California has nine national parks—more than any other state in the nation—and the southernmost of them, Joshua Tree National Park, is located near the northern end of the Mohave Desert. This great desert park is easy to reach, easy to hike and lots of fun.
The calm beauty of the desert is near its peak here. Being out and immersed in the delicious solitude present before dawn is one of the great joys of nature photography. In such special moments, it is easy to feel the rhythms of the Earth and reconnect with Nature.
Despite its name, the Joshua tree isn’t a tree at all. This somewhat strange looking plant is actually a yucca. More to the point—in the bright light of day—it is immediately plain to see that it is not all that photogenic. The best images of these unique yuccas show them in silhouette, emphasizing their interesting and graceful forms, which are often backlit against a brilliantly colored sky. Continue reading →
(before you give them a rake) Weeds- the bane of existence for every gardener. They’re invasive and take over our flowerbeds and carefully manicured yards. The definition of “weed” in the Merriam-Webster Dictionary reads as such: “a plant that is not valued where it is growing and is usually of vigorous growth; especially: one that tends to overgrow or choke out more desirable plants.” Continue reading →
In past Showcase competitions, we asked the judges for insights and tips on image selection and preparation to help future participants produce winning photos. Here are some of their responses. Continue reading →
Overcast light, direct sunlight, high angles, low angles: there are probably as many ways to photograph flowers as there are flowers themselves. However, if the flowers are the sole subjects of your shot, each image might not look radically different from the others. If you’re tired of the ordinary and you want to create something truly unique, try a totally different approach.
Photography is all about light, so it stands to reason that if you drastically change the light, you will drastically change the look of your photo. One way to do this is to shoot indoors under artificial light. You don’t need a studio or any special equipment to do this.
In our early days of nature photography, long before I had any right to be that way, I was very competitive. I wanted the awards and accolades. If someone took a good shot of something, I wanted a better photo of the same subject. Most of the time I didn’t succeed in capturing one, but I certainly tried. Continue reading →
Along the fabled eastern shore near the state line between Maryland and Virginia, is one of my most favorite places to take workshop students: The Pocomoke River State Park. Bordering the Pocomoke River and Corker’s Creek, this Maryland state park protects one of the last remaining bald cypress swamps on the eastern shore. In fact, the cypress reaches its northernmost limit of distribution on the eastern shore.
Did you know that NANPA has organized 20 Meetup groups around the US that will connect you with other nature photographers in those areas? NANPA’s Meetup program has been in existence for a couple of years, but it may be one of our best-kept secrets. Continue reading →