I spy photography


I was born in Sugarcreek, a small village in northeast Ohio. Growing up on the edge of a small town at that time, gave me the freedom to explore my surroundings which meant spending a lot of time outdoors. And in this setting was where my love and respect of nature was born. 

Photography has always been one of my interests.  I enjoyed a photography course in college at The Ohio State University and afterwards rented darkroom time at the student union exploring the development of photos I took on campus, of friends and in the woods. I was able to pursue photography in earnest after taking early retirement from a 31 year career in industry. Several months after retiring, my wife Eve gave me a Canon camera and my real passion for photography began.

My main stage for my photography is the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Living in Akron, I am on the edge of the Park and walk its trails almost daily. Along with my wife Eve, I also take trips to places and parks in the US and travel occasionally overseas. This gives me the opportunity to take nature photos from different parts of the United States and the world.

I find the majority of subjects for my photos by simply hiking and observing the wildlife when it presents itself.  However, if I am aware of an active nest, a particular perch that a hummingbird likes or I find a kill, etc., I will return to those spots and wait to see what might happen.

The image I create starts with a digital photograph.  The original image is downloaded from my camera to the computer where it is usually cropped in PhotoShop.  If possible, I try not to touch the color of the subject but I do modify the color of the background to sepia/black and white.  I then fade the edges of the photo to bring the viewer’s eye into the area of the subject.  By “muting” the background, the subject takes center stage.

Below is an example of the process.  The photo on the left is the original image.  The one on the right is after I have finished the modifications in PhotoShop.  The hawk on the left, in my opinion, is lost in the busy background.  By modifying the background, one sees all the color and detail of this beautiful Red-tailed hawk.

Some of my images will be on display at McDonald Niklaus Custom Framing.

McDonald Niklaus Custom Framing & Gifts

700 Boulevard Street

Dover, Ohio 44622