Pack your Camera, the Ranch Awaits

With three photography workshops in July, we are celebrating by offering a 20% discount on each class. Read on!

The Rocky Mountain Land Library owes a debt to so many photographers over the past many years. With great insight and craft, they’ve shown the world what a unique place Buffalo Peaks Ranch is. This growing body of work has astounded us, from Michael Ciaglo’s stunning New York Times image:

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to Larry Glass’ quiet mist-filled morning:

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and Sarah McLaughlin’s other-worldly photo at dawn:

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No matter the time of day, Buffalo Peaks Ranch has inspired so many excellent photographs. This July, the Land Library will be hosting these Photography/storytelling workshops, taught by three outstanding artists.

To celebrate the great art of Photography (and the way it has always helped us to tell our own individual story), The Rocky Mountain Land Library is excited to offer each of these workshops at a 20% discount (just use Discount Code: PHOTO20 when you register)!

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Storytelling with Image and Text with Andrew Beckham

Andrew Beckham is a lot of things, but I would consider him a visual poet, using language both written and visual to construct nuanced work that is compelling, fragile, and poignant.” — Aline Smithson, Lenscratch

Join photographer and author Andrew Beckham for a day of literary and visual exploration. While the worlds of literature and visual art have traditionally been seen as discrete disciplines, Mr. Beckham’s dynamic approach to storytelling has long sought to bring text and image together as a unified aesthetic whole. This workshop will provide a wealth of ideas and approaches for combining your own text and image ideas, with time in the field to explore, photograph, write, and contemplate how our own stories arise from experiences in the natural world.

Saturday, July 8th, 10am to 4pm,  $50 class fee

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

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This image represents all that is exciting and new yet repetitive and grueling.  I spent last summer commercial salmon fishing with some good friends in Southwest Bristol Bay, Alaska.  Nushagak Point to be exact….This image is a reminder of how bad things can be in the most exciting times of life. — Terry Ratzlaff

Documentary Photography, Developing Long Form Personal Narratives with Terry Ratzlaff

This photography workshop will explore how to construct a long form narrative from inception to execution. From brainstorming, researching and starting something new, to progressing through the struggles and resistance one might find while working on a project that might be stressful, difficult or controversial. Terry will provides tips and methods on facing resistance and criticism, and how to find one’s voice while dealing with these situations. Terry Ratzlaff is a photographer and multimedia artist. His photography draws inspiration from brief encounters with people and situations that are overlooked by others or which are disapproved of as unsafe or uncomfortable. In his work, Terry Ratzlaff hopes to bring more attention to the overlooked.

Saturday, July 15th, 10:00am to 4:00pm, $50 class fee

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

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In the Footsteps on Anna Atkins: Simple Photographic Botanical Illustration with Jacqueline Webster

In 1843, British author and botanist Anna Atkins published the first book illustrated with photography, called British Algae: Cyanotype Impressions. Using a simple iron-based photographic process invented by Sir John Herschel, Atkins made beautiful, simple blue print photograms of specimens with handwritten identification labels that she selfpublished in three volumes. Join photographer Jacqueline Webster for a day of creating your own cyanotype botanical illustrations using the same process Atkins used nearly 175 years ago. We’ll start the day learning the basics and history of the cyanotype process, then move on to some basics of plant identification and collection. Finally we’ll work on creating our own photographic records of the flora found onsite at Buffalo Peaks Ranch.

Saturday, July 29th, 10:00am to 4:00pm, $50 class fee

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

Remember to use Discount Code: PHOTO20 when you register for any of these workshops!

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photo by Berry Oliver

 

Ways to Tell a Story

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Andrew Beckham, at work on his book The Lost Christmas Gift. photo by the Denver Post

A wide-ranging workshop at Buffalo Peaks Ranch:

Storytelling with Image and Text with Andrew Beckham

Join photographer and author Andrew Beckham for a day of literary and visual exploration. While the worlds of literature and visual art have traditionally been seen as discrete disciplines, Mr. Beckham’s dynamic approach to storytelling has long sought to bring text and image together as a unified aesthetic whole. This workshop will provide a wealth of ideas and approaches for combining your own text and image ideas, with time in the field to explore, photograph, write, and contemplate how our own stories arise from experiences in the natural world.

Saturday, July 8th, 10am to 4pm,  $50 class fee.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

A Vortex of Brambles — Andrew Beckham

Andrew Beckham serves as the Visual Arts Department Chair at St. Mary’s Academy in Englewood, Colorado, where he teaches aesthetics, photography, works on paper and the illustrated book. In recent years Andrew has devoted much of his creative practice to the design and construction of artist’s books, some of which have been placed in the Special Collections Departments at both the Penrose Library at the University of Denver and the Norlin Library at the University of Colorado, Boulder. Two of these books, The Lost Christmas Gift and Firmament, have been acquired by enthusiastic publishers (Princeton Architectural Press and GFT Publishing) who have helped to bring his work to a much wider audience.

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In the fall of 2013, Andrew Beckham’s first solo museum exhibition was installed in the Taylor Museum at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center.

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Pleiades Rising — Andrew Beckham

 “Andrew Beckham is a lot of things, but I would consider him a visual poet, using language both written and visual to construct nuanced work that is compelling, fragile, and poignant.” — Aline Smithson, Lenscratch

For more on Andrew Beckham and his work, be sure to visit his website!

Landscape, Emotion & Meaning at Buffalo Peaks Ranch

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We are excited to announce this summer’s first Writers Workshop:

Landscape, Emotion, and Meaning with William Haywood Henderson

presented in partnership with Lighthouse Writers Workshop

Kent Haruf said in West of Last Chance, “It seems to me nothing man has done or built on this land is an improvement over what was here before.

And here you are, setting your story in that original, natural world, the wild wilderness without a trace of man, or perhaps in the tamed edges of wilderness, somewhere like South Park’s Buffalo Peaks Ranch. The landscape you employ can be much more than just a backdrop; landscape can embody the emotion of your characters, the mood of your story, and the themes running through your art. In this workshop, we’ll study the works of some writers who use landscape expertly, then learn techniques to put landscape to its deepest, richest use in your own writing.

William Haywood Henderson earned a BA in English from the University of California at Berkeley, an MA in creative writing from Brown University, and attended Stanford University as a Wallace Stegner Fellow in Creative Writing. He is the author of three novels: Native, The Rest of the Earth, and Augusta Locke. He has taught creative writing at Brown, Harvard, the University of Denver, and the University of Colorado at Denver, and is currently on the MFA faculty at Ashland University in Ohio. At Lighthouse Writers Workshop, he directs the Book Project and teaches the Advanced Novel Workshop and the Novel Bootcamp. We are pleased to work with Lighthouse Writers Workshop in bringing William Haywood Henderson to Buffalo Peaks Ranch!

Saturday, July 1st, 10am to 4pm,  $50 class fee.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

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Three novels of William Haywood Henderson, along with a late morning photo taken on the front porch of Buffalo Peaks Ranch’s Main House.

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Buffalo Peaks Ranch: a rich landscape that we’ve only just begun to explore. Join us!

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The landscape you employ can be much more than just a backdrop; landscape can embody the emotion of your characters, the mood of your story, and the themes running through your art.” — from William Haywood Henderson’s workshop description.

A Book-filled Work Day at the Ranch

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Over Memorial Day weekend, Land Library volunteers met at Buffalo Peaks Ranch to gather some (260 to be exact) of our favorite books from the Ranch’s stored collection.

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Book plates were placed & pasted into the chosen books and photographed one by one. We will be finishing up the digital photo sorting and file labeling this week so we can send the photos to our Kickstarter Sponsored Book backers as soon as possible. Other backers can expect to see their sponsored books soon after.

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Each book was placed on an old Singer Sewing table and photographed.

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Another priceless volume from The New Naturalist series!

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A wonderful volume to add to our always growing collection of ranch histories.

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The bookplates will always remind us of the amazing support we’ve received!

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A perfect title for the Cooks House Library, wouldn’t you say?

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We pause a moment every time we see this favorite tome by John Muir.

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A Western classic finds a home at Buffalo Peaks Ranch!

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So many great books on the diverse cultures of the American Southwest.

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Cowboy up!

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We can never pass up a book by, or about, the great conservationist Aldo Leopold.

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A terrific new volume on raptors, or if you like, you can sit on the Main House’s front porch and watch the hawks & falcons soar.

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Raptor, a great title donated by the Gruening Middle School Library in Eagle River, Alaska.

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Ruxton — an early explorer who explored South Park, maybe even parts of the ranch?

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We had a wonderful day, unpacking books and getting them ready for the Cooks House Library’s shelves. THANKS to so many Kickstarter backers who made all of this possible!

 

 

 

Two New Artist Workshops at the Ranch!

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Rhythm II by Brian Napier

We are excited to announce the Rocky Mountain Land Library’s first Summer 2017 Workshop at Buffalo Peaks Ranch:

ECOLOGY IN ART with BRIAN NAPIER

This is a conceptually focused course discussing the role that artists can play in the rapidly evolving conversation with our environment. The course will dive into issues ecology, sustainability, and environmental activism through the lens of leading contemporary artists today. Students will have a chance to openly discuss strategies that can be used in the creation of ecological conscious art, as well was brainstorm their own ideas in how to make artwork dealing with the local environment of Colorado. This course will be split evenly between lecture, discussion, and hands on project drafting.

Saturday, June 10th, 10am to 4pm,  $50 class fee.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

Brian Napier is a Denver artist whose work has been featured in several galleries, and in Westword, and Garo. Brian artist statement reads: “My work exists in the indifferent nature of nature. Examining the existential play of human beings and the debris left in our wake.”

A native of the Oklahoma plains, Brian moved to California where he quickly fell in love with his natural surroundings and with the Earth’s ability to relieve stress and create new perspective. — Kristopher Wright, Odessa

Late spring snows and driving rain forced us to postpone Meghan Wilbar’s Drawing Landscape class. Here’s your second chance to sign up! 

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DRAWING THE LANDSCAPE with MEGHAN WILBAR

This daylong workshop will focus on the process of seeing and translating the experience of the landscape in simplified shapes and colors. You will explore a drawing technique that combines elements of collage, pencil line drawing and ink washes to emphasize space and movement within a landscape. This will be a outdoor workshop, with all materials included.

Saturday, June 24th, 10am to 4pm,  $50 class fee.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

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Meghan Wilbar received her BA from Knox College and her MFA from the New York Studio School. She has been awarded several fellowships for artist residencies and has her work in private and public collections. She currently lives and works in Denver. For more, view Meghan’s website here.

For Meghan, the landscape provides inspiration, emotional and spatial relationships, and an overall connection to the human experience. She aims to squeeze an expansive landscape into a compressed, tension-filled space. The result: the landscape’s own experience of reality. Each painting is conceived through a series of on-site drawings. The drawings extract form, movement, and space in simple shades of white, brown, and black. The process of painting integrates the shapes from the drawings into the dialogue of paint. The application of layers, washes, and drips of oil paint furthers the exploration of the emotive quality of the landscape.

“The natural world holds the key to abstraction through the dance between colliding forms and the interchange of negative and positive space, light and color. I use this natural abstraction to create paintings that evoke the experiences one has within one’s surroundings. The paintings are brief histories of moments constantly shifting, reorganizing to reveal the underlying structure in the landscape.” – Meghan Wilbar

We’ll have plenty of thought-provoking books on hand for all our summer workshops! 

 

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CLICK HERE FOR MUCH MORE ON THIS SUMMER’S BUFFALO PEAKS RANCH CLASS SCHEDULE!

 

Ecology in Art with Brian Napier

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We are excited to announce the Rocky Mountain Land Library’s second Summer Workshop at Buffalo Peaks Ranch:

ECOLOGY IN ART with BRIAN NAPIER

This is a conceptually focused course discussing the role that artists can play in the rapidly evolving conversation with our environment. The course will dive into issues ecology, sustainability, and environmental activism through the lens of leading contemporary artists today. Students will have a chance to openly discuss strategies that can be used in the creation of ecological conscious art, as well was brainstorm their own ideas in how to make artwork dealing with the local environment of Colorado. This course will be split evenly between lecture, discussion, and hands on project drafting.

Saturday, June 10th, 10am to 4pm,  $50 class fee.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

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Rhythm II by Brian Napier

Brian Napier is a Denver artist whose work has been featured in several galleries, and in Westword, and Garo. Brian artist statement reads: “My work exists in the indifferent nature of nature. Examining the existential play of human beings and the debris left in our wake.”

A native of the Oklahoma plains, Brian moved to California where he quickly fell in love with his natural surroundings and with the Earth’s ability to relieve stress and create new perspective. — Kristopher Wright, Odessa

We’ll have plenty of thought-provoking books on hand for Brian’s workshop too!

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“I don’t like to frame the work in a negative manner. It would be very easy for me to take this tragic material and display it in a tragic way. So, I try as hard as I can to play a neutral role in making the work, because I too am involved in this whole processes of consumption, destruction, and renewal.” — Brian Napier, from Odessa

Class in Session at Buffalo Peaks Ranch!

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Sherrie York’s Illustrating Nature class doing some warm-up drawing exercises, 2016

The Land Library is very excited about the upcoming summer of workshops, classes and field studies at Buffalo Peaks Ranch. With programs on art, photography, writing, natural history, natural building, there is a lot to choose from.

We’re also thrilled to host the Land Library’s third Annual Summer Book Club at the ranch. This year’s selection is Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac, a classic that is bound to generate a great discussion!

Take a look at our Summer Schedule, and start planning your next trip to South Park’s Buffalo Peaks Ranch!

CLICK HERE FOR MUCH MORE

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We’re Excited: Let the Summer Begin!

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Looking up valley, toward Mount Silverheels in morning mist. photo by Jay Halsey

The Rocky Mountain Land Library is very excited about our Summer Schedule at Buffalo Peaks Ranch. Some favorites return from our first two summers, along with many new workshops, classes, and field courses — along with our third annual Summer Book Club. All will be announced on May 1st — stay tuned!

To give you a feel for what’s ahead this season, here is our first ranch workshop, taught by an accomplished Denver artist:

DRAWING THE LANDSCAPE with MEGHAN WILBAR

This daylong workshop will focus on the process of seeing and translating the experience of the landscape in simplified shapes and colors. You will explore a drawing technique that combines elements of collage, pencil line drawing and ink washes to emphasize space and movement within a landscape. This will be a outdoor workshop, with all materials included.

Saturday, May 27th, 10am to 4pm,  $50 class fee.

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Meghan Wilbar received her BA from Knox College and her MFA from the New York Studio School. She has been awarded several fellowships for artist residencies and has her work in private and public collections. She currently lives and works in Denver. For more, view Meghan’s website here.

For Meghan, the landscape provides inspiration, emotional and spatial relationships, and an overall connection to the human experience. She aims to squeeze an expansive landscape into a compressed, tension-filled space. The result: the landscape’s own experience of reality. Each painting is conceived through a series of on-site drawings. The drawings extract form, movement, and space in simple shades of white, brown, and black. The process of painting integrates the shapes from the drawings into the dialogue of paint. The application of layers, washes, and drips of oil paint furthers the exploration of the emotive quality of the landscape.

“The natural world holds the key to abstraction through the dance between colliding forms and the interchange of negative and positive space, light and color. I use this natural abstraction to create paintings that evoke the experiences one has within one’s surroundings. The paintings are brief histories of moments constantly shifting, reorganizing to reveal the underlying structure in the landscape.” – Meghan Wilbar

For more information, and how to register, contact Jeff Lee at jeff@landlibrary.org, 303-321-3574.

New Goal in sight: over 1,000 Backers!

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The Rocky Mountain Land Library is thrilled to have reached our $125,000 Kickstarter goal. Thanks to all our remarkable backers (over 850 strong) we will be able to completely renovate the Cooks House. With that we’ll have two lodgings, a warm & wonderful kitchen, a large meeting space, and the ranch’s first library.

But with two full days to go in our campaign, we aren’t finished yet. We’ll keep reaching out to new & current backers to help us do even more at the ranch this summer.

Our new goal at the end of this exciting campaign is to bring even more people to the Land Library project.

We would love to gain over 1,000 backers by the end of this Friday! 

There are several manageable work projects that we are itching to accomplish this summer, including fixing up this cozy, donated caravan:

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Along with a roomy bed, there’s even space for a writing desk!

Food, and the communal act of cooking,  will always be an important part of Buffalo Peaks Ranch. With additional Kickstarter funds we’ll be able to dust off this wonderful old Forest Service Manual, and build our very own Hillside Oven:

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“Cooking is all about connection, I’ve learned, between us and other species, other times, other cultures (human and microbial both), but, most important, other people. Cooking is one of the more beautiful forms that human generosity takes…. Michael Pollan, from Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation.

Then, for the comfort of all (and always trying to live lighter on the land) we would love to build two compostable toilet/outhouses for ranch visitors:

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It’s always about much more than the work: Each additional project funded in our Kickstarter campaign’s final hours will be achieved by expert advice and volunteer labor. They will also be occasions that bring people together at the ranch, giving us the chance to work on something greater than ourselves — building something for the common good we all care so much about.

We have until Friday, 11:59 pm. Please pledge your support and share our Kickstarter link with friends!

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Help bring books, people & programs to Colorado’s Buffalo Peaks Ranch. With your support we will transform a historic high mountain ranch into a residential library devoted to land, community, and the many positive ways we can all move forward together.

But first, CLICK HERE and you’ll find out much more. Learn how you can be an important part of this land-inspired, book-loving grassroots project!

PLEASE DONATE & PLEASE SHARE!

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One of our volunteer-built Leopold Benches, with Mount Silverheels at sunrise.

Books + Land + (the missing piece we’re all working toward)

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University of Colorado’s School of Architecture graduate students beginning their design work at Buffalo Peaks Ranch.

We love Mark Wren, and the Rocky Mountain Land Library is incredibly fortunate to have him on our Board of Directors. Mark is well-known in the book world, serving as a sales representative for Texas Bookman for many years. He just sent this wonderful note off to friends, and we had to share it with the world!

Mark really captures the urgency (and OPPORTUNITY) coming up in the last 9 days of our all-or-nothing Kickstarter campaign:

Dear Friends,

I would like to give you an update on our Kickstarter campaign for the Rocky Mountain Land Library.  We’re at an exciting stage with our efforts in getting the first building completely rehabilitated and renovated, so we can add the most important element – people!

This will allow us to fill in our missing element:   Books + Land + PEOPLE = the most amazing space and experience.

To all of you who have already pledged on our Kickstarter page – THANK YOU!  To my friends who are still thinking about making a pledge, please know that your pledge is so important.  We all know our world is changing so much, and the Rocky Mountain Land Library is a special place that will allow us to reconnect, reenergize, and revitalize our connections to the land, to the printed word, and to each other.  Ultimately, is there anything more important?

Please visit our Kickstarter page to learn more, and know that I’m here to answer any questions you may have.  Our leaders Jeff Lee and Ann Martin are a constant source of inspiration, and we have them to thank for their vision and amazing commitment.  I hope one day we can all gather at the ranch and celebrate together, with books in our hands, stars in the sky above, and friendship & fellowship with each other.  Thank you – happy pledging, AND reading!

We have 9 days left to go, and we’re more than half way to our goal – so the remaining days are so important!

Link to the Rocky Mountain Land Library Kickstarter page

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All my best,
Mark
Mark Wren, board member

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Help bring books, people & programs to Colorado’s Buffalo Peaks Ranch. With your support we will transform a historic high mountain ranch into a residential library devoted to land, community, and the many positive ways we can all move forward together.

But first, CLICK HERE and you’ll find out much more. Learn how you can be an important part of this land-inspired, book-loving grassroots project!

PLEASE DONATE & PLEASE SHARE!