COWBOYS & CANYONLANDS
27 NOV-1 DEC, 2023
(5 DAYS/4 NIGHTS)
with Jeremy Woodhouse & Russell Graves
Saddle up for a West Texas adventure! The Cowboys and Canyonlands itinerary is a unique one. Come and join professional photographers Jeremy Woodhouse and Russell Graves as we explore the rugged cattle country of the Texas Rolling Plains.
When people think of Texas, this is the part of Texas they invariably think of—big, wide open skies, fat cattle grazing on grass, and rugged landscapes that you see in Western movies. As such, this workshop is full of photographic opportunities. For five days, we'll photograph austere canyon lands, wildlife such as prairie dogs, bison, and maybe the distinctive Texas horned lizard (horny toad to the locals). We'll explore small towns that time has forgotten. We'll take in the night skies in a part of Texas that's dark and mysterious. You'll see stars so plentiful; you can almost reach out and grab them!
Finally, we'll explore the cowboy culture by photographing real working cowboys as they go about their daily chores. To add to the charm of this one-of-a-kind workshop, we'll even treat you to an authentic chuck wagon meal served out on the range.
Based in the Texas Panhandle town of Childress, you will have five days packed full of photographic opportunities. You'll get great shots, learn a lot about photography and the area's culture, and, most importantly, make friends with like-minded people from around the country.
So come and join us! If you have any questions about he tour, please feel free to call Russell (806) 280-8007 or Jeremy at (469) 371-5310.
We will keep the itinerary flexible in order to take advantage of the best landscape conditions and to deliver the best possible photography experience. We reserve the right to change the itinerary and shooting locations as needed. The itinerary below is just an example of what you can expect.
In the Texas Panhandle, November marks the transition from autumn to winter, so the weather can be quite variable. Typically, you can expect:
Temperature: Average high temperatures can range from the upper 40s to mid-60s Fahrenheit (8 to 19 degrees Celsius), with overnight lows dropping into the 20s and 30s Fahrenheit (-2 to 4 degrees Celsius). However, colder weather systems can occasionally bring temperatures below freezing, especially towards the latter part of the month.
Precipitation: November can bring a mix of rain and snow to the Texas Panhandle. Snowfall is not uncommon, especially towards the end of the month, but it is generally light and often melts quickly.
Wind: The region is known for its strong winds throughout the year, and November is no exception. Be prepared for gusty conditions, especially during cold fronts passing through the area.
Daylight: The days are shorter in November, with fewer hours of daylight as winter approaches.
Dress for the Weather
No matter the time of year, a wide-brimmed hat, comfortable clothing and sturdy walking shoes or boots are necessary for anyone planning to explore outdoors. Sunscreen is a must and hikers should always carry plenty of water; one gallon per person per day is recommended.
Summer visitors should be aware of heat safety, such as wearing clothing that protects from the sun and avoiding activity during midday.
FULL PAYMENT DUE ON REGISTRATION
GROUP SIZE: ONLY 6-7
Tour Price Includes
- Photography guiding during the trip
- Entry Fee into the State Park
- Cowboy Modelling Fees
- Post-processing and image critique sessions were time permits.
- Breakfasts, welcome dinner and chuck wagon dinner
- Group transport from McKinney on Day 1 to Day 5 in a Ford Transit passenger van (or similar).
Tour Price Excludes
- Transportation to/from your home to McKinney, TX
- Pre-tour lodging in McKinney on 26 Nov, 2023. Please make your own arrangements at Best Western Plus McKinney Inn and Suites
- Alcoholic Beverages
- Meals and snacks except where shown
Dress for the Weather
Personal Gear List
- Sturdy hiking footwear, and long pants if you want to avoid being stuck by a cactus
- Hiking poles to assist on the rocky terrain. I cannot stress how useful these are
- Layers. The days will be warm but you may feel a chill in the air at night so bring appropriate layers
- Headlamp for when we are hiking in the dark
- Sunscreen, sunglasses, sun hat
- Water bottle
Photo Equipment Checklist
- Sturdy tripod and ballhead
- Digital SLR or Mirrorless Camera Body.
- Wide Angle Lens. Full frame—aim for 16-35mm range or wider. Crop sensor, 10-22mm. A fast, super wide prime would also be great (14mm or 16mm). f/1.4 -2.8 is an ideal aperture
- Mid-range zoom lens in the range of 24-100mm.
- Telephoto lenses will come in handy especially if we see some wildlife, including prairie dogs and American bison, or simply for telephoto landscape images—anything in the 70-400mm range (or longer).
- Circular polarizer filters are useful. Bring any ND filters if you have them.
- Extra batteries, memory cards, and cleaning supplies.
- Remote cord for your camera.
- Laptop if you wish to backup your photos or follow along during the post-processing instruction.
Raised in rural Texas, Russell is the product of a modest, blue-collar upbringing, a stalwart work ethic, and a family who put no bounds on his imagination and creativity.
When he was 19, he had his first photographs and article published in a magazine. When he was 20, he earned his first magazine cover.
After earning a degree in agriculture education from East Texas State University (now Texas A&M-Commerce), Russell went out to the sparsely populated Texas Panhandle, where he was hired to teach agriculture science for the Childress Independent School District. In his 16-year teaching career, he was named Texas Agriscience Teacher of the Year on three occasions, a finalist for National Agriscience Teacher of the Year twice, and won just about every major award conferred on those in his former profession. He also built a solid reputation as a top Texas photographer and writer during that time.
Upon leaving teaching in 2009, Russell continued his life's work by capturing the people and places outside of city limits in innovative and authentic ways. In the ensuing years, he continued to build on his experience and churn out content for clients through magazine pieces, advertising campaigns, television projects, and numerous books.
In 2018, Russell started leading photographic workshops and sharing his knowledge and love of the outdoors and photography. Since then, Russell has led nearly 500 guests on adventures worldwide.
Russell says he feels like he's come full circle by combining his love of photography with his teaching ability.
When he's not in the field teaching or doing projects for one of his clients, Russell is found on his beloved Hackberry Farm driving his tractor and doing tasks that benefit the land and her denizens therein. He now lives a mile from the small stock farm on which he was raised. Black dirt and creek water is a powerful poultice.
His parents are still proud of him.