Christopher Kimmel is a self-taught outdoor photographer who grew up hiking, canoeing, camping and skiing in southwest British Columbia. Coupling hiking, scrambling and climbing with photography is a passion that Chris has developed over the past several years. During this time Chris has started Alpine Edge Photography, a small company where Chris works as a freelance photographer dedicated to capturing stunning outdoor adventure sports for various clients and for commercial stock.
Through his photography, Christopher hopes to share the wild and free feelings of being out in the beauty of nature. He strives to draw attention to the interconnectedness of humans and their environment, while conveying the importance of leaving our urban centers and enjoying the natural world around us. His desire is that these images would inspire those who view his work to go out and explore the outdoors for themselves— to feel the sense of awe that only being in the beauty of creation can bring.
Capturing a story or moment in time is not always easy—especially in the alpine. More often than not, photo gear is carried up into the mountains for thousands of feet before any pictures are even taken. Despite these obstacles, Chris remains dedicated to capturing strong compositions in the backcountry. Christopher’s fondness for the outdoors and adventure continues to draw him out to explore natural areas. Some of his favorite areas to explore are the in the North Cascade and Pacific Coast Mountain Ranges. We asked Chris to share the back story on some of his images now available exclusively through Evolve:
“After a difficult hike gaining over 5000 feet elevation and battling hoards of mosquitoes and black flies Aaron, Matt and I found a flat patch of snow below Silvertip Peak (seen in background left) where we could rest our weary bodies before making a push for the summit the next day. Before heading to bed we took a few night shots. Pictured in this shot is Aaron and I while my other friend Matt was tasked with illuminating our tent with his headlamp. Silvertip Mountain had been on my to-do list for a few years and the next day we made a successful push to the summit. Since there is no trail leading to this area of the North Cascade Mountains it is rarely visited. The approach is via several steep vegetated gullies continuing to a forested rib that leads east from the Skagit River Valley near Hope, British Columbia, Canada.”
“Early this winter Kelly, Adam and I took a day off work to go alpine touring up to Thar Peak in the Coquihalla Recreation Area. We approached Thar via the east ridgeline and topped out around noon. We had lunch on the summit and enjoyed the gorgeous weather and views of the Anderson River Mountains. This picture of Kelly was taken about during our approach up the east ridgeline. As Kelly slid over the snow the movement of his skis shot thousands of powdery snow particles into the air which were then illuminated by the morning sun. It was a fantastic day in the mountains!”
“The morning sun had just risen as our crew of three lifted off in a helicopter heading towards the back end of the Coast Mountains to conduct several snow surveys for the day. During our flight we flew through the Seymour Valley and over the Seymour River near Vancouver Canada where I was able to snap this shot. The Seymour River is one of the largest rivers to empty into Burrard Inlet. The river supplies drinking water to Metro Vancouver and supports a healthy salmon run including Coho, Pink and Steelhead.”
“After hiking up towards Stewart Peak in the Cheam Mountain Range near Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada, my friend Aaron and I set up camp on this snow-dusted rocky ridge. We got to bed early in order to wake up early for the sunrise and to prepare for our summit bid later the next morning. We were awarded for our early rising as the morning light blew us away! We enjoyed our breakfast while we took in the views of Welch and Foley Peaks and the sunning sunrise. It was a brilliant start to a beautiful day in the mountains.”
“After conquering the summit of Crown Mountain in the pouring rain I began my decent in hopes finding dryer weather. Eventually the clouds began to part and the fog lifted. For a few seconds the sun shone through a small opening and lit up this Old Growth Forest near Grouse Mountain. It was a beautiful scene that I had the pleasure of viewing and photographing. A few seconds after this photo the clouds swallowed up the sun and it began raining once again. Crown Mountain is a popular scramble near Vancouver BC and is accessed via the top of Grouse Mountain or through Lynn Headwaters Park on the east side.”
“Lines created by tiny streams of water returning to the sea at White Rock Beach are illuminated by the setting sun low on the horizon. The combination of lines and light made for a unique textured abstract that I happened to stumble upon during an evening walk on the beach. After snapping a few pictures of the patterns I took in the sunset from a nearby bench.”
Scott Rinckenberger is a Seattle based fine art landscape and adventure photographer specializing in capturing the most pristine and wild places his legs, skis and bikes will carry him. After training under one of the most high profile photographers in the industry, Scott seamlessly segued a professional ski career into a successful photography business built on sharing images and stories accessed via a love of adventure and exploration. Scott’s work has been featured in art exhibitions across the US, and Scott has appeared widely in the North American media both as a photographer and as an outdoor athlete. Scott’s clients include Powder, REI and Intel.
When meeting Scott for the first time, I couldn’t help but be impressed by his calm demeanor and purposeful manner. While certainly equipped with an equally quick smile and easy laugh, I understood immediately that these more serious traits are an essential by product, and certainly have been honed, from practicing his craft as professional mountaineer. Thankful for us, Scott is able to share the peaks and vistas as captured through his lens. We asked Scott to share the back story on several of his images now represented exclusively by Evolve:
“My method of photography relies on my immersion in my subject matter. One of the subjects with which I am most intimate is the alpine environment in winter. As a professional level ski mountaineer, I see the camera as a means to share places and moments that require an immense amount of training and practice to access. This image was captured near the summit of a remote and previously un-skied peak in the Washington Cascade mountains. This was on my third attempt to ski from the summit, and would prove unsuccessful. Heavy winds created sensitive avalanche conditions which barred a safe summit bid, but, in the plus column, created a very dramatic photograph as loose snow was blown hundreds of feet above the ridge and backlit by the morning sunlight.”
“The San Juan Islands on the Washington coast are one of the more peaceful places I’ve found. Each summer I join my wife and friends for various forays on the islands with bikes, kayaks, cabins and bbq’s to keep us entertained. Often I find myself out on my bicycle in the early morning enjoying the solitude. I try to always carry a camera with me when in beautiful environments, and on this particular morning I was on a spectacular stretch of forested road just in time to see the sun penetrate the marine fog and forest canopy and begin to illuminate the roadway with subtle and inspiring light. The artist, cyclist, driver and lover of metaphor in me all enjoy this image immensely.”
“Due to the arduous and exploratory nature of many of my backcountry ski outings, I often operate with just a single partner and generally in untrammeled environments. This image was taken 25 miles from the nearest road on a day that began with a midnight wakeup and many hours of climbing before the break of dawn. The tracks are those of myself and my partner after summiting a remote and tall peak in the Glacier Peak wilderness of Washington State. This was likely the first midwinter summit descent to date. As I looked back at our descent tracks, late afternoon light glanced across the disrupted snow highlighting the contours of our tracks and telling a story of joyful solitude.”
“I love this image because it encapsulates one of my favorite memories of a 3 month trip to Southeast Asia with my wife. On a high cliff above the Cambodian jungle sits an abandoned colonial French settlement, complete with a church, hotel and casino. It is in the process of being reclaimed by nature and is in a haunting state of ornate decay. We decided to rent a soviet era motorbike and ride up the mountain from the neighboring town of Kampot in order to spend the night camping at the ruins. As I wandered the basement of the hotel, I saw this incredible reflecting pool and asked my wife to stand in the doorway. The ambiguity of silhouette combined with the penetrating fog and organic elements creates a compelling scene that captured the fascinating feeling of this very unique part of the planet.”
“The alpine environment has a wonderful way of communicating to a climber. There is often a path on a mountain that is in harmony with the environment. A sweet spot that ensures the largest margin of safety while requiring the least wasted energy. In this image, my ski partner navigates this path of least resistance while avoiding an avalanche prone face to the left and a fragile corniced ridge to the right. Eventually on this day our path of least resistance began to resist and we were compelled to abort the mission in the name of safety and to respect the all-important rule that returning from the mountains is the single most important criteria by which to judge success.”
With our eldest daughter in the last few months of her third year of high school, our household mailbox has become the target of college recruiters from around the country. Filled each week with numerous brochures, postcards and flyers from colleges around the country, the mailer we received from Vassar College got the desired result: “Hey Dad, how come we didn’t visit this school when we toured the East coast schools last summer?”
A well designed, large format brochure filled with compelling images supported by smartly crafted copy certainly caught the attention of the future co-ed in our household.
Julia Vandevelder, Editorial Director at Vassar shared with me some of the inspiration behind the creation of the campaign. Referring to the “inspired design” Vandevelder openly admitted to “struggling with the role of print” in marketing campaigns targeted at post-Millennials. She informed me that many colleges have abandoned print mailing pieces in favor of greater investment in digital and social campaigns. However, hoping to “have an emotional impact especially with those students not familiar with our campus and the overall beauty of the Hudson River Valley” Vandevelder elected to push forward with a printed piece.
For inspiration, rather than look at collateral from competitor campuses, Vandevelder took her cues from retail catalogs hoping to “leverage the powerful branding devices so prevalent among retailers and apply those same principles” to communicating the strong values of Vassar.
To help execute the strategy, Vassar commissioned legendary New York City design firm Chermayeff & Geismar known for its signature use of bold typography to communicate memorable brand messages. While founders Tom Geismar and Ivan Chermayeff consulted on the project, partner Sagi Haviv provided creative direction and collaborated with Vandevelder on the photographer selection.
Knowing it was critical to create high-impact imagery to complement Haviv’s strong design, photographer Holly Wilmeth was commissioned for the project. Wilmeth was selected for “her ability to capture both the unique campus environments at Vassar as well as intimate interactions between Vassar students and faculty.” And she delivered the goods.
Copywriting duties also fell to Vandevelder. After opening the large format brochure and double page gatefold, the reader is invited to take a closer look with the headline: “We don’t know you yet. But we do know some things about you. You’re smart.” The plucky style and confident tone deliver both emotional and intellectual punch that hits the mark with aspiring co-eds whose sometime fragile self-confidence gets a much needed boost from this writer.
Given the visceral and immediate reaction of at least one recipient of the final design, clearly Vassar hit the mark. As I sit here writing this post with the catalog on my desk, the future college student in our household leans over to me and asks “Hey, can I have that back?” fulfilling every direct marketer’s dream.
Client: Vassar College
Editorial Director and Copywriter: Julia Vandevelder
Creative Director, Sagi Haviv, Chermayeff & Geismar
Photographer: Holly Wilmeth
The past weekend’s blizzard buried the East Coast in as much as 40″ of snow. Falling in a span of just 24 hours, photographer Jake Wyman took the opportunity to capture these images in his hometown of Guilford, CT. Jake reports: “Almost all roads were impassable. As I live near the Guilford Green, I was able to walk to the center of town to photograph.”
Ron Fehling is an accomplished advertising photographer creating images for BMW, Coca Cola, Kelloggs, Nike, Walmart and many others. When Ron first approached us about representing his work we were thrilled. Rather than provide us outtakes from older shoots, Ron immediately went to work and produced a series of new images now available exclusively from Evolve. We asked Ron to share with us his creative approach and the backstory on how these images were created:
“Originally from the Okanagan in British Columbia, I initially started a pursuit towards architecture, but photography a side passion pulled me towards the world of advertising. After photography schooling in Vancouver, I relocated to Toronto. With the help of several exceptionally talented creatives & crew, we created several award winning ad campaigns and editorial spreads during the last many years. The West Coast lifestyle and Vancouver pulled me back, where I now reside. When I’m not shooting, you can find me either on the snow, or the water enjoying my other passions, snowboarding, windsurfing & surfing!”
“For me it’s really all about the light. That’s what I love to see and capture. I get excited about shooting a still life to large complex set-up as long as we can create or capture gorgeous light! With this image it’s was shot as the light broke through the clouds, but yet still dark enough for the shine of the oncoming headlights to reflect off the the wet road. And captured all in an instant with the iPhone!”
“The sun crosses my kitchen counter beautifully in the summer, making everything I cook look awesome! Take a simple pasta dinner with few fresh basil leaves off a plant on my deck, add the evening sun and voila! A quick rustic food shot of spaghetti.”
“An almost daily occurrence for some of us, something we don’t really think about, but still can be photographed in simple beautiful way. I’m usually not a big fan of direct flash, but seems to work in this iphone image, as the small phone flash creates more of spot effect around the chin, and falls away beautifully to create shape and contrast on the face.”
“The combination of the late day blue window light with the warm desk lamp on my glass desk, peaked my interest again. Capturing a simple daily object we may see, but not really notice, as the shapes and tones created by the different light sources and shadows makes it interesting.”
“Again viewing the natural window light streaming in across the bathroom sink set up for a nice punchy shot of some toothpaste on a brush. Using similar toned props, adds to the blue feeling of the overall shot.
In all these everyday items, it’s the light that makes the mundane interesting. It’s seeing beautiful light occurring naturally and being able to capture it before it disappears keeps my passion of photography exciting as the watching the first images appear in the darkroom.”
See more of Ron’s images on Evolve.
Jake Wyman is an experienced location photographer who produces and creates photography for corporate clients, ad agencies and design firms. Based in southern Connecticut, Jake specializes in photography for the health care industry and has created images for Amgen, Roche, and Novartis in location around around the world. Recently Jake returned from a trip to Hong Kong and we asked him to share the back story on the images he captured:
“I flew to Hong Kong for two weeks, to explore and to make images which said “Asia”. It was a much-needed personal trip back to one of my favorite cities in the world. It would be a chance to update my image library, and to go back and do what I had done for many years-traveling to a new country/city for a month and just shoot.”
“I have always had the urge to explore. Lately, it’s been the remote and sometimes desolate places in the world. Some of the more beautiful and breathtaking destinations I have been fortunate to have photographed so far are the islands of French Polynesia, including Nuku Hiva, the misty Huangshan Mountain’s in Eastern China, Torres del Paine in Patagonia, the Okavango Delta in Botswana, the spectacular summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa, the mighty Amazon River in Brazil and the barren Skeleton Coast in Namibia.”
“My passion for photography was realized at the age of 20, and this initially provided the impetus to pursue a BFA degree in photography/Visual Communications at Ohio University. After graduation, and while assisting and learning from some incredibly creative New York and Boston photographers.
My photography became a viable reason to travel around the world and experience the incredible people and spectacular landscapes that are ‘out there’.”
See more of Jake’s out there images on Evolve.
During the past two decades Rick Gomez has been traveling the world creating images for some of the world’s most prestigious brands including Mercedes Benz, Visa, Crocs, Anheuser-Busch and many others. Fluent in Spanish and Portugese, Rick has lived in six countries and as a result has a unique vision of the world reflected in his work. An avid surfer and cyclist, Rick has photographed the world’s greatest surfers and cyclists at the Tour de France. Rick seamlessly integrates his talents as a photographer and filmmaker with his personal interests and is privileged to often have his family along for the ride. To illustrate the point, we asked Rick to share the back story on several images from his portfolio:
“This is a self portrait that I took in Pennsylvania and is actually one of my favorite shots. I woke up early and it was really foggy and eerie. I knew I had to get out and shoot quickly and without a model nearby I decided to grab my remote and shoot myself. The shot I planned to do was of myself standing off in the distance next to the tree. While I was there I decided to shoot the remote as I walked away from the camera and I ended up with this shot. I played with it a little in Photoshop to get the tones I felt were nice.”
“Being married to a model means you always have to be ready to shoot a headshot. We designed our house to have really nice available light for shooting which is convenient. This was a quick shot right before my wife ran off to a casting.”
“While on vacation in Utah I got a group together to go tubing and shoot. For this shot I had to lay on a tube backwards and shoot while being bounced around. It took quite a few runs and many shots to get a frame that worked.”
“I was hired to shoot a campaign for Crocs and part of the deal was that I could use the shots for stock after a year. I was fortunate to work with some great creative clients and we just went out and had fun. There were no rules other than that there were no rules. I could shoot anything I wanted and it was one of the most enjoyable assignments ever.”
“We spent a summer in France and I always travel with models, my wife and kids. This is my eldest daughter Isabella in a sunflower field near the house we stayed in that summer.”
See more of Rick’s images on Evolve.
Jules Doyle is an accomplished photographer whose work has been widely published and featured in multiple single and group shows. We recently added a selection of Jules’ iPhone images to the EvoSnap collection and asked Jules to provide the backstory on what inspires his work:
“I was a fine art photography student at the University of Washington when I fell for toy cameras and alternative process printing. I would walk around Seattle shooting random sights with one of my many modified Holga cameras. I usually made sure to leave all the interesting light leaks intact. In fact, my senior thesis was a random collection of lith prints shot on Holgas. So, the convenient use of my phone camera to capture similar style images was second nature.”
Born in Stockholm, Sweden, Mats Silvan now “enjoys life and photo’s passion in Switzerland to the South of Europe in the land of freshness in the Swiss alpine landscapes — at least for the time being.” His images reflect the romance he holds for the pursuit of beauty in all the subjects he captures. Says Mats, “I love the old Europe and the centrality that charming Switzerland offers me a range of infinity shots. With an endless curiosity, I embarked on the journey of my life chasing the beauty, cultivating a growing passion for photography which transmit – more than words – dreams, moods, feelings, shape the moments, stop time and recover the memories lived.”
We are delighted to include Mats’ portfolio as part of Evolve and asked Mats to provide the back story on some of his images:
“Imagine being in a perfect place in the right moment of the day like the peaceful warming sunset in Ascona, the unique italian speaking region on the Alps of Switzerland. Fondly referred to as the “Mediterranean’s most northerly”, it not only began to attract more and more artists (Marilyn Monroe, Charlie Chaplin, …), but also holiday makers and art enthusiasts from all over the world who enjoy this postcard panorama with a seascape view over an alpine lake.
In the background the Brissago Islands, which were covered by a sparse indigenous vegetation and were home to the remains of a convent, after restoring the convent (at present a nice hotel) and planted subtropical plant species, it’s an extraordinary botanic garden on the alps.”
“Ticino’s romantic old town centre with arcades and granite piazzas typical of it’s architecture is ideal for shopping in boutiques, galleries and antique dealers. The old village reminds us of a time when life was marked by the traditional seasonal events. In June Ascona’s piazzas are transformed into a multitude of venues for international music performances featuring jazz and classical music.
As Ascona offers openness and freedom, discover at night the narrow streets of the peaceful town, the mysterious fog surrounding the ancient cobbled alley: a display of shadows that highlight the silhouette of the ancient buildings. The quiet little village is mirrored on Lake Maggiore which was once a fishing village. In the early 20th century, it was discovered by numerous artists who spontaneously adopted it as their home returning there, time and time again. Ascona quickly became a well-known “artists’ village”, with different artistic genres (Hermann Hesse, Paul Klee and many others) influencing and inspiring one another.”
“Europe’s equestrian elite also gathers here every year in July to take part in the CSI Tournament. Bucefalo? Marengo? No, just a foal in a day of mist and high humidity in the air that you can well appreciate with the blonde curly bangs of this curious young horse.”
“Not only beauty and poetry, but also daily business. I present to you some of my staff that always accompanies me in my photographic adventures. Hereby the incomparable assistant and choreographer SPINDEX, busy with the housework but only after payment in cookies. Do not think he’s doing the laundry, his successful visit to the washing machine is a technical inspection: he could smell his favorite cookies in the pockets of my pants inside the wash machine …. and did not want to miss this tasty chance.”
“Spendthrift! Authentic expression after she learned that her credit cards have been confiscated during the mad seasonal sales.”
See more of Mats Silvans images available exclusively on Evolve.