Viewing entries tagged
National Parks

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Here's to the Unknown

2013 was incredible to say the least. Now I look ahead at what I want to accomplish in 2014 and I don't know how it all will happen, but I will continue pressing forward doing everything I can. In a previous post I talked about a new national park project I have in the works and I'd like to tell you a little about it. 

The trip will be to one of the most remote national parks in the country, Lake Clark National Park. It is a park bigger than the size of Rhode Island and Delaware combined. The park is home to three mountain ranges, two volcanoes, tundra, and coastal regions. There are no roads in and you have to reach the park by bush plane. It is part of the world's largest sockeye salmon run and has an incredible variety of wildlife. 


Why Lake Clark National Park?

Aren't there closer and more accessible parks with beautiful terrain and wildlife? Of course there are. Lake Clark is facing a very large problem. The proposed Pebble Mine would be virtually right next to the park. This mine would become the largest open pit mine in North America. The permanent tailing ponds would be enormous, not to mention the pit itself. Lake Clark contains one of the most pristine ecosystems in the world. There is little doubt that pollutants and contaminants from the Pebble Mine would harm the local ecosystems. I want to tell the park's story. High quality media will help people care about protecting the park.

Why else?

As I have been researching this trip, I realize hardly anyone knows this place exists and there is very little high quality media from it. The story of Lake Clark National Park as a whole needs to be told. 

What will I do?

I am going to backpack through the park with light weight gear I am designing so I can capture a variety of media while being able to cover a large area. My team will be shooting stills, video, timelapses, getting underwater footage, as well as aerial media. By capturing this wide variety of media we will be able to bring Lake Clark National Park to the viewers and create an immersive experience. 

I don't know how exactly I will be able to accomplish this expedition. Chartered flights on float planes into the park are incredibly expensive. I'm in the process of applying for as many photography grants as I can find. If you know of anyone that would be interested in supporting this project please contact me. I feel like this is a story that needs to be told.


I don't know what exactly will happen this year, but I know great things are in store, much like the beauty of a sunrise precedes the events of an incredible day.


Schwabacher Landing at Sunrise

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Year in Review

A year ago I would have never imagined all the amazing places I would get to visit in 2013. It was a wild ride. Because 2013 was all about national Parks for me I decided for my year in review I would post my favorite image from every national park I visited in 2013.

 

I learned so much in 2013 and I hope these pictures inspire you to go visit a national park. There are so many incredible places in this world. To finish things off I'll leave you with my first foray into time lapses, hopefully in 2014 I'll be able to mix in a few awesome time lapses with the rest of my photos.

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Thank you

I thought I would stop and say thank you to all of you who have supported my photography this past year. I am so grateful for everyone who has been encouraging me and supporting me. Photography has taken me to some incredible places in the past year. 

Hopefully the next year will have equally amazing things in store. I'm working on another national park project for 2014. This time in Alaska. Hopefully everything will work out in planning it and finding the grants and sponsors to make it possible.

 

The stars are amazing at the rim of the Grand Canyon

The world is an amazing place that I am very grateful for, get out and experience it.

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Kickstarter Prints

For all of my Kickstarter backers, this is the gallery of images you can choose from for your print from the project. Once you find your favorite image, remember the title and choose that option on the form I will send you. Be sure to click on the thumbnails so you can see the bigger image and the title.

If you are not one of my Kickstarter backers but are interested in prints please contact me for pricing.

 

 

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Olympic National Park

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Olympic National Park

Ruby's Beach in Olympic National Park

Olympic National Park is a great example of the diversity our national parks have to offer. It has coastal regions, like this shot of Ruby's Beach, rain forest and mountain regions.

My favorite part of our visit was to the beaches. The rock formations jutting out of the Pacific made for great pictures. If you are going to be in Olympic National Park for a longer period of time check the tide charts to see what the best day is to visit at sunset. At one beach we went to the tide was coming in at sunset and took away a few compositions I liked, but we were only there for two days so I didn't have much of a choice to go another day.

Some other places in the park that should definitely be visited are the Hoh Rain Forest and Hurricane Ridge.

A corroding grill over a fire pit

A corroding grill over a fire pit

There were not a lot of closures in Olympic National Park, but we saw the effects of budget cuts in different ways. The effect of the over $10 billion maintenance backlog could be seen right in our own campsite. The grill on our fire pit was very corroded and in need of replacement. I certainly would not want to cook on a bunch of rust and corrosion.  

This would normally be a place to dump waste water or clean dishes, but it now sits with construction unfinished.

This would normally be a place to dump waste water or clean dishes, but it now sits with construction unfinished.

Second Beach in Olympic National Park

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How to get a sunburst in your images

Sunburst at Sunset in the Tetons

ISO 100   f/18  1/10

I have had a few people ask how I get this sunburst effect in my pictures. It's really a pretty simple technique. If you use a very small aperture, something like f/16 or higher usually you can create this effect.

The thing you have to be careful of is metering your exposure. If you use evaluative metering, this means the camera will take an overall average of the light in the scene to pick the exposure, the camera will usually over expose the image. When I'm trying to do this I will usually use spot metering or shoot in manual mode and then bracket the exposures. 

One other thing to keep in mind is that if you are trying to do this just as the sun dips below the horizon or just as it comes up you will have very little time to get your shot. So go out and practice so you can get the technique down. 

If you get some great results I'd love to see them. Post a link in the comments. 

 

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Grand Teton National Park

Schwabacher Landing

Grand Teton National Park is one of my favorite places on earth. There are so many opportunities to take amazing pictures, whether it be of the iconic landscape or the plentiful wildlife. Last year on my visit to Grand Teton National Park I wanted to capture a great image of the Snake River Overlook and follow in the footsteps of Ansel Adams. This year the Tetons would be the start of a 16 day journey to 8 national parks to help preserve the national parks for future generations. So again, I felt a little like I was following Ansel Adams in a small way. He was commissioned just before the United States' entry into WWII to capture images of our national parks for the Department of the Interior. I would be showing why the national parks are worth protecting and how the parks are being affected by budget cuts.

Originally, Grand Teton National Park was going to have to close many of it's visitor's centers, but generous one time grants from local groups allowed for the centers to stay open. There still are closures in the park this year and reduced ranger programs. 

The road to Schwabacher Landing has been closed for the season.

Campfire ranger programs have been cancelled for the 2013 year. This amphitheater will remain empty this year.

The Flagg Ranch Information Station was shut down this year. This station was the first place to get park information when coming from Yellowstone.

Near Schwabacher Landing

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