On Location
Cimarron, New Mexico

Wrangle the West

with Jim Krantz

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Course Description

Iconic cowboy culture and the cinematic vistas of the American West are the focus of this one-of-a-kind photographic travel adventure. Bucking stock, longhorns, horse herds and cowboys on horseback fill center stage while the heart-stopping landscape of Northern New Mexico provides a fitting backdrop. Azure skies, late golden light, and perhaps a few April showers provide the right atmospheric conditions for memorable image-making at the CS Ranch near the village of Cimarron.

This five-day total immersive workshop is directed and instructed by fine-art and commercial photographer Jim Krantz with support from his Western states production team of Larry Campbell, Mark Bishop, Jerry Dominick, and Blake Woken. This team brings the authentic West, in a bold and grand manner, to experience and capture its power and strength with your camera.

Wrangler, Marlboro, Coors, and other Western brands have entrusted Jim to help build their western-themed corporate brands. Danziger Gallery in New York represents Jim’s fine-art practice – his imagery blending Western landscape photography with the figure of the iconic cowboy. Jim’s large-scale prints speak to a contemporary romanticization of the American West in popular culture.

For a week in late April, Jim and his team come together in New Mexico to offer a small group of photographers the opportunity to experience their unequaled preparation and production values to balance cowboys and horses with the vastness of the Western American landscape. This production team has collectively produced numerous projects for commercial Western clients and motion pictures that helped create the lore of the American cowboy.

Each participant has the opportunity to choreograph daily photo shoots with the production team that brings to life a unique vision of authentic Western actions. Mornings are spent in a classroom setting with Jim reviewing images from the previous day’s shoot and then discussing the photographic opportunities of the day ahead. He explains the location scouting processes, ideation of shot concepts, direction on location, and technical considerations from lens selection, lighting, and special effects. Jim’s ultimate goal is to perfect each participant’s creative style by photographing intentionally for four days.

Located in northeastern New Mexico at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the CS Ranch covers 130,000 acres of privately owned plains, foothills, and mountain country that was initially part of the Maxwell Land Grant. The CS is a working cattle ranch and hunting operation and has been family owned and operated since 1873. The CS, founded by Frank Springer and his brother Charles, and bearing their initials, represent the ranch name and historic brand. Les Davis, the grandson of Frank Springer, took over the management of the CS in 1947, and the ranch continues under family management to this day.

Horses are an integral part of life on the CS. The ranch has raised its horses since the 1880s. The CS horse-breeding program refocused on the support of the cattle operation. This program remains the case today, with a broodmare band producing top ranch horses and replacement fillies.

In addition to lead instructor Jim Krantz, the production team consists of:

  • Blake Woken has been a commercial photographer for 25 years and has shot for Marlboro, Chevy, Ford, and Wrangler, to mention a few. His expertise is in location production, and he is well-versed in Western state production’s workings. Blake assisted Galen Rowell and sports photographer Walter Iooss early in his career.
  • Jerry Dominick began his engagement as a Marlboro Cowboy in 1975 and has been the cowboy producer since 1998. For this workshop, Jerry will be coordinating the cowboys as the choreography requires.
  • Mark Bishop supplies the horse livestock, bucking horses, and cowboys and cowgirls for our production. Annually Mark and his family operate the largest horse drive currently in America. The Great American Horse Drive has moved up to 1000 head 70 miles across the Northern Colorado landscape from the high country to their ranch for lease to various camps, recreational purposes, and institutions since 1959. Moving horse herds is Mark and the team’s business.
  • Larry Campbell has been a producer, location scout, and location representative for multitudes of commercial shoots and motion pictures in Moab and many surrounding Western locations. From films such as Thelma and Louise, The Lone Ranger, City Slickers, and Geronimo to multitudes of commercials for Marlboro, Chevy, Jeep, and Levi’s, Larry has forty years of experience in his field.

Join Jim and his team of elite production professionals for an unparalleled photographic experience to capture classic Western imagery and chase your dreams.

Additional Information

Advanced Amateurs, Professionals
What You Should Know:

Participants must have a solid working knowledge of a digital camera and a basic understanding of Lightroom or Photoshop. This is a rigorous, physical workshop and, at times, in variable weather conditions. Enrollment is limited to 12 participants.

Portfolio Required:

Please see the Portfolio Section of Registration Information for guidelines on your submission of recent images pertinent to this class.

Activity Level:
Fine Art, Nature & Landscape, One-of-a-Kind, Pop-Ups, Portraiture, Storytelling
Jim Krantz

Jim Krantz is an American photographer who began his career studying under Ansel Adams. For Jim, photography has been a way of life. He has created an ongoing body of work for the last forty years that encapsulates the romance and allure between the myth and reality of the American West.

Over his career, Jim has photographed countless versions of the Marlboro Man, worked with Wrangler, and collaborated with lifestyle brand, Supreme, to name a few of his corporate clients.

His range and versatility are Jim’s forte, working efficiently in demanding and ever-changing conditions. He has been the recipient of The Lucie International Photography Award and has photographed innumerable advertising and editorial projects, constantly pushing the limits of his work. Like the world he photographs, Jim’s images tell a story full of passion, heroism, and adventure, bringing to life the strength and energy of his subjects.

Jim’s fine-art photographs are represented by Danziger Gallery in New York City.

Website: jimkrantz.com

Instagram: @jimkrantzphoto

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