John D Hunter
As long as I have traveled I have carried camera in hand. I found it satisfying to record and remember. But a funny thing happened once when I was setting off on a two week solo backpacking trip in the High Sierras – my camera was stolen the night before and I had to travel without. And I ended up having the best trip of my life, being forced to see, experience and remember. That taught me to be aware of the boundary between being an observer who records, on the one hand, and being the guy who is only there to push the camera shutter on the other hand. A year later when my film for another Yosemite visit was lost in processing, I was devastated. But to this date, I still remember the feeling in my gut as I crept out to the overhang on top of Half Dome to pose for a photo, and that is enough.
After retiring from working in 2009, I have been fortunate to ramp up my travel schedule, visiting chunks of Africa, Latin America, and Asia, and recently discovering the Europe that I never visited during my friends’ vagabond years. Every new travel experience leads to my growing interest in photography. It seems that encountering "all that is different" provides a trigger to record every new experience. New cultures, people, food and atmosphere all excite me.
With architectural training in my background, I tend to seek out physical elements and find compositions that tell a story. But recently I am making a greater effort to study people and their stories, and that means I must overcome my natural shyness - so I am enjoying the challenge.