Waking Up in Michigan

Lake Michigan Sunset Landscape Photography

Lake Michigan Recreation Area Photography

I close my eyes and all I hear are the leaves being slowly pushed by the wind. This is where I am most at ease; the most myself. I enjoy it. Waking up with the trees above your head, cooking a meal over a fire, listening to the wood crackle as it burns while breathing in the fresh air. A couple of weeks ago, I drove up to the Lake Michigan Recreation Area. There was no reason in particular, I guess it just seemed like a good opportunity to get away for a day; to keep it simple, no distractions and to just be. I knew I was getting close as both window seats were filled with views of endless trees. A bumpy, dirt road gently carves it way through the forest as to leave the least impact of it ever being there. Once I opened up my door, there seemed to be a sense of relief. The air carried the soft sounds of laughter with a backdrop of the lake meeting the shore. I smiled with every step closer to the beach, and as my feet hit the sand I felt like a child again. Whenever I road trip, hike or just wander by myself, I always feel like I’m at peace, like I have the world in the palm of my hands. Maybe because I can clear my head of every thought and just live in that moment. Here are a couple of those moments that made me smile.


See More Travel Photography:  Living Under the StarsPictured Rocks | A Nature Walk

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Living under the Stars

Kayak-Night-Landscape-Photography-Milky-Way

Driving through the pitch black woods at 12 am until I see a faint light at the end of the road, well not a faint light I guess just less darkness. I reached the end and I can hear the waves. Beverly Shores Indiana is quite a hidden treasure. This was my second opportunity visiting this beach and it’s about an hour drive from Chicago. Beverly Shores is a secluded little oasis right off of Lake Michigan, but what makes it truly beautiful is that it’s the #7 dark sky community. Walking down the steps to get to the beach is a task in its own if you do not have a flash light but once you reach the beach you instantly feel like your hundreds of miles away. Being from the Chicago area, I get happy when I’m able to look up and see the big dipper, but here… here the sky is alive. It’s pitch black with only the stars to offer you light and the waves to play you music. Enjoy your weekend!


See More Travel Photography:  Exploring Iceland | Pictured Rocks | The Mountains Were Calling

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Exploring Iceland: The West

reykjavik Church Iceland Photography

In August I went on a trip that I never thought that I would have ever gone on. Iceland. I traveled around the ring road for 8 days in a camper car. It was honestly the most amazing experience in my life and none of the pictures that I took truly do justice to the beauty of Iceland. I look back, reminiscing on each picture, while writing this post and I think “Maybe it’s sad that this is now a memory”. But hey, maybe it’s not. It’s like they say, we take photos as a return ticket to a moment otherwise gone. I remember each and every moment it still sends chills down my spine. I can’t wait to go back. On another the other hand I think I may have over done it with pictures while visiting Iceland. I went through 3 memory cards, 3 batteries in about 8 days so I’m happy to share some of my Iceland photography from an unbelievable trip. Here’s some of my photography from road tripping around the Golden Circle, Reykjavik, & West Iceland.

See More of my Iceland Photography Here: Iceland Road Trip Photography > Continue reading

Set the Sky on Fire

Clouds Nature Photography

I could see in the sky that a storm was approaching quick. The air even had a different smell to it. I was on my way to Chicago to do some night shooting, thinking that just as long as I keep driving that Mother Nature wouldn’t be able to catch me. In that instant I saw a part in the clouds, light came shining through and just like that, the sun set the sky on fire. It lasted  a couple of minutes before one raindrop turned into two and two in billions. Mother Nature caught me.


See More Nature PhotographyGarden of Waterfalls | At the End of the Day | Somethings Never Get Old

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Face to Face

Chicago African Lion Photography

While making my rounds through the zoo, I was fortunate enough to get a picture of the African lion named Sahar! Located in the heart of Lincoln Park right along Lake Michigan is the Lincoln Park Zoo. It’s funny to think that one second you could be walking along the beach surrounded by the Chicago skyline and the next moment you could be face to face with a lion. When I was younger, I’ve always wanted to let all of the animals free. I guess I went through my Jumanji phrase, hoping one day I would see a stampede on Michigan Ave. while I watch a gorilla climb the Willis Tower and hear the roar of a lion in the distance at Millennium Park. Well that’s enough of nostalgia for one day.


See More Animal Photography: Showing Your Stripes | Underneath it All | Tail Feathers

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Garden of Waterfalls

Matthiessen-State-Park-waterfall-photography

Ever since I was little I have always been drawn to water. I always loved rivers and watching water flow down the street after/ during a rain storm and today was no different. I woke up, looked outside and maybe it was the kid in me or the wanderlust or a little bit of both, but I really had an urge to see a waterfall.  Within an instant, I grabbed my camera, got in my car and set off through the mist to Matthiessen State Park (even though I just knew that it was going to start to pour any second). It was just my luck that once I pulled into the parking lot, the rain started to pick up. I waited for a couple of minutes, as I watched families who were gathered for a picnic embrace mother nature, singing while they ran to throw water balloons at each other. As the rain began to die down, I made my way down the wooden stairs, descending to the base of Matthiessen’s shady canyon floor. I hiked along the river which carves it’s way through the sandstone, offering quite an experience and a spectacular view of this sort of hidden gem in Illinois. It seemed like I had the whole park to myself, listening to nothing but the birds, water and the occasional couple trudging back through the water. Once I heard the the sound of rushing water, I knew I found what I was looking for. I found myself in the garden of waterfalls.

I would love to hear/ see of any waterfalls you have visited before, please share them!


 

See More Hiking Photography: Pictured Rocks | A Nature Walk | The Mountains were Calling

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