After much debate in the waning months of 2019, I opted to put down a deposit to attend the Out of Yosemite conference in February 2020. The last third or so of 2019 was an extremely challenging period and I had little time or energy to devote to photography; in fact, from the early part of August of that year until arriving in Yosemite I didn't use my camera for anything other than playing around to capture some moon shot from my back yard.
Attending the conference seemed the perfect opportunity to not only travel and get out and shoot but to also connect with dozens of other photographers, amateur and professional alike. Yosemite was also high on my list of locations I wanted to photograph (no big surprise there, I suppose).
Aside from the incredible sunset I captured upon my arrival a couple days before the start of the conference, it was nothing but blue skies the entire week. Fortunately, and not surprisingly, the park is a veritable playground for photographers, providing countless opportunities for everything from grand vistas to intimate scenes, and everything in between.
It was also a great chance to break in my new (at the time) 100-400mm lens, which allowed me to capture many small details of my surroundings that would have otherwise been out of reach. I believe I ended up using that lens for roughly 70% of the images I took in Yosemite.
Once the actual conference kicked off it was moment after moment of incredible stories about Ansel Adams - shared by John Sexton, Alan Ross, Michael and Jeanne Adams, Michael Frye, and others - and being totally immersed in landscape and nature photography.
I had an opportunity to meet so many amazing photographers, including Alex Noriega, Colleen Miniuk, Charlotte Gibb (whose box set almost brought me to tears), Franka Gabler, Jennifer King, Michael Shainblum (one of the photographers that first inspired me when I was starting out), Matt Payne, Charlie Cramer, William Neill, the late Jack Curran... and several others I'm probably forgetting about.
Then add to the mix friendships made with other attendees and it was simply one of the best experiences I've had to-date. I could have come away without a single photo and still felt the same.
It goes without saying the events that unfolded throughout the rest of 2020 made me all the more thankful for attending. So many of the images you'll see below brought me small slices of peace and calm throughout the pandemic and world turmoil that seemed to unfold endlessly.
Several of the images you see below are available as prints, which you can purchase via the button below. More will be made available over time; if there's an image you'd like a print of which isn't listed for purchase, please contact me.
Image previews below are cropped; click on any preview to view the full image and read additional backstories.