Tag Archives: Chased By The Light

Three Very Last Minute Gift Ideas for the Photographer and Nature Lover

Cane-02-iconHere we are, one sleep away from Christmas day. It’s a busy time of year and sometimes we find ourselves on the cusp of Christmas but still needing a gift or two. Don’t panic! If those last gifts are for either a photographer or nature lover, here are a few last minute gift ideas. And since they are downloads, you don’t need to worry about running out to a store and battling the crowds of  shoppers. You can simply purchase them, download them and then email the link or file to the person you’ve bought it for. Or, put it on a USB stick for them. Easy! But also great gifts.

Here’s an absolutely fabulous app that any photographer or nature lover would be happy to receive for Christmas:

POLE TO POLE by Paul Nicklen.

Paul Nicklen's app, Pole To Pole

Paul Nicklen’s app, Pole To Pole

http://paulnicklen.comPaul Nicklen's app, Pole To Pole

http://paulnicklen.comPaul Nicklen’s app, Pole To Pole

Paul is a wildlife and conservation photographer from Canada and produces some of the BEST wildlife images I’ve ever seen. He does a lot of underwater photography, producing both unique and visually stunning images. I recently purchased Paul’s app and was absolutely blow away by it! It would be an understatement to say that his photography is stunning. Some of his underwater images are mesmerizing, such the image below of  penguins swimming.

Image by Paul Nicklen

Image by Paul Nicklen

Not only is Paul a phenomenal photographer, but he is also a gifted storyteller. What I really love about his app is that he supports his great images with stories about what he had to go through to make the image. He also includes natural history in his writing, to give readers a better understanding of the species he photographs.

Paul Nicklen, Pole To Pole

Paul Nicklen, Pole To Pole

There are also some great video clips showing how Paul goes about getting his images  – all I can say is that this guy is dedicated! What he has to go through to get those amazing images!

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Paul Nicklen, behind the scene....

Paul Nicklen, behind the scene….

You absolutely cannot go wrong with this app  as a gift. Even if the person you are buying for isn’t a photographer, I still think they’d really like this.

Image by Paul Nicklen

Image by Paul Nicklen

Another app that you just cannot go wrong with is:

Jim Brandenburg’s, Chased By The Light

Jim Brandenburg's app

Jim Brandenburg’s app

This first came out as a print book, but I think the app is monumentally better. Not only does it tell the story of Jim’s adventure and self-challenge of only exposing one frame of film each day for 90 days, but many of his images are stunning.


I also love that Jim’s app is interactive in that there are pages with imbedded video. It might include a short clip of him explaining why he made a certain image for that day or what the challenges were in making that image.


There is also additional information imbedded in some of the images. You simply click on the “i” to bring up the additional info.


And, if you love Jim’s images so much that you want one hanging on your wall, you can click on a link that will take you to his website where you can purchase a print. You also have the ability to share one of the images by clicking on the Facebook link.

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I would highly recommend this to nature photographers, but also anyone with  an interest in nature.



And finally, I couldn’t end this blog post without including my own new e-book 😉

Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips.

If you are buying for a photographer or a flower-lover who also enjoys photography, this is the book for them! I describe some very straightforward techniques for creating beautiful fine art flower photos.

My new e-book, a 109 page downloadable pdf, available on my 44th Parallel Photography website.

My new e-book, a 109 page downloadable pdf, available on my 44th Parallel Photography website.

It’s packed with vibrant images and many examples of putting the techniques into practice.

Sample page from Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips

Sample page from Flowers: fine art photography techniques and tips

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I’ve also got a large section on creative flower photography.

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For anyone who loves flowers and loves to capture their beauty with a camera, this is a must-have.

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Filed under Amphibians, conservation, Conservation & Environment, Digital Photography, Featured Wildlife Photographer, Flowers, Landscape, Mammals, Nature, nature photography, Opinion, Wildlife Photography

Chased By The Light – an iPad app by nature photographer, Jim Brandenburg

I have a ‘short list’ of my favourite nature/wildlife/conservation photographers – people who’s work dazzles me and who I admire for their creativity, their dedication to the field, and their productivity. One of the names on the top of my list is Jim Brandenburg. Anyone who has followed National Geographic over the years and read their magazine will know his name. He’s had a long, productive and very impressive career with Nat Geo.

I recently began tuning into Jim’s blog and have spent hours going through his galleries, admiring his images, and taking mental notes – subject matter, angle of approach, depth of field, quality of light, and other aspects. One always wants to learn how the masters do it.

In perusing Jim’s website and blog, I came across his Chased By The Light app. It was the first I’d heard of the app version of it. Jim had originally published these images in a 1997 issue of National Geographic magazine. It was the first time National Geographic had published so many images in one feature in its entire history. So, the images aren’t new. But their presentation as an iPad app is. And it is well worth seeing!

The Chased By The Light app instantly appealed to me for two reasons. Firstly, Jim’s images have so much appeal. I really relate to his style and his motivation for image making and what it is he is trying to communicate with his images. His images are ‘brain candy’ for me; they tickle my grey matter. His images are to me, as chocolate is to a chocolate-lover. 🙂 They get those ‘feel good’ chemicals going.

The second thing that appealed to me about Jim’s Chased By The Light app is the fact that he’s developed this medium not just to showcase his images, but to provide a full photographic experience. I think I was pre-disposed to like Jim’s app because I’m a big fan of e-books and apps. But Jim’s app is nothing short of masterful! It isn’t just a collection of great images. It is truly, an experience. In it, Jim explains the goal of his 90- day, image-a-day, self assignment. He explains what motivated him to do it. And then he presents each of his 90, stunning images. For me, the icing on the cake is his presentation – the extra bits that make his app a photographic experience rather than just a collection of beautiful images. On many of his image pages, he has embedded additional information and videos. On pages that have an ‘i’ icon, you press on the icon and up pops a block of text that provides more information about the image – where and why he took it, the challenges he faced in making the image, the ‘story’ behind the image. It’s an extra little window into the world of Jim Brandenburg. But it gets even better! On pages that have a ‘v’ icon, you press on the v and up pops a video clip. It may be Jim explaining how he came to choose the subject of his image for that day or the significance that particular image has for him.

The embedded info and videos makes Jim’s app just that much more of a personal experience. You get to know something about the photographer behind the camera – what makes him tick. As Jim explains, when he first conceived the idea for the project, he didn’t plan to share it widely. It was a personal journey for himself, a challenge to bring some balance and meaning back into his life. For me, his choice of medium – the app with embedded info and videos – makes the presentation of his 90 day journey far more personal than one would get out of a coffee table book.

Is this kind of app the new coffee table book of the future? I think so. I hope so! I love books. I’ve spent a lot of money on books, over the years. And I’ve always been a fan and collector of coffee table books. But to me, this app beats a coffee table book hands down. It truly is an experience. It’s at your finger tips in bright, vibrant colours. You can look at it again and again, but you don’t have to dust it once a week or worry about spilling your coffee on it. The embedded video makes it a living book. It tweaks both your visual and auditory senses, which is what I think makes this more of an experience than a read.

Another absolute bonus is the price. You can download Jim’s Chased By The Light app from the Apple App Store for $9.99. That’s a bargain for what you get in return! His app is truly a photographic experience well worth the price. I hope we see more of this from Jim and from other great photographers.

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Filed under Creative Photography, Featured Wildlife Photographer, nature photography