Nature Note 68 - An Eye for the Natural: Nature Photographers

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Nature Note

An Eye for the Natural: Nature Photographers

Photography is an amazing process and, for me, is a constant reminder of the importance of the Sun. The word itself means drawing with light. Photo = light; Graph = to draw. The kind and quality of light during the taking of a photograph has a tremendous impact on the clarity, mood, and impact of the image. I use photography as a tool to record what I see in nature and to capture fine details that I want to examine later. I very often notice, especially with landscape photography, how hard it is to take a photo that truly reflects what I see. I am amazed and inspired by the images of nature photographers who excel at capturing what they see and feel at a place. They have mastered both the science and art of photography. Here is a list, in no particular order, of a few of many nature photographers that I've found inspiring:

  • Rach Stewart - specializes in landscapes, long-exposure photography.
  • Ansel Adams - was a landscape photographer and conservationist.
  • Sarah Marino - specializes in the American West with partner Ron Coscorrosa.
  • Galen Rowell - was photojournalist and world-renowned climber
  • Serena Dzenis - self-taught from age nine; captures details to ask what is really important in life.
  • David Muench - creates images that show "nature at its most powerful, its wildest, its most extreme, most dramatic."

And, here is a link to Fine Art America where you can view Maine landscape photographs by various artists.

Activities for Children and the Young at Heart

  1. Take a photography walk. Get out there with a smart phone and start taking pictures. Later, look at them on a computer and make lists of what you find interesting about each photo. Add to you list after each photography session. Record the time of day and weather conditions. Do you find that there is a best time to take photographs?  
  2. Make a pinhole camera.
  3. Explore the amazing hows and whys of light at these two links: Light at Explain that Stuff, and Light at NASA Science.
  4. Photo safari: First, decide on a theme: countries, people, animals, winter environments. Then, set a time limit. Next, look for as many photos - in any source you have at hand - newspaper magazine, online, family photo album - and within the timeframe record how many photos you find within your selected the theme. Next time you visit an art museum check to see of they have a photo gallery and see what they have chosen to place on exhibit. 
  5. Keep a list of your favorite nature photographers and check their online galleries often for inspiration. Look not only in your state but across the world. 

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