Who has had a chance to check out my latest release of work from Antarctica? This series juxtaposes the natural beauty of the glacier-covered continent with various beach and summer objects that draw attention to climate change and our shifting landscape. To celebrate the release of these images, I wanted to share a behind the scenes look at the series to give you a better idea of how it all came together. What makes this series even more special is that it supports the NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council), an international nonprofit environmental advocacy organization that believes everyone deserves clean air, safe water, and a just and livable future.
Watch the behind the scenes video below to get a better look at the magic…
Early in my career, I set the goal of shooting on all 7 continents and I knew one day I would encounter “the white continent”. In researching how to bring my vision to life, it turned out that the only way to get to Antarctica was by boat and that there was an opportunity to travel there with National Geographic. My sister accompanied me on this once in a lifetime chance and I’m so grateful to this day to have had the privilege to capture such a rare and treasured place with my amazing sibling. It’s no surprise to you all that I’m inspired by the beach, so when I began to plan the shoot, my initial thought was how could I bring the beach to this icy continent. As my concept began to develop, I realized that through my art I could shed light on a much bigger issue at hand… the global warming crisis. My plan was to place summery props throughout Antarctica’s terrain to capture the two contrasting worlds and present a greater message about how climate change is affecting the landscape of our world. Because of the melting icebergs there were many regulations we needed to follow and we took every precaution to make sure we didn’t do any further damage to the already struggling environment.
One of my favorite images from the shoot is The Shifting Landscape, Antarctica. The idea behind this image is that there is a stanchion, similar to what you might see in a museum, and you can’t touch what’s on the other side. Because Antarctica’s landscape is so highly protected this image illustrates how much we need to protect and respect it too.
For the image Iceberg Inner Tube, Antarctica, we had a bright green inner tube that I threw out into the icy blue waters, attached to a fishing string. One of the dangers when shooting in Antarctica is that due to the melting glaciers, large shelves of ice can fall into the water and cause tsunami like waves. While I was shooting the inner tube I remember looking over and seeing a giant piece of ice fall into the water. Next thing I know, our boat driver hit the gas and my sister and I fell to the floor of the boat as we raced to get away from the wave with the inner tube flying in the air behind us.
One of my favorite items to shoot was this neon beach ball. I was mesmerized by how the white of the snow made the colors of the ball and the water pop so vibrantly.
All of my shots with the rainbow umbrella, especially The Glacier, Antarctica, are so special to me. Due to my wide array of beach photography, the beach umbrella has become somewhat of a staple in my work. To capture one so bright and colorful for such a powerful cause is incredible. I love how the rainbow colors stand out against the icy terrain behind it. There’s something ominous yet cheerful about it.
Overall, this series was by far one of my most difficult to create. Aside from the difficulties of just getting there, the unpredictable weather and falling ice made it a very challenging location to shoot. However, the resulting photographs are well worth it.