Winter

Winter has set down it’s roots here. And I couldn’t be happier. Besides all the cold weather fun it brings it also produces a beautiful palette for black and white. Over the pass from where I live is the Gunnison River valley which produces some of the coldest temperatures in the lower 48, sometimes even colder than parts of Alaska. This was shot near the base of the pass off the main road and down a gravel lane that dead ends into a snow bank. A perfect place to find the serenity that winter creates.

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The Spirit of San Luis

The oldest town in Colorado, San Luis is also likely the most spiritual. Populated by the primarily Hispanic families who settled there in 1851, the town remains small and, in some ways, unique. Situated in south central Colorado, not far from the New Mexico border, San Luis boasts the oldest church in Colorado and La Vega, a rare public commons — a place where communal grazing of livestock is allowed. The town is most famous, however, for its Stations of the Cross, a string of bronze statues climbing the mesa adjacent to town. Each station represents a moment during the crucifixion of Christ, and the locale is popular with Christian visitors each Easter. These photographs were created during a road trip through the San Luis Valley which is fast becoming my favorite place to photograph when I have a little extra time. The Arkansas Valley near my home town of Salida is spectacular in its own right but the history and the vibe of the San Luis Valley is so unique and intriguing that it’s always worth the effort.

San Luis Church

San Luis Church

 

Summer Rain

The monsoon flow has begun here in Colorado and with the wide open vistas we enjoy around Salida rain events like this are a daily occurrence. On this particular day, I was driving home from a photo shoot at the Great Sand Dunes National Park and saw this thunder head growing near the small town of Villa Grove which lies at the northern end of the San Luis Valley. The Sangre de Cristo mountains in the background start just north of here and run south towards Taos, New Mexico. That chain of mountains has intrigued me for years as I’ve made many pilgrimages to and from New Mexico chasing the light. But as luck would have it I was in the right place and headed into the storm with enough time on my hands to shoot this amazing display.

Summer Rain

Great Sand Dunes National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park is just a short distance from my home base in Salida Colorado. As a photographer it’s an amazing place to spend time wandering the dunes and photographing the shifting light and sculptural forms. The dunefield has the tallest dunes in North America spreading across 30 square miles (78 sq. km) creating a unique high-altitude desert environment bordered on one side by 14,000 foot peaks and the other by the San Luis Valley.

Sand Dunes

Changing Seasons

Spring gives way to summer in the landscape around Salida Colorado. Within a short distance from the studio is world class fly fishing on the South Platte River and just a short drive from there are the Collegiate Peaks which are part of the Sawatch Range of central Colorado.

Mount Princeton afternoon storm.

Afternoon on the South Platte River

 

The View From Here

Since relocating to Salida Colorado last July I’ve been spending countless hours photographing and filming the landscape right out my door. This is one of the driving forces for the relocation in addition to the quality of life that can only be found when surrounded by immense mountains, big rivers and endless skies. IMG_3514   IMG_3400

New Zealand

A series of photos from a recent trip to New Zealand.

New Zealand New Zealand New Zealand New Zealand New Zealand New Zealand

Water for the Other 90%: Images and Ideas

Design for the Other 90% topic

As part of the Smithsonian Museum’s Design for the Other 90% (D90) exhibit, Tim Ryan Pictures and Project Exposure have collaborated with Redline Gallery to produce an exhibit, lecture series/panel discussion that explores the concept of “The Other 90%”.

Project Exposure selected four photographers whose work focuses on the people and places where the products in the D90 exhibit are used. Each photographer’s work is projected in the gallery to give visitors a better sense of who the “Other 90%” constitutes.

Tonight at 7Pm I will be presenting my work and thoughts on the state of the global water crisis as well as the role photographers can play in advancing issues and solutions by collaborating with NGO’s.

A Bolivian household

Bolivia has long been one of the poorest and least developed countries in Latin America, with an average annual income in rural areas of just US $150.  Bolivia also has the largest proportion of indigenous people, comprising about two-thirds of the total population. According to Bolivian government-supplied statistics, the percentage of people with access to safe water is only 68%.

The statistics never paint a pretty picture and sometimes it’s hard to see progress from the hard work of the local governments, NGO’s and international NGO’s like the ones I often work with. But it’s the job of the photographer/filmmaker to see the opportunities when they present themselves. This was one of those cases. We were working in a small remote village, which is often the case, and it was getting late in the day. We decided to walk up a faint dirt road to a household nestled up against the cliffs that reminded me of the desert Southwest in the US. When we arrived a woman with the most amazing smile was drying grain she had recently harvested. With the light slipping behind the ridge I quickly began shooting as she filled the sack with the days’ work.

Challenges and solutions in Bolivia

So much of the imagery associated with development work focuses on the problem and not on the solution. But often times the solution is a much more powerful image, as this photograph demonstrates. It’s not difficult to shoot the worst case scenario, but most potential donors want to know that the cause they’re contributing to has some positive impact. That’s not to say that the problem should be ignored, but rather framed in a larger context that shows problems in conjunction with solutions. The organizations I work with embrace this approach. They work to tell the whole story, one of challenges and solutions. And as a photographer/filmmaker I strive to convey that balance in the photographs and videos I create by acknowledging the challenges and demonstrating the solutions, which sometimes can be truly beautiful.