A Thanksgiving Get Together by Gordon & Cathy Illg ©

© Gordon & Cathy Illg

© Gordon & Cathy Illg

A Thanksgiving Get Together

By Gordon & Cathy Illg

The day before Thanksgiving we took a short drive hoping to see some bighorn sheep. Maybe it was because we were already in holiday mode, maybe it was just nice to lie in bed on a cold morning. Whatever the reason, we ended up sleeping in and eating a leisurely breakfast. By the time we made it to the Waterton Canyon trailhead it was already 11 a.m., and we had a couple of miles to walk—not exactly the behavior we endorse in our wildlife photography lectures. Do as we say, not as we do.

© Gordon & Cathy Illg

© Gordon & Cathy Illg

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NATURE’S VIEW: Of Tundra Buggies & Polar Bears

Part IIIPhotographing Polar Bears in the Canadian Arctic

Story and photography by Jim Clark

Polar bear, Churchill Wildlife Management Area, Manitoba. © Jim Clark

Polar bear, Churchill Wildlife Management Area, Manitoba. © Jim Clark

In my previous two columns I shared how I prepared for my excursion into the Canadian Arctic to photograph polar bears. So let’s now experience the Arctic tundra and photographing bears.

Our daily mode of transportation into the Arctic tundra was a tundra buggy, which is a buslike contraption converted into an all-terrain vehicle with extremely large tires, each measuring more than five feet in height. It’s the only mode of transportation capable of negotiating the rugged, snow-covered terrain. The ride is bumpy along the designated trails, and the top speed is probably around three to five miles per hour.

The tundra belongs to the bears and other Arctic wildlife. During my four days there with my wife and son, our feet never touched the ground. Even when we returned to the tundra-buggy lodge—an arrangement of buggies, which includes sleeping quarters, a dining area, a lounge and separate quarters for staff—we remained several feet above the tundra. Read the rest of this entry »

NANPA Announces the 2016 Showcase Winners

The North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA) is pleased to announce the winners of the 2016 Showcase Photo Contest. Approximately 2,600 images were submitted from 275 NANPA members. Categories include: 1) Mammals, 2) Birds, 3) Scapes, 4) Macro, Micro, and all other Wildlife, 5) Altered Reality. This year’s judges were William Neill, Joe and Mary Ann McDonald and John Nuhn. There were three top prizes in each of five categories (Best of Show, 1st Runner-Up and Judge’s Choice).

The top 250 images are featured in the 2016 issue of Expressions, the official journal of NANPA. This journal is available to view at http://www.nanpa.org/expressions.php. In addition to appearing in Expressions, all 250 images will be on the NANPA website under 2016 Showcase for a year.

Category: Mammals

Best in Show: Cindy Goedell, Bozeman, Montana

First Runner-Up: Andrew Lerman, Pleasantville, NY

Judge’s Choice: Mark Hayward, Spring Creek, NV

 

Category: Birds

Best in Show: Bill Klipp, Key West, FL

First Runner-Up: Robert Strickland, Beverly Hills, FL

Judge’s Choice: Ken Archer, Lakewood, WA

 

Category: Scapes

Best in Show: Paul Marcellini, Miami, FL

First Runner-Up: Marco Crupi

Judge’s Choice: James Heupel, Fredericksburg, TX

 

Category: Macro, Micro & All Other Wildlife

Best in Show: Hector Astorga, Mission, TX

First Runner-Up: Larry Lynch, St. Petersburg, FL

Judge’s Choice: Bob Oswald, Atlanta, NY

 

Category: Altered Reality

Best in Show: Doug James, Westfield, MA

First Runner-Up: Bonnie Block, Kingston, WA

Judge’s Choice: Alice Cahill, Morro Bay, CA

UAVs AND AERIAL PHOTOGRAPHY

Story and photography by Ralph Bendjebar

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), otherwise known as drones, have been in the news a lot lately, not always on a positive note. Reported sightings near airports, sport stadiums and large crowds or urban settings have caused alarm and consternation from public officials and the FAA, which has led to negative and (sometimes) alarmist coverage from news organizations. Of course, the problem lies with inexperienced and reckless users rather than with the exciting technology these UAVs offer for the gathering of unique and useful images and footage.

Tanzania-31503

Using a drone in Tanzania.

As an avid landscape and wildlife photographer with a background in commercial aviation (my day job), I became intrigued with the possibilities of utilizing UAVs. They can be fitted with stabilized cameras to record images and footage not otherwise obtainable except at great expense with manned fixed-wing aircraft or rotorcraft. The rapid technological advances that enabled adaptation of this technology to small UAVs from their larger military cousins have produced capabilities that rival ground-based camera systems. The latest is the DJI Phantom 3, which allows stabilized 4K footage and 12 MP DNG files. It also provides full camera control through a controller-mounted tablet. The DJI Inspire 1 Pro is fitted with a MicroFourThirds (MFT) sensor that takes 4K video, 16 MP stills and has the unique feature of interchangeable lenses. Thus the capabilities for capturing exciting and memorable footage and images have become a reality.

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Fine Art Photography Top 17 by Alain Briot ©

Afternooon in Grand Canyon National Park © Alain Briot

Afternooon in Grand Canyon National Park © Alain Briot

 

Fine Art Photography Top 17 by Alain Briot

According to Robert Motherwell, “The purpose of the artist is to express reality as felt.”  But what are the most important aspects of Fine Art Photography?  The answer certainly varies from photographer to photographer because each of us places more importance on some aspects than on others.  I’ve compiled my Top 17 Tips based on information that I use for teaching during my workshops and what I personally consider to be the most important aspects of Fine Art Photography.

This list is excerpted from a longer list that I use for teaching during my workshops and seminars. The decision to create a shorter list, with only 16 items instead of 37, stemmed from the desire to focus on the essential aspects of Fine Art Photography regardless of which scenes we photograph, what subject we are study or what next step we are working towards. The resulting list is free from a particular teaching emphasis and represents what I look for in a Fine Art Photograph.  Read the rest of this entry »

NATIONAL PARKS: Big Bend National Park

Story and photography by Jerry Ginsberg

North America, United States, Southwest, West, Big Bend, Big Bend National Park. .Tornillo Flats in rugged Big Bend National Park in Southwest Texas.

Tornillo Flats

 

Deep in the southwest corner of Texas sits the lightly visited, yet fascinating Big Bend National Park.

Situated near the northern end of the vast Chihuahuan Desert, Big Bend features more scenic variety than we usually find in a desert park. If you have an appreciation for the innate beauty of the somewhat harsh desert, a photo trip to Big Bend could be for you. Major landforms include the Chisos Mountains and the rugged Sierra del Carmen, but that’s only scratching the surface. Read the rest of this entry »

Learn the Ins and Outs of Leading a Photo Tour by Ron Rosenstock

Ireland Sunset © Ron Rosenstock

Learn the Ins and Outs of Leading a Photo Tour by Ron Rosenstock

What do you get when you mix the magical light and sacred sounds of Ireland with dinner conversations about being a photo tour leader?

You get the best of both worlds – opportunities to photograph and to build your tour leader skills. Read the rest of this entry »

FIELD TECHNIQUE: The Moon in the Morning

Story and photography by F.M. Kearney

T-138I enjoy shooting early on winter mornings. Besides capturing the beautiful light that occurs just before sunrise, I’m unencumbered by the masses of casual photographers and sightseers that tend to venture forth later in the day. Sometimes, however, I find that I’m out a little too early—long before sunrise or even the magic light of the day.

In the Northeast, too early means little more than bare branches dominate the scene. What initially might seem like a bleak subject, bare branches can reveal a multitude of creative options. Also, if the moon is out, it will shine like a beacon in the darkened sky and add even more interest to the shot. Read the rest of this entry »

NATURE’S VIEW: Of Tundra Buggies & Polar Bears

Story and photography by Jim Clark ©

Part II-Techniques for photographing the ice bears of Churchill

 

Photographing polar bears, I discovered, is not much different from photographing any other wildlife species. You still have to prepare. You still have to understand exposure and how to use different lighting angles. You still must consider the guidelines of composition. You still have to remain patient. And, you still have to know when to act fast to capture that defining moment.

You might have to pinch yourself to realize you are really seeing these majestic creatures in real time. You are photographing the largest land predator in the world located in an isolated arctic environment in the early throes of winter, which can at times be overwhelmingly windy and bitterly cold with lots of snow. So, okay, there are a few differences.

Polar Bear @ Hudson Bay (c) Jim Clark_013Polar bear at Churchill Wildlife Management Area in Manitoba. © Jim Clark

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Effortless Marketing for Photo Workshops

Design your learning events to attract and wow lifelong clients, by Steve Moeller

If you’re offering, or thinking about offering, photographic learning events, let me help you make them profitable and sustainable. First, how would you answer the following questions?

1) How can I design and deliver insanely great photo learning events that instantly attract great clients as soon as they learn about them?

2) How can I create such an amazing experience that my business grows through word-of-mouth marketing and repeat clients? Read the rest of this entry »

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