As long as I can remember I have loved nature.

Sneaking up on shorebirds in Oregon.

My mother recalls three-year-old Austin rescuing earthworms from puddles after rainstorms and running around the house turning off lights to “save the penguins.” Before I entered elementary school, documentaries and television shows featuring lion prides and herds of giraffe made me dream of becoming a world-traveling wildlife photographer. As a teenager, I led my parents on a grand summer vacation visiting national parks in Wyoming, Utah, Arizona, California, and Oregon. I’ll always remember how I felt exploring Yellowstone National Park for the first time—like every footstep deserved to be placed with a gentleness and respect for hallowed ground.

The desire to be involved with nature has always stuck with me, and my personal and professional goal in life is to protect the natural world.

Tracking a three-toed woodpecker in Colorado.

The inspiration for my photographs comes from being in nature. A special connection forms when you observe clouds, birds, and plants, and find that watching these things brings me peace, cultivates patience, and stimulates positivity.

Because each piece of nature is inherently beautiful—the colors of a songbird’s feathers, the textures of burgeoning clouds, or the glimmering morning light off the ocean—a kind of nature photography that seeks not to take away from these natural elements, but to simply emphasize their beauty is the kind of nature photography that can change the world.

Photography can capture the natural environment unlike anything else, preserving moments with more precision and detail than other media. In both a fortunate and unfortunate sense, photographing life’s intricate wonders is especially important in a rapidly changing world.

Watching swifts and scenery at the Black Canyon, Colorado.

Within digital photography I challenge myself both technically and artistically, with time-lapse, super macro, telephoto, panoramas, digital infrared, and more—techniques that allow me to find new and dynamic ways to present my experiences to the viewer while always seeking to provide truthful and responsible representations of my subjects.