What Conservation Means to Me: This is my "why"
In recent years, a dramatic expansion in availability and quality of mobile phone cameras has made photography available to everyone. Today, we are all photographers! Inspiration will separate some of us from the main group, those of us to whom photography is not about snapping as many photos as we can and getting as many followers as possible.
Personally, I am inspired to capture, and then share the story of images from the most wild and remote places on Earth. You may prefer to capture images of people, food, sports or other things. Perhaps you arrived here because you are doing research prior to a trip to one or more of our National Parks. Whatever your reason, I am pleased to have you visit here. Please allow me to share my "why," the inspiration that drives me to do my work and share it by creating a site like this one.
Photography has been a blessing in every sense of the word, for it has opened the possibility to see places that few people will see in person. As I have gone out in the wild over a period of years, I have developed a strong sense of responsibility for the care of these wild places that have been underappreciated, even under attack by natural changes and by man.
Up to now, I have shared images showing the beauty and wonder of nature. From here forward, my images will focus on the heritage and the fragility of our wildest and most natural environments. The balance between nature and change is delicate indeed. I will not have all the answers, but I promise to share the challenges in the form of imagery and art.
Environmental conservation, a subject near and dear to me, addresses current and future threats to the environment and the living things in it. I am far from an expert on definitions and practices in field of conservation, so I encourage anyone interested in learning more to download a copy of the pamphlet "Tools of Engagement," published by The National Audubon Society, and "Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation," published by the Conservation Measures Partnership.
I practice conservation in my daily routine by taking only pictures and leaving only footprints; by working hard to capture the essence of a place in my images; by sharing not only my images but also the story of each shared image, so that others may be inspired; and finally, by coaching others who ask and by coaching some who just need to know, the acceptable boundaries of behavior in the wild.
I support conservation organizations that share my vision. For more information on an organization I support, please visit Yellowstone Forever to see the real work this organization is doing to save one of the wildest places on earth for future generations.
So, that is a quick overview of my "why." I hope you find your "why" along the way.
A quick comment on my art products and pricing. I have chosen a fine, family-owned company called SmugMug to host my photos. For the production of wall art based upon my photos, I use the very best labs in the USA and around the world. I continuously monitor quality and pricing of the labs, so that you receive the very best quality products possible. I have control over a portion of the final product cost to you, known as 'markup' which I take very seriously. Your purchase makes it possible for me to continue producing products that I am proud of, and to continue supporting organizations like Yellowstone Forever. It is easy to contact me - just click the CONTACT link in the top menu. Be sure to leave instructions on how to connect with you. Messages sent via my CONTACT page are private; no one else will see your message.
Thank you for visiting!
Larry Rogers, September 2018
My Artistic Journey
My very first camera was a Kodak Brownie StarFlash. It was a Christmas gift that I received around age seven. Those who have experienced film photography may recall a time when we would carefully pose our friends or family before snapping each shot, only to wait a week or more to actually purchase and receive prints and negatives. Only then could we see if we had captured the moment just the way we visualized it, let alone try to recall the camera settings we used on that day. As photographers (even at age 7), we learned to be very patient about our art, and moreover, to be very prudent when expending shots. Prints, after all, were the only way to review our work, and prints were very expensive.
As a young adult, upon graduating from engineering school, I was off to the US Army in Germany. There, I found that I could get a bit more serious about my art. Equipment prices were almost affordable in the Army Post Exchange. And, while film was still the gold standard for those important images, transparency (slide film) was gaining in popularity due to its more affordable price point for processing. There were no prints, after all. By this time I found myself moving away from 'event' photography (friends, family, graduations, etc) to more subject-based art. Some of my favorite subjects at that time were architecture and landscape images - bridges especially, and the older the better.
Eventually, transparency film began to fall out of favor as a way to capture images. It was a lot of work, frankly, to load images into slide trays, and trays were almost always full of the wrong images at a time when friends were over. So, I'm embarrassed to say, I lost interest in my art for a number of years, until - along came the digital camera. Early models were known for grainy images, either lacking character or over-contrasted, but I could tell that it was time to take notice of this new technology, so I started to dabble. Dabble led to tinker, which led to starting a digital library, and then... well, it hit me that my old standby film and transparency images were... frankly, not very good at all! And that was the point at which my art began to flourish. Flourish it has, and even though many years have passed since that first Brownie StarFlash flashbulb burned my little fingers as I tried to remove it, it feels like photography is brand new again!
My website is a reflection of the absolute joy I get from photography. The digital world is a playground. Every day there are new words to learn, new tools to try out, and yes, new friends to meet - even if only 'virtually'. Thank you so much for stopping by here! I am truly honored that you have taken a few minutes to read the story of my artistic journey. You have my word that I am doing everything I can to ensure that every visit here takes you somewhere new.
Please check out my BLOG for periodic updates on my activities. I may be offering a few followers the opportunity to join me on a photo trip. I will announce upcoming trips in the Blog.
I would love to hear from you! Please use the Contact Form to let me know what subjects you would like to see.