In The Style of Ansel Adams: Crafting The Fine Silver Image

Photography Education

Instructor: Alan Ross
2024 Date: October 1 - 5
Focus: Darkroom/Field
Medium: Film

An expressive, tonally rich, silver image represents the ultimate blend of vision, passion and craft. No other photographer achieved this delicate balance more consistently or more successfully than Ansel Adams. Now you can connect Ansel’s approach and mastery with your own photography in this five-day inspirational workshop designed for film-based photographers wanting to hone their vision and advance their technique in the style of Ansel Adams.

$1,650.00 USD


Ansel Adams liked to say that the negative is the score and the print the performance. He set the standard for knowing how to best compose a “score,” what “notes” to emphasize and how to follow up with a “performance” of the richest tones possible to create his iconic silver images.

Immerse yourself in the magic and methodology of his traditional darkroom mastery under the patient and expert guidance of Alan Ross, Ansel’s last field assistant and a master in traditional film photography and darkroom printing. 

This workshop is a comprehensive hands-on tutorial for intermediate and advanced practitioners of traditional black-and-white silver photography. 

Over the five-day session, Alan will explain and carefully demonstrate the techniques and approaches he learned working side-by-side with Ansel to create a nuanced, tonally rich, fine silver image, from exposure to the expressive print. 


FALL 2024 – October 1 - 5, 2024
This workshop is scheduled for early Autumn which should provide participants with great photographic opportunities throughout Yosemite National Park. This is typically when the aspen trees are turning color in the High Country, and we may also see some color changes at lower elevations in the valley. The weather can be glorious, but it is also known to rain or even snow, with commensurate clouds and mist.

Workshop Details

In The Style of Ansel Adams
FOCUS Darkroom / Field
LEVEL Intermediate to Advanced



Each day will be a combination of field/camera work and film processing and review. Alan will do several printing demonstrations using student negatives, and also introduce his Selective Masking technique for controlled dodging and burning…a technique that can make the impossible-to-print negatives, possible.

In addition to reviewing your existing prints, which you are encouraged to bring, Alan will provide continuous support to each participant, personally helping you improve your film and darkroom skills. 

Among the topics covered:

  • Evaluating a scene and organizing the details to zero in on the essence of an image
  • View camera features and tricks
  • Optics and lens choice
  • Calculating exposure using aspects of the Zone System
  • Managing depth of field
  • Hyperfocal distance—what is it and how to use it
  • Film testing and calculating your personal film speed & development time
  • Tonality
  • Visualizing the effects of your camera work
  • Decisions at the time of exposure to help in printing
  • Field work tips and tricks 
  • Tray or tank processing
  • Scanning your negatives and creating a digital contact sheet
  • Test printing
  • Finishing and presentation

Evenings will be spent processing film, scanning negatives and evaluating our work. By the end of the workshop, you will have a solid understanding of the approaches and techniques essential to the creation of a meaningful and compelling black-and-white silver gelatin image.

Note: All participants will have the opportunity to process and review their film. Actual printing will be demonstration-only, with Alan using participant negatives.

Due to the prevalence of COVID-19 as this workshop is scheduled, class size has been reduced to maintain health safety during the workshop. If the situation changes, class sizes may be increased to normal

About the Instructor

Alan Ross

Alan Ross is a master photographer who worked side-by-side with Ansel Adams as his photographic assistant, in the field and in the darkroom, and who knows Ansel’s approach and technique perhaps better than other any photographer today. He was personally selected by Ansel to be the exclusive printer of the Yosemite Special Edition Photographs and expects to make his 100,000th print sometime soon. Alan specializes in helping photographers at any level identify and better express their photographic vision and has led workshops in locations ranging from the scenic Southwest to the mountains of China. His photographs hang in collections and galleries around the world and have been featured in campaigns for companies like Boeing, Nike, IBM and the National Park Service.

Workshop FAQ

Find answers to your questions about our Photography Workshops in our FAQ. Please do not hesitate to reach out if you need additional help. You can reach us by email at or by phone (650) 692-3495. 


What to Expect

Getting Here / Getting Around


Clothing / Dressing for the Elements

Registering for a workshop



Related Logistics

Cancellation Policy

Multi-day Photography Workshop Cancellation Policy: We rely on your confirmed attendance to make important arrangements for the workshop. If you need to cancel, please let us know no fewer than 45 days prior to the first day of your workshop for a refund of your tuition, less a 10% non-refundable charge. Refunds cannot be made for cancellations initiated within 45 days of the first day of the scheduled workshop, or for no-shows, for any reason. If you are concerned with this possibility, please consider purchasing travel insurance.

Workshop registration is NOT transferable.

In the extremely rare event that The Ansel Adams Gallery needs to cancel a workshop, we will let you know at least 14 days prior to the first day of the scheduled workshop, and immediately refund your full tuition. However, we will not be responsible for non-refundable airline tickets or lodging reservations. (Lodging reservations made through Yosemite Hospitality, Aramark are fully refundable 14 days in advance).

It is recommended not to purchase airline tickets or make non-refundable deposits on lodging that cannot be canceled 14 days prior to the initiation of the event. The Ansel Adams Gallery highly recommends travel insurance to help with an unfortunate travel event.

COVID-19 Policy

COVID WORKSHOP PRECAUTIONS:The Ansel Adams Gallery is trying to create a workshop environment that is safe for all attendees. In doing so, the gallery realizes that workshop participants will have differing opinions in regards to the Covid-19 Policy. The gallery will side with caution and safety. The Ansel Adams Gallery will follow current CDC Guidelines in pace with the evolution of the Covid-19 Virus. Additional measures may be instituted and updated for the purpose of improved safety of all attendees.

The Gallery will provide the following:
COVID-19 rapid test upon arrival
Hand sanitizer
Sanitation wipes
Room Air Filtration


The Ansel Adams Gallery will require all attendees to show proof of a current negative result from a supplied Covid-19 Rapid Test. This negative Covid-19 Rapid Test result will be required after travel to Yosemite and prior to entry into the first day of the workshop. A Covid-19 Rapid Test Kit will be included in your welcome package available at check in at the Yosemite Valley Lodge or Ahwahnee Hotel. It is very important to inform us if you have chosen different accommodations. A gallery representative will then make alternative arrangements for your receipt of the Covid-19 Rapid Test.

The Ansel Adams Gallery highly recommends travel insurance to help with an unfortunate travel event.

This pre-workshop information may be emailed to the education coordinator at



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