The Nature Photography Academy
$2,400 per person
Various dates in 2023
Hackberry Farm, Dodd City, Texas
This workshop is limited to 10 participants.
About the Academy
Join us at Hackberry Farm near Dodd City, Texas, for the first-ever nature photography academy. Highly acclaimed wildlife photography educator and professional photographer Russell Graves will lead this informative and interactive approach to learn about the discipline at his home base. In this series, you’ll learn about equipment, post-processing techniques, and topic-specific techniques for nearly every discipline in nature photography.
Each course (unless otherwise noted) will be on location at Hackberry Farm near Dodd City, Texas.
Aside from the in-person classroom, we’ll also conduct twice monthly remote-learning webinars so we can go in-depth on even more topics.
To provide the maximum experience possible for everyone, we’ll cap the number of participants to ten (10) people.
An Introduction to Nature Photography
In this course, we’ll cover some of the basics of nature photography including theories on ISO, aperture, and shutter speed. In addition, we’ll have a wide-ranging discussion on current topics surrounding wildlife photography and a Q&A session to get everyone started off right.
Macro and Flowers
This season, we’ll take advantage of the season and learn how to shoot flowers and macro subjects in a way where your images will pop! You’ll learn how to shoot effective macro shots without breaking the bank and how to think about composing your shots for maximum impact.
This is an in-the-field session to introduce you to field craft techniques that will help your wildlife photography. We’ll talk about camouflage selection, blind construction, animal tracking, and a host of other topics to help make the most of your time afield.
June is when the hummingbirds come to Hackberry Farm, and in this session, we’ll learn how you can set up your own backyard hummingbird studio and use flashes to freeze the action on these super-fast birds.
One of the treats at Hackberry Farm is the number of fireflies that light up the summer night. This month, we’ll learn how to shoot and post-process your firefly images for maximum impact.
Sticking with the theme of night photography, you’ll learn how to shoot images at night with the equipment you already have. Shooting compelling shots at night and light painting is surprisingly easy.
As the weather cools, we’ll change our focus to landscape photography. Landscape photography is a classic nature photography discipline, and while we won’t travel to some pristine mountain hideaway, we’ll still learn the basics for impactful landscape photography in places that will surely hone your skills.
Wildlife photography is a highly specialized form of photography. To be successful you have to have the right gear. More importantly, you have to know how to use the right gear. We’ll go in-depth on how to take great pictures of both birds and mammals.
We’ll culminate the year with a field trip whose location is to be determined. On the field trip, we’ll practice the things we’ve learned over the past year.
*Topics and schedules are subject to change.
What else is included?
Bi-weekly webinars which include one image critique and educational webinar to complement each month a course is taught.
Future trip discounts
Discounts on printing
Lunch or supper is provided on workshop days at Hackberry Farm.
In all, you’ll get nearly 100 hours of top-end educational programming.
What’s not included?
Transportation to and from the workshop locations (including field trip days).
Hotels or lodging
Meals on field trip days
Who is this trip designed for?
Anyone with a love for nature photography! While it’s best if you have some working knowledge of your camera and its settings, you definitely don’t have to be a seasoned expert with your camera.
As such, all skill levels are welcome.
Recommend Gear List
Digital Mirrorless or DSLR Camera
Wide angle lens (ie. 16-35mm)
Short telephoto (24-105mm)
Medium telephoto (70-200mm)
Large telephoto (300mm and above)
Please feel free to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
What People Say...
"Russell was absolutely wonderful to work with. His knowledge of the area, the wildlife, and the landscape was spot-on. He spent a lot of time helping me fine-tune my camera settings and then he followed up every day with me to ensure I was comprehending what he showed me. His love of photography shows in everything he does."
- Lisa from Florida
To reserve a spot for this academy, a 50% deposit of the total cost is required by January 1, 2023. If booking within 30 days of the start of the academy, the total cost of the trip is required in order to make a reservation.
For payments, we accept Credit Card, Paypal, and Venmo.
If final payments are not received within 30 days of the start of the academy, we are allowed to consider your reservation canceled and can offer that spot to someone else.
If you do cancel, we require written notice in which cancellation fees in the following amounts
If canceled within 31 days or more prior to the start of the academy, the total cost of the deposit plus a $50 per person administrative fee.
If canceled within 30 days prior to departure - the total cost of the trip fee
No partial refunds will be made for any reason for parts of the academy that are not used by the client, itinerary changes, or any unforeseen circumstances.
Hackberry Farm reserves the right to cancel a trip for any cause and is not responsible for any additional expenses incurred during the trip, such as medical expenses, clothing, equipment of any kind, etc.