The above image was created at one of the crane pools at Bosque del Apache Wildlife Refuge. I have been working on this kind-of etching look for years, trying to get that one shot that made “my heart” smile. It finally came together this past November for me. This image is straight out of camera, not one pixel cropped. I did a very slight color tweak to remove a hint of the blue.
For me it is art, and exactly what I had intended through all of my trial and errors with this technique. My first attempts were done several years ago at the same location, but with flash. I liked the results but there was something a bit unnatural about the look and I could not allow myself to be completely satisfied. I have always had a fondness for sketch work, pen & ink and etchings; I’ve always wanted to incorporate those looks into my photography. The burning need inside of me to follow-up with this technique is part of the passion that drives me.
I’ve been following the work of many great photographers, including; Art Wolfe, William Neil and several others over the years. I will always aspire to get to their level with my art someday.
Each one has their own certain something…Take for instance, William Neil, his photographs of trees are second to none. He explores the beauty of his subject like no other photographer. His high- key work, his soft blurs or just his unique compositions have always appealed to me. I’ve been a huge fan of his for many years. I can’t remember ever seeing one of his images that didn’t move me.
Art Wolfe- this man is a creative, compelling story teller. His images walk you through his journey as if you were standing next to him. He sees things that most of us can’t see and then he creates a true work of art. His show “Travels to the Edge” stirred a great need inside of me to explore this world, looking for my own stories.
So many photographers have inspired me and my work. The one constant that they all share is their passion. You can see it in every picture that they capture; you can read it in their words. It’s always there.