Educational Presentations

Julian Gray presents a wide variety of lectures, presentations, workshops, and keynotes on geology, mineral collecting, and photography, specifically rock and mineral photograph and photomicrography. To bring Julian Gray to your next event, conference, class, or symposium, please use our contact form.

How to Dispose of your Collection

Many hobbyists amass huge collections over their many active years. When it comes time to part with some or all of your collection, how will you share this collection with others? If you were to die, will you leave your family or friends with a garage, basement, and/or shed full of rocks? In this talk you will learn about the reasons for disposing of all or part of your collection, considerations of selling versus donating, and how to get an appraisal for tax purposes. This presentation is for all hobbies, not jut mineral collecting.

Minerals of Georgia

In 2016, Auburn professor Robert Cook, Jose Santamaria, and I published Minerals of Georgia, an update and significant revision of Dr. Cook’s original version published in 1978. This presentations covers the geology of Georgia and how that affects where what minerals can be found. Most of Georgia’s best mineral localities are lavishly illustrated with high quality photographs in this presentation.

Gold in Georgia

gold nugget

Gold nugget from the Etowah River, Lumpkin County, Georgia. 1 cm high, Travis Paris collection. Credit: Jeff Scovil photo.

In the 1820s, the discovery of gold in the southeast, especially in North Carolina and Georgia set off America’s first gold rush.

Julian Gray covers the geology of gold in the Southeastern US, the history of its discovery rush, establishment of the Charlotte, N.C. and Dahlonega, Georgia, mints. Many examples of Georgia gold in private collections as well as collections of Tellus Science Museum, former Georgia Capital Museum, and the Dahlonega Gold Museum are featured in this talk.

Graves Mountain, Georgia

Since the early 1800s, Graves Mountain in East-Central Georgia has been that state’s most noteworthy collecting site. Collectors extracted some of the World’s finest lazulite and rutile crystals in the early days of collecting there. From the 1960s to 1980s, Graves Mountain was operated as a kyanite mine. Mining exposed hundreds of incredible rutile, lazulite, and iridescent hematite specimens that made their way into museums and collections around the world. Dedicated groups of micromineral collectors have discovered many rare and beautiful phosphate minerals there.


Many of the nearly 6,000 known mineral species occur as microscopic minerals; many of which were discovered by micromounters. Micromounting is a subset of mineral collecting that specializes in the study of micro-minerals, minerals that require magnification to be fully appreciated. A micromount is a mineral specimen that is trimmed and attractively mounted in a tiny box (7/8″ x 7/8″) and properly labeled. This is a rewarding and fascinating area of mineral collecting. This presentation can be tailored to either a history of micromounting or an overview of the micromounting hobby.