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The Power of Environmental Photojournalism

July 13 - July 18

$1175 – $1605

Join former National Geographic Editor-in-Chief and long-time National Geographic photographer Chris Johns on a photographic exploration of western Montana’s stunning landscapes, remarkable people and the profound consequences of decades of mineral exploitation. Over the course of six days, participants will examine the Clark Fork River, from Missoula to Butte, in search of photographs that help us understand this magnificent and scarred landscape — the largest Superfund Complex in the United States — and the people who care so much about it.


Chris Johns
Former Editor-in-Chief and photographer, National Geographic magazine



  • Who is this workshop for?
    Anyone who has mastered the basics of photography and wants to develop their story telling skills through impactful photography.
  • Who is the instructor?
    Chris Johns is the former Editor-in-Chief of National Geographic magazine and was a National Geographic photographer for more than 20 years. 
  • When is this workshop?
    July 13-18, 2020
  • Where is this workshop based?
    We will spend our first day in Missoula then spend the remainder of the workshop photographing in and around our central base in Butte.
  • How long are workshop days?
    From sunrise to sunset
  • What will I leave the workshop with?
    A portfolio of photographs that illustrate what you have seen and learned in western Montana 
  • What equipment do I need to bring?
    Your camera, a laptop with photo editing software, and an external hard drive
  • How will my final photographs be used?
    On the final day of the workshop, we will have a gallery exhibit in Butte of photographs made by the participants.
  • Can I shoot video instead of photos?
    While you are welcome to shoot video on your own and receive feedback from instructor Chris Johns as time allows, this workshop focuses on still photography. 
  • How will I edit my photographs?
    Your preliminary edit will be on your laptop. We will have a system for sharing and editing your photographs during critique times.
  • What about meals?
    We will provide dinner one night in Butte. All other meals will be on your own. 
  • Will I need a car?
    Yes.  There is a possibility you could carpool, but that may narrow your photographic opportunities.  If you are flying into Missoula, you can easily rent a car at the Missoula airport.
  • Do you provide housing?
    Housing is not provided.  However, we have arranged low-cost accommodations at the University of Montana dorms for Sunday, July 12 and Monday, July 13 ($35 per night for a single and $23 per night for a double room) or you can book through AirBnB or local hotels. In Butte, we have reserved a block of rooms at the historic Finlen Hotel for July 14-18 for all participants. Single rooms are $90-$100 per night. Double rooms (for participants interested in sharing a room) are $100 per night. Participants may also stay at the Finlen Motor Inn located next to the Finlen Hotel for $78 per single room or $88 per double room per night. 
  • What is the maximum enrollment for this workshop?
  • Can I take this workshop for college credit?
    Yes. You can earn two undergraduate or graduate journalism credits from the University of Montana for an additional $155 processing fee.
  • I’m a teacher. Can I earn OPI renewal units for this workshop?
    Yes. You will earn 48 renewal units for this workshop.
  • What’s your refund policy?
    The Montana Media Lab will issue a full refund, minus a $150 administrative fee, for cancellations made more than 45 days prior to the start of the workshop. Cancellations made within 45 days of the start of the workshop are not eligible for a refund. If the Montana Media Lab cancels the workshop for any reason, you will be issued a full refund.


July 13
July 18
$1175 – $1605
Event Category:


12 available
The Power of Environmental Photojournalism early bird registration$1,175.00Early bird registration available through June 1, 2020
12 available
The Power of Environmental Photojournalism early bird registration (for university credit)$1,330.00early bird registration available through June 1, 2020