I love photography and birding, and I have over 30 years of logbook entries of bird species spotted globally. When I was a hardcore birder, I used a pseudonym for my pro photography due to my commitments as a rescue specialist traveling worldwide. I was also keen on landscapes, and now today, these same locations are just becoming available for NatGeo and the common adventurer for safe travel, maybe a little less safe at present due to the spread of COVID-19 and the occasional headhunter in PNG. Over the course of my life as a pro visual artist, I have seen many friends, colleagues, and clients who are birders become photographers, and I am thrilled to welcome them into the field of visual artistry. And some are achieving gallery quality hanging prints from there birding adventures. Unfortunately, in Japan, I have never offered an exclusively birding open group photo workshop; however, I do lead private birding adventures several times a year. And I enjoy myself with my fellow birders, but during many of my multi-themed group photo adventures, I keep tongue-tied from time to time when asked what species of bird we just spotted. And to tell you the truth, the reason why I don’t identify the species is that in some cases, I am not 100% positive, but my accuracy is between 85% to 95%. If You know birders, you know what happens when you misidentify; you are dammed if you do and dammed if you miss, but even if you get the bird family correct, so I sometimes prefer to be dammed. Birding photography is a noble pursuit, but as the Zen master, D.T. Suzuki said, “I like zen because everything is zen.” Everything is zen, not birds exclusively. My vision is to explore and always experience life with the beginner’s mind. A beginner sees myriad possibilities in each theme and pursuit, and that is the mindset I bring to each project, so I broaden the scope of my photo adventures to include several different themes, not only birding as a focus. While many colleagues who are fellow photographers feverishly hold onto their pride and feel they are experts in birding. Still, there are so many other types of photography to bring the beginner’s mindset that are arguably as beautiful and spectacular as birds. I do carry a decent set of binoculars for spotting in my pack, and I use them from time to time. At one time, I swore I would be a birder for life, but my sensibilities have evolved. There’s much more to hang on my walls than birding photos, and I have become a renowned photographer of birds, wildlife, landscapes, culture, flowers, architecture, and virtually any type of photography. Join me in Japan in the near future on a different kind of adventure, birding, including, and maybe I won’t be quite a tongue-tied post-pandemic.
The photos in this newsletter are exclusively birds. I’ll always have birding in my blood.