Canadian Nature Photographer Newsletter

December 6, 2016

Dear Friends and new subscribers - winter is upon us and I have created two articles on places and animals to photograph around Calgary. I like winter and I like to take photographs during the winter season. I think living in Houston for 4 years during graduate school made me appreciate winter's beauty even more. For those new to photography there are some tips in these articles on where to go and things to bring with you. I am also offering several new workshops and if they don't fit your schedule I am also available for private training or excursions into the country. I am also offering a special to subscribers - buy two gift certificates get one free for December only.

My book "The Art of Canadian Nature Photography" is in the process of being professionally edited after which I will try to get a publisher. Creating a book is a lot of work and its easy to miss small details. I will keep you up to date on the status of my new book in the new year.

Robert Berdan Gallery of Images - VISTEK photography in downtown Calgary is hosting a dozen of my photographs in their store this December so if you drop into the store please have a look at some of my favourite photos on display.

Photoshop CC 2017 came out this past week and I hope to review the updates shortly. Besides my two articles on winter photography, Reinhard Thomas has submitted another article this one on Brazil's Pantanal where he volunteered to help biologists and brought back some great wildlife photos. In regard to this March's aurora photography workshop in Yellowknife this year, it turns out that all the hotels are booked, so will try to offer this workshop in 2018.

Click on the thumbnails or links to visit web site and see these new photo articles


Photographing Winter & Wildlife Around Calgary  - Part I by Dr. Robert Berdan In this article I would like to share with you some of my favourite winter photography locations around Calgary. I have broken this article into two parts - read more.

Hiker Gardner Creek, BC  

Photographing Winter & Wildlife Around Calgary - Part II by Dr. Robert Berdan
Snowy owls can be elusive. To find snowy owls the best locations near Calgary are around Beiseker and then south of Calgary around Mossleigh in my experience. I drive on average of a 100 km in order to spot a single snowy owl - read more.

Polkadot Tree-Frog by Reinhard Thomas ¬©  

Photographing Brazil’s Pantanal the Unknown Gem by Reinhard Thomas
Most people know about the Amazon region of Brazil but few ever heard of the Pantanal - read more.


2017 Photography Workshops

Consider a Gift Certificate for Christmas for your Favourite Photographer - See my workshop page. Special Offer - buy two gift certificates and get one free during December only.

In winter, when it's dark and cold outside it is a great time to select and edit your best shots. The price of Photoshop and Lightroom is now about $12\month. You get both programs for this price and you can download the software on two computers - even if one is a Mac and the other a PC. While some folks prefer Lightroom because it is easier, I believe if you are serious about photography you would be wise to learn Photoshop. It's not as hard as you think and a short course will get you up to speed quickly. You don't have to know how to do everything in Photoshop, but all photographers will benefit from knowing how to colour correct their images, adjust levels, burn, dodge, remove spots, add text and a copyright symbol. All of this and more can be learned in a one day hands on workshop which I offer in my studio on both PC and Mac. Gift certificates can be purchased on my web site - the certificates never expire and they are good towards any workshop (except Arctic Adventure) and can be used for a private session.




Novice Photographer Workshop - Christmas Special $199 - Saturday January 21, 2016 10:00 am to 4 pm. Learn how to use your new Camera.

This workshop includes 2 hours in the studio going over camera equipment followed by 3 hours in the field and then 1 hour back in the studio to critique your images. This workshop is for beginners or anyone that just purchased a new camera. Participants should bring their camera, camera manual and any other camera gear they own and be prepared to go outside to shoot for several hours. You will be provided with a set of notes. The course is designed for single lens reflex type cameras, though you can bring a compact camera if you like (no phone cameras). I will also cover composition basics and seeing. We will photograph outdoors somewhere close like Bowness Park or Big Hill Springs Provincial Park. My studio is located in Calgary, NW in Silver Springs.




Adobe Photoshop Workshop Saturday Feb 25, 2017 - max of 4 - $299

We will be working with Photoshop for a full day. You will receive a DVD with step by step movies, a 100 page book with Photoshop recipes. I will walk you through setting up Photoshop, a basic work flow which includes resizing images, adjusting levels, colour correction, removing spots, red eye correction, dodging and burning, content aware fill and several other techniques. You will have several hours to work on your own images so bring some of your favourite images as .jpg or RAW files. Lunch will be provided (turkey croissants and pop, or bottled water). If you can't make the workshop you can always hire me for a private session in my studio I will be available most of the winter.



NEW - Photo-restoration workshop - 4 hours Saturday Feb 11, 1-5 pm max 4 Learn how to fix your old photos. $199

Do you own some old images you would like to fix or repair. In this workshop I will show you how to scan your images (from prints, slides or negatives) and repair them in Photoshop. I will also show you how to tint your images and hand colour black and white photos. We will be working in Adobe Photoshop - No previous knowledge of Photoshop is required. You will receive 2 hours instruction and have 2 hours with assistance to fix up your old images. Participants should bring some old photos with them that they would like to digitally repair.



Winter Workshop - Saturday, January 28th $299

Saturday, January 28th from 7:00 am to 5 pm. We will be travelling to Banff and then to lake Louise to photograph some winter scenery and the winter festival. We will shoot the sunrise at 8:30 am, then travel down Highway 1 A to shoot some landscapes, wildlife and Morant's curve before heading to the Lake Louise winter festival. I will be able to provide transportation for 3 people, additional folks up to 6 will be transported via car pooling or I will arrange for another photo-instructor to join us and provide transportation. If folks are interested we can arrange for a follow up session and critique of your images.



NEW - Winter Prairie and Snowy Owl Workshop - Saturday Feb 25, 2017 max of 3 - 7:00 am to 6:00 pm $299 (full) If there is more interest I may do this on another weekend - contact me if you are interested.

On this workshop we will head out in search for snowy owls and winter prairie landscapes. I will provide transportation in my Jeep. In general I usually have to drive about 100 km per snowy owl, so we will cover the country side east and south of Calgary. We will stop for lunch. Participants should have a telephoto lens (70-200 mm or larger), a tripod or monopod is recommended. In the event we do not encounter a snowy owl, I will make an second trip on Sunday or the following weekend at no additional charge. I usually spot at least one snowy owl on most outings - but no one can guarantee wildlife. We also photograph Mule Deer, foxes, and other wild birds we encounter.


NEW - Winter Photography in the Badlands Saturday March 4, 2017 - max 3 $299

This will be a day long trip to Dinosaur Provincial Park in order to photograph the badlands in winter. Mule Deer are common in the park and we are unlikely to encounter any other people. We will leave early morning and arrive back in Calgary after dinner time. I will provide transportation in my Jeep. Our focus will be landscape and wildlife photography. If there is time we may search further south for some Pronghorn antelope. In the event the highway is closed I will arrange for another weekend.




Spring Wildflowers - Saturday June 10, 2017 $299

Early June is the best time for wildflowers in Rockies. We will photograph calypso orchids, lady;s slippers and other flowers. On this workshop we will travel to Rocky Mountain Parks to places where I know there is an abundance of wildflowers. There will also be opportunities to photograph landscapes and wildlife we encounter. I can provide transportation for three, otherwise we will car pool or I will hire and additional instructor to provide transportation and instruction. See article on photographing wild flowers in the Rockies. All participants will be provided with an e-book on macrophotography. There will be an optional 2 hour class in my studio before the workshop to cover macrophotography equipment and techniques and a follow up session where participants will show 6-10 of their best photos from the workshop for critique.



Arctic Adventure Workshop 2017 - August 31 to September 7, 2017 min 4 - max 10. $5,579.00

Our annual arctic adventure tour starts in Yellowknife, with accommodations provided for two nights in Yellowknife, we will touring the city, take a boat tour and in the evenings we will be photographing the Aurora Borealis. We will then fly 350 km north to the heart of the tundra to stay at Peterson's Point Lake Lodge for 7 days in photograph the tundra in spectacular autumn colours, migrating caribou,wildlife and in the evening the aurora Borealis. See my article from 2015. Guides are provided to accommodate all fitness level, we will do some hiking, boating and even some fishing if interested. The caribou sometimes come by the cabins. There are also opportunities for macrophotography with a wide variety of lichens on the tundra. Accommodations are in comfortable cabins around Point Lake include a shower and sauna. All meals are provided at the lodge including the flight from Yellowknife to and from the lodge. For more information contact me or visit Petersons Point Lake lodge web site .


Rudy spotted near Point Lake, Northwest Territories


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
Robert Berdan

Calgary, AB
403 247-2457