"Capturing the Essence"
Wildlife Art Workshop

Led by Julie T. Chapman
in conjunction with the Triple D Game Farm

** Planned workshop schedule **

WE PROMISE: you will be exhausted, exhilarated, and inspired to go home and paint after this event! You will obtain fabulous reference material that can't be gotten any other way, and you will have the benefit of one-on-one and group time with Julie for critique and discussion. Come and join us for this unique event in the beautiful Rocky Mountains!

* group events in the afternoon and evening will be held at the new Triple D conference room!
Thursday 6 PM - 8 PM
Check in at the Triple D office or cabin. We will introduce ourselves and go over any final details and questions. 
Friday, Saturday, Sunday ~7:30 AM
We'll meet at Triple D and take a short drive to the morning's shooting location for today's wildlife. Once we're done, we'll stop for coffee to warm up on our way back to the Triple D conference room, then begin the day's sketches and critiques.
  Noon - 5:30 PM
After a break for lunch, it's back to the conference room to continue our sketches, our critiques, and our in-depth drawing/painting progression. We'll also probably take time out for some life drawing in the afternoon (warm up those charcoals!)
Monday 7:30 AM - 2:30 PM
We spend the day at Triple D focused on longer painting project(s). We will probably have a brief photo session at the ranch sometime in the morning.
Please be thoroughly familiar with your camera and how best to use its settings - I can't emphasize this enough! I've seen too many workshop participants lose shots because they didn't understand what their cameras were doing. Shooting animals - even captive ones in a controlled setting - can be challenging and requires fast responses from both you and your camera. If any of the following describe you:
  • Shoot with an all-in-one digicam rather than a digital SLR
  • Shoot all your images in P (program) mode and don't understand exposure settings (metering, shutter speed, aperture)
  • Shoot only jpegs, and have no idea why anyone would want to shoot in RAW format

....then I strongly urge you to read a basic book on digital photography, such as Scott Kelby's The Digital Photography Book (only $12 at Amazon), before coming to the workshop. If you don't, you may wonder why your black bear becomes gray in your photographs, or why your fox-in-snow photographs are so poorly exposed - so take a little time to learn about photography before attending the workshop.

This is NOT to say that you MUST have a DSLR - just that you will get better results if you shoot with a DSLR and can control your camera's exposure and white-balance settings.

  • 3 images of recent paintings for group critique and discussion
  • Camera gear (you will find a 70-200 or 100-300 lens the most useful. You may also want a monopod for stability)
  • Plenty of memory cards; I shoot with multiple cards of 8 - 16 GB always available (and in Camera Raw format, NOT jpeg!)
  • Drawing/sketching materials: LARGE pads of paper and UNFUSSY sketch media (no pencils!! Charcoal, crayon, pastel are fine)
  • Easel, if you prefer one (tables and chairs will be provided)
  • Painting kit (media, supports/panels/canvases, etc.) for 4-5 painting sessions. If you prefer to stick with monochrome paintings in order to simplify your kit and luggage, please do so.
    NOTE: I will provide spirits, jars and paper towels for those who need them, since air travel doesn't allow spirits.
  • LAYERS: fleeces, gloves, hats, jackets, sturdy pants, hiking boots. We'll be shooting outside in fall weather, then we'll need to peel off some layers when we go back inside the conference room to draw and paint.
  • Extra camera batteries (so one battery is in a warm inside pocket to replace a cold one in your camera)
  • Warm, sturdy boots - we will have very short walks (50-100 yards) on rough terrain at some of our filming locations, and you may be standing on cold ground for quite a while. You might want to bring some comfy slip-on shoes for conference room wear if you want to remove your heavier outdoor boots.
  • A sense of humor and a realization that we are working close to animals and nature...which can mean going behind a bush to pee during the photo sessions!
Filming schedule and species offered in the workshop are subject to change, due to animal health and welfare or to changes in state and federal permits and regulations. That said, we will do our level best to provide quality photo and sketch sessions with a variety of exciting and popular animals!