Pumas Of Patagonia

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

© Jorge Cardenas

May 3rd – 11th, 2021
Torres del Paine National Park, Patagonia

The solitary and elusive puma is the focus of this 7-day conservation photography workshop that brings you up close and personal with one of nature’s most intriguing animals.

Otherwise known as the mountain lion, cougar, shadow cat, and panther, the objectives of this workshop are to create images of this animal in the wild for use in specific conservation photography work. That is, we will use the images made during the workshop to build awareness and new alliances, influence policy, and raise important funds for puma conservation.

While chance will favour the persistent and patient photographer, against the backdrop of the Torres del Paine mountains in Patagonia, Chile, this workshop will strive to provide lasting encounters with the animals to permit a spectrum of photographic opportunities.

There is a need to address the conservation narrative of the puma in Patagonia. It exists as a dichotomy: some think of them as pests, as the pumas prey on livestock, so they still get hunted despite it being illegal to do so; others are learning how much more valuable a puma is alive, and so puma tours are making grounds as conservation stakeholders by providing permits to photographers, not the hunters.

The opportunity to be eye to eye with the puma of Patagonia might be enough to engage with this workshop, but more than that, this experience will extend the invite for participants to actively engage in putting their images to work for conservation.

What is Conservation Photography?

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

© Jorge Cardenas

It’s What You Do With Your Images That Really Matters

Skilled photographers the world over have long been using the camera to document wildlife and landscapes but more recently there has been a wave of interest in using these skills to document the relationship between humanity and our natural planet. Looking through the lens with a heightened sense of awareness for our ecological footprint provides enriching experiences to elevate your own photography.

Conservation photography combines nature photography with the proactive, issue-oriented approach of documentary photography and can be used as a tool for change. Conservation photography uses the art of high-quality photography and visual storytelling to elicit action that creates tangible and meaningful conservation measures.

In short, conservation photographers “put their images to work.”

You can learn more about conservation photography in a widely viewed documentary made for the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) here.

This documentary film was inspired by “Conservation Photography”, a thesis authored by Carlton Ward, Jr.

Workshop Objectives

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

© Jorge Cardenas

Build Awareness and Alliances

  • participate in a social media campaign that features your images made in this workshop to create awareness for puma conservation in Patagonia
  • share your images with new alliances

Influence Policy

  • send your images to a person of influence in Patagonia with the assistance of Neil Ever Osborne

Raise Funds

  • use a portion of your expedition fee to support real puma conservation action; opportunities to be discussed pre- and post-expedition

Workshop Inclusions

What’s Included

  • transportation from Punta Arenas to the puma viewing areas
  • hotels in Punta Arenas
  • lodging throughout your stay near the puma viewing areas
  • all meals excluding alcohol
  • puma guide fees
  • conservation photography guide fees

What’s Not Included

  • travel to Punta Arenas from your home destination
  • other travel not noted; this can include taxis and Uber rides
  • camera equipment

Workshop Itinerary

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

© Jorge Cardenas

May 3rd

  • arrive in Punta Arenas via air from Santiago, Chile via your home destination
  • one night in hotel in Punta Arenas

May 4th

  • travel to Hotel Estancia El Ovejero Patagonico
  • lunch
  • landscape photography on our journey

May 5–9th

  • puma scouting all mornings
  • puma photography all mornings (sunrise)
  • boxed lunch all days
  • landscape photography in the National Park (option)
  • puma scouting all afternoons
  • puma photography all afternoons (sunset)

May 10th

  • puma photography (sunrise)
  • drive to Punta Arenas
  • short stop at condor roost
  • one night in hotel in Punta Arenas

May 11th

  • depart Punta Arenas for your home destination

Post Workshop

  • disseminate objectives with remote work from home

Recommended Photo Gear

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

© Jorge Cardenas

  • at least one DSLR camera body
  • a telephoto lens at least 300mm focal length (longer focal lengths will be advantageous)
  • a tripod or monopod
  • at least 32 gb memory card x2

Recommended Workshop Gear

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

© Jorge Cardenas

  • running shoes or hiking boots
  • durable socks
  • long johns and heavy field pants; also rain pants as the weather can turn cold, wet, and windy anytime
  • layers of clothing; it can be very hot and then cold in minutes
  • rainjacket
  • gloves
  • sunblock, sunhat and sunglasses

Workshop Guides

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

Neil Ever Osborne

TreeHugger named Neil Ever Osborne “one of conservation photography’s most vocal advocates” and the UK’s best selling Practical Photography Magazine called him “one of the world’s best conservation photographers.”

Whether he’s trudging through miles of dense jungle in the Amazon or crossing a frozen Northwest Passage braving the elements, Osborne works as a conservation photojournalist and visual artist to make photographs that link people and planet.

He is represented by National Geographic Image Collection, has been recently named as a National Geographic Explorer, and he holds titles as an International Fellow with the Explorer’s Club; a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society; and a Fellow with the International League of Conservation Photographers.

Osborne also previously held a 2-year tenure as a Nikon Ambassador and he was the first ever Photographer-in-Residence with Canadian Geographic Magazine.

When he is not in the field on assignment for international magazines, environmental organizations, or sustainable corporations, he works as the Managing Partner at Evermaven, an agency and academy that publishes environmental communication and trains people in visual storytelling across North America and abroad.

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

© Jorge Cardenas

Jorge Cardenas

Jorge Cardenas is a biologist, naturalist guide, and tracker, who has a passion for big cats.

Cardenas established his tracking expertise working with various species of cats in Africa where he first volunteered for various research programs and later became a Level 1 safari guide registered in the Field Guide Association of South Africa (FGASA).

Upon returning to the USA Cardenas worked in Brazil, where he collaborated with a research group conducting jaguar research, and in Chile, where he worked under the tutelage of local puma trackers and refined his maturing tracking skills.

He has since been using his training and the help of local guides to locate cats all around the world. Cardenas added snow leopards in India and other lesser known species such as the Geoffroyi’s cat, the margay, and the elusive ocelot, to the list of species he’s tracked.

Every year Cardenas scouts and tracks cats in different locations to provide the best opportunity to see some of these cryptic and beautiful species.

All this experience has made Cardenas a sought after big cat guide.

Reserve Your Spot

Workshop: Pumas Of Patagonia with Neil Ever Osborne and Jorge Cardenas

Cost: $7495.00 USD per person