Moments of Providence – that is what they are. Photographs I record are moments when the Creator and Master Artist allows us to see a glimpse of the Craftsman’s design, a prevue of nature’s emotions, a sensation of earth’s textures – all captured in a single moment.
Capturing images of wildlife and nature is unlike other photography where the artist has a significant degree of control of the subject, media, and environment. A portraiture photographer can set up props, ask the subject to turn their head, smile, look serious, or face into the distance – he makes art. In contrast, the ethical wildlife photographer has little to no control over the time of day, the weather, the angle of the light, the subject’s movements, or the environment. He only controls his position in relation to the subject, the time of day and season he enters into their realm, and his choices relating to equipment. In addition to learning about the wildlife subject’s behavior patterns, he waits for the moment when Providence allows the creature to reveal itself, pose in a particular way, or show emotions through a natural behavior. For the wildlife photographer it requires patience– patience that can cook a stone (African proverb)–to record art.
I record art. Often the recording is done at a 2500th of a second or faster resulting in expressions, poses, or behavioral features that happen so fast that normal human observation of the animal or bird will miss the moment. Still photography can capture and freeze the moment which may never again happen in exactly the same way, with the same light, and with someone observing it.
The art I record testifies of the Master Artist. It is my endeavor to show through the medium of photography the beauty that remains in God’s created natural realm, His second book of revelation, after millennia of sin scarring. Therefore, I choose not to show the predator chase, the blood and gore of the kill, or the weak and diseased. I choose to reflect on the magnificence of His revelation with the prayer that as you view these images you find your attention drawn to the Creator.
Just as Providence guided animals, birds, and other creatures millennia ago into Noah’s ark, so I believe Providence guides and times my journey as photographer to cross paths with that of creatures which God designs me to encounter. A proverb from Ghana expresses the thought: God arranges things so a leper’s sandal breaks under the shrub that provides the rope to mend it. Encounters that are intended to be spiritual experiences to me personally. It is some of these spiritual encounters that are recorded in images that I am glad and privileged to share in this portfolio.
Ooltewah, TN, USA