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Monday, February 8, 2016

Gung Hay Fat Choy! Happy New Year 2016!

Gung Hay Fat Choy! Happy New Year 2016!

Welcome to the Year of the Red Monkey. How about the serendipity of that considering the color of Donald Trump's hair (LOL)? Who knows where 2016 is going, so this is to wish us all safe journey, BUT I am happy to report I ended 2015 on a high note that has now carried forward into the New Year, so please read on.

photograph _ copyright  Robert Glenn Ketchum 2016
photograph © copyright Robert Glenn Ketchum 2016

May I say that petting a sloth is a GREAT way to start celebrating the Holidays. It certainly helped mine move in the right direction! In case you are wondering this slothful occasion is being presented by The Explorers Club of New York. In fact, this is taking place at a formal dinner in Melbourne, FL (very near Cape Canaveral). On November 7, 2015, myself and 5 other recipients were given the Explorers Club Lowell Thomas Award as "Visionaries of Conservation". 

You may note I am the only awardee that does NOT have a Ph.D (but I DO have an MFA.) As you can see, for the actual award ceremony, they even got me into a tux!

photograph _ copyright John Sluder 2016
photograph © copyright John Sluder 2016

photograph © copyright John Sluder 2016
The Explorers Club always creates an "exotic" awardee dinner that includes unusual guests and equally unusual food. This year we were visited by numerous birds, reptiles, and yours truly up above who stole the show (NOT ME! THE SLOTH!). We also dined on pre-dinner appetizers of Florida's invasive species. Among many surprising dishes, the wild boar stir-fry was excellent, and the scorpion fish tacos and ceviche were to-die-for (no pun intended). The Lowell Thomas Award was begun in 1980 and the amazing list includes many scientists and explorers that inspired some of the actions I have taken in my life. There are few artists or photographers included here, so I am greatly honored to be included.  It wasn't only a most enjoyable weekend of dinners and presentations from all of the awardees, we were also given an all-day tour of the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Florida, as you can see from this shot of our group collected below the massive engines of NASA's Saturn 5 moon rocket.

photograph © copyright Martin Kraus 2016

WiLDspeak, International League of Conservation Photographers

After the award ceremony in Florida, I flew to Washington, DC to participate in WiLDspeak, an International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP) special event and lecture series, being held at the Carnegie Institution for Science. iLCP now works with so many photographers and so many projects all over the world, we believe it is more effective to host WiLDspeak as an annual event in DC and bring our photographers together in one place at one time so they can present. DC provides the perfect setting for it because it puts our work in front of politicians, major foundations, international environmental non-governmental organizations (NGO's), the media, and philanthropists that appreciate our unique purpose to provide fine photography in service to conservation and science.

photograph © copyright iLCP Services 2016

Over the course of an entire day in which lunch was included, individuals and panels presented on a wide variety of ongoing projects that ranged from reefs to rangeland, and salmon habitats to orangutang forests. It was amazing!!! As a Founding Fellow of iLCP, I see an organization growing in strength, with an unparalleled purpose in the work that it does, and I am very proud to be part of this group. Last year we also were granted our "official" non-profit status, SO I have repeatedly asked my social media followers to please donate to help support our programs. If you support conservation causes, support iLCP. It is our pictures that help make science more widely understood, and the issues more of interest to the public.

photograph © copyright iLCP Services 2016

I would especially like to thank the Carnegie Institution for Science for working with iLCP and affording us the newly tech-updated auditorium. Presenting at this institution of science places the work we do in its proper context.

Booth Western Art Museum 
Ansel Adams: Before and After 
November 14, 2014 to March 20, 2016

Booth Western Art Museum
November 14, 2014 through March 20, 2016 

While I was presenting at WiLDspeak in DC, a small selection of my prints opened as part of an important group exhibit at the Booth Western Art Museum in Georgia entitled: ANSEL ADAMS: Before & After. Beginning with Alfred Stieglitz, and Paul Strand, the list of artists follows somewhat chronologically and includes 25 prints of Ansel's, as well as a selection of prints from his peers and good friends:   Edward Weston; his sons, Brett and Cole; Imogen Cunningham; and Dorothea Lange, among others. As a young photographer from the West Coast, these were image-makers of which I was in awe. Much like being included on the Lowell Thomas awardee list, it is amazing to me to be displayed with these photographic artists and pioneers whom I have always admired. Above is the exhibition catalog cover featuring one of my images from the work I have been doing in the southwest Alaska / NO PEBBLE MINE campaign. 

Considering there is a sizable number of photographers in this exhibit, I truly scored when they used JUST MY IMAGE on the announcement card for the panel discussions. I would especially like to thank Robert Yellowlees and Tony Casadonte of Lumiere Gallery in Atlanta who represent my work and loaned prints to the Booth Western Art Museum for this exhibit.

No Pebble Mine

Although the NO PEBBLE MINE campaign is still ongoing, working with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) during the last two years and using my images in full-page "ads" in major strategic newspapers, we have succeeded in driving ALL the investors out of the project. We are hoping the EPA will ultimately cancel the mining permits before Obama leaves office. Until then, I continue to do what I can and I hope you follow my NO PEBBLE blog where there are now more than 175 images of the amazing parks and landscapes of southwest Alaska / Bristol Bay watershed.

photograph © copyright Robert Glenn Ketchum 2016

In my writing and project research I use many good science sites available through the Internet. One of the best and most respected of those is Yale Environment 360, so it was exciting for me to have them post a  NO PEBBLE MINE portfolio to help me spread the word.
Mandalac Gardens:  The G2 Gallery ~and~ Venice Art Walk & Auctions

If you read my last Constant Contact emailer, you know that in August-September, I had a show of my new work, MANADALAC GARDENS, at The G2 Gallery in Venice, California. For those that did not see it, here my collaborator, Michael Jones of West Coast Imaging, and I stand in front of one wall of the installation. I would like to especially thank The G2 Gallery for continuing to show my work and encouraging my willingness to explore nature and the landscape in less than traditional ways.

It was a great show and you really need to view these images in person, so the next chance you get will be the image I donate to this year's Venice Art Walk & Auctions on May 22nd, here in Los Angeles. The piece below is NOT the one I will auction it is just here to tease you. Come to the Art Walk Auction, see a GREAT display of Los Angeles-based artists, and bid up the UNIQUE image I always create just for the Art Walk. Until then:

Latest Project...

Lastly, I have recently been working with a broad coalition of groups on issues regarding the San Francisco Bay, including wetlands and habitat restoration, impacts of climate change, and the proposed completion of an around-the-bay trail system. To further project interest, I was afforded helicopter time over the bay and I SHOT IT ALL WITH MY iPHONE! 39 of those images have now been printed as a new scarf in my line of fashion products. The "face" is a jigsaw puzzle of very identifiable Bay Area locations. The "back" is a Bay Trail Map showing what exists and what needs to be completed. As with my other scarves, this is double-sided silk charmeuse, approx. 22" x 72". It is available through my online store ($190), and at retail stores around the Bay Area. Wearing this, you can literally SHOW your support for The San Francisco Bay!

Peace to Earth!

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RGK Photography | Los Angeles, California 

to my various sponsors and colleagues, thank you!

Social Media by LittleBearProd
Social Media by LittleBearProd

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