Photographing & sailing the Atlantic coast from North Carolina to Chile - its natural environment, people, and other wonders.
Who is this guy?
After ten years as a military officer, I decided to give it all up so that I could live a less stressful & healthier life, connect with the natural world, experience other cultures, and photograph it all so that I might preserve what's left before consumerism gets a foothold everywhere. At the same time, it is another goal of mine that my photography inspires others to explore the world around them, even if it's just within their own city or county. There's more to life than money, fast food, and the internet, right? Photography has been my creative outlet for over ten years, and in the past few years I've been published, won national awards, and worked with various conservation groups, and I am a member of the Professional Photographers of America. You can view my portfolio here.
Last year I sold or donated almost everything that I owned so that I could move aboard a sailboat and experience the simple life, offering a unique photographic perspective. Read this Artist Spotlight in the Wayne Arts Council Summer newsletter.
What is this project?
It's a website culminating in a book. A beautiful, colorful book filled with amazing photographs, titled "Saoirse: The Atlantic". Saoirse (pronounced SEER-sha) is the name of my 27' sailboat, and is a Gaelic word meaning "freedom" and "liberty". I'll be spending approximately two years sailing this boat from North Carolina, down the West Indies, and along the coast of South America to Patagonia. I don't have a specific itinerary for the 10,000 miles, but that's the joy of sailing. The forces of nature dictate my itinerary. Where I do go, I'll be photographing our natural world, secluded coasts, and isolated cultures. Specific photographic subjects will include:
- Underwater reefs and ecosystems
- Remote coastlines, estuaries, and tributaries
- Mankind's impact (both positive and negative) on these systems
- Interaction between different cultures and the natural world
- The joys of simple living on a sailboat
If I've found success at the end of this project, I should be able to and will hopefully follow it up with another book called "Saoirse: The Pacific" as I head back up to California.
It's a long project and physical rewards won't be realized until 2015, but don't worry...part of the fun will be tracking my progress via an interactive map on my website.
Why should you fund it?
Because it'll be fun to follow for two years (or however long I spend at sea)! More seriously, reality television, political bickering, and celebrity tabloids have seemingly become more important than the world that sustains our life. Your funding will help produce a book that offsets our current cultural trends. It'll only be a minimal offset, but one nonetheless.
There are hundreds of causes that book sales could support, and if this looks like it'll be successful, I have a couple of years to find one that really needs the support.
What does the funding go towards?
I'm almost done outfitting my vessel for this trip. I've added things like solar panels, bigger anchors & chain, self-steering, new rigging, etc. All of these modifications are budgeted. Your donations will go towards the following:
- Gear - underwater housing & strobes for my camera, data storage systems, and a still unfunded liferaft.
- Communications - hosting fees for the website and satellite data costs to upload updates and photos.
- Book publishing fees - I'll be working on the book throughout the trip, and at the end it'll hopefully be ready to send off to the publisher. A quality book will cost some serious money!
What if I don't meet my goal?
I won't let that stop me from making this trip. But I won't be able to document as many places, I won't be able to make as frequent web updates due to satellite communication costs, and I won't be able to photograph our underwater world. All of this would threaten my ability to publish a photographic book at the end and share it with everyone. I still hope that you'd follow me!
I don't have a definitive 100% solution for those questions yet. I've seen some horrendous hardcover photography books and I've also seen some amazing softcover books. The answer will really depend on fundraising and if I self-publish or not.
As of now I'm hoping to produce a 12"x12" or similar softcover with dust jacket printed on heavy luster photography paper. As for length...well...I do have 10,000 miles to cover. Keeping it to 60-80 pages or so should force me to only pick out the best photos though I might have a problem limiting myself to that. Again, we'll see how fundraising goes! If it really takes off, then I might be able to ship out a larger hardcover!
seconds to go
Pledge $5 or moreYou selected
Thanks! Kudos to all of my supporters will be given on my website!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $10 or moreYou selected
Not only will I give you kudos on my website, but your assistance will be noted in the book!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or moreYou selected
In addition to website & book recognition, you'll receive a signed 8"x10" watercolor fine art print of your choice!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $75 or moreYou selected
Thanks! In addition to website & book recognition, you'll receive a copy of said book.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $150 or moreYou selected
You'll get thanks on my website, in the book, and receive a signed limited edition copy of the book!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $500 or moreYou selected
You're awesome! In addition to kudos on my website and in the book and a signed limited edition copy of the book, you'll get your choice of a professionally framed 16"x20" fine art watercolor print from my voyage!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $1,000 or moreYou selected
Wow, I can't thank you enough. In addition to kudos on my website and in the book and a signed limited edition copy of the book, you'll get your choice of a professionally framed 24"x30" fine art watercolor print from my voyage!Estimated delivery:
- (30 days)