Greetings! I’m headed off to Hawaii today to lead a photography retreat of EPIC proportions – but before I go I wanted to share some photos from my recent trip to the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia – part of the world’s largest archipelago – where we found, after a couple of days of searching, a social group of macaque monkeys.
As you can tell from these photos these animals are friendly, outgoing and most of all, grabby! Many of you know of the controversy surrounding the macaques of Sulawesi and photographer David Slater. I post these photos so we can all appreciate the often joyful personalities of these outgoing creatures. These are curious animals whom have no fear of the camera, mug for it, and often reach for it out of curiosity – hence the appearance of ‘selfie’ type shots. Rest assured, I was not about to trust them with my expensive equipment!
Though this trip started out with such wonderful subjects (pygmy tarsier’s included!), it was unfortunately cut short due to medical concerns. You see, back in the spring I took a trip to Chad and came away great photos of elephants and some not so great sand fly bites. If you are unfortunate enough to experience such a thing, get them treated immediately! To make a long (and not particularly pretty) story short, CDC was eventually involved despite my best efforts to treat them as recommended by my doctors back in Seattle. Given that the remainder of the trip was structured around diving opportunities, we felt it best not to tempt fate with the damp and irritation of repeatedly changing in and out of a wet suit. I’m on the mend – but I can’t stress enough how important it is to address such things immediately!
The last stop on my Africa adventure took me to Namib-Naukluft National Park in Namibia. From Sossuvlei to Dead Vlei and the Skeleton Coast, Namibia provides an abundance of photographic opportunities that illustrate a cross-section of my work. The flowing dunes and the angular shapes of the gemsbok traversing them, along with the graphic silhouettes of acacia husks provide endless opportunities to experiment with composition.
I go into more detail of what makes this such a fascinating location in an upcoming edition of Where’s Art?. Episode 9 from Botswana is available as of Tuesday, and the edition covering Zimbabwe will be up next week!
I’ll be leading a photo journey here next year which is already sold out. If you’re interested in visiting this location with me, please fill out the wait list form in case a spot opens up.
I’ve had the fortune of spending these past few weeks traveling to several locations in Africa with great company, and I’m excited to bring you new photos from the first leg of my journey. Our first location was the Makgadikgadi pan in Botswana. Curious meerkats came to mug for the camera and the locals gathered in traditional cultural garb led by their shaman. We took to the sky for aerials of the salt pan, and photographed the ancient Baobab trees. I couldn’t have been happier with the variety to be found here, and it was a great first stop on this adventure.
Travel tip! I experienced technical difficulties with my laptop to begin this trip, and had to pick up another one on the fly. It was an inconvenience to be sure. My advice to anyone undertaking such an involved trip that keeps you in remote areas for extended periods of time is to consider bringing along a smaller less expensive backup laptop so you’re not simply out of luck when it comes to editing and organizing your photos. It would be a shame to invest the finances and time into such a trip and have a simple piece of hardware impact your productivity. Thanks only to my wonderful connections here was I able to continue to work without a hitch.
Stay tuned for upcoming photos from Namibia and Zimbabwe, as well as episodes of Where’s Art? from these locations!
My staff was thrilled that I finally was traveling to a new location: the world’s largest island, Greenland. Our Luminous Landscape group met in Svalbard, and from there sailed across the misty Greenland Sea and down the eastern coast of Northeast Greenland National Park. We were able to make Zodiac landings to explore the rugged landscape that was already turning autumn copper and red. The immense icebergs were the true rock stars of the journey, and we felt dwarfed by their stories-tall spires. They are dangerous as well; if you are too close when one rolls over -and they do- they could swamp and kill a boatload of people. In the final days of the trip I was able to capture some the most spectacularly perfect reflections I have ever seen – truly a fantasy world of ice.
I just returned home to Seattle from a quick trip north to the 55th parallel – Nunavik, Canada to be a little more exact! While we found lots of wolf sign in the area, actual sightings were not to be, unfortunately. We opted for muskox, red fox . . . and mosquitoes. This land is mostly flat and covered in large, flat rounded rocks from the glaciers that covered the area. The glaciers also carved out a land of many small lakes, which in turn adds to the insect population in the area.
Fortunately using bug spray and head nets, we had all the proper protection from the insects. It always pays to be prepared and to do your research on a location. In this case our preparation made the situation more than manageable.
Today I am headed back north to Katmai National Park for a couple weeks. Not a bad life! I hope everyone is having a great summer so far. I’d love to hear about the kinds of things my readers are up to, so please feel free to leave a comment below. I’m busy and on the go so while I can’t respond to everyone, I do make an effort to keep my finger on the pulse of what everyone is up to!
I just flew into London from Ivalo, Finland, and had a bit of down time to upload photos. This was my first time in Lapland and the light and snow and trees were as spectacular! Unfortunately, we were unable to photograph any auroras because of cloud cover, but we had a gorgeous final evening which made the quick three-day foray above the Arctic Circle well worth it.
We’ve actually had a winter in Washington state this year – a odd ending to what was, unfortunately, the second warmest recorded year in U.S. history. It has been good to see the mountains with a decent snow pack for a change. A couple weeks ago I took a quick run up to the Skagit Valley, a large swath of mostly farmland roughly an hour’s drive north of Seattle. I am always searching for owls and saw none this time, but we did manage to find some nice arboreal landscapes. Enjoy!
This past weekend was a full one in Texas. On Friday and Saturday I went out photographing with NANPA president Sean Fitzgerald. We found a small flock of the extremely endangered whooping cranes along the Aransas Bay, where they spend their winter. NANPA – the North American Nature Photography Association – will be holding it’s 2017 Nature Photography Summit in Jacksonville, Florida on March 2nd through the 4th.