Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Back to the Future: The Film Project

Canon A-1, 50mm lens, Kodak Ektar 100 film
Last week we posted an update to our film project, rediscovering my old 1980 Canon A-1. In addition to the A-1, I also picked up a Holga 120N toy camera and shot a roll of Fujifilm Neopan 100. I like to experiment, and I've been intrigued by the low-fi images produced by the Holga and Lomography cameras and the original Diana camera that inspired them. In fact, there's a great exhibit that I recently viewed at the PhoPa Gallery in Portland, Maine by Tonee Harbert, all shot on an original 1960s Diana. 

Sony a7R, 35mm f/2.8 Sonnar lens
But, back to my experiment. On a recent trip up the California Coast, I had two digital cameras and the two film cameras with me. Stopping at the iconic Bixby Bridge in Big Sur, I shot the bridge with the Canon A-1, the Holga and a Sony a7R. 

Clearly, these are three different interpretations of the same scene. Readers on my Facebook page seemed to prefer the color film version shot by the A-1, but everyone's response is going to be different. I used Kodak Ektar 100 for that, and it was shot with the original Canon FD 50mm f/1.8 lens. The detail is present and the colors are neutral without over-saturation. 

Holga 120N, Fujifilm Neopan 100
The black and white Holga image is naturally softer, with greater contrast and some vignetting. The 36 megapixel capture from the Sony a7R, equipped with a Sony Sonnar 35mm f/2.8 lens, reveals a highly detailed, vibrant photograph.

As I mentioned in my previous post, retraining myself to shoot film was interesting. The muscle memory returned and the experience was rewarding. I'll be looking to use both of these film cameras in future projects where they can lend a distinct perspective. 


Saturday, November 22, 2014

Update on the Film Project

Historic Pierce Point Ranch: soft tones and subtle colors
handled well by the Kodak Ektar 100 film.

A couple of months ago, I posted a piece on rediscovering my vintage 1980 Canon A-1 film camera. I knew that it worked, or at least that the film advance worked, the shutter released and the meter was responsive. That's about all I knew after not using the camera for 20 or so years.

I did a little cleanup inside and out, bought a new 6-volt battery and a roll of Kodak Ektar 100 color negative film, and went shooting. It took me at least two months to complete the 36 exposures on this one roll of film, which would be zipped off in a few minutes of shooting wildlife with a digital SLR. One doesn't snap away so quickly when each frame costs money - and when there's no motor drive. 

Midday Southern California light
brings saturated skies and warm
tones of the official bellringer at
Mission San Juan Capistrano.
So, I just got back the negatives and a set of scans that the lab provided. Technically, everything worked. The meter was obviously still accurate and the camera and attached Canon 50mm lens were in sync. 

I have not shot film in close to 15 years. I had to retrain myself to shoot with film, as it really is a different process. You know that you are setting up one shot, and that there's no way you can check it until it comes back from the lab. It requires a more deliberate, thoughtful approach. Focus is manual, and you need to understand how the light meter is reading the scene. You can't bump the ISO to shoot a low-light image, so you work with what you have in camera. And I didn't want to be doing a lot of post-processing as that would defeat the value of film in capturing the moment as it truly was.

I have to say that I was pleased with my results. Apparently, the muscle memory was still intact and I mostly managed to properly frame, focus and expose the film. There's also a pleasing visceral sensation in handling the smaller, lighter and purely mechancial machine.

High contrast subjects were more challenging for the color film.
I was pleased with what the Ektar 100 delivered: saturated colors, soft tones and crisp details. High-contrast scenes were more troublesome, and I felt that with a histogram and the ability to run off some test shots, my DSLR would have better handled those scenes. But that could also be an issue of relearning my film technique. 

It was a fun experiment, and now that I know the camera is functional, I'll try some different films and subjects and see what develops (pun intended). Meanwhile, here's some images from roll #1. 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Returned from the Arctic


So, we've been missing in action from the blog and Google+ the past few weeks. Apologies for the absences. I'll get a note from my mother. What's my excuse?

Well, first of all, I was away in a place with no connection to the outside world. I spent an amazing week in the Arctic photographing polar bears along Hudson Bay, at a remote location in Nunavut, 100 km from the nearest Inuit settlement. More on that in a future post, but the image above will give you a taste of what we encountered. 

Since returning, I've been busy processing the images from the far north, and at the same time redesigning and relaunching my website. It has a new look, with expanded content. Take a look at DBZphoto.com and let me know what you think. 


I'm also getting ready for a bit of a break over the Thanksgiving holiday and planning for 2015. Stay tuned!


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Camera Review: Sony a7R

1/250 sec @ f/11, ISO 100
The Sony a7 and a7R debuted with much-deserved fanfare last year about this time. I'd had a chance to try them out briefly early on, but it wasn't until recently that I spent a full week with the a7R. To keep things light and simple, I paired it with just one lens: the Sony - Sonnar T* FE 35mm f/2.8 ZA lens. I planned to use it on some long hikes as well as walks around town - and, as it turned out, a walk across the Golden Gate Bridge.

My early impressions were born out, substantiating the many glowing reviews of this full-frame 36MP mirrorless camera. Images were tack sharp with vibrant colors, the camera was fast and responsive, and it gave good results in low light. Of course, this superior prime lens was a key factor.  

Most of all, the Sony a7R was a dream to carry around. On a five-hour, 12-mile hike with 2,000 feet of climb, through a dark and misty forest, I barely noticed the camera slung over my shoulder on a BlackRapid strap. When I wanted to grab a shot, it came to life quickly, though perhaps with some lag in lighting up the electronic viewfinder. 

1/60 sec @ f/8, ISO 2000
The a7R's small size helps keep it discreet while walking around cities and towns, as I did in Santa Cruz one evening. The dynamic range of the sensor is impressive. Contrasty shots, such as the lighted boardwalk sign, held detail in the lightbulbs as well as the shadows. Noise levels were comfortably low, even as ISO numbers went up. I wouldn't suggest going beyond ISO 6400 except in an emergency, but the RAW-file noise in the boardwalk shot at ISO 2000 and the "Compass & Chonometer" photo below at ISO 4000 were easily handled in Lightroom.

The Sony's menu system and controls take some getting used to. It's worth spending the time to set it up to your liking before ever clicking the shutter. Once set, and once you get used to the control layout, it's easy to manage common tasks such as white balance, bracketing, continuous or single shooting, and exposure mode and settings. 

1/60 sec @f/2.8, ISO 4000
The a7R's 36 megapixel images (7360 x 4912 px) will readily enlarge to wall-size prints of 30 x 45 inches or more. Burst shooting will only get up to about four frames per second, but this camera is best suited for landscapes and portraits. It can be used for street photography and should produce amazing macro images, though I haven't had a chance to try that yet. It's not the camera for sports or wildlife shoots, though. (Sony's a6000 - with its 11 fps capability - could be a good choice for action within the Sony family.) 

I've been quite skeptical of mirrorless cameras until this year, with the arrival of the Fujifilm X-T1 and the Sony a7 line. They've now reached maturity. 

NOTE: The camera used for this review was paid for by the reviewer and obtained through BorrowLenses.com. No compensation was received for this review.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Road Trip: Point Reyes National Seashore

Milking barn at Pierce Point Ranch
Foggy coasts, frequent sightings of endangered Tule Elk and historic ranches co-exist within the 71,000 acres of Point Reyes National Seashore. Ninety minutes north of San Francisco, the park offers amazing photo opportunities year-round.

Point Reyes is a favorite of mine, not only for photography, but also for hiking, history and peacefulness. Located in Marin County, it's close to hotels, restaurants, shopping and the wine country of Sonoma County. It's a year-round destination, though photo opps and conditions will vary by season. 


Tule Elk along Tomales Point trail, the cool Pacific behind.
For me, the Tule Elk are a highlight. Thought to be extinct by 1870, a hidden pair was later discovered. Today, about 4,000 animals are protected in a handful of areas in California, its native state. They'll be found on or near Tomales Point, and can readily be photographed with a long telephoto lens (400-600mm recommended). There's also abundant bird life, with shore birds at McClures Beach and many other species around Abbotts Lagoon. 

There are ample hiking opportunities, including short and easy walks as well as longer, more strenuous challenges. On a recent visit, I was thrilled to do a 12-mile hike through fog-shrouded forests while climbing 2,000 in elevation. Another hike out to Tomales Point offers a view of the Pacific Ocean to one side, Tomales Bay to the other, and the likelihood of seeing the elk anywhere along the trail. In fact, you'll see their tracks on the trail. Use these trails to capture the coastline, forests and sunsets. 


Hiking along Sky Trail in the fog.
Once home to the Miwok Indians, the mid-1800s saw the coming of numerous dairy ranches, some of which still exist today as inholdings. Historic structures of the former Pierce Point Ranch, now part of the park, show what life was like in the 1870s. They offer good photo possibilities, as does Point Reyes Lighthouse. Visiting the lighthouse requires a climb down 300 steps - and the climb back up! Also on the south end of Point Reyes, the brown cliffs and wide beaches of Drakes Bay mark the spot where Sir Francis Drake stopped for several weeks during his 1579 circumnavigation of the globe. 

Feel free to contact me for more information or if you'd like a guided photo outing to discover Point Reyes National Seashore. 


See more images at DBZphoto.com

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Photographing Sunsets

12 minutes before sunset

Magic Hour
Everyone loves a sunset. There’s a magic to the multi-hued sky, the moment when the sun is slipping below the horizon and the day is almost done.

Getting the best images of a sunrise or sunset requires planning, preparation and persistence. I look at the event in three phases: golden hour, which begins (or ends in the morning) when the sun is 10 degrees above the horizon; the moments right around sunrise or sunset; and blue hour, the period when the sun is between 3 and 10 degrees below the horizon. Depending on the time of year and latitude, the whole event takes between two and three hours.

Golden hour is the time for those brilliant warm colors and low sun angles that add pop and contrast to your image. If sky conditions are just right, you can get a range of colors from pinks and oranges to blues and violets, usually in the 20-30 minutes before and after the moment when the sun breaks the horizon. Blue hour provides its own beauty, with the sky still showing and enough light to render foreground objects in cool, often monochrome, colors.

Moment of sunset

On Location

I like to get to my location early, either in the pre-dawn darkness for sunrise or late afternoon for sunset. I’ll scout out and determine my precise location, framing and composition. To help determine exactly where on the horizon the sun will set or rise, I use a phone app such as Helios or Sun Surveyor.

You’ll want a sturdy tripod, as exposures will get longer the later it gets, and a cable release. I also recommend a graduated neutral density filter to balance the bright sky against the darker foreground. And please … don’t stare at the sun. Be careful of your eyes and your camera’s sensor. In the three images here, the entire range of pre- and post-sundown light is shown. The subject is the famous Ghost Tree along 17-Mile Drive in Carmel, Calif., looking out over the Pacific Ocean.

The first shows the sun above the horizon, about 12 minutes before sunset. I had a great dramatic, orange sky. The next image, which I rendered in black & white, shows the sun right on the horizon. The colors were already fading. About 11 minutes later, I made the final shot in the blue light, which I emphasize by adjusting the color balance toward the blue tones. Exposures ranged from ⅕ second to 3.2 seconds, all at f/22 and ISO 100. Each image has a different mood, and the sequence shows what you can do with a little patience.


Blue hour
See more images at DBZphoto.com


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Lens Review: Tamron SP 150-600MM F/5-6.3 Di VC USD

Image courtesy Tamron

I recently had the opportunity to try out Tamron’s new super-telephoto zoom lens, the SP 150-600MM F/5-6.3 Di VC USD. It was mated to my Canon EOS 5D Mk II in place of the Canon EF100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS USM lens that I’d generally use in the same situations. My primary objective was to photograph the Tule Elk herds at Point Reyes National Seashore, and I also stopped by Piedras Blancas on my way up the California Coast to shoot the elephant seals that haul out on the protected beach above San Simeon.

The Tamron lens feels larger and heavier than the Canon 100-400, and it is. It weighs in at 4.3 lbs., about 1.26 more than the Canon gun, and it’s also almost 3 inches longer. Theoretically, it’s a slower lens, with a maximum aperture range of f/5.6-6.3 versus the Canon’s f/4.5-5.6, but if you want to get out close to 600mm with the Canon, you’ll have to use the 1.4x extender, which costs you a full stop.


The narrow overlook at Piedras Blancas was crowded with people on a Sunday morning, so I went handheld and relied on the lens’ Vibration Compensation (VC) system to help deliver steady shots. This female elephant seal was shot at the far end of the range, a full 600mm. Exposure was 1/640 at f/11 at ISO 400 in manual mode. I found that there’s just a hint of softness that comes in beyond 550mm, but it’s only noticeable at the pixel level.



The elk was shot at 309mm, 1/800 second at f/11 and ISO 400. The eye is tack sharp. (This was a tripod-mounted shot.) Only minimal Lightroom adjustments have been applied to these two images. Overall, I was quite happy with the images the Tamron lens was giving me, and I’ll use it again on an upcoming wildlife shoot.

There’s nothing wrong with the Canon glass. I’ved used it for several years and it always delivers tack sharp images and quick performance. The Tamron gave me greater range without needing an extender, and it’s $1,069 price is a great value.


See more images at DBZphoto,com

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

On the Road with the Fujifilm X-T1

Straight from camera at ISO 200, no sharpening or exposure
adjustments applied. Film simulation mode = Velvia.

I recently had a chance to spend almost two weeks with the Fujifilm XT-1 (black edition) and I was impressed with this mirrorless camera’s sharpness, color and speed.

I used the X-T1 on a road trip through Northern Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado. In the hand, it felt light but solid, making a perfect travel companion. It was coupled with the Fujinon XF18-55mm f/2.8-4 R LM OIS lens. Images were tack sharp - so sharp that my typical Lightroom sharpening settings had to be dialed back.

The sensor delivered excellent dynamic range, easily handling contrasty situations even at its basic setting. Noise was absent at ISO 200, and well within the range of noise reduction post-processing up to ISO 3200. I did not test it at it 6400, or use the extended range, which provides ISO from 100 to 51,200.


Straight monochrome
from camera
at ISO 1600
When shooting landscapes, I set the film simulation mode to Velvia, which delivered nicely saturated colors. I also did a series of shots in monochrome mode (no filter). The black & white images had nicely neutral tones and a full contrast range. All images were shot in RAW. 

I found the electronic viewfinder clear and sharp, responding quickly when brought to the eye. The fold-out LCD screen is useful when shooting at unusual angles, when you want to be more discreet, or when you want to see a larger image for more critical focus.

Shot at 1/500 sec, f/8, ISO 640 in continuous high mode
I was also impressed with the X-T1’s ability to handle motion and continuous shooting. The locomotive was probably moving at 30-35 miles per hour across the frame, and I got a series of truly sharp captures using the camera’s high-speed burst mode, which is rated at up to eight frames per second. The mode wheel beneath the ISO dial allows quick access to various shooting modes, including continuous shooting and bracket modes. 

Fujifilm claims optical image stabilization up to four stops for the XF18-55mm lens, which I found a bit too optimistic. At times, it was allowing me to shoot as low as ⅓ or ⅙ second. I’m pretty steady, but that’s asking a lot. Given the superior low-noise quality of the sensor, I’d suggest bumping the ISO up a notch if you find the shutter speed dropping too low.

Inside the Lowell Observatory, Flagstaff.
Natural light at ISO 1600, no noise reduction used.
My only other issues with the camera were ergonomic and practical. The lens cap, which did not grab well, was easy to lose. I also found that the battery compartment cover could spring open and cause the battery to fall out. On one occasion, that had me crawling around and under my car seat to retrieve the errant battery. One other note of caution: it’s easy for your thumb to move the exposure compensation dial at the top right of the camera body.

Overall, the Fujifilm X-T1 is an excellent mirrorless camera with professional capabilities and picture quality. It’s a good choice for travel, street photography, or any situation where you want a camera that’s reasonably small, light and discrete. I do wish it had a sensor larger than 16.3 megapixels, as I exhibit in galleries and sell prints. Buyers often want large prints.


NOTE: The camera used for this review was paid for by the reviewer and obtained through BorrowLenses.com. No compensation was received for this review.

Monday, September 15, 2014

New: "An Affair of Light" Photo Book

http://blur.by/1AzIodG

My new photo book, "An Affair of Light", was released this morning. The 48-page book features dramatic images where light is the key element in each photograph. Sunrise and sunset shots are complemented by night photography and images made during the golden hours of early morning and late afternoon. 

Life here in the Southwest - and photography - is an affair of light. It’s bold and strong and in your face. It strikes early through your bedroom window and claws at your eyes on the way to work. Time spent outdoors, which is the gift of the West, is both a warm embrace of the sun and a sunscreen-armored battle to protect yourself from its deadly rays. Nothing is purely good or purely evil. 

Of course I travel, by car and aircraft and train, and that brings me to places where the light has other shadows and nuances. Cities come alive at night, the Pacific Northwest tries to hide its light in clouds, oceans retell the story of the skies above and Sierra snows soften mountain days.

Each image we take is defined by the character of the light at the moment we press the shutter. If we wait patiently and are lucky, we may find that perfect moment of light. It’s that perfect moment we lust after, the rare beauty we fall in love with, the affair of light we keep coming back to. 

Please take a look. It's available as a print or eBook, with a full preview, here. Prints of each of these images in the book are available on my website at DBZphoto.com

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Remembering 9/11 Through the Tears of the NYPD


I grew up in New York City, and although I lived in Los Angeles on September 11, 2001, the searing live television images of the World Trade Center towers burning and then collapsing brought tears and shock and anger that morning. 

I wasn't able to visit the Northeast until May of the following year. A long line led to the platform overlooking Ground Zero, and on street corners and in alleyways all around downtown, people looked, remembered, and anguished.

But perhaps my most vivid experience took place that same week in Washington, D.C. It was  National Police Week. I hadn't known in advance, but the unusual number of cops in my hotel led me to ask what was going on. In fact, it was the first police week since 9/11. 

The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial is in Judiciary Square, site of the Supreme Court building. A low wall encircles the site, inscribed with the names of every fallen federal, state and local officer dating back to the 1800s. Crowds of officers from every part of the country were at the site, with most gathered around the area reserved for the New York Police Department. The NYPD lost 23 members on 9/11; 37 Port Authority officers  also lost their lives. 

My connection to the NYPD is personal. I served as a civilian volunteer for three years, grew up with two uncles on the force, and my great-grandfather also served. On that day in May, 2002, I watched big, burly men - some in uniform - shed tears as they remembered their comrades whose names had been inscribed on that wall. This image is dedicated to those fallen officers. 



Saturday, September 6, 2014

Exhibition Catalog Released

The exhibition catalog for the new "Stories" show at the PH21 Gallery in Budapest has just been released. My work, "Waiting for the Train", has been included in this juried international photography exhibition. 
"A narrative told with a single image is a most exciting challenge for the photographer and the viewer alike, and hopefully we appreciate these works with the care and curiosity they deserve." - from the show catalog
We released a limited edition of 10 signed, Giclee 10" x 15" prints for exclusive sale through the gallery. 

Image included in PH21 Gallery exhibit

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Camera Review: Canon A-1. Say What?

Canon A-1 with box of Kodak Ektar 100 film

I’ll admit to being somewhat of a packrat. I’ve kept many of the cameras I’ve owned over the years, displaying them on bookshelves as my own personal museum of photography. So one day a couple of weeks ago, I grabbed my old Canon A-1 just to look it over. It’s a camera I remembered fondly, having used it for automobile, event, and product photography. Equipped with a motor drive, it even did some cool motorsports work.

To my surprise, the meter functioned and the shutter clicked.

Wait … how was this possible? I haven’t used this camera in more than 20 years. Even way back in the untechnological non-digital days, some electricity was necessary. Popping open the battery drawer, I found a six-volt Energizer bunny still charged and working. Wow. This had to be an omen.

I love to try different tools and approaches in photography, and today, using film is certainly different. So I bought a fresh new battery (Energizer, of course, hoping it will last another 20 years), and a roll of Kodak Ektar 100 color negative film. I just started shooting the other day, so we’ll complete the review when I finish the roll and get the prints back.

The first habit I had to relearn was manual focusing. No AF on the old Canon FD 50mm f/1.8 lens. The second habit to unlearn was looking at the back of the camera to check the image on the non-existent LCD screen. Both were actually liberating, as was being highly selective when clicking the shutter. Film costs real money.

Compared to today’s professional DSLRs, the A-1 and cameras of that era were smaller, lighter and more tactile. Flipping that mechanical film advance lever is fun. So let’s see where we can take this!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Hands-On With the Sony a6000

I recently took the opportunity to put the new Sony Alpha a6000 mirrorless camera through its paces. It’s a remarkably small, light, fast-acting camera potentially capable of producing really good images.

Small and light is what I was looking for. I’m a hiker, and I also like to do some street photography. I want something with me that won’t add weight when I’m climbing a long, steep trail and that can be inconspicuous when walking city streets. I also want a camera that’s always ready and responds quickly.

Montane Botanic Garden. ISO 100. 
I worked with the a6000 for a full week, taking it on a hike in the San Bernardino Mountains, on a ramble through downtown Los Angeles, to the Huntington Gardens and the Getty Center, and on another hike around Lake Hollywood.

Sony’s strength lies in its sensors. The broadcast industry has relied on them for many years. The a6000 is equipped with a 24 megapixel crop-frame APS-C sensor that delivers a 6000 x 4000 pixel image in RAW. That’s an image you can enlarge easily to at least 30” x 45”. What I believe hurts the image is the kit lens that came with my camera, an inexpensive 16-50mm zoom (equivalent to 24-75mm full-frame). It exhibited a lot of barrel distortion (correctable in Lightroom) and noticeable softness, especially at the edges.

Los Angeles Union Station, ISO 6400
Low-light performance was impressive. Although noise was evident even at lower ISO settings, it was easily controlled up to ISO 6400. The camera certainly was responsive, with a minuscule 0.02 second shutter lag. Its 11 frame-per-second continuous capture speed was amazing. Battery life had to be watched; on one long hike where I clicked off over 200 frames, it was getting worrisome as I got back to the trailhead.

Controls can be confusing. One main, marked control wheel on top sets the program mode, while most other settings are changed through menus. I often found myself switching between continuous shooting, single frame and bracket modes, which required a couple of thumb-presses each. It was easy to miss the correct setting, especially in bright light while trying to read the LCD screen. A second top-deck unmarked control dial can be set to different functions; I had mine set to aperture. However, your thumb can easily change the setting as you handle the camera and operate the shutter; it’s something I had to learn to keep checking.

Some of those issues, I suppose, are associated with the small size of the camera and therefore unavoidable. I’d like to go back and test the Sony a6000 with a better lens, preferably one of the Zeiss Touit prime lenses (they offer 12mm, 32mm and 50mm, equivalent to 18, 48 and 75 respectively). We’ll follow up when we have a chance to do that.

The Sony a6000 is a great little camera with the ability to produce large images and capture the moment. Its promise may be fulfilled with higher-quality lenses.

NOTE: The camera used for this review was paid for by the reviewer and obtained through BorrowLenses.com. No compensation was received for this review.

Wounded deer, grazing on the brush near Lake Hollywood. ISO 400. 




Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Starting A New Journey

Sometimes, a new journey begins in unexpected ways.

Last year, a dear friend that I’d known since childhood died of melanoma. We’d met in 7th grade and grown up together. Our parents became friends. We learned to drive and got our first cars on the same timetable. We explored the world outside our neighborhood together. And although we lost track of each other for a time as we both entered our career years, we came back together and enjoyed several years of talking, visiting and sharing memories before he passed away. He was a long-term executive at a blue-chip technology company and looked forward eagerly to his retirement. He never got there.

As I carried his casket to the grave site, something in me changed. I realized that I was spending my life in meetings and airports, creating useless spreadsheets and trying to meet my employer’s unrealistic opposing demands to cut service and increase revenues.

Just a few weeks later, I found myself standing on the mud flats along Cook Inlet, an hour’s bush-plane flight south of Anchorage, surrounded by Alaskan brown bears. In the distance shone the snow-capped mountains of the Katmai Peninsula. Mother bears with their cubs were feeding. My camera was clicking away.

This year, I left my job to concentrate full-time on photography. This was no spur-of-the-moment decision, but a choice to get my life back on center. I have always been driven by a need to create. I wrote my first short story at the age of five and got my first 35mm camera at 13. Professionally, I was a working journalist covering the automotive industry and saw my byline in major daily newspapers and magazines. I had a long career in marketing, advertising and public relations, heading two prestigious car accounts and one major motorcycle account. I also co-founded and ran a video production company with an amazing partner, during which time we garnered more than 50 awards for our work.

In 2007, I decided to get serious about photography. I have studied and continue to study with masters such as the renowned Art Wolfe, Canon Explorers of Light Lewis Kemper and Jennifer Wu, and creative geniuses such as Jim Zuckerman, Tony Sweet and Brenda Tharp.

This year, my work has appeared in the “Portraits of the Garden” show at the Sturt Haaga Gallery, and a new show opening next week in Europe (details to come). I’ve also been recognized with several awards, and my work is for sale both on my own site and at Saatchi Art. I have a book coming out next month and several exciting projects in the works.

This is a journey I’ve been preparing for all my life. The death of my friend and the transcendent experience of closely photographing wild grizzly bears were simply the push I needed. We too often spend our lives waiting for the day when we can do something instead of just doing it.  

So please come along to follow my adventure. I’ll also be sharing camera and gear reviews, photo tips and lessons from my own art journey. Thanks!