Saturday, February 28, 2015

The legend of Crater Lake

The Legend of Crater Lake, Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

There have always been stories about the origin of the land and the life that calls it home. Before there was science, those stories came from imagination and spirituality. In this series, I have created contemporary nature photography to illustrate those early Legends of the Land. Read more about the series here.


The spirits of the Earth and Sky used to be closer to us than they are today. While they lived deep below ground or way beyond the clouds, they would visit us from time to time. We could see them, walk with them, talk to them.

They are powerful gods, but we usually had no reason to fear them. They were friendly and often used their power to help us. But they were still sometimes controlled by their emotions. One of those emotions — jealousy — led to a particularly dark time.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Announcing my next photography project

Typically when I share a project with you, it’s nearing completion. Or at least I’m sure it will be completed. This time, I’m bringing you into a project early, although in some ways, this isn’t exactly the early stages.

I’ve been working on Legends of the Land for going on 10 years now. It was to have been my very first photography book. Today, I’m not even sure it will be my fifth.

It’s not that I’m not fond of this project. In fact, I find it even more interesting and inspiring than I did 10 years ago. The issue is that it has required far more time and resources than any other project I’ve ever attempted. Keep in mind I spent three years watching a bald eagle nest.

The idea is this:

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Hands on with the Canon 100-400 IS Mark II

Spotted Towhee on Branch, Spring, Snohomish County, Washington
Captured with a Canon 1D Mark IV, Canon EF 100-400 f/4.5-5.6L Mark II, and a Canon Extender EF 1.4X Mark III

I spend relatively little time on this blog talking about equipment — I’m drawn more to the art than the mechanics — but there’s no denying that equipment plays a critical role. The wrong equipment can limit your creative vision. Bad equipment can cause you to miss the shot entirely.

With that in mind, I thought I would share some of my thoughts about the new Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS II USM lens, which I’ve been using for about two months now. You won’t find test charts and studio comparison scenes here. There are plenty of those already that are produced under very controlled conditions. This is a Canon 100-400 Mark II review in the context of how it has performed for me as a professional nature photographer in real-world situations, which includes handling and other features that make a difference in my work.