Chasing Time: One Room Schools in Montana

Chaput_Neil-2Neil Chaput de Saintonge – RMSP founder, former student of Ansel Adams, and photo instructor for over 45 years – will be in Billings, MT on March 23 – 24, 2017 to support a traveling photo show he created with fellow photographer and University of Montana Photojournalism Instructor Keith Graham. The show, titled Chasing Time: Montana’s One Room Schools will be on display at the Northcutt Steele Gallery from February 16 – March 30, 2017.

Two photographers, Neil Chaput de Saintonge and Keith Graham spent much of the 2013-2014 school year photographing active one-room schools in the state on Montana. 100 years earlier in the 1913-1914 school year there were 200,200 active one-room schools in the United States. 100 years later there were just 200, with 75 of them being primarily in eastern Montana. Neil and Keith spent a day or more at 25 of these schools. Neil Chaput de Saintonge will give a talk with slides of many of these images. He will talk about how the project was done and his views of the education these children received. He will share many fun stories of working with these schools, teachers and students.

Gallery Reception and Artist Talk:

On March 23, 2017 there will be a public reception from 5 – 8 pm in the Northcutt Steele Gallery, 1st floor of Liberal Arts Building, MSU Billings campus. (Parking on MSUB campus is free after 5pm). At 6:30 that evening, in Room LI148 (the lecture hall next to the gallery), Neil will be giving a one-hour artist talk about the creation of the images and his experience traveling around Montana to photograph these iconic one-room school houses. A natural lecturer, Neil will discuss everything that went into the process of this ambitious endeavor, from developing the idea to filling up the gas tank dozens of times! He will gladly answer any and all questions during his talk.

Free Lecture on Photography Equipment:

The following day, March 24, starting at 10:30 am Neil will offer an additional two-part lecture on new developments in digital photographic equipment in LI148 (the same room). There is no fee or reservation needed for this event, and it is open to the public. This highly informative lecture will be of benefit to photographers just getting started, or seasoned shooters who could benefit from learning more about today’s cameras. The two parts of the lectures are as follows:

Part 1: The Landscape of Cameras
Part one of this lecture will titled The Landscape of Cameras, and will help you get your bearings and make sense of the current landscape of today’s photo market. While covering both mirrorless and DSLR camera systems, Neil will touch on over 20 different features to look for when buying a camera such as GPS, wifi capabilities, high ISO performance and fast auto-focus capabilities. He will provide a robust spreadsheet that compares various makes and models of camera, and many of their features, and offer a list of helpful websites for attendees to refer back to.

Part 2: All About Lenses
The second part of his lecture will cover the multitude of lenses on the market. Arguably one of the most important accessories a photographer will ever purchase is a lens, yet even with the multitude of options available, there is no such thing as the perfect one! During this lecture Neil will cover several lens features that are important to consider before making a purchasing decision, and he’ll offer tips on how you can save money in the process. He will discuss on- and off-brand models for DSLR and Mirrorless camera systems. Whether you photograph sports, landscapes, people or a bit of everything, choosing a lens is an important decision that will greatly impact your images. This lecture will open your eyes as to what lenses are available and make sure you are able to make an informed decision before your next purchase.


If you are in the Billings area and can make it to either of Neil’s talks, we encourage you to do so. Neil would love to see you!

For media inquiries and additional images contact Dr. Leanne Gilbertson, Director of Northcutt Steele Gallery,; (406) 657-2903.