Can an entire city, or even an entire state be considered a "studio?" Here in Missoula, Montana, we think it can. From our
historic downtown, to the golden mountains that ring our valley, to the picturesque ranches, rodeos, and wild mountainscapes
radiating out across our home state, we think you'll find it an incomparable place to study photography.
When RMSP students first arrive here, they immediately understand why Missoula appears regularly in the "Best Town" lists of
national magazines. It's been called the best mountain town, best town for retirees, best town for fishing, paddling, cycling.
You get the idea. For all those reasons—mountains, rivers, historic architecture, colorful locals—it also happens to be
one of the best cities for photographers.
As the cultural capital of the Northern Rockies, the city itself hums with creative energy. Within a short walk from RMSP's
classrooms in the historic Higgins Building, there are art galleries, photography studios, arthouse movie theaters, twice-weekly
farmer's and artisan markets, an eclectic mix of bistros, and a vibrant riverfront lined with walking paths and endless
photographic opportunities. Summertime features a flood of festivals, parades, and Shakespeare in the Park performances. Creativity
even infuses the local bars—the walls of the legendary Charlie B's are lined with Lee Nye's framed black-and-white portraits of the
saloon's rough-hewn regulars from the 1970s.
Missoula's summers are legendary for their sundrenched days, cool nights, and bring-you-to-tears sunsets over the western mountains.
Permanently protected natural areas ring the city and are alive with crystalline creeks, old-growth forest, and views across
mountains stacked upon mountains.
Three major rivers converge here—the Bitterroot, Clark Fork, and the storied Blackfoot of A River Runs Through It fame—offering
an almost absurd wealth of fly fishing, river running, and scenic riches. Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge, 25 miles
south and one of our favorite shooting locations, is a wonderland of bird life and reedy marshes, still pools, and stands of
cottonwood backed by the vaulting, sawtooth pyramids of the Bitterroot Mountains. Ninepipes National Wildlife Refuge, an hour north
at the foot of the mighty Mission Mountains, may be even more spectacular.
That's just our backyard. Head 3 hours north and you're in Glacier National Park, 5 hours southeast and you're in Yellowstone—two
of the most scenic national parks in the country. The valleys in between are dotted with working ranches and true-blue cowboys
who don't wear Stetson's, tight jeans, and giant belt buckles to be trendy, it's just who they are.
All together, it's a feast for the hungry photographer. You can understand why spending time in Missoula and Montana—our studio
writ large—often proves as rewarding to our students as the school itself.
Lightroom for Photographers
The Photography of People
Intro to Studio Lighting
The Business of Outdoor
The Modern Studio
Adventure & Lifestyle Photography
Food and Product Photography
Other Montana Workshops
Autumn in Yellowstone
Glacier National Park