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Colorado Fall Color Photography Workshop

Sept. 28-Oct 1, 2023: 1 SPOT! |  Cost: 1,650 total

$450 due at registration | Remaining due 45 days prior 

PREVIOUSLY SOLD-OUT! Winding mountain roads, aspen filled valleys and bursts of orange and gold…. Fall color in Colorado is sure to inspire. But that’s not all this photography workshop is about. We will spend 3-days focusing on the dramatic scenery of the towering San Juan Mountains and surrounding landscapes. Home to the largest number of aspen trees in the country, the Telluride-Ridgway-Ouray area is one of the most inspiring places to shoot fall color and we will strike aspen gold in stunning artists’ light! In this Fall Color Photography Workshop, we will venture to less known locations to create original images.

Experience Level

Beginner - Advanced 

Both beginners & experienced photographers will benefit from this workshop. I will work closely with you to address  strengths and weaknesses. All can expect to be challenged.



All age levels are welcome on this photography workshop. We’ll drive to each location then walk to the best position for sunrise & sunset. *Reach out if you have limitations


San Juan Mountains

We will be shooting gorgeous aspen valleys with majestic mountain backdrops. If we are lucky with the weather, we will get to snow on the peaks.

Group Size

10 people

I prefer to keep workshops small, ensuring that each person will have ample time for one-on-one instruction. This photography workshop is limited to 10 people. 

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 Unique Locations • Individual Instruction • Creative Editing • Portfolio Feedback Session 

I will guide you through 3 days of shooting sunrise/sunset in the San Juan Mountains in Ridgway as we work on photography concepts — focusing on light, fall color, shadows, ridges, mountain vistas and much more. We will stay at the Ridgway Lodge and explore the surrounding area from there. Each trip out to shoot will be unique in its own way.


I will always be with the group providing thoughts, advice and real time critique as the light changes. I run my workshops the same way that I shoot personally. By keeping the group small we can react quickly to changing conditions and scout interesting locations.


Colorado Fall Color Photography Workshop

Beyond the leaves... 

While the shimming colors of the aspen groves alone are worthy of a photo, we will focus on capturing fall color in a gorgeous mountain landscape that only Colorado can offer.

Years of Experience with Sony, Nikon, and Canon Gear 

Just imagine spending several days together one-on-one with one of the top photographer/teachers in the country. Dan is a gifted teacher, one with no agenda except what you want and need. He is generous with his knowledge and experience, sharing the best of both.


We will be out shooting and exploring during sunrise and sunset to ensure we find the best conditions. During daytime hours we will have classroom time where we will focus on photography concepts and techniques. 

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Image Composition 

Learning how to compose an image is one of the most important elements of photography and probably one of the hardest to master. Starting with this class and continuing throughout the workshop, I will teach you simple and actionable skills that will help you find amazing compositions in any environment.


Creative Editing

We will go through my editing process from beginning to end using a combination of mostly Lightroom with some fairly easy but extremely powerful Photoshop to finish it off. My editing method is very artistic and effective for beginners and advanced users alike. It is always one of the highlights of the workshop.

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Portfolio Feedback

Getting honest and constructive feedback about your images is extremely hard to find. At the end of every workshop I will dig into 15-20 of your best shots to give you insightful critique on how to improve. While these sessions are honest, I guarantee you will go away inspired with new ideas and thoughts on making great images.

Photography Workshop Schedule: 4-Days


On Thursday, we will start the workshop off at 1:00PM at the County Fairgrounds meeting space with an introduction, followed by a classroom session on light and composition. We will have a very early dinner at a small local restaurant before heading out to shoot sunset.


On Friday, we will rise before the sun to capture the best light over the rugged San Juan Mountains. After breakfast we will have a classroom session on image processing with Lightroom. The group will then take a short break before we head out to shoot for the evening light. We will enjoy dinner and conversation after sunset.


On Saturday, we will rise early again to shoot the morning sunrise. After breakfast and a short break, feedback session that will break down 15-20 of your best images and give you new ideas on how to improve. In the evening we will head out again to shoot our final sunset. 

On Sunday, we will spend our last shoot capturing sunrise and wrap up in the morning. 

* Exact schedule subject to change due to weather, good light, etc.

Planning Your Trip to Ridgway, Colorado

Please note that transportation and accommodations for the Colorado Fall Color Photography Workshop are up to each individual participant.


Hotel: We will base out of the Ridgway Lodge & Suites. You are welcome to book here or nearby. After sign-up you will receive an email with more details. 


Car: If you won't have your personal vehicle, I highly recommend renting a vehicle so you can also explore on your own before/after the workshop. We will be carpooling in 3 vehicles during the workshop. ​

Flights: There is an airport in Montrose (30 min drive), Grand Junction (1.5 hours) and one in Telluride (45 min) as well. Denver International Airport to Ridgway is about a 5-hour drive.

A Dynamic Mountain Landscape 

A dramatic section of the western Rocky Mountains, featuring deep valleys, mineralized volcanic peaks, old mines and several historic towns. The range spans across Telluride-Ridgway-Ouray and the continental divide with numerous jagged volcanic summits, 13 of which rise to over 14,000 feet!

What's Included in the Colorado Fall Color Photography Workshop: 

Instruction from Dan Ballard • Classroom Courses • Personal Feedback Session • Snacks and Water
Not Included: Flights, hotel, car and food.
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Have questions? Feel free to reach out.
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