Nature Photographer

Nature, Wildlife and Outdoor Photography - who inspired you?

My answer, a true legend in the outdoor media world. Marty Stouffer is at least partly responsible for inspiring me to become a nature, wildlife, conservation and commercial outdoor photographer! As much as I like to think that my inspiration came completely from the heart, I must admit it did not. The passion, commitment and motivation comes from there, but the inspiration to make nature, wildlife and outdoor photography my livelihood is due in part to Marty Stouffer and his long running TV series "Wild America."

There probably is not a person in the outdoor media world, over 30 years old, that has not seen at least one episode of, "Wild America." Stouffer's series, "Wild America" was, for a young outdoors-man, the "holy grail" of wildlife and outdoor TV experiences. To this day it's still the longest running wildlife and nature show ever aired on PBS.

After watching those episodes of "Wild America," it dawned on me that if someone made those films it means there's a job doing it - right!  So, while I did not run right out at 10 years old and buy an 8mm camera to start my own journey to become a relevant outdoor, nature, and wildlife photographer, the seed was planted. That seed sprouted many years later and today I have a successful career in the outdoor media world.

Bighorn Sheep Cover Photograph

When Marty emailed me to talk about the bighorn sheep photograph he saw on the cover of  Western Hunter Magazine, it reminded me that his TV series is what got me thinking I could have a career in the outdoor world. I replied to his email thanking him for the complements and for his great contribution to the outdoor media world. Later that day, I decided to call and talk directly to him. Imidiatly upon hearing his voice I recalled many of the episodes I watched as a young kid growing up.

A couple of weeks after Marty and I first talked, I received the full box set of 120 episodes of "Wild America" in the mail. What a surprise. Marty, one of my childhood heroes, and one of the greatest cinematographers to work in this business, personally sent ME a collection of the greatest wildlife, nature and outdoor films ever produced! I'm grateful to Marty.

Box Set of 120 episodes of Wild America by Marty Stouffer

This brings me to my closing comments. If you are interested in becoming a professional in the outdoor world, I encourage you to consider joining the Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA). I love the organization so much I decided to become a board member. Today POMA is the Nations premier traditional outdoor media organization, made up of some of the nations top outdoor TV producers, film makers, photographers, radio talk show hosts, and writers.

If you are in any way part of the outdoor media world, you need to join POMA. If you're not yet a professional, we have special membership just for you. If you're interested in becoming a member contact Tony Bynum. Before you do, I encourage you to check out our website for more information about becoming a member of the Professional Outdoor Media Association.

Get out there and find your passion in the outdoor media world!

Sincerely,

Tony Bynum

You also can find Tony Bynum on Facebook, and Tony Bynum on Twitter

 

Snow Geese Migration - Rocky Mountain Front

The snow geese migration along the Rocky Mountain Front in Montana is in full swing. The birds usually come though from the middle of March though early April on their way to their nesting grounds located on a small island in the north Bearing Sea. The migration is a nature and wildlife photographers must do activity. It's an epic adventure and a wildlife experience worth watching in person. Every spring I travel up and down the Rocky Mountain Front of Montana to photograph one of natures most miraculous bird shows. Its a total experience. I usually camp-out and photograph from sun up to sun down. I'm away from home for a few days at a time, but I love it. This time of year, the days are getting longer but it's still early enough in the year to experience below freezing temps in the mornings, snow on some days, and lots of wind. Layering is a must as some daytime temps can reach the 50's.

This year the bird numbers are down. I think most of the white geese are moving through but not staying. The weather has been mild here so I suspect there's open water up north, how far up north, I'm not sure, because I know that Alaska got hammered this winter. Check out my friend Dan Bailey's posts, he's an alaska based oudoor adventure photographer who can teach you a lot.  Moving back to Glacier Country, and the Rocky Mountain Front, I'm going to share a photograph and video of snow geese with you.

In preparation to make a video like this, you have to know a little about bird behavior, and I know just enough to get me in trouble, and that's what I found.  I knew the birds would fly into the wind, they always take off into the wind - but I never imagined that the entire flock would move over me.  You'll watch as over 100,000 and as many as 150,000 snow geese lift off and fly right over my head (starting at about minute 1:15).  Watch as the geese just keep coming and coming and coming. What's also unique about this video, is that these geese are leaving for good, this was their final lift off  as they moved farther north from Montana. I have to tell you that this video was shot last spring, the numbers did not get this large this year. . .   The video is below this still image of a flock of snow geese rising off the water, and heading out to feed. The snow capped peeks of the Rocky Mountain Front are visible in the background.