A trained human ecologist, Austin studied natural sciences and conservation at College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine. Before graduating in January 2018, he wrote his senior thesis on conservation in the American West. His studies examined United States wildlife policy, environmental history, and social and political implications of land conservation during travels through Oregon, California, Nevada, Utah, and Arizona.
He currently lives in Bar Harbor, Maine, next door to Acadia National Park. He works by day as the community engagement coordinator for Frenchman Bay Conservancy, a small nonprofit conservation organization. He grew up in Enumclaw, Washington, and also enjoys spending time with family in Oregon and Colorado.
- 2014 – Washington State Fair, Puyallup, WA
- 2015 – City Hall Gallery, Enumclaw, WA (Solo)
- 2015 – Spectrum Creative Alliance Gallery, Enumclaw, WA
- 2015 – Arts Alive! Gallery, Enumclaw, WA
- 2015 – Green River College, Auburn, WA
- 2016/17 – Dorr Museum of Natural History, Bar Harbor, ME
- 2018 – Exploration Center at Frenchman Bay Conservancy, Hancock, ME
- 2019 – Choco-Latte Cafe, Bar Harbor, ME (Solo)
- 2018 – Newspapers Ellsworth American and Mount Desert Islander
- 2018 – Publications and online media of Frenchman Bay Conservancy, Heart of Ellsworth, Ellsworth Green Plan, Maine Today
As long as I can remember I have loved nature.
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.
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.
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 ethical representations of my subjects.