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PHOTOTRACK

*DIGISCOPING FROM THE DECK Van_1 Transit_1 PhotoOp_1 ScopeUseful_1 

With Clay Taylor
Sponsored by Swarovski Optik

Fee $20 / Wednesday, Friday 1:30pm – 4:30pm
These workshops, sponsored by Swarovski Optiks, are designed for digiscopers of all levels of experience but will be particularly valuable for struggling beginners. They will be conducted by Clay Taylor, the Naturalist/Market Manger with Swarovski Optik Ltd and a pioneer of digiscoping in the U.S., from the deck at Estero Llano Grande State Park and will cover setups, camera settings, field-shooting techniques and reviews of images. Please bring all your equipment including spotting scope, tripod, camera and adapter, fully charged batteries and empty memory cards. If you do not have a spotting scope, let Clay know in advance at [email protected]. Clay will also have digiscoping adapter for DLSR cameras and smart phones available.

Participants will be limited to eight and the nominal fee includes transport to and from Harlingen.

MARTIN REFUGE Van_1 PhotoOp_1

Fee $165 / Wednesday 6am – 1:45pm
The Martin Refuge, owned by John and Audrey Martin, has hosted wildlife photographers since 2003 on its 300 acres of thornscub enhanced by water features and professionally designed photo-blinds. It is particularly renowned for the opportunities it gives to photographers for close views of Crested Caracaras, Harris’s Hawks and other raptors. We will be joined for the trip by the Refuge’s own guide, who is both a birder and an experienced photographer, but this is not a workshop – just a unique opportunity to get great shots of wildlife at a private ranch. After a morning of photography, the Refuge will be providing us with lunch at one of its rustic palapas.

The trip will be limited to eight participants and is suitable for photographers of all levels. Bring lots of batteries – there is no electricity on site. Outhouse restroom available on-site.

PHOTOGRAPHING VALLEY SPECIALTIES Van_1 Transit_1 WC_1 LunchBox_1 PhotoOp_1

with Larry Ditto and Bill Supulski
Fee $150 / Saturday 9am – 3pm
A shorter workshop offering at a surprising location – the North American Butterfly Association’s unique park, with its brand-new photo-friendly birdfeeding area. This is probably the best place to easily shoot Green Jays, Chachalacas, Olive Sparrows, Altamira Orioles, and other Valley gems. Combine this with personal in-the-field assistance and although this workshop may be a bit shorter, it won’t be less!
Goals: Improve composition skill; learn appropriate f stop, shutter speeds and ISO settings; understand your camera’s controls and custom functions; learn how and when to use flash; discover how to get sharp, pleasing, successful photos.

 

PHOTOGRAPHY on SPI Van_1 Transit_1 WC_1 LunchBox_1 PhotoOp_1

with Larry Ditto
Fee $180 / Thursday 6am – 3pm
A one-day workshop with esteemed pro Larry Ditto—whose work has appeared in many national publications—and on South Padre Island! Morning emphasis will be on flight shots and action photography. Afternoon will be on Photoshop techniques. So you might want to bring your laptop. Come with a basic working knowledge of your camera, bring telephoto and/or macro lenses, tripod, plenty of flash cards, spare battery, and, most importantly, your camera manuals!
Goals: Improve composition skill; learn appropriate f stop, shutter speeds and ISO settings; understand your camera’s controls and custom functions; learn how and when to use flash; discover how to get sharp, pleasing, successful photos of birds in action.

*PHOTO OPS RANCH STYLE & ORIENTATION with Ruth Hoyt

Fee $250 / Friday or Sunday 6am-2pm at the ranch
Thursday 1:30pm – 3pm 
If you are a birder who believes a camera is as vital to carry as binoculars, this special trip is designed for you. Led by professional photographer Ruth Hoyt, a select group will enjoy the privilege of not only benefiting from her experience and knowledge, but also doing so at a premier private South Texas ranch that is set up for professional-level photography with photo blinds for stellar shooting opportunities.

Important: Fee includes one classroom session and one ranch trip. Thursday afternoon from 1:30pm -3pm, meet Ruth in class at the Fair Park Municipal Complex, site of the festival, for instruction on equipment choice and use, exposure techniques, etc. Choose from one of two in-field ranch trips; one occurs Friday from 6am-2pm and the other occurs Sunday from 6am-2pm. Outhouse restroom available on-site. No electricity on-site. Designed for the advanced amateur and above.

*SUNSETS, BIRDS AND BEERSVan_1 Transit_1 PhotoOp_1 ScopeUseful_1 LunchBox_1 Icon-solo-beer-mug-jpg

With Clay Taylor
Sponsored by Swarovski Optik

Fee $150 / Thursday 2pm – 8pm
Spotting scope photo systems are really coming into their own and the options are expanding with camera and smartphone pairings. Clay will cover it all on South Padre Island’s famous birding boardwalks that just happen to be perfectly situated for the Island’s lovely sunsets as well! Sunset shooting followed by dinner at a favorite SPI restaurant (hence the Beer).
! Important: Before registering, email Clay to discuss equipment owned and perhaps needed: [email protected]
Note: Trip will return to auditorium complex after the day’s Festival events are concluded and the complex will be locked.