Part IV: Chasing the Light with Light In Alaska

All photographs © Rick Sammon

This is the forth in a series of posts I am writing aboard the Northern Song, the boat the Light Photographic Institute is using for its first Alaska photo workshop of 2011. I'm co-leading the workshop with fellow Canon shooter Hal "Bull" Schmitt, the lead instructor and director of Light - which also produces the California Photo Fest – the must-attend photo event of the year. 

Each day, we chased the light, as photographers do every day - and night.

(I hope to see you on one of my workshops - perhaps in Alaska in 2012. Shoot me an email to get on my workshop list.) 

Because there is no internet on the boat, I'll actually be posting when I get back on land - so each Alaska post you read was actually written about a week ago.

I'll be including some of these photographs (with composition tips) in my next Kelby Training class: Composition - the Strongest Way of Seeing, which is scheduled for release later this year. For info on all my Kelby Training classes, click here.

Today's tip:

Learn about the subject. For example, following are a few cool facts about humpback whales, which are shown feeding on herring in the opening photograph. Thank you Captain Dennis Rogers for the info!

Their jaws unhinge for maximum feeding capacity - which is why, in the opening picture, the the mouth of the whale on the right looks kinda weird.

Feeding is a cooperative behavior between two and 20 whales. One whale is always the leader.

The whales circle the fish
and start to blow bubbles that form a "net" around the herring.

In the opening shot, you can see some of the bubbles in the background. As they rise, bubbles compress the fish into a nice fish sandwich.


These whales live nine months in Alaska and then take a vacation in Hawaii for the rest of the year.

For some info on marine life, see my next iPad app, Underwater Wonders, due for release in a few months. Shoot me an email if you want to be notified.

For more photo tips, see my iPad and iPhone app: Rick Sammon's 24/7 Photo Buffett.

Explore the Light - and save the whales,