.
IMPROVE YOUR TECHNIQUE.
HAVE A GREAT TIME.
While our main focus for this tour is to send you home with dynamite images of bald eagles for your portfolio, we have other goals in mind for each client. Sending you home with great photos might not improve your ability to capture them in the future unless we deliver the information in a way that helps you retain the information. During my 20+ years as a corporate trainer and director, I was fortunate to learn several techniques to make this happen. Whether you’re a visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learner, we will take advantage of each learning style to ensure that you take home more than just great photos.
The third goal is the easiest. In most cases, our clients have traded their hard earned vacation time to make the trip to the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve. We simply want you to enjoy yourself. While we are heavily focused on getting each client into a position to capture outstanding images, balancing this agenda with a little relaxation is essential. Thankfully, Alaska is a great place to accomplish both.
I traded in my corporate life to combine what I had learned with what I have loved. Watching another photographer glow with the anticipation of getting a fantastic shot is a tremendously rewarding. Seeing that light bulb moment when we are able to simplify a complex concept is more gratifying than anything I had accomplished in my previous life. We understand that this is a once in a lifetime trip for many, and will do whatever it takes to make it fun!
Did you ever think you could get so close to an eagle that you could hear the sound of it’s wings flap? Have you ever wanted to get such a crystal clear photo of a bald eagle that you could see it’s eyelashes? Experience this and more by joining me for a photography workshop at the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve near Haines, Alaska!
We will have a relaxed, informal classroom discussion about key topics. Special attention will be paid to sharing best practices and problem solving. Whether you are new to the concepts of shutter speed, aperture and ISO or have a deep understanding of the exposure triangle, we will cater to the needs of each photographer.
Understanding shutter speed, aperture, ISO and focus settings can be daunting and has caused many to put down their cameras for good. We will cover each of these items in detail and continually review camera settings throughout the week. This will be a constant source of discussion, starting in the classroom and into the field. Putting these concepts into practice is the best way for it to stick.
BALD EAGLE BEHAVIOR
Wild animals are wild and unpredictable for the most part. What if you could tell when a bald eagle spotted a foe? What if there was a tell tale sign that they were about to take off? What if you could predict which direction they would fly? We will discuss all of these behaviors and more.
What impact can the tried and true "rules" for landscape photography have on wildlife photography? What role does wing placement, head position and perspective have on your outcome? Great shots often sit unnoticed on hard drives until we "see" them with a fresh perspective. We will discuss the image assessment process as it relates to bald eagle photography and judge our own images by a set of criteria.
BIRDS IN FLIGHT
The right body movements, position and other nuances are critical for improving your chance of success. This workshop will cover all of the above and more.
IN THE FIELD
Our main focus is to get you into position to capture great photographs of bald eagles. While classroom discussion is extremely valuable, you won't take a wall worthy photo from a comfortable chair. That said, involvement is absolutely critical to learning, and putting your new knowledge into practice is essential for retention. We want you to take stellar photos, whether it's at the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve or after you return home.
THE ROLE OF LIGHT
Weather isn't the only challenge in Alaska. Light is minimal and the direction can be downright brutal unless the right steps are taken. There are methods to managing this challenge and we will continually analyze and discuss it in detail. Special attention will be paid to establishing your Window of Opportunity as the conditions change, as they often do in Alaska.
PHOTO EDITING MADE EASY
As Benjamin Franklin once said, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." If we learn the right shutter speed, aperture and focus settings, the need for photo editing should be drastically reduced. That said, there are simple ways to enhance your photos without completely ruining authentic spirit of the image. We will discuss non-destructive editing technique along with the tools to prevent you from having to sit in front of your computer for longer than you already do.
VIDEO TIPS & TRICKS
Capturing video of a moving subject is a challenge for even the best photographers with the most sophisticated cameras. We will discuss several tips and tricks that have the potential to take your cinematic ability to the next level.
Lodging is included. Based on single occupancy. Please see discounts below for double occupancy.
Traveling with a sidekick? Each photographer receives a $375 discount for double occupancy.
Attend a workshop with us before? You can take another $200 off of this one!
ABOUT YOUR GUIDE
After spending well over a decade as a corporate trainer and director for one of the largest furniture manufacturers in the United States, AJ is able to combine his experience in public speaking and training to provide instruction to other photographers in a workshop setting.
In 2017, AJ published his first book, titled The Bald Eagle Book for Kids, which he created to be as visually appealing to adults as it is educational for children. He is currently working on two additional books that are scheduled to be published in 2019.
While bald eagle photography is his specialty, AJ has also been recognized for other subjects. He was named as a National Geographic Top Shot Award Winner in 2016 for one of his brown bear photographs. All of his photos are captured in the wild.
If you have questions about the workshop or planning your trip to Haines, don’t hesitate to contact us directly with the information below.
(319) 400 7929