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I am Nikonians

Lawrence Treadwell (treadwl) Interview

Marsha Edmunds (meadowlark2)


Keywords: landscape, wildlife, macro, street, infrared, photography, treadwl

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Moving to the Florida in 1970, Larry found it very different from the part of the country where he grew up.  Instead he found that Florida offered different and incredible opportunities for photography.

“In south Florida I am lucky enough to live in one of the birding centers of the world.  I also have countless lighthouses and of course the Everglades to provide subjects for my camera. I grew up hiking in the forests and mountains and enjoying the cool and the seasonal weather.  None of that exists in Florida. 

01

Long Pine Milky Way - Blue
Nikon D800, 24-70mm f/2.8 @ f/2.8, 25s, ISO 100.
12 photos stitched for this panorama
Click for an enlargement

 

For years I avoided the state’s great wonder, the everglades, as I found it hot (really hot) and featuring mosquitoes that will pick you up and carry you away while draining your life’s blood.  The everglades have no running water, no mountains (highest elevation 4 feet above sea level) and really no great forests.  It has only been recently that I decided to try and really photograph the everglades and find some beauty in the flat marsh.  Since I have made the commitment I have been amazed at the beauty, tranquility and joy I have found in this land that is best suited to mosquitoes, alligators and all things non-human

02

Pa-hay-okee
Nikon D800, 24-70mm f/2.8 @ f/2.8 20s, ISO 100
Click for an enlargement

 

I had to rethink photography since all the elements everyone talks about are generally not present.  Clouds became my mountains, grasses blowing in the wind became my rivers, and foreground subjects became shells, a puddle or a piece of coral.  I had to learn to see all over again.  I also learned to get wet.  I’ve waded through the marsh, had sandals sucked off by muck, shared shallows with alligators and pythons and in short learned to go native. 

03

Long Pine Sunrise
Nikon D800, 24-70mm f/2.8 @ ISO 100, f/18, 20s, ISO 100, GND filter
Click for an enlargement

 

But I’ve found a beauty I did not know existed and a kind of peace and love I had not known before.  Now I run outside to see the storm gather and rain on the wetlands.  I know the call of dozens of birds and other critters.  I’ve found their nests, shared their lives and learned of the struggles they face for existence.  The everglades have only two seasons, wet and dry.  But it has night and day as well and these completely change the life of the everglades.”

What a poetic description and humorous perception for the area of his new home!

“I still love the mountains and the fast flowing streams and make annual trips to the Rockies and the Smokies to experience the natural world I learned to love as a child.  I love to photograph wildlife, from birds to mammals and enjoy the challenge of getting close enough without disturbing the lives of the subjects.  It just takes lots and lots of patience.  But the Everglades have become my home and I love being out there to catch its moods and nuances.”

04

Lake Norman Sunrise
Nikon D800, 24-70mm f/2.8 @ f/22, 20s, ISO 100, ND filter
Click for an enlargement

 

Back in 2009 while surfing the web for photographic ideas Larry found the Nikonians site.  “What hit me immediately was the number of amazing photographers who freely shared ideas, images and their know-how.  It was like being a kid and walking into a candy store.  There were (and are) forums for everything type of photography and they are full of experts.  Nikonians has saved me money with their gear tips, reviews and suggestions.  Experts have inspired me with their images, and techniques.  Time spent surfing the Nikonians forums has translated into better images and improved skills in the field.”

05

Glades Sunset - Purple
Nikon D800, 24-70mm f/2.8 @ f/22, 1/80s, ISO 100, GND filter
Click for an enlargement

 

In relating what he has benefited from Nikonians Larry writes, “One of my great joys derived from being a Nikonian was sharing my love and knowledge of the everglades with fellow Nikonians who have planned trips to this magical land.  When I saw the images they captured on Nikonians it was as exciting as capturing my own.  Several Nikonian members in different forums (sports, wildlife, astrophotography and landscape) have inspired and taken me under their wing and greatly improved my skills.  Their guidance makes me want to share with others so I can give back to the community.  This interview is for me an opportunity to thank all those who cared enough to help me get where I am.  You folks are really the best.”

06

Hillsboro Lighthouse
Nikon D800, 24-70mm f/2.8 @ f/22, 102 seconds, ISO 100, ND filter
Click for an enlargement

 

With a view of sharing some advice with others Larry talks about a few pieces of gear.

“One thing I’ve learned is ALWAYS carry your tripod when going into the field and in conjunction when you get to your destination don’t set it up.  Lay it down and look for a composition.  I’ve seen too many photographers arrive, set up their tripod and then where ever it is that is the shot they take.

07

Sandhill Crane Chicks
Nikon D800, 200-400mm f/4 + TC14E @ f/7.1, 1/125s, ISO 500
Click for an enlargement

 

I love the things you can do with a neutral density filter.  I have both a 6 and a 10 stop filters and they can create magical images.  Everyone should give them a try.”

Larry recounts an amazing experience, “Once while hiking in the Smokies I took my boots of to soak my feet in the running water and enjoyed it so much I fell asleep on the rock.  When I woke up, there was a young black bear soaking his feet in the same river, while sleeping on the same rock!  Happily we both safely went our separate ways.”

A future direction that Larry plans to explore in the future is infrared photography.

As the interview wrapped up Larry shared some great insights with astrophotography.

“Most recently I have enjoyed pushing my camera and myself in the area of astrophotography.  The challenge of getting a good image and the sheer joy of watching it materialize in the still of the night is a real natural high!  It just makes you want to be there again and again.

I’ve always loved watching the stars.  Now Nikon Technology has provided me a camera and lens that allow me to capture what I actually see.  Add to that some tips from Nikonians in the Astrophotography forum and the rest is easy.

08

Morton Overlook Sunset
Nikon D800, 80-200mm f/2.8 @ f/20, 1/125s, ISO 100
Click for an enlargement

 

The Everglades provide a unique opportunity to photograph the Milky Way.  First it is one of the darkest places in the USA, and winter/spring weather often provides for clear skies.  A great tip for anyone wanting to try shooting the Milky Way is to get the app GOSKYWATCH.  It provides a map of the night sky for any place on earth, at any time of the day or night on any day past or present.  With this you can see exactly where and when the stars will appear.” 

09

Big Cypress Milky Way
Nikon D800, 24-70mm f/2.8 @ f2.8, 15s, ISO 1000.
Three photos stitched into a panorama
Click for an enlargement

 

We express our thanks to Larry for generously sharing the enjoyable and insightful content for this article and for his breathtaking images.  We will be watching for more in the future.

 

Originally written on September 22, 2017

Last updated on November 29, 2017

Marsha Edmunds Marsha Edmunds (meadowlark2)

Donor Ribbon awarded for her support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Fellow Ribbon awarded for her continuous encouragement and meaningful comments in the spirit of Nikonians. Donor Ribbon awarded for her generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2015 Ribbon awarded for her generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2017

Lethbridge, Canada
Moderator, 6180 posts

10 comments

Bob Bell (bb_sailor) on September 28, 2017

Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2017

Great article and photography. Thanks for the tip on ND filters.

Robert S Baldassano (robsb) on September 25, 2017

Fellow Ribbon awarded for his expertise in CNX2 and his always amicable and continuous efforts to help members Laureate Ribbon awarded for winning in the Best of Nikonians 2013 images Photo Contest Donor Ribbon awarded for his enthusiastic and repeated support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2015 Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2017

Larry absolutely stunning images, thank you so much for the post.

Ray Heslewood (Hessy) on September 25, 2017

A lovely story and images Larry. I enjoyed reading every line, and viewing every image. Well done.

Sarah Boser (Sarah9) on September 25, 2017

Really beautiful images, Larry. I enjoyed reading your story. Thanks for sharing .

Russell Whittemore (rosewood_ltd) on September 24, 2017

Donor Ribbon awarded for his support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2015 Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2017

Great images, Larry and another excellent "I am Nikonians" feature, Marsha. I had not thought much about the Everglades as a destination for landscape photography in the past, but these images have me rethinking that proposition. Outstanding all the way around.

John McGarry (jtmcg) on September 24, 2017

Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Awarded for his high level skills, specially in Wildlife, Macro & Landscape Photography Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2015 Awarded for his win at the Nikonians Best 2016 Photo Contest Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the 2017 fundraising campaign

Larry, Great work and an inspirational story. I've admired your excellent photography in the forums. Marsha, another great addition to your I Am Nikonians series.

John D. Roach (jdroach) on September 23, 2017

Fellow Ribbon awarded. John exhibits true Nikonian spirit by frequently posting images and requesting comments and critique, which he graciously accepts. He is an inspiration to all of us through constant improvement in his own work, keen observations and excellent commentary on images posted by others. Donor Ribbon. Awarded for his very generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014 Donor Ribbon awarded for his most generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2015 Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2017

Nice article with some good insights about seeing the scene and capturing it.

Tom Jacob (sevendayimages) on September 23, 2017

Awarded for his continuous knowledge and images sharing with community members Awarded for his win at the Best of Nikonians 2016 Photo Contest

Outstanding work Lawrence :) Those landscape shots are an eye opener to someone like me who only took a dip in them. This is a great article, very well written and the pictures are excellent...well done to you and Marsha of course. Just goes to prove the potential we've got here at Nikonians! Tom

Mark Roberts (mrob) on September 23, 2017

Ribbon awarded for his support to the Fundraising Campaign 2017

Larry, thanks so much for your interview and beautiful photos. As a new Nikonian I got a lot of inspiration and ideas from your interview. Thanks for sharing. Marsha, I always look forward to your I Am Nikonians. Great job! Mark

Olli Thomson (ollithomson) on September 22, 2017

Thanks. Beautiful images.

G