X-Rite Interview – Photographing Icebergs and More

The good folks at X-Rite have posted a short five minute audio interview on their blog I did with them a few weeks ago as part of their Coloratti program.

Coloratti Josh Holko is our newest member of the Coloratti program from Melbourne, Australia.  Josh is an accomplished nature photographer and workshop leader. He received word this month that his photographs of Antarctica have made set him as a finalist in 2012 Outdoor Photographer of the Year. Already an award winning photographer Josh’s blog says, “I feel I have been very fortunate this year as I was also a finalist and highly commended with 3rd place in the Travel Photographer of the Year ‘Single Shot Water Category’ and was a finalist in the ‘Fine Art Photographer of the Year’ competition in Paris a few months ago.”

We caught up with Josh a few weeks ago to talk about his photography and yes, I admit it,  to enjoy his lovely Aussie accent! You have to hear about his thoughts on “luxury shooting” in his workshops.

Visit the X-Rite blog for the complete interview.

Happy New Year and Happy Holidays!

I would like to thank all the readers and followers of my blog, those who have purchased prints and workshop participants for your continued support throughout 2012. I wish all of you a very happy and safe New Year and all the very best for 2013. 2013 is going to be another busy year with more new features in the pipeline for my website and blog, and even more new and exciting photographic travels. If you are travelling with me in 2013 on one or more of my workshops or expeditions I look forward to shooting together in some of the world’s most beautiful and remote locations. I have some really exciting announcements I hope to be able to make early in the new year, not the least of which includes a new partnership and surprise guest on the expedition I am leading with Daniel Bergmann to Antarctica in November. More to come on this very shortly suffice to say for now that there is going to be over a quarter of a million dollars worth of high-end digital camera gear on board for everyone to freely use and try out throughout the expedition.2013 also marks the first time a dedicated film production crew will be accompanying me to film an expedition. Abraham Joffe and his team from ‘Untitled Film Works’ will travel with me on the 2nd Jewels of the Arctic expedition I am co-leading with Peter Eastway and have been secured with the task of producing a short video of the trip. This is going to be a great experience and I am looking forward very much to sharing the video on our return. There are actually still a few places remaining on both of these Arctic expeditions for anyone who would like to join us. We are looking forward to Polar Bears, grazing Reindeer, Walrus, Icebergs, precipitous granite spires, mountains and more.I am working feverishly on finalising the 2014 Iceland workshops and hope to have these ready for bookings before leaving for Iceland with Andy Biggs for our Winter Workshops in March. Interest for the 2014 trips has already been very high so please drop me an email if you are interested and I will notify you with details before I officially open the bookings.

To those of you who have expressed an interest in the 2014 Namibia trip with Andy Biggs we are getting close to finalising details and likewise hope to have everything in place before we head for our winter workshops in Iceland next March.Whatever you’re doing today, enjoy yourselves and thank you for your support over the last year. Roll on 2013!

Outdoor Photographer of the Year Finalist 2012

I received notification via email yesterday that one of my photographs from Antarctica has made the finals in the 2012 Outdoor Photographer of the Year Competition. I feel I have been very fortunate this year as I was also a finalist and highly commended with 3rd place in the Travel Photographer of the Year ‘Single Shot Water Category’ and was a finalist in the ‘Fine Art Photographer of the Year’ competition in Paris a few months ago. This was the first time I have entered Outdoor Photographer of the Year and did so more or less on the spur of the moment as one of the category titles (‘The Spirit of Adventure’) really struck a chord with me whilst browsing their website. I had a particular image from Antarctica; which I felt really summed up ‘The Spirit of Adventure’. The photograph in question was taken from the deck of the Ocean Nova near the Lemaire Channel and is of mountain climbers nearing the summit of one of Antarctica’s precipitous mountains in rapidly deteriorating weather. The truth of this photograph is that I did not see the mountain climbers (or at least I do not recall seeing them) when I took this photograph. I do recall being attracted to the sinuous ridgeline, dark sky and swirling clouds as we cruised slowly past and perhaps on a subconscious level I did see the climbers; but my memory of this particular photograph is a little foggy. It was, after all, just one of more than 13,000 images taken on the trip.From the exif data I know I used the Canon 300mm F2.8L IS lens on the Canon EOS 1D MKIV body, which gave me an effective focal length of 390mm for this capture; which should help give an idea of just how far away these climbers were when I made this photograph. It was shot at ISO400 F7.1 at 1/2500th of a second. You can’t see it on this small jpeg; but there are two large sea birds perfectly sharp and frozen to the right of frame. A higher resolution version of this photograph can be seen on my website in the Antarctica Portfolio.

Footnote: Unfortunately, Outdoor Photographer of the Year is not judged on the ‘Print’; but rather on the submission of digital files. To their credit they do require the submission of the original RAW file as proof the photograph has not been significantly tampered with. As I have previously blogged however, I far prefer to have my work viewed in Print, which I regard as the ultimate output. Nevertheless I am very honoured to have made the finals of this prestigious competition and look forward to seeing the winning entries when they are announced early next year.

Iceland 2014 Workshop Dates

For those of you who would like to do some pre-planning and get in early on future workshops; I will be leading three trips to Iceland in March, July and August in 2014. The first of these in March will be a Winter Aurora trip and the second two will be Summer trips into the Highland regions. All three of these workshops will be co-led with my good friend and Iceland’s most experienced guide Daniel Bergmann and each will be limited to just twelve participants. We will be using highly modified Icelandic super jeeps (4-wheel drive monster trucks) to access the best areas in Iceland for photography. There will be no camping on these trips and we will be using guest houses and hotels as our bases. All accommodation, food and in country ground transport will be provided. The emphasis on these workshops is photography and as such we plan to be out in the field when the light is at its best.

Winter Aurora Workshop 2014

  1. March 8th – March 18th 10 Days / 9 Nights

Summer Highlands Workshop 2014

  1. July 14th – July 23rd 10 Days / 9 Nights
  2. July 28th – August 6th 10 Days / 9 Nights

I am not quite ready to start taking bookings for these 2014 trips as yet (that will happen early next year); but if you are interested in joining one of these workshops you can email me and I will contact you prior to opening these trips for bookings. The 2013 trips sold out fast (Summer sold out in 24 hours and the first winter trip sold out in just a few days) so if you are keen I recommend emailing early to avoid disappointment (no obligation at this point).