Description A male Western Tanager as it was sitting in my neighbors walnut tree one afternoon. For one week a year, in early May, a small flock always show up to eat berries in my neighbors yard. The walnut tree is merely a place for each to wait their turn to eat the berries. Noticing this trend, I was ready with my camera and lens the next time they showed up, and was able to get this shot.
Craig Stott, Tualatin, Oregon Member Since April 2009 Artist Statement I was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. In the residential area where I grew up, I was exposed to more pedestrian kinds of wildlife. As I learned later: with the intrusion of humans, habitat often suffers.
However, things changed in the early 70's when my folks purchased property in a small vacation development near a reservoir 35 miles SE of Mt Hood; about a 90 minute drive. This property bordered on the Mt Hood National Forest and had a diversity of habitat. It was much higher in elevation than the house in the city, and was semi-arid with stands of pine, fir and oak. It was here that we got introduced to the many species of birds and animals that inhabited the area. It was here that we had our first encounter with birds of prey such as bald eagles, osprey and owls. We also had frequent encounters with black-tailed deer as well as many kinds of songbirds, and woodpeckers.
The bottom line about my family’s experience at our cabin was that we were exposed to wildlife on a more frequent and personal level than ever before. We were now looking for such experiences on a regular basis and our ability to see and appreciate it increased accordingly. Our eyes had been opened to the natural world around us.
My interest in photography also started in earnest in trying to record these experiences. Over time, my shots began to get better. I joined a photography club in Portland and eventually became involved in club as well as inter-club competition. Over the next 7 years, I earned my share of ribbons going against seasoned veterans in our club. I’ve also taken photography coursework at PCC and have a certificate in photography from NYIP.
My current gallery is composed of images taken in the last 2 years in wildlife refuges in and around the Portland Area. These images were taken with a 100-400 Canon zoom and a Canon 600 F/4 supertelephoto lens. I hope that you get a sense of discovery when seeing my wildlife images as much as I had in taking them!