I have come across many photographers on this journey of mine, and to each their own. I have come to accept that everyone gets into photography for their own reason and/or purpose. Some may be righteous and others not, however whom am I to judge them? In my opinion I let them live and let live, it is not place to put them down for they have their own journey to pursue.
I have found however that some photographers are money driven, others are Ego driven, some use it as a means to be worshiped or idolized, while others just do it to document their experiences and to capture life. Some refuse to work with others, they keep their distance and wont get close to anyone while some reside on a self inflated cloud in their minds believing they are greater than they are.
I on the other love to work with other photographers, I love to shoot with them, explore with them and bond with them. I love to inspire others as they inspire me so that together we grow and learn from one another. I am not here to compete nor here to be idolized or worshiped but rather merely to exist. I am here to make friends, to document my life, to create new memories and to merely continue on my journey as God wishes.
With that being said, stay humble, be true to yourself and remember that our words and actions indeed have weight. Use them wisely and try not to be a egotistical jerk, because in the end that will cause you to lose your reputation and quite possibly your following and friends.
Clyde Butcher & Lucky Cole
These are the two photographers who have inspired me to venture forth into the Glades, they indeed are both legends. Clyde Butcher is an amazing passionate soul who captures the very essence of nature in its purest form. His Black & White photography is known across the world as is his passion for what he does. Lucky Cole is known for his beautiful, soft nude photos of adult models from all ages and walks of life. He loves what he does, to him capturing the angelic form of a nude woman is one of the greatest blessing of life.
I am eager to learn from them as they have inspired me along the way and have supported my photography wholeheartedly.
Photo by: Fahad Asmat
Hiking the Big Cypress Preserve:
One thing I have learned from friends and those who know the glades to a far greater level than I ever will. Never ever hike alone, always have a partner, a plan, and emergency supplies. If you have a Conceal Weapon carry it, you can never be too safe. I do not encourage people to go out there and start shooting at anything unless you have a valid reason such as if your life was in danger, or during hunting season and that is providing you have a hunting license. Shooting at anything for mere fun and pleasure may lead to hefty fines from Florida Fish & Wildlife.
I will be honest, on all my travels I have yet to shoot at anything. I found it is far easier to use my walking stick to push away any venomous snakes that are too close. I also have come to terms with leaving wildlife along and never pester a gator. Just go in there and enjoy your experience, your journey and trip and leave only with your memories and photos. Make sure if you are hiking the glades to buy a good knee high set of anti venom snake boots. They will come in handy and it is far better to have a pair than to be caught by surprise, snake bites are not fun and some can be extremely painful and life threatening.
When I travel out there, I sure as heck do not hike the swamps alone. Now some people will state that it is okay to do so, and I will not argue their debate. If that is what you want to do then go for it. However if something happens, I am certain you will rethink that thought real fast, especially when there is no one there to assist or help you. Bear in mind I do not claim to be an expert at this, I am just passing along some common sense. In my opinion, I have no time for macho bravado in the glades or miscalculated moves, I have no time for ego thrill seekers or people who want to harass wildlife. All it takes is one stupid move, one move to make things go from good to bad real fast, and that is an outcome I cannot afford to take.
Stay safe, and Hike on!