Desert Botanical Garden Educational Portal. Return to DBG.org
Welcome
Enjoy a full range of educational classes and programs for learners of all ages!
Photography
Whether you are an aspiring photographer or an experienced professional, the Garden provides photography classes for all skill levels taught by qualified professionals. We offer introductory classes that guide beginner photographers to acquire the basic principles and techniques of photography. For the experienced professional, we provide classes that build upon their skills and how to master new techniques. Whatever level of your experience or camera you use, we have a class for you! Many of the classes are supported with hands-on sessions in the Garden's digital classroom, along the Garden's trails or to Arizona destinations.

iPhone and iPad Photography: Getting Started
Regular Price: $63.00
Member Price: $50.00
Product Image

The best camera is often the one you have with you when something spectacular happens right before your eyes. Learn how to stabilize, hold and shoot using your iPhone or iPad, and choose the best apps for smart photography and editing. Instructed by Ashley Lowery. Limit 15.

Water Photography
Regular Price: $63.00
Member Price: $50.00
Product Image
Sunday / Jan. 7 / 2 - 5 p.m.

Water is a perfect subject for photography. Joanne West shares with you expert photography tips for taking outstanding images of water. She then guides you to favorite spots in the Garden to practice your newfound skills as you capture the beauty of water. Click here for required equipment. Instructed by Joanne West. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sun, Jan 7, 2018 2:00PM - 5:00PM   (5 AVAIL)

Painting with Light
Regular Price: $50.00
Member Price: $40.00
Product Image
Wednesday / Jan. 10 / 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Create unique photographic images through light painting. Join Ashley Lowery and learn to use light sources to paint images and words with long exposures and flashlights. Class time will be spent in the Garden, where participants will 'paint' the desert scene and plants with light. For digital SLR cameras with a tripod only. Participants should bring a flashlight. This class is designed for beginner-level photographers and no prior experience is required. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Wed, Jan 10, 2018 6:00PM - 8:30PM   (9 AVAIL)

Patterns in Nature
Regular Price: $63.00
Member Price: $50.00
Product Image
Saturday / Jan. 13 / 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Did you know that you could control how your audience feels and experiences your photography through light, shade and creative composition? In this class, you will learn the quintessential compositional elements oriented toward wildlife and nature photography. Discussion will include rule of thirds, the Fibonacci sequence, leading lines, color harmony, tension, positive and negative space, journalistic photography styles, power points, post-processing concepts, and more. Open to all digital cameras that can shoot in manual mode. Click here for required equipment. Instructed by Lisa Langell. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Jan 13, 2018 10:00AM - 1:00PM   (4 AVAIL)

Photography 101
Regular Price: $75.00
Member Price: $60.00
Product Image
Saturday / Jan. 13 / 2 - 6 p.m.

Photography 101 is for beginners and intermediate photo enthusiasts with a DSLR camera who want to know where to manage their camera settings. Tracy Battaglia guides you through exercises to discover how aperture, shutter speed and ISO are the three basic pillars to master your photography skills. Understanding these elements, their function and how they work together is important to achieve your photography goals. Some photography practice in the Garden is included. Click here for required equipment. Instructed by Tracy Battaglia. Limit 10.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Jan 13, 2018 2:00PM - 6:00PM   WAIT LIST

Package Deal - Nature in Winter
Regular Price: $325.00
Member Price: $260.00
Product Image
Learn how to take your photography skills to the next level. Explore the tools and techniques to photograph winter landscapes and wildlife. Instructed by Robert McBride. Limit 12.

PACKAGE DEAL: Register for both classes by the New Year and receive a 10 percent discount!

Offer expires on Jan. 1. Programs may be purchased separately at the regular price, subject to availability.

Nature in Winter: An Introduction
Wednesday / Jan. 17 / 6 - 8 p.m.


The stark, white landscape in the wintertime can be breathtaking. Join Robert McBride to learn what it takes to become a digital landscape photographer, taking advantage of the soft winter light to create images that are beautifully exposed. This class is open to all digital photographers. Participants should bring camera and manual.

Nature in Winter: In the Field
Saturday / Jan. 20 / 9:30 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.


Explore the winter wonderland of Red Rocks of Sedona with Robert McBride. You will discover techniques on how to capture winter scenes from general photographic skills, to equipment, to composition and the use of natural light. While all digital camera owners are welcome, this class is most appropriate for DSLR cameras. This is an offsite program, and transportation from the Garden is included. Click here for required equipment.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Wed, Jan 17, 2018 6:00PM - 8:00PM   (3 AVAIL)

Nature in Winter: An Introduction
Regular Price: $50.00
Member Price: $40.00
Product Image
Wednesday / Jan. 17 / 6 - 8 p.m.

The stark, white landscape in the wintertime can be breathtaking. Join Robert McBride to learn what it takes to become a digital landscape photographer, taking advantage of the soft winter light to create images that are beautifully exposed. This class is open to all digital photographers. Participants should bring camera and muanual. ​Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Wed, Jan 17, 2018 6:00PM - 8:00PM   (2 AVAIL)

Nature in Winter: In the Field
Regular Price: $311.00
Member Price: $249.00
Product Image
Saturday / Jan. 20 / 9:30 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Explore the winter wonderland of Red Rocks of Sedona with Robert McBride. You will discover techniques to capture winter scenes from general photographic skills, to equipment, to composition and the use of natural light. While all digital camera owners are welcome, this class is most appropriate for DSLR cameras.This is an offsite program, and transportation from the Garden is included. Click here for required equipment. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Jan 20, 2018 9:30AM - 7:30PM   (3 AVAIL)

iPhone and iPad Photography: Next Steps
Regular Price: $63.00
Member Price: $50.00
Product Image

Note: The Feb. 22 class time has been updated. The class will run 5:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Continue building your iPhone and iPad photography skills to create better photos using a range of settings. Learn how to improve your device photography and editing techniques with different lighting scenarios and compositions, and how to add creative touches to "finish" your photos. Time is allotted for guided help on the Garden trails. Instructed by Ashley Lowery. Limit 15.


Understanding Your Camera
Regular Price: $75.00
Member Price: $60.00
Product Image

Saturday / Jan. 27 / 2 - 6 p.m.

Creating a successful photograph starts with understanding how your camera works--the different features, functions and general set-up. Discover how to create a "properly" exposed photograph by balancing the influences of shutter speeds, apertures and ISO. Take a walk in the Garden and practice your newly acquired skills. Participants should bring DSLR camera and manual. Instructed by Robert McBride. Limit 12.

Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Jan 27, 2018 2:00PM - 6:00PM   (7 AVAIL)

Package Deal - Digital Desert Photography
Regular Price: $169.00
Member Price: $135.00
Product Image

Learn the keys to photographic excellence using digital cameras. Instructed by Joanne West. Limit 12.

PACKAGE DEAL: Register for Getting Started and Next Steps by the New Year and receive a 10 percent discount!

Offer expires on Jan. 1. Programs may be purchased separately at the regular price, subject to availability.

Getting Started
Sunday and Tuesday / Jan. 28 & 30
Sunday / 1 - 5 p.m. / Tuesday / 4:30 - 7:30 p.m.


This two-session introductory class is ideal for those who are new to digital photography or are simply interested in learning which settings to use and when. Joanne West will go over basic camera functions and controls, exposure techniques, shooting modes, basic composition and tips on how to create better-looking images. Open to all digital camera owners. Participants should bring DSLR camera and manual. Some photography practice in the Garden is included.

Next Steps
Saturday and Monday / February 10 & 12
Saturday / 1 - 5 p.m. / Monday / 4:30 - 7:30 p.m.


Learn to take your camera off automatic and use the more advanced creative exposure settings to produce compelling photographs. Topics include advanced exposure techniques, metering, how to achieve sharp focus and merge technical and creative aspects of photography. While all digital camera owners are welcome, this class is most appropriate for DSLR cameras. Participants should bring DSLR camera and manual. Some photography practice in the Garden is included.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sun, Jan 28, 2018 1:00PM - 5:00PM   WAIT LIST

Digital Desert Photography: Getting Started
Regular Price: $94.00
Member Price: $75.00
Product Image
Sunday and Tuesday / Jan. 28 & 30
Sunday / 1 - 5 p.m. / Tuesday / 4:30 - 7:30 p.m.


This two-session introductory class is ideal for those who are new to digital photography or are simply interested in learning which settings to use and when. Joanne West covers basic camera functions and controls, exposure techniques, shooting modes, basic composition and tips on how to create better-looking images. Open to all digital camera owners. Participants should bring camera and manual. Some photography practice in the Garden is included. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sun, Jan 28, 2018 1:00PM - 5:00PM   WAIT LIST

Digital Desert Photography: Next Steps
Regular Price: $94.00
Member Price: $75.00
Product Image
Saturday and Monday / Feb. 10 & 12
Saturday / 1 - 5 p.m. / Monday / 4:30 - 7:30 p.m.


Learn to take your camera off automatic and use the more advanced creative exposure settings to produce compelling photographs. Topics include advanced exposure techniques, metering, how to achieve sharp focus and merge technical and creative aspects of photography. While all digital camera owners are welcome, this class is most appropriate for DSLR cameras. Participants should bring DSLR camera and manual. Some photography practice in the Garden is included. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Feb 10, 2018 1:00PM - 5:00PM   WAIT LIST

Moonscape Photography
Regular Price: $63.00
Member Price: $50.00
Product Image
Wednesday / Jan. 31 / 6 - 9 p.m.

The beauty of moonlit nights and the splendor of the Garden make for a fantastic evening of shooting moon-illuminated landscapes. This class is for amateur photographers and provides hands-on guidance. Participants use creativity and experimentation to learn elements of lighting, exposure, camera settings and nighttime considerations to create beautiful photographs. Click here for required equipment. Instructed by Ashley Lowery. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Wed, Jan 31, 2018 6:00PM - 9:00PM   WAIT LIST

Introduction to Macro Photography
Regular Price: $63.00
Member Price: $50.00
Product Image
Saturday / Feb. 3 / 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.

In photography, the closer you focus, the more you reveal. Join us as we explore an unfamiliar world by magnifying small subjects. We will discuss the difference between close-up and macro photography, ways to get very close, equipment, focusing, lighting and steadying the camera. While this introductory class is open to all camera owners, it is best suited for those who are proficient in operating a DSLR camera. Some photography practice in the Garden is included. Click here for required equipment. Instructed by Robert McBride. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Feb 3, 2018 10:00AM - 1:00PM   (9 AVAIL)

Mirrorless Cameras
Regular Price: $50.00
Member Price: $40.00
Product Image
Saturday / Feb. 3 / 3 - 5 p.m.

Small and lightweight, mirrorless cameras offer photographers excellent quality images and are quickly becoming a great alternative to DSLR cameras. Learn the components of mirrorless cameras, including the advantages and disadvantages. We will also discuss recommended settings to use if you already own a mirrorless camera. Participants should bring mirrorless camera and camera manual. Instructed by John Marino and Joanne West. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Feb 3, 2018 3:00PM - 5:00PM   OPEN

Ordinary to Extraordinary
Regular Price: $75.00
Member Price: $60.00
Product Image
Monday and Wednesday / Feb. 5 & 7 / 5 - 7 p.m.

Join us for this unique opportunity where you learn to easily identify photo opportunities and see differently to produce a stronger photography portfolio. Participants will practice using the elements of design, camera settings, lighting and cropping techniques to enhance composition. Choose flattering angles and learn post-processing tricks to elevate ordinary subjects to extraordinary visual heights. All photography levels welcome but students should have working knowledge of basic camera settings. Some photography practice in the Garden is included. Click here for required equipment. Instructed by Joanne West and John Marino. Limit 12
Session Winter 2017-2018: Mon, Feb 5, 2018 5:00PM - 7:00PM   (1 AVAIL)

Dramatic Botanical Photography
Regular Price: $75.00
Member Price: $60.00
Product Image
Tuesday / Feb. 6 / 5 - 9 p.m.

Learn how to design creative lighting setups indoors without the need for expensive studio equipment. Lisa Langell shares techniques about photographing botanicals as you practice indoors. Play with lighting setups using flashlights, lamps, foam core and more. Learn great tips for backdrops that give you effects ranging from the ethereal to the dramatic! Click here for required equipment. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Tue, Feb 6, 2018 5:00PM - 9:00PM   OPEN

Pollinator Photography
Regular Price: $63.00
Member Price: $50.00
Product Image
Saturday / Feb. 10 / 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Desert pollinators such as bees, butterflies and hummingbirds are a delight to see in the garden. Learn how to capture in a photograph the variety of pollinators found in the Sonoran Desert. Lisa Langell will show you how to capture these pollinators by discussing camera settings, composition, depth of field, natural light and more. Bring any digital camera that enables you to manually adjust aperture (f-stop), ISO and shutter speed. Smart phones and compact cameras are welcome. However, emphasis will primarily be placed upon techniques and settings primarily available to DSLR cameras. Click here for required equipment. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Feb 10, 2018 9:00AM - 12:00PM   (10 AVAIL)

Mastering the Tools: Exposure
Regular Price: $75.00
Member Price: $60.00
Product Image
Sunday / Feb. 11 / 10 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Establishing a correct exposure involves much more than simply setting your ISO, shutter speed and aperture. This class will examine your camera's various shooting modes and why different metering systems can be used to produce better results under varying conditions. Discuss how to ensure the accuracy of every exposure using the digital camera's histograms and highlight alert. Participants should bring DSLR camera and manual. The Mastering Series is recommended for DSLR camera owners only. Students must have a working knowledge of their DSLR camera settings. Instructed by Robert McBride. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sun, Feb 11, 2018 10:00AM - 1:30PM   (9 AVAIL)

iPhone and iPad Photography: Nighttime
Regular Price: $50.00
Member Price: $40.00
Product Image
Monday / Feb. 12 / 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Have you ever taken photos with your iPhone or iPad at night and felt dissatisfied with the outcome? Learn the essential techniques that will help you shoot better iPhone or iPad photos at night or in low light. Explore lighting, exposure levels and the best apps for nighttime photography. Time is allotted for guided help on the Garden trails. Instructed by Ashley Lowery. Limit 15.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Mon, Feb 12, 2018 6:30PM - 8:30PM   (7 AVAIL)

Mastering the Tools: The Secret of Lighting
Regular Price: $75.00
Member Price: $60.00
Product Image
Sunday / Feb. 18 / 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Lighting is the essential ingredient in all photography. Yet for all its importance, light is too often unknown, unstudied and abused by today's photographer. This class covers the most important aspects of light and how it can be used to turn snapshots into stunning photos. Participants should bring DSLR camera and manual. Mastering Exposure is a prerequisite for this class. The Mastering Series is recommended for DSLR camera owners only. Students must have a working knowledge of their DSLR camera settings. Instructed by Robert McBride. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sun, Feb 18, 2018 11:00AM - 2:00PM   OPEN

Creating Dynamic Landscapes
Regular Price: $219.00
Member Price: $175.00
Product Image
Tuesday and Sunday / Feb. 20 & 25
Tuesday / 6 - 8 p.m. / Sunday / 2:30 - 7 p.m.


The art of capturing dynamic landscapes goes beyond simply finding how to capture that perfect moment. In this class, we will cover the basics of creating more dynamic landscapes using techniques such as hyperfocal distance and focus stacking to create sharp focus from the nearest foreground element to the most distant one. In the second part of the program, we will venture out to Four Peaks to refine your skills. Student will have an opportunity to use the exposure, focusing and composition skills to photograph the changing light of the Sonoran Desert. Price includes round-trip transportation from the Garden. Click here for required equipment. Instructed by Robert McBride. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Tue, Feb 20, 2018 6:00PM - 8:00PM   (7 AVAIL)

Mastering the Tools: Composition
Regular Price: $75.00
Member Price: $60.00
Product Image
Saturday / Feb. 24 / 10 a.m. - 1p.m.

For many, no aspect of photography is more difficult than composition. Examine the rules for composing a photograph and how they work in unison with exposure and subject selection to produce visually compelling images. Participants should bring DSLR camera, tripod, cable or remote shutter release and three to five printed photos for class discussion. Mastering Exposure and The Secret of Lighting are prerequisites for this class. The Mastering Series is recommended for DSLR camera owners only. Students must have a working knowledge of their DSLR camera settings. Instructed by Robert McBride. Limit 12.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Sat, Feb 24, 2018 10:00AM - 1:00PM   OPEN

iPhone and iPad Photography: Editing
Regular Price: $50.00
Member Price: $40.00
Product Image
Tuesday / Feb. 27 / 6 - 8:30 p.m.

Learn to use photo editing app Snapseed on your iPhone and iPad to enhance your snapshots into stunning images. Ashley Lowery walks you through the amazing transformations you can make with the touch of your finger! Students should download the free Snapseed app onto device before class. Instructed by Ashley Lowery. Limit 15.
Session Winter 2017-2018: Tue, Feb 27, 2018 6:00PM - 8:30PM   (7 AVAIL)

CANCELLATION POLICY

Program registration may be canceled up to two weeks prior to the start date for a $20 processing fee. If you are unable to attend a class/workshop, you may transfer your registration to an alternate participant with your confirmation. Desert Botanical Garden reserves the right to cancel programs at its discretion. Programs will run as scheduled, regardless of weather, unless participants are contacted directly by Garden staff either by phone or email. We reserve the right to substitute any instructors in the event of unforeseen circumstances. Please contact registrar@dbg.org or call 480 481.8146 (Option 2) for cancellations and refunds.