He’s no Peter Parker superhero but he sure as hell is one fantastic photographer. Unlike most, he doesn’t go trigger happy on his camera, hoping for that one okay shot out of the hundreds; not Mr Parker, he will sit and meditatively wait for that one perfect capture to come his way, even if it takes days. “when I see something that I’m interested in, frequently I’ll end up having to wait for the light or often the next day to get dawn or sunset on it. And even then I’m often skunked by some clouds and have to wait another day.”
Parker will not only wait but will traverse over many miles to get to these ideal picturesque destinations, in fact most of his large-format, color landscape shots are taken while he’s backpacking in the wilderness. “I go out for five to 10 days, all over the world, and that’s my main vehicle. I really very rarely shoot from the road. There’s the occasional day hikes, but the lion’s share’s always backpacking.” It’s no easy task, he will normally be carrying an excess of 80 pounds of large-format-view camera equipment with the additional essentials- tents, food, clothing and other utensils. All this hard work certainly pays off for him though, It’s almost as though the landscapes thank him for his patience and rewards him by revealing they’re beauty.
He says, “I try to take some time to really settle into a sense of place and really let it into my spirit until I’m comfortable enough to really start noticing clearly and my intuition starts to flow, but even then, even in the right space, I’ll sometimes come back with nothing. Frequently I’ll take a week and if I get one shot, I’m ecstatic. If I get two or three, it’s an incredible take. It’s very difficult to find a strong photograph, at least for me. Needles in haystacks, I’ve always felt, you know?” That may be so but it’s defiantly the quality of the shots that matter, not the amount.
Parker was an oceanographer for 15 years before he became a photographer; this change came about because of budget cuts which eliminated his position at the Center for Ocean Analysis and Prediction in Monterey, California. After searching unsuccessfully for work in that field, he took advantage of the opportunity to get back into his “first passion, which I never stopped loving.”
Thank god he re-found his love for photography, because after three decades of shooting he has managed to produce a body of work in several formats that have been widely exhibited and published. His friend and mentor writes: Parker’s stunning prints have impressed me and will no doubt also impress you for their beauty of craft as well as content. Those who will give sufficient time to discover what has been wrought through his efforts will no doubt be rewarded. He has met and mastered the shape of his own passion and vision.
If your eyes are appeased by what they’re seeing then I’d recommend you check out his site!