What Can I Do For You?

I have a question about photography.
I'm a photo editor.
I work for an outdoor adventure or outdoor photography magazine.
I'm the publicity director for a bookstore.
I'd like to tag along with you on a photo shoot.
I own a photo workshop/tour business.
I'm in charge of finding speakers for my club.
I'm a beginning photographer.
I'm a visitor from another planet.
I'm a science professional.
I'm a commercial designer/art director.
I'm engaged to be married.
I'm looking for a free photo.
I want to quit my job and take pictures full time. Please tell me how to do it.
I'm a book publisher.
I'm the coordinator at a public library, community college, or civic center.
I'm a school student working on an assignment.
I'm the senior editor for National Geographic magazine.

I have a question about photography

You're in luck! I just happen to have a page called Photo Nuts & Bolts. It features articles about various photography techniques, as well as information about the photography equipment I use. Check it out. You just might find the answer to your question. If not, give me a shout.


I'm a photo editor

I know you work with very tight deadlines and you don't want to see images from Pisgah National Forest for an article about Gorges State Park. My files are extensive, but no photographer has everything for everybody. If I don't have what you need, I'll tell you so, rather than sneaking in a similar pic in hopes for a sale. And I'll happily direct you to someone else who may have the coverage. Regarding what I do have, it's all good quality. If it's not, it goes in the trash before anyone sees it! And I'll get it to you right away. The exception is if you contact me when I'm on a photo trip. But even in such cases, the lead time is rarely more than a week.


I work for an outdoor adventure or outdoor photography magazine.

Need articles about nature photography technique? How about nature subjects and outdoor adventure in North Carolina and the Southeast? Need an expert on the southern Appalachians or North Carolina that you can call whenever you have a pressing need for content from that region? I won't be any help if you need material on repairing motorcycles or auto touring in Oklahoma, but if you need general nature or nature photography articles about North Carolina and the surrounding region, I can help. Click here to see a selection general nature articles and here to see articles about photographic technique.

TOP OF PAGE

I'm the publicity director for a bookstore.

I'm always happy to schedule book signings for bricks & mortar bookshops. I can give a talk, but I typically don't give photo presentations at book signings..


I'd like to tag along with you on a photo shoot.

Let me guess. You'd carry my gear and you wouldn't get in the way, right? You wouldn't believe how many times people tell me this. The truth is, you DON'T want to tag along with me. You would be hot, cold, hungry, wet, exhausted, and constipated (or the opposite). Bushwhacking through briars and rhododendron thickets would bruise and scratch you. Sliding down steep mountain slopes would make your butt sore. Your feet would get all pruney from wading in creeks and swamps all day long. Mosquitoes, noseeums, and ticks would devour you. Trust me, you would be miserable. I live in my truck and get food from a plastic tub. I'm awake from a couple of hours before sunrise until well into the night (all night if its clear and I'm working on night photography). I don't take naps during the day. From spring through fall, I take baths in mountain creeks, coastal plain swamps and blackwater rivers, or in the ocean. In winter, I pour water from a jug over my head or I just don't bathe. And I can get cranky if the lighting and subject matter don't cooperate. If all this is not enough to dissuade you, I have to admit that I'm just not comfortable with other people around when I'm in the field. I simply can't immerse myself into the photography the way I normally do.

With all that said, if you have a lot of money and happen to look anything like Charlize Theron, give me a call. I think I have an opening on my next trip!

I own a photo workshop/tour business.

Are you looking for a talented, experienced, energetic photographer/teacher to add to your roster? Perhaps you've been thinking of expanding into a new territory, but don't know whom to contact. Maybe I can help. Leading workshops and photo tours has been a regular aspect of my business for over a decade. I'm always interested in adding new events.

I'm in charge of finding speakers for my club.

I love to speak to camera clubs and groups of all kinds. I have a reasonable basic fee for most club presentations, which is in addition to any travel expenses incurred.

TOP OF PAGE


I'm a beginning photographer.

Professional nature photographers are generally very open and willing to offer help and advice when they have the time, but most people are afraid to question them. When I was getting started, pros intimidated me. I was always afraid to initiate contact for fear of catching them at a bad time. I remember how that feels and I would like to do something to help those photographers just getting started. So if anybody has any questions, send me an email and I'll respond as soon as I can. It might be the same day, or if I'm traveling it could be several weeks. I may not be able to write a lengthy response, but I promise to get back to you eventually with something.

I do ask that you try to limit your queries to specific questions. I get a lot of questions like “How can I improve my photography?”, “I’m going to Italy, what gear should I take?”, and “How do I take pictures at night?” I couldn’t possibly give a meaningful answer to questions like these in an email, or even in several emails. Those are subjects for BOOKS, not emails! When you need a specific answer to a question, like “How do I focus my camera in the dark?”, please feel free to fire away.

As a follow-up to the above statement, if you’re just getting into photography and don’t know where to begin, I recommend that you join a local camera club and surround yourself with other photographers. Most clubs have regular outings and the seasoned members are usually happy to help beginning photographers. Another good option is to hire a professional photographer for a few hours of private instruction. Most pro nature photographers offer this service. Although it can be pricey, there’s nothing better than one-on-one instruction with someone who shoots the same kinds of subjects that you wish to.

While I’m happy to answer questions to the best of my ability, I do not offer online photo critiques. Proper critiquing requires that I know something about the photographer and what they were trying to accomplish. There are just too many variables to fit everything into a tidy email. Also, email removes all the nuance of a person-to-person conversation. If I had hours to spend writing and perhaps talking on the phone as well, it would be different, but as it is I’d run the risk of hurting someone’s feelings or simply giving them bad advice. So, while I love to look at other photographer’s online images, I am uncomfortable critiquing them through email.


I'm a visitor from another planet.

Can I take your picture?.


I'm a science professional.

If you're a botanist, biologist, geologist, or professional in any field of the natural sciences, you are my hero. I wish I could go back to school and learn what you know. Conversely, I bet there are occasions when you wish you had the gear and knowledge to take the best quality photos for your project. Maybe next time we can work together. You need the best possible photos and I need photos of things I ordinarily wouldn't be able to get without collaborating with a scientist.

TOP OF PAGE


I'm a commercial designer/art director.

I work with commercial designers and art directors to supply exactly the right photo for their projects. Occasionally, I have the ideal photo in my stock files, but commercial work typically means shooting to spec on assignment. Although my specialty is outdoor and nature photography, I excel at photographing architecture, modern development, people in normal settings, and the like. The only type of photography I typically shun is non-nature still-lifes and general studio work. Oh, and weddings. (See next section.) Click here for more information about commercial, advertising, and editorial photography assignments.


I'm engaged to be married.

Congratulations! I am so happy for you! And I just know that you're going to find a really great photographer to shoot your wedding. Someone who specializes in weddings-not outdoor and commercial photography. If you were thinking of maybe asking me to shoot your wedding, I'm afraid I won't be in town the day you're getting married. How do I know this? Just tell me the day. I assure you, I already have plans.


I'm looking for a free photo.

Read this first.
You're back? Hmmm, either you didn't read that first or you didn't pay attention to what it said. Giving you the benefit of the doubt, perhaps you're with a legitimate (preferably environmental) non-profit organization and you have a very tight budget. If so, get in touch and well talk about it. I sometimes provide free photos for certain causes that I feel strongly about. If you're with a for-profit publication or business and you're just looking to get a free photo, or your attitude is something along the lines of, "Anybody can take a picture, so what's so special about yours that I should have to pay for them," please go away .


I want to quit my job and take pictures full time. Please Tell me how to do it.

Did you hear that? That's the sound of me cringing. This is the number two question I hear. (Number one is, "What camera should I buy?") I cringe because I know exactly how the person feels and I can't do or say anything to help. In fact, I face the terrible choice of telling the truth and bursting the person's bubble, or lying just to make them feel better. Since lying is not in my nature, I'm sure I've upset many aspiring photographers. This topic comes up so often and is so deserving of a meaningful response, I have a special page about becoming a professional photographer.


I'm a book publisher.

Most of my large projects like books are planned several years ahead, but I'm always willing to discuss new ideas. Depending on the topic, I may be able to piggyback the work onto existing projects. So give me a call and let's talk about it.


I'm the coordinator for a public library, community college, or civic center.

Looking for a different type of speaker for your Friday night lecture? I can give programs on general nature topics, photography, and North Carolina travel. I also have a special program relating to my North Carolina Then & Now book. I can't speak for free, but my rates are reasonable.

TOP OF PAGE


I'm a school student working on an assignment.

Let me guess. You have 215 questions and your assignment is due tomorrow, right? While I can certainly identify with your predicament, I probably won't be able to help you. In this insane "real" world we adults live in, rarely can I just stop what I'm doing and spend a lot of time on something else. But if you are one of the minority who is actually planning ahead and you can give me a little more time, I am happy to help. In fact, I'm flattered that you picked me as the subject of your project. So give me a call or shoot me an email. Just remember, though, if I'm away on a photo trip it could be a few weeks before I can get back to you. You might have to tell the teacher your dog peed on your computer and fried your assignment!.

Oh, if all you need for your project is to copy some text and/or photos from this website, you are welcome to do so provided you send me an email beforehand letting me know exactly what you're doing. This applies ONLY to elementary or high school students working on a teacher-assigned project. Click here for more information about photography copyright issues.


I'm the senior editor for National Geographic magazine.

Hey, I'll do anything you want, any time you want me to do it!.