I have learned over the years that the pursuit of nature as a photographer can be, and usually is, a fairly solitary affair; and that, aside from my teaching activities, much of my time is spent alone chasing the light or the changing seasons around the countryside. So being able to create community at every opportunity is something I cherish, for we sustain ourselves ultimately by the quality of the connections and relationships we establish, not only with other photographers, but with all of those who, like us, are living the journey that is life and seeking to understand our place in the dance and to offer the best of who we are in the pursuit of that understanding.
The sites offered on this page are not intended to represent people and purposes that are identical to me and mine, rather to highlight what I consider to be the search for excellence in whatever the endeavor.
(Click a link to read more.)
Creek ‘n Woods Vacation Rentals
Tom and Sue Knapko have distilled the essence of what being in the hospitality business is all about: treat your guests even better than you would wish to be treated. And they have made of this credo an art form. That their guests return year after year tells their story more eloquently than anything I could say.
Let me state my belief simply, we don’t need more highways; we need a better plan for sustainable transportation in Appalachia and we need leaders with the vision and courage to implement such a plan. As an organization dedicated to such a process and result, WaysSouth has my vote for the kind of grassroots organization ideally suited to take us forward in ways that promote progress and preserve our heritage, as well as the beauty that cannot be replaced once it is destroyed.
Great Smoky Mountains Association
In 1953 GSMA was created as the first non-profit partner of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. In 2008 this wonderful organization contributed jumi.84 million to fund the Park’s scientific, historic, and educational programs. Whenever you make a purchase in one of the Smokies’ visitor centers, you are contributing to the on-going work of GSMA. I encourage you to visit them often.
Mountain Lens Retreat Center
Jeff Miller & April Johnson have created a wonderful facility in the beauty of Henderson County North Carolina. We have very much enjoyed the retreats and workshops we have held at Mountain Lens Retreat Center. Take a few minutes to immerse yourself in the beauty of Mountain Lens and you will see what I mean.
Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts
There are several images that come to mind when I reflect on Arrowmont. It is a place where the appreciation and love of art and the creation of art is palpable and real. It is a place where the love of learning and creativity is revered, and a tradition of quality instruction is time-honored and upheld. In an often frenetic world it is an oasis of possibility sustained by calmness and beauty. I acknowledge it a pleasure to be counted among Arrowmont’s instructors, and an inspiration to me to know and be among the students who are drawn to its charm.
North American Nature Photography Association
In 1994 the North American Nature Photography Association was chartered as a non-profit corporation for promoting the interest of nature photography and nature photographers, both as art and science, and striving for not only excellence, but ethical conduct as well. I am proud to be a member.
Carolinas’ Nature Photographers Association
At the regional level in the Southern Appalachians there are several nature photography organizations whose efforts are of extremely high quality. CNPA is just such a group. The CNPA regional structure has proven to be a wonderfully effective way to make a large geographic area work for a photographic community.
Southern Appalachian Nature Photographers
On the other side of the mountains, in the Tennessee Valley and Cumberland Plateau region, SANP has been effectively promoting nature photography for many years and the quality of its efforts is widely known.
Camera Club of Hendersonville
Western North Carolina is blessed with a plenitude of active camera clubs and equally active photographers. The Camera Club of Hendersonville is one of the most active anywhere around. Its meetings are very information and its membership is actively engaged in its wide variety of programs and participatory opportunities. It has been a pleasure getting to know this excellent organization and its people.
There are photography websites and there are photography websites; and when I elect to create a link to another photographer’s site, it is because I have the clear sense that that person shares my understanding of what epitomizes the journey that is the art and craft – the creative essence – of nature photography. Bob Johnson is such a photographer and his site is such a place.
Seawall Motel, Southwest Harbor, Maine
The beautiful coast of Maine has long been one of my favorite locations, and it became even moreso when I discovered Dave and Vickie Lloyd and their warm and cozy facility in Mount Desert Island’s Southwest Harbor. Situated exactly at the Seawall Entrance to Acadia National Park, it’s the perfect location to experience the loveliness and charm of MDI without the crowds of Bar Harbor; and the hospitality extended by the Lloyds goes way beyond inn-keeping. EarthSong Photography Workshops is pleased to call Seawall Motel its Down East Home, and we plan to visit as often as possible.
First Tee Mountain Golf
I have to confess that I don’t play golf, but my friend Ron Clark does; and from his obvious passion for the game he’s crafted an excellent business that offers a variety of golfing packages to some of the most beautiful and challenging courses in these mountains. If golf is your game, Ron Clark is your man, and First Tee Mountain Golf is the way to play.
I received an interesting email recently from Angela Whitney, who is an instructor in the After School Care Program in El Paso County, Colorado, as in Colorado Springs, et al. She is working with a group of students to create a video/photography club in the program. They found my website and enjoyed it, and then bookmarked it for future use. They also shared with me a link to a site called The Snugg. I have not used the products of the company, but I did enjoy the page on the history of photography and thought others might enjoy it as well. Thanks Angela.