2019 Washington State Scenic Calendar

The images for the Andy Porter Photography 2019 Washington State Scenic Calendar have been chosen. Here they are!

Copies will be available soon!

Autumn Colors along the Baker River

In October the North Cascades change color. The autumn colors along the Baker River are magnificent.

Depending upon the year the river is filled with salmon in October.

The views of Mount Baker from the Baker Lake road are not too bad…

Everything about a hike along the river on a fall day is perfect, the temperature, the lack of bugs, the late fall-afternoon light, the leaves, the colors, the smells…I could go on and on…

The trail starts at the end of the Baker Lake Road. Here is the link with the details.

Be sure to have a Northwest Forest Pass to park at the trailhead. You can get one in Sedro-Woolley at the Chamber Office on Metcalf Street and at the North Cascades National Park / Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest Office on Highway 20 in Sedro-Woolley.

Field Trip to Artist Point

Last Thursday I took 47 students on a field trip to Artist Point. It was awesome!

Artist Point is the coolest place you can drive a car here in our state, and on a fall day with nice weather its unforgettable. Located at the end of the Mount Baker Highway, at more than 5,000 feet elevation) Artist Point is right between Mount Baker and Mount Shuksan.

The weather was perfect and we had a blast. Most of the kids had never been to Artist Point before, in fact many had never been in the mountains until today!

Just the bus ride up the switch backs at the end of the highway was breath taking…

This all started with Career Day; I was invited to the Burlington Edison High School to present what life is like for a professional photographer. I came and did the talk twice and the photo teacher started to recruit me, he was retiring soon and suggested I take his spot.

So now I am the Photography Teacher at the Burlington Edison High School! This is my 3rd year. I have a full schedule of Photography Classes, this semester I have about 165 students.

The school has about 40 Canon Rebel DSLRs; a wide selection of lenses, studio lights, Photoshop… so I can teach the students to take and edit cool pics. And field trips!

We stopped at Picture Lake for some shots of Mt Shuksan…

Often I go on a field trip and take few images, spending most time advising, but the light and setting was so stunning that managed to snap a few pics…

Picture Lake is right in the middle of the two ski areas. From there we drove up to the end of the highway, at Artist Point

Our next Field Trip adventure is Oct. 16th and I cant wait!

 

Happy 50th Birthday, North Cascades National Park

Fifty years ago, on October 2, 1967, the North Cascades National Park was created.

Happy Birthday!

Diablo Overlook Panorama

From the first time I laid eyes on a map of the North Cascades I was captivated. The names of the peaks drew me in; Mt. Terror, Desolation Peak, Mount Fury. And then I saw a few pictures. The North Cascades looked like I thought mountains should look: deep dark forests, lush with life; sharp serrated peaks, ridge, after ridge, stretching to the horizon, donned with glaciers, spouting myriad waterfalls glistening in the sun….

My first visit was a mostly cloudy one. I hiked over Park Creek Pass from Stehekin. There were a few glimmers through the clouds of the majesty beyond.

 

 

It would be many years before I returned and tried again.

And I was able to confirm that indeed the North Cascades were everything I had dreamed of.

Lush forests and waterfalls

Sharp serrated peaks

Meadows and wildflowers…

and endless vistas

The North Cascades have not lost the feeling of wildness. For that I am grateful!

Happy Birthday, and Thank you, North Cascades National Park!

 

 

Wilderness

I was drawn to wilderness from the first time I saw images on some old 1960’s Wild Kingdom TV show. Things looked a bit sketchy out there. Like you were never exactly sure what would happen next.

That appealed to me.

Sahale Camp

I didn’t get very old before I figured out that most people seemed to live life in a straight jacket. Maybe it was created for them, or it could have been of their own making. But things looked so predictable and depressing.

Wilderness, was it a way out?

At 16 my mom got cancer and passed away rather suddenly. She was my stable person in the world. I was lost. 30 days on an Outward Bound program in the Sawtooth Mountains saved me.

The wilderness taught me strength.

Returning to civilization afterwards was…difficult.  I ran away soon after never to return home. There were rough times. When things got really bad I escaped to a wild place.

Wilderness gave me hope. My time there taught me that no matter what, things would be alright.

For a time I lived an idealists dream, thinking I was helping to save the world, only to end in bitter disappointment.

Sahale Camp

When that ended I was left with a hole in my soul bigger than the grand canyon. And it was Sahale Camp that saved me.

Wilderness taught me that you shouldn’t take things so fucking seriously.

I have dug myself in many holes in my relationships with others. I escaped to wilderness to find peace. Finally wilderness taught me some humility.

Sometime just knowing that there are wild places out there is the only thing that keeps me going.

There are times when I am deeply disappointed in humans and worried about the havoc they wreak. I worry about losing wild places.

Now I understand that wilderness is more than a place. Its a feeling, an attitude, a freedom, a willingness and a determination.

Deep down inside I know these are things I will never lose.

Photography Classes in Burlington Fall 2018

Andy Porter Photography

I will be teaching several Photography Classes in Burlington Fall 2018. There are 3 different classes, each is about 2.5 hours long and cost $40.

How to Capture Awesome Images with your DSLR – Beginners Level 1

Looking down the Middle Fork of the Nooksack River

There are 4 scheduled sessions for this class on different dates and times to make it easier to find a date that works for you.

  • Sept. 18,    Tuesday,      6pm – 8:30pm
  • Sept. 27,    Thursday,     6pm – 8:30pm
  • Oct. 6,       Saturday,      10am – 12:30pm
  • Nov. 6,      Tuesday,      6pm – 8:30pm

Taking pictures with your new DSLR is easy, just set it on auto and shoot away. Capturing GOOD pictures with your new DSLR…that’s harder. Quality photography starts with understanding how to set your exposure manually.  This is NOT difficult to do.

In this 3 hour workshop we’ll cover aperture and shutter speed and show you how to change them on your camera. Next we’ll discuss how to use these settings to create the image you want. Bracketing the exposure is a very key part of this and will set you on the right path. We will also cover the use of polarizers and capturing images in the RAW format.

To register for classes, visit the Burlington Parks and Rec web site here

How to Capture Awesome Images with your DSLR – Intermediate Level 2

Mt Rainier and Packwood Lake

There are 2 scheduled sessions for this class on different dates and times to make it easier to find a date that works for you.

  • Oct. 16,    Tuesday,      6pm – 8:30pm
  • Oct. 27,    Saturday,     10am – 12:30pm

In this class we will delve deeper into depth of field and how to master control over how much of what’s in front of you is in focus. Then we’ll cover the use of different shutter speeds to create stunning, unique images.

We will discuss different types of lenses and which is best for you.

Next will be more advanced techniques to obtain a sharp focus throughout your entire image, we will practice each technique as we go.

This class will cover in detail how to shoot Milky Way and Star Trail images.

Bring your tripod and any and all lenses you have for your camera.

Prerequisites: You must have taken the How to Capture Awesome Images with your DSLR – Beginners Level 1 (aka Nature Photography – Beginners class) OR be VERY comfortable shooting in the Manual Mode with your current camera.

Liberty Bell and the Milky Way

Photography Composition and Basic Editing

Having an eye” for photography is definitely an acquired skill! Once you learn the basic tools and practice you’ll have it. We will cover: subject placement; use of the horizon; reflections; leading lines; the Rule of Thirds; framing and more.

Then we’ll delve into how to edit your images on the computer, covering cropping, color adjustment, filters and all sorts of amazing stuff to make your images pop!

  • Nov. 8,   Thursday,   6pm  – 8:30pm

To register for ALL CLASSES you must sign up and pay through Burlington Parks and Recreation. Seating is limited so sign up sooner!

Visit their web site here  OR Call them at : 360-755-9649

Andy Porter Images is my main web site where you can buy prints, calendars, cards and more.

Are you interested in a Night Sky Photo Tour? Learn more here.

Questions? Email me at andyporterphotography@gmail.com

Three visits to Park Butte Lookout

Three visits to Park Butte Lookout

In 2015 I had the good fortune to make three visits to Park Butte Lookout.  Its always good fortune when you visit such a place, I have spent more than 20 nights in, on or near the lookout. Stormy or clear, with others or alone, each visit unique.

The last several years I have passed up chances to do Park Butte in July, thinking I’d have plenty of opportunity in August, only to have my plans dashed by wildfires. That’s not to say that the local forest burned, but rather smoke from fires in Canada and Eastern Washington filled the valleys. Photographically the images of mountain landscapes are utterly ruined by the smoke.

So, here I sit, looking at these three trips in June, July and August, 2015.

And its helping, I am feeling better already!

June

There was a high alert for sun activity making the Northern Lights visible, so I made my way up to the lookout. The only stellar shots I got were before sunset.

July

I spent the night alone at the Lookout, and the sky was sublime. The Sisters, across the valley and the Middle Fork stretching towards the sun, it was quite a show.

August

This trip was a busy one! I brought 2 clients up to stay the night, but the Lookout was taken, so we camped in tents just below. The sunset was unbelievable.

Park Butte Lookout and Mount Baker Panorama

and the next morning was one of those magical moments that wouldn’t end. The snow-melt tarns are perfect for reflections and the low angle light sumptuous in its tone…

Hopefully the smoke clears soon and I’ll be back for the 2018 versions of the Lookout!