From the Executive Director – Susan Day


January 15, 1994. NANPA Founding Board. Sheraton Hotel, Ft. Myers; Seated, clockwise from lower left: Jim Saba, Karen Hollingsworth, Rick Zuegel (Forum chair), Frans Lanting, Mark Lukes (President), Jerry Bowman (Co-ED), Francine Butler (Co-ED), Gil Twiest (Treasurer), Aileen Lotz, Karen Beshears, Helen Longest-Slaughter, Jane Kinne (President-elect). Standing, L to R: Gary Braasch, John Nuhn, Roger Archibald, Russ Kinne. Missing: George Lepp. © Shirley Nuhn & Roger Archibald.

NANPA’s 2019 Award Recipients

It all started back in October 1993, when ornithologist, artist and nature photographer, Roger Tory Peterson invited a group of nature photographers to the Roger Tory Peterson Institute in Jamestown, New York. This was the first time that an organized group of nature photographers had assembled in one place, and more than 100 photographers showed up for panel discussions, networking, and presentations. This meeting was so well received that everyone wanted to do it again—and thanks to a ton of work and great organization—by April 1994, NANPA had a founding board, president, bylaws and mission, with plans underway for their first annual conference, which took place in Florida in January 1995. NANPA’s first awards were also bestowed at the 1995 conference when Roger Tory Peterson received NANPA’s first Lifetime Achievement in Nature Photography Award, and Outdoor Photographer Magazine was honored with our first Community Recognition Award.

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From the Executive Director – Susan Day


Traditionally, October is a relatively slow time in the NANPA office because so many photographers are out searching for fall color and wildlife.  It’s also when people take vacations or squeeze in another workshop while the weather is cool, but not yet bitterly cold and blustery. For whatever reasons, this October was different – and busy – with member activity, phone calls, and questions.

In this month’s column, I’ll give a brief status report on what’s happening with NANPA’s events and programs.

2019 Showcase Competition

The 2019 Showcase Competition closed on October 17, and judging started soon thereafter.  We received more than 3,600 entries from nearly 400 photographers, which is our highest participation since 2009.  Judging has been completed, and winners have been notified and are now sending us their hi-res photos that will be published in Expressions 2019.  Production of Expressions 2019 is underway, and barring any unforeseen delays, will be available in February.  Members who submitted images in the competition can view the results by logging into the members area of the website.  The Top 250 Winning Images will be displayed on the NANPA website beginning in January.  Thank you to all who entered the competition; to judges Melissa Groo, George Lepp, and Joe and Mary Ann McDonald; Showcase Coordinator, Wendy Shattil; Showcase Web Developer, John Lock; and Project Manager, Teresa Ransdell.

We do have a few spots left for advertising in Expressions 2019.  If you’d like to place an ad, contact Gina Head for rates and availability.  Or download ad info here.

2019 Nature Photography Summit & Trade Show

Registrations opened in early October for the 2019 Nature Photography Summit & Trade Show which will be held February 21-23, 2019 in Las Vegas.  As usual, members wanting to ensure spots with their top choices of portfolio reviewers and to make sure they get in for Super Sessions and pre/post photo outings, registered early.  Take a look at the speaker lineup and schedule for this Summit, check out the reviewer openings (A bargain at only $60 for 20 minutes one-on-one time with a pro!), and consider adding a Super Session (only $75 for a 3-hour class on a variety of great topics).   We’ve heard of some great airfare sales to Vegas, and you can’t beat the room rate at the Westgate!  NANPA will be emailing a series of Summit Snapshots to you in the coming weeks with announcements of any changes or additions to the program.  Be sure to bookmark the Summit website and check back periodically because we’ll be making updates as they come up.

A few exhibitor booth spaces, advertising, and sponsorships are still available.  More info.

Regional Events

NANPA Regional Events are almost full for 2018 and 2019.  As of November 1, there are two spots left for the Bosque del Apache event with Cathy Illg in December and one spot left on the Florida Birding Workshop with Maresa Pryor Luzier in January.  We still have spaces left for the fall 2019 Fall in Upper Peninsula of Michigan with Richard Day and Hank Erdmann.  The Yellowstone Snowcoach Tour and the Arches Astrophotography Workshop are both sold out.


We took a short break from webinars this fall while photographers were traveling, but have a great lineup ready for the next few months.  Topics include power marketing, video nature photography, timesaving tips with Adobe ACR or Lightroom, macro on a budget, and more.

Remember that all NANPA members can view past webinars in the members area of the website—including the latest in our Town Hall Series on Ethical Field Approaches for Nature Photography.

Those are the highlights from October, and we’ll continue to share new information on events, programs, and projects when it’s available.


Susan Day
NANPA Executive Director




From the Executive Director – Susan Day

Susan Day at NANPA board meeting, Jacksonsville, FL. Photo by David Small.

Choices and Goals

Everyday we make choices.  What to eat.  What to wear.  What to do.  Nature photographers make choices on new equipment, how to pay for it, where to use it, how to compose an image, which tweaks to make during post-processing; and for some, how to make a living.  Everyone’s bucket list is unique, and we take different paths to reach them–whether you’re a big-time goal-setter with spreadsheets and planners or a seat-of-the-pants winger.

Passion, planning, and drive play big parts in whether (and when) we take those fall landscape photos in the Rockies or photograph wildlife on an African safari.

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From the President: Gordon Illg

Close encounters with unimpressed bighorn sheep.

Close encounters with unimpressed bighorn sheep.

In the old days, not only did we have to walk through two feet of snow on our way to school (which was really tough for me because I lived in Tucson), but we didn’t have access to all the species and landscapes that photographers do today. If one has the money, there is now almost no place on Earth that cannot be reached and photographed with only a couple of days travel. Nature photography has indeed changed over the last 30 years, and I’m not just talking about technological advances in photo gear. I’m also referring to our subjects, our relationships with them, and our access to them. Most, if not all, of these changes have resulted from an exploding human population and the fact that we are increasingly mobile. Have these changes been good or bad? The answer is yes. The immediate conclusion most of us jump to is that a hordes of people are bad for the natural world, and this conclusion is not wrong. But, and this is a big but, lots of people can make nature photography better.

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From the Executive Director – Susan Day

NANPA’s Board terms end on June 30, and new directors take office on July 1, which is also the date that presidents change. I had the privilege of working with Don Carter for a year as president, and on July 1, Don passed the gavel to Gordon Illg. To say that Gordon jumped in with both feet would be putting it mildly.

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NANPA Regional Event Preview – Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge

Story and Photographs by Donald Brown


Chincoteague Ponies at Tom’s Cove © Donald Brown


NANPA Members Colin Hocking and Don Brown will be leading a NANPA Regional Event at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia from November 16-19, 2017.  All the details about the event, including cost, registration, and other information can be found on the NANPA website at–va/   Here, Don offers a preview of the beauty of Chincoteague, and shares some great images from his previous visits there. Continue reading