I have always had a great affinity for the outdoors. Hiking, camping, and fishing are among some of my favorite activities. But, really, anything outdoors will do. One of the draws of photography for mw was documenting my adventures. Taking a camera on a hike in to the smokes to document the experience was how I got started in the craft. A small group of my friends took a weekend hike on the Appalachian Trail. We started on the Chimney Tops and walked to Kephart Springs on the first day. The 2nd day we hiked to the top of Mount Le Conte. And on the 3rd day we completed the circle by walking the Alum Cave trail back to where we started at the Chimney tops. It was a fairly difficult hike, with a fair amount of elevation change. All the gear/food that we needed for the entire trip had to be carried, and yet, I still found room for a very heavy Pentax k1000 3 lenses and a tripod. Now, keep in mind that for a trip like this, weight and space are at a super premium, and my whole pack with food and water weighed only 35 pounds. The camera and tripod took a significant portion of that. This set of trails in the Smokies is arguably some of the best that the AT has to offer. From the stunning rock formations and vistas of the Chimney Tops to the hidden waterfalls on the Sweat Heifer Trail there is just so much to see and experience. When I was just beginning my journey in photography, the objective was just to be able to share these magnificent experiences with my friends and family. And soon, I was eager to show more than just what some place looked like, I wanted the images to show more… to show the beauty and wonder of these places. I had seen some of the works of some of the master landscape artists, and their works always had that emotion in the images. That really started my foray into the craft of photography. The funny thing is, I am not even sure exactly, where those negatives are. I am pretty sure that they are in the filing cabinet with most of my other negatives, but i have not looked at them for some time.
I have been exploring my local area since moving to North Arkansas and photography has filled the same niche in my life. I am discovering new places and the history of the local area. Getting out to photograph these places is the excuse I use, but it is much more than that, often the journey is the destination.