Long ago I learned that the technical part of any job is 10 percent. Creativity, problem-solving, optimism, and surrounding yourself with intelligent, hardworking people is the remaining 90 percent. When you know how to be creative and assemble the right team, that’s when all great things come.
I’m a photographer, director, and Nikon Ambassador based in South Lake Tahoe, California. I chose to live in one of America’s great outdoor playgrounds for its skiing, climbing, and biking opportunities because I believe that living in a place that inspires your passions directly translates into doing the best work of your life. South Lake Tahoe also acts like a magnet for talented, likeminded creatives. It’s where I’ve met some of my best friends and some of the most talented, inspired collaborators that I could ever imagine.
My goal is to work on creatively satisfying projects, but what makes it all worthwhile are the lifelong friendships I’ve earned in the process.I live in South Lake Tahoe with my wife, Marina, our daughter, Leila, and our mutt, Preta (who happens to also be my favorite mountain-biking partner).
I’m a part owner of Novus Select, a production company and assignment agency that works with some of the biggest brands in the world. Our strength is our global network of thoroughly vetted creatives that allow us to tackle projects at any scale, in any location. In 2017, Novus Select’s offices moved to South Lake Tahoe.
Working as a director has provided me with some of the most creatively satisfying experiences of my life. I found my footing directing projects in the adventure-sports world, leading small-footprint productions in remote locations around the world, from kayaking in Mexican jungles to high-altitude mountaineering expeditions in Pakistan.
I’ve always embraced the cutting edge because I know that no matter how the world of visual storytelling changes, the fundamentals of what makes a good, compelling story never do. I was an early adopter of HD-DSLR motion storytelling, working on projects with the Nikon D90. Recently, I’ve been recognized for my work in the 360 / VR realm. In 2016, I helped Nikon launch the Nikon KeyMission camera line, including the KeyMission 360, a 4K Ultra-HD virtual-reality-capturing action camera.
Photography and Photojournalism
My background is in photojournalism and photography, particularly in the adventure sports realm. I started out as a kid in college, traveling around the country on my own dime in a beat-up Honda Civic with a brick of slide film to shoot rock climbing. This was in the mid 1990s, when climbing was still an obscure sport and the world of extreme / adventure sports was just beginning to enter the mainstream. I was there to tell the stories of athletes like climbing legend Chris Sharma, kayaking pioneer Eric Jackson and world champion surfer Lisa Anderson. At the time, it was all about just following my passion, but what I didn’t realize was how it would springboard me into bigger and bigger projects.
I’ve always said that if I wasn’t a photographer / director, I’d be a teacher. That passion for helping others learn has brought me some incredible opportunities over the years. I’m a co-founder and lead instructor of the Summit Series Adventure Photography Workshop. I’ve also worked with brands such as Adorama and CreativeLIVE on educational online videos, as well as Nikon workshops around the world.
In addition to being a Nikon Ambassador, I’m also a member of the SanDisk Extreme Team. I’m also a professional partner with AquaTech, FreeFly, G-Technology, Kessler, Lite Panels, Lowepro, Manfrotto, and SmallHD.
I’ve worked on projects with Anheuser-Busch, Apple, Columbia Sportswear, Discovery, Energizer, Ford, Mazda, NBC, New Mexico Tourism, Nevada Tourism, Nike, Nikon, The North Face and Patagonia.
My work has appeared on close to 100 magazine covers, including the pages of the New York Times Magazine, Sports Illustrated, and National Geographic.