How NANPA’s High School Scholarship Program Impacted Me: A Turning Point

Owl on alert in the forest.

Owl on alert in the forest.

Story and photos by Ashleigh Scully

I was a participant in the 2017 NANPA High School Scholarship Program and spent a week in the Great Smoky Mountains working with some incredible mentors, broadening my interests in photography and learning from some very talented kids my age as well. This program was a turning point for me–it showed me just how much I want to inspire the younger generation to learn more about conservation and photography. Working with and learning from 9 other students from across the country was not what I expected it to be. I had assumed we would all stick to the certain aspects of photography we were comfortable with, but instead we all motivated each other to try a little bit of everything. During that week in the Smokies, I got to experiment with flash and night photography and use some of the cameras, lenses, and flashes that Canon sent to as loaners. I now have knowledge of the settings to use for star and night photography, something that will definitely come in handy for me in the future. We also hiked out to a waterfall and attempted slow motion waterfall photos to capture the blur of the water. Using the loaner flashes, we also found little salamanders and toads and used white backgrounds for the “Meet Your Neighbors” technique that  Andrew Snyder, one of the mentors, taught us. Some of the kids were so in love with this new technique, it was all they did!

Do you know a talented young nature photographer? NANPA’s High School Scholarship Program is seeking 10 high school student photographers to attend a five-day field event where they can learn from the industry’s top shooters. Apply now for this immersive, hands-on education program to be held in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park July 6–11, 2020. Combining classroom and field-based instruction, students will have the chance to improve their nature photography skills, learn about NANPA, meet industry professionals, and gain an appreciation of the Smoky Mountains’ rich natural history. The NANPA Foundation funds this and other educational programs. January 31, 2020 is the last day to apply, so don’t wait. Apply now! This article was originally published in January, 2019.

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Weekly Wow! Week of December 2, 2019

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: " Undertow, Kona Coast, Hawaii " © Geoffrey Schmid.
Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: ” Undertow, Kona Coast, Hawaii ” © Geoffrey Schmid.

All of this week’s Weekly Wow! images can be seen in the slideshow on the NANPA homepage at nanpa.org.

The following Showcase images have been selected to appear on the NANPA home page for the week beginning Monday, December 2, 2019.  To view all of the top 250 photographs from NANPA’s 2019 Showcase competition, see the photo gallery on the NANPA website. 

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Weekly Wow! Week of November 25, 2019

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: “Winter Bobcat With Drake Mallard, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming” © Cindy Goeddel Photography, LLC.
Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: “Winter Bobcat With Drake Mallard, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming” © Cindy Goeddel Photography, LLC.

All of this week’s Weekly Wow! images can be seen in the slideshow on the NANPA homepage at nanpa.org.

The following Showcase images have been selected to appear on the NANPA home page for the week beginning Monday, November 25, 2019.  To view all of the top 250 photographs from NANPA’s 2019 Showcase competition, see the photo gallery on the NANPA website. 

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Weekly Wow! Week of November 18, 2019

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: " I Wanted to Show the Way an Osprey Carries a Fish, Fort Myers Beach, Florida" © Sankha Hota.
Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: ” I Wanted to Show the Way an Osprey Carries a Fish, Fort Myers Beach, Florida” © Sankha Hota.

All of this week’s Weekly Wow! images can be seen in the slideshow on the NANPA homepage at nanpa.org.

The following Showcase images have been selected to appear on the NANPA home page for the week beginning Monday, November 18, 2019.  To view all of the top 250 photographs from NANPA’s 2019 Showcase competition, see the photo gallery on the NANPA website. 

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Weekly Wow! Week of November 4, 2019

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: "Boulder Beach at Sunrise, Acadia National Park, Maine" © John R. Kuhn Jr.
Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: “Boulder Beach at Sunrise, Acadia National Park, Maine” © John R. Kuhn Jr.

All of this week’s Weekly Wow! images can be seen in the slideshow on the NANPA homepage at nanpa.org.

The following Showcase images have been selected to appear on the NANPA home page for the week beginning Monday, November 4, 2019.  To view all of the top 250 photographs from NANPA’s 2019 Showcase competition, see the photo gallery on the NANPA website. 

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Showcase 2019 Winner Profile – Jeff Vanuga

Showcase 2019, Judges' Choice, Scapes: White Dome Geyser under the Milky Way, Yellowstone, © Jeff Vanuga.

Showcase 2019, Judges’ Choice, Scapes: White Dome Geyser under the Milky Way, Yellowstone, © Jeff Vanuga.

Bio:

Jeff Vanuga is based in Dubois, Wyoming, and specializes in both advertising and editorial media. His work has been published worldwide in magazines and major advertising campaigns. He has won major international awards and leads tours for the largest photography tour company in the world, Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, and additional tours for National Geographic Expeditions, First Light Workshops, African Wildlife Foundation, Nature’s Best Magazine, Santa Fe Workshops and the Moab Photography Symposium. He is represented by Getty Images and the Nature Picture Library stock agencies.

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Weekly Wow! Week of August 12, 2019

All of this week’s Weekly Wow! images can be seen in the slideshow on the NANPA homepage at nanpa.org.

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: "Cottonweed," High Ridge Scrub Natural Area, Lake Worth, Florida. © Kevin Barry.

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: “Cottonweed,” High Ridge Scrub Natural Area, Lake Worth, Florida. © Kevin Barry.

The following Showcase images have been selected to appear on the NANPA home page for the week beginning Monday, August 12, 2019.  To view all of the top 250 photographs from NANPA’s 2019 Showcase competition, see the photo gallery on the NANPA website.  The period for entering your best shots in this year’s Showcase began August 1st and runs  through September 16th.  What are you waiting for?  Let’s get shooting!  Your best shot might be your next one.

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Weekly Wow! Week of July 29, 2019

All of this week’s Weekly Wow! images can be seen in the slideshow on the NANPA homepage at nanpa.org.

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: A Mother's Love, Biwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda, Mammals © Peter Balunek.

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: A Mother’s Love, Biwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda, Mammals © Peter Balunek.

The following Showcase images have been selected to appear on the NANPA home page for the week beginning Monday, July 29, 2019.  To view all of the top 250 photographs from NANPA’s 2019 Showcase competition, see the photo gallery on the NANPA website.  The period for entering your best shots in this year’s Showcase runs from August 1st through September 16th.  What are you waiting for?  Let’s get shooting!  Your best shot might be your next one.

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Showcase 2019 Winner Profile – Carol Grenier

Showcase 2019: Judges' Choice, Mammals: Wolves Re-establishing Dominance, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming © Carol Grenier.

Showcase 2019: Judges’ Choice, Mammals: Wolves Re-establishing Dominance, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming © Carol Grenier.

Bio:

Carol Grenier’s interest in nature photography really took off with her first full-time job, a seasonal appointment as a surveyor in Yellowstone National Park which she calls, “the best job I ever had: working outdoors in a beautiful setting with abundant opportunities for recreation and nature photography.” Exposure to the stunning landscapes and wildlife of the western United States inspired a passion to capture the beauty of nature ever since. In recent years her images have been recognized in NANPA’s Expressions, Nature’s Best magazine, Audubon, and Denver Audubon.

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Weekly Wow! Week of July 1, 2019

All of this week’s Weekly Wow! images can be seen in the slideshow on the NANPA homepage at nanpa.org.

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: "Baby Gray Whale," Guerrero Negro, Baja California, Mexico, © Matthew Meier.

Showcase 2019 Top 100 winner: “Baby Gray Whale,” Guerrero Negro, Baja California, Mexico, © Matthew Meier.

The following Showcase images have been selected to appear on the NANPA home page for the week beginning Monday, July 1, 2019.  To view all of the top 250 photographs from NANPA’s 2019 Showcase competition, see the photo gallery on the NANPA website.  The period for entering your best shots in this year’s Showcase starts in August.  What are you waiting for?  Let’s get shooting!  Your best shot might be your next one.

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