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Thread: Environmental protection and landscape photography

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    Senior Member vieri's Avatar
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    Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Ladies and gentlemen, I just published a new blog article about something I deeply care about and that I have been thinking about for a long time now. As landscape photographers, we love the environment: however, we also contribute in no small part to its destruction. In the blog article below you can find my thoughts about this conundrum and about what we could do to start helping instead:

    https://www.vieribottazzini.com/2019...otography.html

    Looking forward to your thoughts, ideas and opinions on this. Best regards,

    Vieri
    Vieri Bottazzini
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    I'm no longer a 'photographer' although for most of my life I was.....I started with the proverbial Box Brownie and moved on to old cameras of various types and then to Rollieflex's and MPP's (4x5), Sinar, hassy etc .......Had work published across the world and was a TV/film stills, press and military photog. along the way. Now i can't really justify the cost of digital back/medium format digital and have become disillusioned with photography in recent years although I keep up an interest.....

    The main problem i see in photography is the attitudes so often prevalent, especially in the top range gear world like medium format digital....most of this stuff is owned by the 'go-getters' and the moneyed dilittantes who, as well as being unpleasantly competitive, are frequently the poorest respectors of the environment. Why, on earth would a real photographer have such a thing as a 'bucket list' of sites or make his/her way across the world to shoot the exact same view as a previously published shot unless highly competitive ...the word; 'hackneyed' comes to mind.

    Unfortunately, I know several 'keen' camera owners and they are not people I generally want to mix with socially, let alone have artistic coversations with as their attitudes and selective opinions are very strong and their artistic abilities limited!.......So WHY would these people respect either the attitudes of others or the environment at large?
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    Ladies and gentlemen, I just published a new blog article about something I deeply care about and that I have been thinking about for a long time now. As landscape photographers, we love the environment: however, we also contribute in no small part to its destruction. In the blog article below you can find my thoughts about this conundrum and about what we could do to start helping instead:

    https://www.vieribottazzini.com/2019...otography.html

    Looking forward to your thoughts, ideas and opinions on this. Best regards,

    Vieri
    Thank you!!!!

    Vieri,

    We are on the same track from two different backgrounds. I will check the link later when I have some time but I thank you for bringing this up. I have hesitated for some reason but my background in City and Regional Planning, both in academia and professional work, has left me with a huge sense of frustration after working 40 years in the field of Environmental Planming, Design and Development.

    I will get back with you, I have a lot to say!
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Bugleone View Post
    I'm no longer a 'photographer' although for most of my life I was.....I started with the proverbial Box Brownie and moved on to old cameras of various types and then to Rollieflex's and MPP's (4x5), Sinar, hassy etc .......Had work published across the world and was a TV/film stills, press and military photog. along the way. Now i can't really justify the cost of digital back/medium format digital and have become disillusioned with photography in recent years although I keep up an interest.....

    The main problem i see in photography is the attitudes so often prevalent, especially in the top range gear world like medium format digital....most of this stuff is owned by the 'go-getters' and the moneyed dilittantes who, as well as being unpleasantly competitive, are frequently the poorest respectors of the environment. Why, on earth would a real photographer have such a thing as a 'bucket list' of sites or make his/her way across the world to shoot the exact same view as a previously published shot unless highly competitive ...the word; 'hackneyed' comes to mind.

    Unfortunately, I know several 'keen' camera owners and they are not people I generally want to mix with socially, let alone have artistic coversations with as their attitudes and selective opinions are very strong and their artistic abilities limited!.......So WHY would these people respect either the attitudes of others or the environment at large?
    Well... I don't have time for a discussion but maybe later... for now, I can only say that I understand where you are coming from and from my perspective, it is easy to become disillusioned with the way things are going in this world and people are both good and bad. And then there are those of us in between. I have learned and often remind myself not to be negative, although it is easy.

    I prefer now, at this point in life to use photography for change. It is a powerful medium and many before us have done a great job, but there is a need for us all to do a lot more for environmental concerns. A cursory review of world population and migration will both amaze anyone and scare everyone who has a desire for a better world.

    So, I will come back to this thread in due time. Right now, there is no opportunity, I must get back to work.

    Thank for your input, and, Vieri, thanks again for you!
    Last edited by dave.gt; 10th May 2019 at 03:33.
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    I think frequently about this topic, especially as relates to the workshops that I have (and will) be part of.

    Providing a good workshop experience (enjoyable, educational, pictorially fruitful) while respecting the beautiful natural world that we benefit from... it sounds easy (insert some simplified slogans like "leave no trace", but in practice it can be a challenge! Even the more so as the quantity of visitors to such places seems to keep going up!
    Doug Peterson , Digital Transitions | Email
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    I love your post, Vieri, and as the Past Chair of the Nature Conservancy of Canada I applaud your views - and your "rules". I teach the same ones in photography classes I conduct from time to time.

    Unfortunately there is another way we are despoiling landscapes and destinations - we so often fly to them. This is CO2 intensive activity which contributes to climate change and if unchecked, will certainly destroy species and environments. Just two days ago the UN reported on this very thing.

    I don't have any ready solutions, though I am driving an electric car which is fed by a solar array on my home. But I love to travel and struggle with my conscience every time I board a plane.

    Nonetheless, your blog is most constructive. Thank you.

    Bill
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Thanks for this post. This is an extremely important topic. Ironically, the biggest environmental impact people make is through their flight to a destination. But photography and the tourism can have positive effects by creating another value except direct use value--we may have lost our entire elephant population by now if it were not for the economic value of visiting them and photographing them rather than killing them for ivory. Still, it is still uncertain if that will be enough to prevent the extinction of the elephant in the wild.

    Still, we are in a unique period of history for photographers: we can document huge changes to our natural environment and photograph some of the last members of many species before they become extinct. Sorry for such a pessimist view, but history has shown that humans will destroy their environment until the situation reaches a crisis. They will then simply learn to adapt to a degraded environment instead of trying to reverse the impact. This time however, the impacts will not be regional. This by the way is not something that will happen in the future, this is happening now. Our current extinction rate is about 1,000 times the historic norm. There is no indication that we are doing anything more than nibbling around the edges, whether that is with fishery exploitation, land and ocean degradation, deforestation, air and water pollution, waste, and a hundred other metrics. And most of this, while impacting the natural environment, directly effects the human environment, including food production.

    We might as well sit back and enjoy the show.

    Will

    http://www.hakusancreation.com
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Thanks for this post. This is an extremely important topic. Ironically, the biggest environmental impact people make is through their flight to a destination. But photography and the tourism can have positive effects by creating another value except direct use value--we may have lost our entire elephant population by now if it were not for the economic value of visiting them and photographing them rather than killing them for ivory. Still, it is still uncertain if that will be enough to prevent the extinction of the elephant in the wild.

    Still, we are in a unique period of history for photographers: we can document huge changes to our natural environment and photograph some of the last members of many species before they become extinct. Sorry for such a pessimist view, but history has shown that humans will destroy their environment until the situation reaches a crisis. They will then simply learn to adapt to a degraded environment instead of trying to reverse the impact. This time however, the impacts will not be regional. This by the way is not something that will happen in the future, this is happening now. Our current extinction rate is about 1,000 times the historic norm. There is no indication that we are doing anything more than nibbling around the edges, whether that is with fishery exploitation, land and ocean degradation, deforestation, air and water pollution, waste, and a hundred other metrics. And most of this, while impacting the natural environment, directly effects the human environment, including food production.

    We might as well sit back and enjoy the show.

    Almost all species that have ever existed on earth are now extinct. The current natural world is a tiny percentage of the diversity throughout history.

    And believe me when I say humans aren't going to be the exception to the rule.

    All species on earth will eventually be extinct when looking on from a geological time scale.

    The objective for humanity should be to extend that out as long as possible, but our current world affairs seems to be set on the exact opposite goal.

    I have children and I don't think when they are my age that there will be any wildlife left just whatever we have domesticated.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Actually there was a study in Africa regarding arid and desolate land that was once fertile but due to hunting and removal of animals the earth below turned to dust. When the Elephants and other animals were brought back the dust became a oasis.
    Yes you guessed it the animal dung fertilized the soil grew the plants and retained the water which brought back the cycle of life.

    Most of the prime areas in national parks in any country are destroyed compared to what they looked like twenty years ago.

    As a photographer I donít feel my footprint is doing much harm in fact I know that ten of me wouldnít do as much damage as one unconcerned tourist/camper is capable of.

    Because of super growth on the west coast this year Iím sure fires will change our landscape this season for many years to come.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Vieri,

    Perhaps a single basic change in thought might make a difference.

    With the greatest photographic tools in history available, more of us should ask why are we, in the "photographic community", making images of those beautiful places in the first place? For fun? For personal enjoyment? For a living? Why are we not using the skills and technology to help change the impacts on our environment?

    I never see images of the crowds in Iceland. Or the National Parks. I never see images of trash and garbage in those places, or the detrimental effects we all have in those places. Why not? Even human impacts on Mount Everest photos are now being published on CNN...

    And closer to home, I have been struggling for months to get a single good Night Sky image and I have failed each time because there are no dark skies in our little world unless I dedicate at least two days to drive to the Okefenokee Swamp, spend the night in a crappy motel and drive back the next day. Light Pollution is that bad. But wait, I can always shoot the beauty of our environment close to home right? Wrong. No one here can say that they have opportunities to do that... just more urban and suburban sprawl, traffic and continuing degradation in every possible form. A study in Atlanta around the year 2000 confirmed that drivers in the metro area drive 93 million miles/day! How much more do they drive now? Urban sprawl is out of control and will never be reigned in short of a catastrophe.

    Human migration is as old as our human history. It will never stop.

    So, what to do? Has anyone here besides me looked at the population projections over the next 50 years? The crowds at National Parks will be several times larger than we have today if there is a way they can be accommodated. How about our "wonderful" environmental programs? Recycling. Meh... retrieving plastics from the oceans... really? How about something more than feel-good objectives?

    I love the idea of electric cars... oh, but they use cobalt, right? A resource from poor countries that strip mine and use child labor... and disposal of yet more cars and components. Maybe green is the way to live by NOT having everything disposable every three years?

    Electric cars, recycling, and all the present initiatives are a great idea but certainly not a perfect solution, and they are but a small step toward a day of reckoning. Sound pessimistic? No, reality sucks and it takes a lot to face the facts.

    So where do we go from here? Contact our politicians? Yeah, right! The Moon? Sure... meet you there for an espresso one day as we discuss the next "mining" impacts by the various countries looking to exploit the cratered orb we see in the night sky..

    It is sad.

    Unfortunately, there are no solutions. Yet. Maybe never. But we can do our part as an individual, changing one person or one thing at a time. As skilled photographers, why not?

    At least that would separate us from the social media selfie crowd and make a real difference in the world... I hope.
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Stop!

    Right now, stop and imagine you are on the Moon... seriously, for a poetic perspective, like the lyrics of the Grateful Dead song, "Standing on the Moon" (or looking at our bigger "home", our Milky Way, from a vantage point very far away) and think about what is happening on the blue marble upon which we live.

    In a few months, we will celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo Moon mission. What have we done to make our environment better? Really better? Seriously, the Environmental Awakening of the 70s did wonderful things, but it was just a start. Social and political nightmares continue as well. So we turn our heads to our own little space and lives.

    Look up the song (above) and read the lyrics online for a perspective outside of our little existence. There are many songs and writings like that. Think of all that has happened just from news headlines that you remember and from your own life experiences. And, still, the world goes on.

    For an overall historical perspective, watch this, among many other available resources:

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=PUwmA3Q0_OE

    Can there be any doubt that our environment is in danger just from the sheer numbers of humans on this planet? What do we do, kick the can down the road as we have always done? Can we not change?

    The power of the photograph... where is it?

    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Gentlemen,

    thank you very much for sharing your thoughts. I think we face (at least) two different level of challenge here.

    - The "larger" challenge of the sustainability of human presence on Earth at large;
    - The "smaller" challenge of saving the environment and the photographic locations we love from being overwhelmed by inconsiderately behaving tourist / photographers, while preventing newly found photographic locations from meeting with the same end;

    I am an optimist by nature, and believe that with enough thinking and putting in enough effort, (almost) any problem can be solved. However, I am also a realist, and I'd rather put my direct, personal effort into problems that I, personally, might truly have an impact on. For those issues that I care about, but haven't any chance to be effective in fighting personally, I'd rather support organisations that I trust (financially or otherwise) and have them "fight by proxy" on my behalf.

    There is one extremely interesting thing in what Dave said - why don't we show the "behind the scene" of what we do? I paused, and my first thought was that this would be a reporter's job, not a landscape photographer's. Thinking about it a bit more, for me this is definitely the same kind of issue, while much less dramatic in terms of immediate "life or death" scope, that war photographers face: take photos of the dying child, or help him? When I go working somewhere, my mind is set towards the task at hand: create beautiful images of the landscape in front of me. Not only photographing a crowd doesn't come to mind, but the very presence of a crowd puts me so much out of my "zone" that I normally find myself not even start working, if a place is too crowded. Therefore, I normally don't go to crowded places. Even when I go to Iceland, which is as today the most crowded place I go, until now I managed to find spots with little enough people to allow me to work in (relative) peace.

    I will organise a trip with a reporter friend, not to do the usual "idyllic" backstage videos we all see on the web and used to sell Workshops and the like, but to do a serious reportage on the "state of the union" of landscape photography in ultra-popular locations. This would ensure that the photos are made by someone that professionally does reportage, and not by me, and will also make the storytelling easier, since we'd already have a story and a leading character (as non-photogenic as I am, I am afraid!).

    That aside, I think that on the "larger" issue we could:

    - try and minimise our carbon footprint as much as we could;
    - put pressure on politicians and such to pass environmentally-friendly legislation;
    - support organisation that do so;

    While on the "smaller" issue, we could:

    - do what I propose in the article, which seems to be ok for everyone so far;
    - use our skills as photographers (at large, even if perhaps not our personal skills!), the "power of photography", to document the damages done to the environment by, paradoxically, other (and too many) photographers;

    Is this a good summary of what has been said so far, and does that make sense?
    Vieri Bottazzini
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    "..The power of the photograph,...where is it?"

    In case you have not noticed it's been devalued like everything else of real value in this world....In western countries (and increasingly in non-western ones as well) we are bombarded by photography in growing amounts daily. Most of this 'photography' is rubbish both visually and contextually, in fact most of the population does not have either the time or the ability/interest to discern good image work......

    ........."the whole world is clicking a camera"

    I'm sorry to say this; but I actually know people who think that their photos should gain recognition simply becasue they were made with very expensive equipement.......

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    Gentlemen,

    thank you very much for sharing your thoughts. I think we face (at least) two different level of challenge here.

    - The "larger" challenge of the sustainability of human presence on Earth at large;
    - The "smaller" challenge of saving the environment and the photographic locations we love from being overwhelmed by inconsiderately behaving tourist / photographers, while preventing newly found photographic locations from meeting with the same end;

    I am an optimist by nature, and believe that with enough thinking and putting in enough effort, (almost) any problem can be solved. However, I am also a realist, and I'd rather put my direct, personal effort into problems that I, personally, might truly have an impact on. For those issues that I care about, but haven't any chance to be effective in fighting personally, I'd rather support organisations that I trust (financially or otherwise) and have them "fight by proxy" on my behalf.

    There is one extremely interesting thing in what Dave said - why don't we show the "behind the scene" of what we do? I paused, and my first thought was that this would be a reporter's job, not a landscape photographer's. Thinking about it a bit more, for me this is definitely the same kind of issue, while much less dramatic in terms of immediate "life or death" scope, that war photographers face: take photos of the dying child, or help him? When I go working somewhere, my mind is set towards the task at hand: create beautiful images of the landscape in front of me. Not only photographing a crowd doesn't come to mind, but the very presence of a crowd puts me so much out of my "zone" that I normally find myself not even start working, if a place is too crowded. Therefore, I normally don't go to crowded places. Even when I go to Iceland, which is as today the most crowded place I go, until now I managed to find spots with little enough people to allow me to work in (relative) peace.

    I will organise a trip with a reporter friend, not to do the usual "idyllic" backstage videos we all see on the web and used to sell Workshops and the like, but to do a serious reportage on the "state of the union" of landscape photography in ultra-popular locations. This would ensure that the photos are made by someone that professionally does reportage, and not by me, and will also make the storytelling easier, since we'd already have a story and a leading character (as non-photogenic as I am, I am afraid!).

    That aside, I think that on the "larger" issue we could:

    - try and minimise our carbon footprint as much as we could;
    - put pressure on politicians and such to pass environmentally-friendly legislation;
    - support organisation that do so;

    While on the "smaller" issue, we could:

    - do what I propose in the article, which seems to be ok for everyone so far;
    - use our skills as photographers (at large, even if perhaps not our personal skills!), the "power of photography", to document the damages done to the environment by, paradoxically, other (and too many) photographers;

    Is this a good summary of what has been said so far, and does that make sense?
    Vieri!!!!

    Fantastic idea!

    An artist like yourself in a quality production! There is the power of photography!!!

    It has been done before, like this:

    https://www.google.com/search?q=ludo...&client=safari

    Vieri, I would absolutely love to see you move forward with this. If I can possibly help, please let me know.

    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by dave.gt View Post
    retrieving plastics from the oceans... really? How about something more than feel-good objectives?
    Plastics have real consequences: https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/18/asia/...cli/index.html

    When you are getting to that level of plastic pollution, it is not simply a feel-good issue.

    As far as population goes, it is not a simple one-to-one relationship. It is certainly a driver, but if per capita consumption goes down, then you can still have people and a healthy environment.
    Will

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Plastics have real consequences: https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/18/asia/...cli/index.html

    When you are getting to that level of plastic pollution, it is not simply a feel-good issue.

    As far as population goes, it is not a simple one-to-one relationship. It is certainly a driver, but if per capita consumption goes down, then you can still have people and a healthy environment.
    No doubt about plastics being a monumental problem! My opinion is grassroots solutions like having kids walking a beach and picking up plastics is too little, too late. Admirable, yes. Effective, not really. The truth is, when the problem is so huge, it will take governmental action on many levels to change the direction we are going. In other words, real commitment like has never been done before is what will be needed.

    The "ifs" you mentioned is where the solution again resides with governments, because hoping for reduced consumption per capital just isn't going to happen without a broad, sweeping change in this country and I would imagine everywhere.

    These are serious problems with very difficult decisions needing to be made, however, we don't seem to be getting anywhere lately. Vieri is proposing an action that I salute! We the people... can effect change but the public outcry and protests in the streets for major causes seems to be a thing of the past. We are left with whatever we can do to make things better. It starts with us as individuals.

    So, I will do what I can, and I hope others in the photographic community will as well.
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by dave.gt View Post
    The "ifs" you mentioned is where the solution again resides with governments, because hoping for reduced consumption per capital just isn't going to happen without a broad, sweeping change in this country and I would imagine everywhere.)
    Yes, the ifs are big. Which is why I am not not holding my breath. But as Winston Churchill said, "I am an optimist because there is no point in being anything else."

    Still, 186 signatories of the UNs Basel convention just passed a binding resolution on plastic pollution. Only one country did not sign, the US. https://www.theguardian.com/environm...deal-except-us
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Yes, the ifs are big. Which is why I am not not holding my breath. But as Winston Churchill said, "I am an optimist because there is no point in being anything else."

    Still, 186 signatories of the UNs Basel convention just passed a binding resolution on plastic pollution. Only one country did not sign, the US. https://www.theguardian.com/environm...deal-except-us
    Yep!!!

    And therein lies my point. You, me, and the rest of us in this country are pretty much alone in the struggle. We shall do what we can because I agree with Winston Churchill.
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Plastics have real consequences: https://www.cnn.com/2019/03/18/asia/...cli/index.html

    When you are getting to that level of plastic pollution, it is not simply a feel-good issue.

    As far as population goes, it is not a simple one-to-one relationship. It is certainly a driver, but if per capita consumption goes down, then you can still have people and a healthy environment.
    I read sea salt is no longer considered healthy because plastic particles have been found in it.

    --

    I have travelled via airlines a considerable amount in the past and have decided this is one area I am making an effort not to do unless it is an emergency situation.

    I have never been attracted to those high priced workshops abroad, especially when the country I live in is so vast and beautiful. Years ago I did the only abroad workshop with a well known photographer (now deceased) and it was the worst travel experience I ever had. Sometimes I think I am a bit too sensible financially to blow money on photography glitz.

    IMO, we can all do more in our lives to help the environment if we try.

    Best to all,
    Darr
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by darr View Post
    I read sea salt is no longer considered healthy because plastic particles have been found in it.
    Yes, that is now in the human food chain: https://www.nationalgeographic.com/e...salt-sea-salt/

    Another thing we are finding in our drinking water supplied is medication because people flush their old meds down the sewer system: https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsl...s-in-the-water

    And then their is agricultural runoff, also mentioned in the Harvard Health link above. And as you know Darr, in Florida, city and agricultural runoff is feeding the red tide problem. 90% of Florida's coastal waters is hypoxic, primarily from runoff. Rising ocean temperatures is making that worse as the warmer the water, the less oxygen it contains. Coral bleaching in Florida has been on the rise as well.

    But look on the bright side, water conditions don't impact off-shore oil extraction. (What could possibly go wrong?)

    (I don't know if I want to laugh or cry )
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    It is sad, actually, it is horrible.

    Other studies have found microplastics in our toothpaste, in fish, our freshwater streams and ... well, let's find out where they have NOT been found. To make it worse, no one really knows the full impacts of that material in our environment, food chain and our own bodies.

    I cannot think of anyone I know outside of academia, that even knows about the presence of plastics everywhere. They probably are so busy with their own lives and tune out what little Environmental news is presented in our media. They simply can't be bothered to care.

    Maybe they will when they find they cannot get to see the amazing landscapes (yes, the same ones that we photographers enjoy) because the sites will have been damaged, destroyed, or simply closed due to the lack of protection they deserve.

    I'm with you, Will, laugh? Or cry?
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    Yes, that is now in the human food chain: https://www.nationalgeographic.com/e...salt-sea-salt/

    Another thing we are finding in our drinking water supplied is medication because people flush their old meds down the sewer system: https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsl...s-in-the-water

    And then their is agricultural runoff, also mentioned in the Harvard Health link above. And as you know Darr, in Florida, city and agricultural runoff is feeding the red tide problem. 90% of Florida's coastal waters is hypoxic, primarily from runoff. Rising ocean temperatures is making that worse as the warmer the water, the less oxygen it contains. Coral bleaching in Florida has been on the rise as well.

    But look on the bright side, water conditions don't impact off-shore oil extraction. (What could possibly go wrong?)

    (I don't know if I want to laugh or cry )
    Well it always comes down to financial incentives doesn't it? For a few billionaires to exist a billion creatures should die? Sounds about right to me.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    I'm not a landscape photographer and I rarely go to "beautiful" places. However, I have the privilege of having a day job that takes me to many of the ugly places, places that are smelly, polluted and that are the sources of overfishing, soil destruction etc. Ironically, I spend a lot of time on polluting airplanes to sell machinery that recycles and conserves byproducts from meat and fish production, an important protein source. Hopefully, I save more energy than I spend.

    On most of my journeys, I try to photograph and document those place and not least the people there, trying to describe why those places function like they do and the challenges they have trying to improve their lives, but also the environmental improvements that they make, improvements that affect their own lives as well as the lives of others.

    I have two plans for those photos and other material that I make, one short term and one long term. The short term plan is a blog that will go online this year, a combined photography and environment blog. The long term plan, which will probably only materialise when I retire from my current job or at least reduce my working hours, is to make 5-10 minute videos about places that few people visit, the people there, and how those places and those people are important pieces of our big life puzzle too.

    Thank you for starting this thread, Vieri. The subject is very close to my heart and mind. I truly believe that every single person's action is important. We all have to do our bit. Unfortunately, too many people believe that their potential contribution is too small to count. It's easier to think that way...

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    This is relevant:

    Will

    http://www.hakusancreation.com
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post
    This is relevant:

    Jeez... "trying to keep it as natural as possible"...
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by dave.gt View Post
    Jeez... "trying to keep it as natural as possible"...
    I know. I have something to say, but it would probably be politically incorrect! A lottery system for entrance comes to mind.
    A Photo A Day Project: darrlene.com
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by darr View Post
    I know. I have something to say, but it would probably be politically incorrect! A lottery system for entrance comes to mind.
    The other question is what does "wilderness" mean in 2019? While these places are spectacular, they are not wild. And this was Aldo Leopold's point about creating our National Park system, it should be built in such a way to preserve wilderness. There are places that are wild, but they are also under pressure from human encroachment, both in terms of recreation and development. To Dave's point about government regulation, our politicians know that the environment is not a voting issue. There is only one way that changes...
    Will

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Yesterday, we took a few hours to drive to the old Covered Bridge not far from here. The old Red Oak Creek Covered Bridge is not beautiful by any means, but it remains remarkably unspoiled by crowds and litter.

    Despite the one picnic table, a garbage can and its rural location, it is clean and lonely. As we drove up to the site, dodging a 300 lb. runaway hog/pig on the road approaching from the West, we were pleased that there was only a single SUV arriving from the opposite direction. Emerging from the vehicle were two women, apparently a grandmother and her granddaughter who was driving. They spent a few minutes taking pictures with their phone, and we chatted a few minutes more. Soon, they left, and I set up my tripod and observed the old Bridge. Nothing has changed in the years I have visited the old wooden structure. I have never seen more than one car in each of my visits over the last ten years.

    I was reminded how important Vieri's call to action is for all of us. Leave no trace and return with only photographs and memories.

    I would miss this old Covered Bridge if it were suddenly not there, or ruined by a lack of concern. And, yet, on a rural dirt road (the East side), there is a part of history that still stands 180 years after construction. The residents near the old Bridge seem to care more than the tourists we see at popular locations around the world.

    The psychology there is depressing in a way. I guess we humans are always looking for self-fulfillment at any cost, in general.

    But, in our own backyards, there lies hope.
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WKPEy7U2sGE

    ........Anyone who has a view/interest on this topic will value this and 'feel' some of the matters mentioned.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Interesting video from an artist, David Yarrow. Thanks!

    There is no end to the artistic views of environmental concerns, but I happen to have been attracted by the power of the written/musical messages like the lyrics and song below:

    https://www.google.com/search?client...iw=320&bih=529

    Video:
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=gGLuM2IcDJ8
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    I have been inspired- in part by this discussion, to do something new. I told my wife and two kids that from now on when we fly anywhere we will also go online a find a website that allows you to order a number of trees be planted for a fee. I have found a few sites that look reputable, and the price is not too much at all. I will have to determine how many trees we will each have to have planted to offset our flight. Anyone else doing this?


    John

    Quote Originally Posted by dave.gt View Post
    Interesting video from an artist, David Yarrow. Thanks!

    There is no end to the artistic views of environmental concerns, but I happen to have been attracted by the power of the written/musical messages like the lyrics and song below:

    https://www.google.com/search?client...iw=320&bih=529

    Video:
    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=gGLuM2IcDJ8
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    Senior Member vieri's Avatar
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Smoothjazz View Post
    I have been inspired- in part by this discussion, to do something new. I told my wife and two kids that from now on when we fly anywhere we will also go online a find a website that allows you to order a number of trees be planted for a fee. I have found a few sites that look reputable, and the price is not too much at all. I will have to determine how many trees we will each have to have planted to offset our flight. Anyone else doing this?


    John
    Hello John,

    that's a great idea, I do too and I am now in talks to decide which of these organisations to support to offset my Workshop participants' carbon footprint - basically, I will pledge part of my fee towards planting trees, I think in the order of 200 per person per Workshop. I will announce on my website which organisation I will support as soon as all is finalised Perhaps it's not much, but it's a start!

    Best regards,

    Vieri
    Vieri Bottazzini
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    Senior Member Frankly's Avatar
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    The solution is to reduce the population from almost 8 billion to a sustainable carrying capacity not unlike any other animal.

    Our technology, prosperity and leisure time has allowed millions of people who would otherwise be too weak or unsuited to survive to flourish and pass on dysgenic genes to a greater number of offspring.

    Our charity and good intentions has fed millions of people who have bred many times million people all consuming and polluting.

    The early environmentalists understood this 100 years ago. They advocated for population control. Eugenics was not the boogeyman topic it is today.

    The facts haven't changed in 100 years, only the beliefs of the people. I think our elders were quite a bit wiser than we are now.

    Watch the fury that follows my post as people try to rationalize the hard cold fact of having too many people for us to sustain ourselves. Please don't reflect that overpopulation of animals usually results in the complete, total destruction of the herd.

    Electric cars, global socialism, etc. are all romantic utopian notions. The realistic practical solution starts with birth control tied to food and aid. If someone can not sustain themselves independently then they are not equipped to have children.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    It's always assumed that everything in the human world will go on growing and governments all have their 'projected growth' figures to fuel their authority and actions,...witness the current UK preoccupation with building new houses on every beauty spot to house our "vital" immigrants........

    However, much of the earths problems may be self-correcting. Some important factors are often completely overlooked and to take but three;.......The average sperm count is now less than half that of 40 years ago and nobody seems too concerned despite vast numbers of young people having fertility problems now. ........The bee population has now halved in less than 25 years and govenments give micoscopic funding to this with great reluctance. And finally, cancer rates are up massively on 30 years ago when one in 5 were likely to develop the disease.....latest projection if that half the population will be afflicted in western countries......
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    It appears we are straying off topic in regard to Vieri's original intent. What can we do , as photographers, to preserve our environment, particularly those locations that are stressed already and the future endangered locations?

    In my take on his question, the point is what responsibilities do I/we have? What can my images, my writing, my books, my social interactions, and my words contribute?

    In a former life, my post-graduate education was in Environmental Planning and my professional work involved years of environmental analysis for hundreds of major projects and that was when photography became important to me.

    Now, times are different, as my many roles in life are completely different but I need to see what I can do, personally, as a photographer. It promises to be an interesting quest for discovery.
    Best regards,
    Dave (GT)

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Not exactly environment-related, but kinda proves the point in my article anyway: https://www.dpreview.com/news/998544...icking-selfies

    Best regards,

    Vieri
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankly View Post
    If someone can not sustain themselves independently then they are not equipped to have children.
    I didn't realize you were living "off the grid", growing your own food, producing your own energy for transportation and heating requirements etc. There are a few people here in Alaska who live that life and take it seriously. It involves many sacrifices and hard work. I don't think any of them are forum members on GetDPI. My hat is off to you if this is indeed the independent life you lead. Personally, I prefer a life where I don't have to sustain it independently of the work so many other people expend to produce the food, energy and products I consume every day. Many of us here are fortunate to have the financial resources to enjoy a lifestyle which is far beyond anything we could achieve independently.

    Maybe you didn't really mean "independently", you just meant to say buying the stuff you need or want, assuming someone else was able and willing to make it for you. In that case...I wish you the best of luck if you ever have to actually grow or make it "independently" (i.e. not depending or contingent upon something else for existence, operation, etc.)

    I do agree that population growth is a serious concern. The biggest factor here is with population growth and excessive cosumption in developed countries. These consume a vastly disproportionate share of the earth's resources and have a much greater impact on the carbon pollution posing a threat to all life on our planet. Myself included of course (which is one reason my wife and I chose not to have any children).

    Gary
    Last edited by bensonga; 21st May 2019 at 14:07.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankly View Post
    The solution is to reduce the population from almost 8 billion to a sustainable carrying capacity not unlike any other animal.

    Our technology, prosperity and leisure time has allowed millions of people who would otherwise be too weak or unsuited to survive to flourish and pass on dysgenic genes to a greater number of offspring.

    Our charity and good intentions has fed millions of people who have bred many times million people all consuming and polluting.

    The early environmentalists understood this 100 years ago. They advocated for population control. Eugenics was not the boogeyman topic it is today.

    The facts haven't changed in 100 years, only the beliefs of the people. I think our elders were quite a bit wiser than we are now.

    Watch the fury that follows my post as people try to rationalize the hard cold fact of having too many people for us to sustain ourselves. Please don't reflect that overpopulation of animals usually results in the complete, total destruction of the herd.

    Electric cars, global socialism, etc. are all romantic utopian notions. The realistic practical solution starts with birth control tied to food and aid. If someone can not sustain themselves independently then they are not equipped to have children.
    Fertility rates are going down all over the world except in Africa. The more developed, the faster it sinks. Thailand, which had a rate well over 6 just 40-50 years ago is now down to 1.4-1.5 and sinking. This will result in a shrinking population a couple of decades from now. Countries like Japan already have a shrinking population, and even Bangladesh is down to a fertility rate of under 2.4 which is less than needed to sustain the population.

    These are all good news. The question mark will be Africa.

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankly View Post
    The solution is to reduce the population from almost 8 billion to a sustainable carrying capacity not unlike any other animal.

    Our technology, prosperity and leisure time has allowed millions of people who would otherwise be too weak or unsuited to survive to flourish and pass on dysgenic genes to a greater number of offspring.

    Our charity and good intentions has fed millions of people who have bred many times million people all consuming and polluting.

    The early environmentalists understood this 100 years ago. They advocated for population control. Eugenics was not the boogeyman topic it is today.

    The facts haven't changed in 100 years, only the beliefs of the people. I think our elders were quite a bit wiser than we are now.

    Watch the fury that follows my post as people try to rationalize the hard cold fact of having too many people for us to sustain ourselves. Please don't reflect that overpopulation of animals usually results in the complete, total destruction of the herd.

    Electric cars, global socialism, etc. are all romantic utopian notions. The realistic practical solution starts with birth control tied to food and aid. If someone can not sustain themselves independently then they are not equipped to have children.
    It is true that birthrate decreases as education levels and GDP per head of population increases.
    Most long term analysis based on these findings conducted from multiple studies around thee world indicate population is likely to peak around 10 billion and then begin a highly probable irreversible decline from there to stabilise long term at lower levels than today.

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankly View Post
    The solution is to reduce the population from almost 8 billion to a sustainable carrying capacity not unlike any other animal.

    Our technology, prosperity and leisure time has allowed millions of people who would otherwise be too weak or unsuited to survive to flourish and pass on dysgenic genes to a greater number of offspring.

    Our charity and good intentions has fed millions of people who have bred many times million people all consuming and polluting.

    The early environmentalists understood this 100 years ago. They advocated for population control. Eugenics was not the boogeyman topic it is today.

    The facts haven't changed in 100 years, only the beliefs of the people. I think our elders were quite a bit wiser than we are now.

    Watch the fury that follows my post as people try to rationalize the hard cold fact of having too many people for us to sustain ourselves. Please don't reflect that overpopulation of animals usually results in the complete, total destruction of the herd.

    Electric cars, global socialism, etc. are all romantic utopian notions. The realistic practical solution starts with birth control tied to food and aid. If someone can not sustain themselves independently then they are not equipped to have children.
    Let them die and reduce the surplus population--Scrooge, A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens

    Eugenic was and is a horrible idea. The fact anyone is still even entertaining the idea is chilling. I suggest a history book or two.

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by dave.gt View Post
    It appears we are straying off topic in regard to Vieri's original intent. What can we do , as photographers, to preserve our environment, particularly those locations that are stressed already and the future endangered locations?

    In my take on his question, the point is what responsibilities do I/we have? What can my images, my writing, my books, my social interactions, and my words contribute?

    In a former life, my post-graduate education was in Environmental Planning and my professional work involved years of environmental analysis for hundreds of major projects and that was when photography became important to me.

    Now, times are different, as my many roles in life are completely different but I need to see what I can do, personally, as a photographer. It promises to be an interesting quest for discovery.
    I wonder how our relationship as photographer to the environment is negative. In Japan, I saw many photographs of tree farms as a natural environment, which of course they are not. When I read authors such a John Muir, I get a sense of deep personal connection to the environment. When I read more modern writers, I get a more romanticized interpretation, that seems disconnect from the actual natural system.

    This might be of interest on plant blindness: BBC - Future - Why 'plant blindness' matters ? and what you can do about it

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by bensonga View Post
    I didn't realize you were living "off the grid", growing your own food, producing your own energy for transportation and heating requirements etc. There are a few people here in Alaska who live that life and take it seriously. It involves many sacrifices and hard work. I don't think any of them are forum members on GetDPI. My hat is off to you if this is indeed the independent life you lead. Personally, I prefer a life where I don't have to sustain it independently of the work so many other people expend to produce the food, energy and products I consume every day. Many of us here are fortunate to have the financial resources to enjoy a lifestyle which is far beyond anything we could achieve independently.

    Maybe you didn't really mean "independently", you just meant to say buying the stuff you need or want, assuming someone else was able and willing to make it for you. In that case...I wish you the best of luck if you ever have to actually grow or make it "independently" (i.e. not depending or contingent upon something else for existence, operation, etc.)

    I do agree that population growth is a serious concern. The biggest factor here is with population growth and excessive cosumption in developed countries. These consume a vastly disproportionate share of the earth's resources and have a much greater impact on the carbon pollution posing a threat to all life on our planet. Myself included of course (which is one reason my wife and I chose not to have any children).

    Gary
    Gary, to answer your quibble about definitions of living independently, I meant as not requiring explicit welfare or gifts as opposed to simply being alive in modernity. But picking apart an argument based on a triviality is a popular technique, like grammar policing or calling everyone you disagree with a conspiracy theorist.

    Your larger point, the trope that developed countries consume resources disproportionately may actually be a misdirection intended to influence through guilt. No other than Jared Diamond, in his book Upheaval:

    If you read page 414 very carefully, you’ll notice that Diamond points out that immigration from the Third World to the First World worsens environmental problems such as carbon emissions and overconsumption of resources. (from Steve Sailer's review in Taki's magazine https://www.takimag.com/article/the-...at-white-male/)

    I explicitly hope that humanity will be able to continue its dominant, high technology, longer lifespan, consumptive lifestyle rather than returning to brutal hunter-gatherer crude agricultural status. My contention is that to secure the existence of our people and a future for... our children we have to limit the number of consumers we create.

    Thank you for not reproducing.

    Sashin: Eugenic was and is a horrible idea. The fact anyone is still even entertaining the idea is chilling. I suggest a history book or two.
    It's a tough branding to overcome (dogmatic indoctrination works!) so perhaps we should call such efforts by alternative names? Genetics. Evolution. Human Bio Diversity. Science. Nature?

    Considering that groups of people have been manipulating their genetic material from the get-go by selecting more successful people to mate with we're all beneficiaries of the eugenic process. Also we eat the eugenic results of crops and meat, otherwise we wouldn't now have almost 8 billion because we'd have cruel famines wiping out huge swathes of the population.

    ~~~

    As far as Vieri's original piece one answer would be to turn away from the exotic and to photograph our locales and personal experiences. Such pictures may not be profitable economically but they can be soulful and rewarding. And within a small community they can be uplifting.

    First person willing to go on international or exotic trip without their camera raise their hand!

    It's a quandary. William Henry Jackson understood this, he helped open the floodgates to the American West. He lived long enough to see it despoiled. Ansel Adams came later and helped do the same to his beloved Yosemite. They were great men and photographers but at the heart of it they were no different than surveyors "who love the outdoors"; geologists "who love nature"; and property developers "who love the landscape".

    I don't see any solution to this paradox. Some of us are aware of it but I doubt the masses would be able to grasp the concept of loving something to death. Of course, as always, less people = less effect.
    Last edited by Frankly; 4 Weeks Ago at 06:21.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Note: I'm going to let this continue AS LONG AS THE POSTS REMAIN CORDIAL TO ONE ANOTHER. So be warned I am watching and know I will close this thread down and permanently delete it, then I will ban the posters on BOTH sides of any rudeness or arguments the second it crosses that line. So now continue, feel free to disagree with each other, but make darn certain you do so politely...
    Jack
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  44. #44
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    I'm afraid this is only going to get worse, at least until people become too lazy to go anywhere and replace travel with 3D simulations.

    The herd mentality has always been strong among the majority of people, and the fact that humans now are using the same devices and software worldwide to be entertained, also means that most people will get the same visual and verbal (for those who can still read more than a couple of single syllable words in sequence) impulses, leading them to the same locations to take their selfies. It's not something entirely new, it just happens on a larger scale nowadays.

    What I do find suprising is that also skilled, experienced photographers visit the same famous places, trying to find the 5,687th angle from which a photo of horseshoe bend or the Eiffel tower can be taken. Has originality gone out of fashion?

    I do get questions sometimes about places to visit and photograph here in Southeast Asia, and I always recommend more or less unknown, "boring" places that few tourists visit. I don't really do that to spare the famous sights from more visitors, but because I don't understand the attraction of visiting a place where I have to queue up to get a clean shot of whatever. If I want to spend time with lots of uninteresting people, there's always the immigration queue at most international airports, or rush hour in Bangkok.

    So when people ask where to tak good photos around where you live, send them to the local bakery to take a portrait of the baker and his bread. Some of my most memorable photo moments have been when I insist on walking from customer meeting back to the hotel, camera in hand. I meet people, get exercise and now and then an interesting photo. Go boring places, take good photos and don't tell anybody

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    IMHO only and mostly to the OP...

    The "art" side of landscape photography has always surrounded the more incredible wonders of our natural world. I don't see this changing as many people want to see these places before they pass from this world; and photographers will continue to record their own visit to them in their own, unique way. Many of these are from grand and well-visited places, others are found in small places, but both retain merit as art. The more affluent traveller is likely going to record those wonders with more refined gear, but that does not in any way serve as an indicator of the quality of the end product.

    The reportage side of photography takes on a different hue; and is usually about recording singular events like war, disaster, sport and science in an effort to increase awareness. Unfortunately we have created a HUGE relay mechanism where spin and bias gets introduced between the event and it's ultimate relay to us. Now it is incumbent on us to separate the wheat from the chaff so to speak, and how that's done is going be based on our own needs and experiences -- and education...

    End of day I believe any sharing of news through photography (or video) boils down to relaying hopefully unbiased information via whatever "gear" will ultimately allow one to convey the raw message. Either way, photography certainly remains an effective means of conveying those issues to a broad spectrum of people as "pictures are still worth more than 1000 words"

    Back to the OP... I personally do not see where the actual gear used to perform that becomes an indicator of the veracity of the message, but I respect that other's opinions may vary...
    Jack
    home: www.getdpi.com

    "Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence."

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Without in any way diminishing the importance and worth of landscape photography that seeks to show the incredible beauty of the unspoiled natural environoment, my own primary focus has shifted over the past 20 years to show landscapes that have been altered (and often despoiled). Both approaches can serve to illuminate the natural environment, what remains and what has been lost.

    I don't have to travel very far from my home and workplace in Alaska to see many examples of both landscapes.

    Gary
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankly View Post
    It's a tough branding to overcome (dogmatic indoctrination works!) so perhaps we should call such efforts by alternative names? Genetics. Evolution. Human Bio Diversity. Science. Nature?

    Considering that groups of people have been manipulating their genetic material from the get-go by selecting more successful people to mate with we're all beneficiaries of the eugenic process. Also we eat the eugenic results of crops and meat, otherwise we wouldn't now have almost 8 billion because we'd have cruel famines wiping out huge swathes of the population.
    No, eugenics is not genetics nor evolution nor bio diversity. It is certainly not science or nature. Sorry, but the bad rap eugenics gets is based solely on its merits.

    Actually, the benefits for successful people mating with other successful people results in in-breeding. Most royal dynasties are testament to that. Breeding also increases the risk of genetic disorders in livestock. Limiting the diversity of type of animals bred because of certain attributes increases the risk of pandemics in the population, both animal and human (think avian flu in chickens). As far as crops, that can be useful, but only to a point. The Cavendish banana is now threatened because it was chosen as the winner and a disease is now decimating the crop and not many varieties are available to take its place in food production. The Irish potato famine is also an example of the dangers of a mono-culture in food production.

    As far as the natural landscape, the topic here, we are fracturing the environmental more and more from human exploitation, either in term of agriculture or development. This impact the survival of animals and plants that require a certain size and diversity in the environment to survive. Climate change also shifts the environment. Alpine flowers are literally being pushed off the tops of mountain and into extinction. While we have package "nature" as a place to visit, that environment is far more complex where simply making a small patch into a park will not actually save that ecosystem and result in a change in the landscape.
    Will

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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankly View Post
    First person willing to go on international or exotic trip without their camera raise their hand!
    I went to Paris for eight days a few years ago and didn't take a camera. I wanted to spend time with my wife.
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Shashin View Post

    As far as the natural landscape, the topic here, we are fracturing the environmental more and more from human exploitation, either in term of agriculture or development. This impact the survival of animals and plants that require a certain size and diversity in the environment to survive. Climate change also shifts the environment. Alpine flowers are literally being pushed off the tops of mountain and into extinction. While we have package "nature" as a place to visit, that environment is far more complex where simply making a small patch into a park will not actually save that ecosystem and result in a change in the landscape.
    We're going to disagree on semantics but to spare Jack let's put it aside. We agree that there is a problem!

    What we ultimately need are large North-South migration corridors for non-human animals to use unencumbered by human interference. Imagine the half or more of the Sierras, Rockies, Grasslands, Appalachia left to go feral, with the reintroduction of large predators and whatever lost species we can reinsert. The Missouri and Mississippi would return to nature, especially in Louisiana. Central America would have to be mostly cleared out (this seems to be happening anyway) and the corridors would extend down to Patagonia. A similar system would exist on other continents. Seashores and coastal areas would need at least as much attention.

    Even a tiny step in this direction would be hugely disruptive and require radical changes. Do you really expect people to come to consensus on any of this?

    I think you have to change the culture by increasing its intelligence (hmm...) and sense of community. It seems it would be a lot easier to accomplish this with fewer people rather than more.

    This is an extension of Vieri's concerns, a culture that would sacrifice that much to preserve the environment would also be advanced enough to respect limiting the destruction of the most beautiful places. Hope we get there.

    In the meantime, perhaps photographing pristine nature without human presence is actually the most progressive thing we can do as it provides an example and inspiration for what's possible? Rather than the depressing New Topographics approach of noticing the sewer gratings and landfill fences. (That's fifty year old thinking!)
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    Re: Environmental protection and landscape photography

    Quote Originally Posted by Frankly View Post
    We're going to disagree on semantics but to spare Jack let's put it aside. We agree that there is a problem!

    What we ultimately need are large North-South migration corridors for non-human animals to use unencumbered by human interference. Imagine the half or more of the Sierras, Rockies, Grasslands, Appalachia left to go feral, with the reintroduction of large predators and whatever lost species we can reinsert. The Missouri and Mississippi would return to nature, especially in Louisiana. Central America would have to be mostly cleared out (this seems to be happening anyway) and the corridors would extend down to Patagonia. A similar system would exist on other continents. Seashores and coastal areas would need at least as much attention.

    Even a tiny step in this direction would be hugely disruptive and require radical changes. Do you really expect people to come to consensus on any of this?

    I think you have to change the culture by increasing its intelligence (hmm...) and sense of community. It seems it would be a lot easier to accomplish this with fewer people rather than more.

    This is an extension of Vieri's concerns, a culture that would sacrifice that much to preserve the environment would also be advanced enough to respect limiting the destruction of the most beautiful places. Hope we get there.

    In the meantime, perhaps photographing pristine nature without human presence is actually the most progressive thing we can do as it provides an example and inspiration for what's possible? Rather than the depressing New Topographics approach of noticing the sewer gratings and landfill fences. (That's fifty year old thinking!)
    I am pretty sure we are going over the horizon into a future that is not going to be pleasant, to put it mildly. Humanity has never made significant enough changes to advert environmental disasters that we have created. No reason to believe this age will be any different. The only difference today is we have a much better idea of what is going to happen and will have a more extensive record for historians to ponder.

    Naturally, I would love to be proven wrong...
    Will

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