Tag Archives: photography

Relic :: NH

5 Dec

Relic :: NH

“Do it for the ‘gram!” – People who ruin it for the rest of us.

This fall, Melissa and I took a trip to lower VT/NH for some foliage shots. We stopped at a quiet spot for sunrise, then schlepped over to Madame Sherri’s. It’s been on the list of places to see for a long time and we were finally checking it off.

We get there and the place was over run with people. Knowing this is a popular and unique location though, I was willing to be patient and wait my turn. Everyone has the same right to experience this spot, right?

But then a college-aged looking girl started climbing the stairs and perched over the top arch. The arch that clearly has a crack in it. The arch that looks likely to fall first.

Maybe it’s the nurse in her. Maybe it’s the mom in her. Either way, Melissa called out, suggesting that it wasn’t safe and that she would come down the steps a bit.

The girl’s mother, who was taking shots of the girl on her cell phone, turned to us and said it was fine. And heck, she’s the girl’s guardian so who are we to disagree?

But truth be told, it rankled. In part, because no one wants to see a kid get hurt if that thing crashes down. But also, if someone is up there when it does eventually crumble, and they get injured, Everyone will lose access to the ruins.

So many people these days have an entitled, short-sighted attitude. While I fully support an adventurous mindset, I also believe in safety and conservation; those things don’t have to be mutually exclusive, but the I-do-what-I-want mentality really throws a wrench into things.

Ultimately, the girl came down off of the stairs safely, but how many people will see her post on social media and think to mimic her? We all have a responsibility to set good examples. If we aren’t willing to speak up when we see something dangerous and to preserve our special places (environment, planet, etc) now, then what are we leaving for our children? Once the places or access is gone, it’s gone.

If you’re interested in prints this gift-giving season, let me know.  You can find a gallery’s worth of options here.

 

Waters Meet :: WA

2 Dec

Waters Meet :: WA

“Speak the truth, even if your voice shakes.”

Earlier this year, I learned of the sudden passing of Karen, a fellow photographer. As I said to another friend, it’s always the good ones we lose too soon.

You see, besides being a lovely person to chat with, Karen was an advocate for the environment and an artist to her core. She started a magazine that was a way for artists to celebrate nature. The idea was that people will care about things they are invested in, things that they love…so she tried to showcase the beauty of nature to inspire others to love it the way she did. To advocate for it the way she did.

She used her talents and time to make a positive difference in this world. It was, in a word, inspiring.

How many people see something they wish were different, better, safer but don’t speak up? How many people think their voice doesn’t matter? They’re only one person? Imagine if those same people stepped up and worked toward change instead of turning away from our problems. Imagine if they used the skills and talents at their disposal to tackle problems and make things better.

Karen was a great example of what could be, and she will surely be missed.  I’ll honor her memory by reminding myself to speak up, even if its difficult, about the things that matter. ❤

This is a photo of one of the many incredible waterfalls in the Pacific Northwest.  If you’re interested in prints, let me know!  You can find a gallery’s worth of options here. You can contact me at seespotsphoto AT yahoo DOT com.  I’m offering 10% off if you purchase between now and Tuesday.  I’ll donate that same 10% to one of my favorite charities, Heifer International who works on reducing world poverty with sustainable agriculture and business practices.

 

Traverse :: CT

1 Dec

Traverse :: CT

“Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details if how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.” -Ernest Hemmingway

Found this hidden gem in CT one rainy day this fall, and had the place almost entirely to myself.  It was so damn peaceful. ❤

If you’re interested in prints this gift-giving season, let me know! You can find a gallery’s worth of options here. You can contact me at seespotsphoto AT yahoo DOT com.  I’m offering 10% off if you purchase between now and Tuesday.  I’ll donate that same 10% to one of my favorite charities, Heifer International who works on reducing world poverty with sustainable agriculture and business practices.

 

Supporting dreams with Small Business Saturday, Etc.

30 Nov
Light Bright :: CT

Light Bright :: CT

Yesterday, I thought to myself, “Self, I should promote my business for Black Friday.”  Then I took my dog for a three mile hike and spent time with loved ones instead.

Thanksgiving is truly my favorite holiday, because it’s about spending time with the people that make our hearts feel full.  And eating until our pants bust. 😛  I feel Christmas is just too damn commercial these days.  But, if I must shop, I try to support my entrepreneurial friends in their endeavors.  Then, I’m not falling into the trap of predatory marketing…I’m supporting someone’s dream.

I urge you to spend some time browsing your friends websites, etsy, craft fairs, etc to see if there’s any goodies you want to pass on to your friends and family this gift-giving season.  Musicians, crocheters, painters, jewelry makers, etc.

And if you happen to own a small business, I urge YOU to leave your website in the comments.  Lets help support each others dreams this holiday season. ❤

For those of you interested in purchasing prints of my photos, there is a whole gallery’s worth of options here.  You can contact me at seespotsphoto AT yahoo DOT com.  I’m offering 10% off if you purchase between now and Tuesday.  I’ll donate that same 10% to one of my favorite charities, Heifer International who works on reducing world poverty with sustainable agriculture and business practices.

The Restorative Effects of Landscape Photography

17 Jun

The newest article on the restorative effects of landscape photography is out in the current issue of On Landscape. Big thanks to Matt Payne over at F-Stop Collaborate and Listen podcast for his interview of William Patino. That was what sparked this article. Also, big thanks to David Pasillas, James Crouch of The Eye of the Mind Photography and Jennifer over at Art Therapy Nest in NY for helping me shape this article.

Give it a read, and let me know what you think! 😊

Heartwood :: WA

7 May
Heartwood :: WA

Heartwood :: WA

Three years ago I made my first trip to Oregon where I hiked through Opal Creek Wilderness.  The trail there is incredibly lush, with mossy halls and nurse logs for days.  In fact, that is where I learned what nurse logs were – a fallen tree that, as it decays, provides shelter and nutrients to seedlings.  That struck a cord for me.  Ever since then, nurse logs have made me smile when I stumbled upon them.  We all need help and protection somewhere along the way to help us thrive, and there is something heartwarming about the idea of the younger generations building upon the foundations of the generation before them in the hopes of growing to greater heights.  It’s a great metaphor for our own lives, and reminds me to appreciate all of the help I’ve had along the way in my own journey.

I have so much gratitude for all of the support that every one of you have given to me.  I’ve been fortunate enough to have some incredible mentors and photography friends who encourage me to be my best, and I feel motivated to work harder by all of your kind words, referrals for work, print purchases, etc.  You guys keep me reaching for new heights and I cannot thank you enough for your support over the years!

Nature First

30 Apr
Nature First :: WA

Nature First :: WA

 

Last week, Jennifer Renwick and Sarah Marino (both spectacular landscape photographers and humans!) approached me with a new initiative they are working on called “Nature First”.

In some ways, landscape photography is a double edged sword.  I think most of us get into this field because we love nature and want to celebrate and share the beauty of the world with others, in the hopes that we might inspire them to embrace nature as we have.  However, with the evolution of social media, and the affordability of travel, it’s become easier than ever for people to visit locations they’ve seen beautiful photos of…and without proper education and restraint, things can quickly get out of hand.  For example, a few weeks back, California experienced a super bloom of poppies – one of the most prolific years they’ve had in quite some time.  People flocked to see the flowers, to disastrous effect.   Tens of thousands of people descended on Lake Elsinore, and the popular Walker Canyon had to be shut down, as they could not accommodate the volume of visitors.  And the tourists themselves lacked the caution necessary to preserve such fragile locations, often straying from paths, disturbing wildlife (at least one rattlesnake bite was reported) and trampling huge swaths of the very thing they’d come to see.

In a similar example, just this past week, Panther Falls in Oregon closed the route to the lower falls because someone fell trying to see it.  That location was made popular by landscape photographers, and now, access is being restricted.

I cannot say that in my time as a photographer, I have never been careless, thoughtless or broken a rule I didn’t agree with.  But over time, I’ve come to realize that if I am to be a good steward for this planet, then I need to place its needs over the desire for a pretty shot.  I cannot assume that simply because I did the rock walk around fragile alpine that someone else will.  I can’t assume that because I know to keep a massive distance between myself and wildlife, and have access to a large zoom lens that someone else will.  I need to be more thoughtful in what I do, and just as importantly (if not more) in what I share, and how I share it.  Do I use my photos as teachable moments?  Do I use caution when posting fragile locations?  Am I doing my best to protect our green spaces?

To that end, Nature First has come up with a list of guidelines specifically for landscape photographers, in conjunction with the Leave No Trace principles.

 

1. Prioritize the well-being of nature over photography.

2. Educate yourself about the places you photograph.

3. Reflect on the possible impact of your actions.

4. Use discretion if sharing locations.

5. Know and follow rules and regulations.

6. Always follow Leave No Trace principles and strive to leave places better than you found them.

7. Actively promote and educate others about these principles

 

If you’re interested in learning more about the Nature First movement, or better yet, joining, you can read about it over at https://www.naturefirstphotography.org
 
Every single one of us has the ability to make a positive difference and use our voice for change.  What will you do with yours?