A traveler asked English poet William Wordsworth's servant to show him Wordsworth's study. The servant replied, "Here is his library, but his study is out of doors." This according to Henry David Thoreau's 1862 essay Walking.
We, too, study out of doors by walking. We began our serious photographic walking by pointing our cameras at The Loess Hills of western Iowa. Then at Iowa's Buena Vista County. The county's rolling pastorals inspired us to request a sabbatical from Buena Vista University to walk beyond Iowa. In 2010, we traveled more than 20,000 miles to walk 12 national parks and monuments in 17 states (while sleeping soundly for 49 nights in the back of our mini-van). Since then, we have returned to the Badlands of South Dakota twice and walked for the first times in Rocky Mountain, Saguaro and White Sands National Parks.
America's National Parks. Iowa. Minnesota. Arizona. Wildlife. Flowers. These are some of the subjects of our "study" out of doors. We plan to walk Vermont for its fall colors in October of 2017.
We retired from teaching digital media the spring of 2015, which gave us more time to study and to walk. Since then we have begun photographic projects in Minnesota, at Wright County's Pelican Lake wetlands, at the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge, as well as on the North Shore of Lake Superior. The winter of 2017 gave us opportunities to photograph the white snow of Minnesota as well as the White Sands of New Mexico and the desert browns, reds, yellows and greens of Arizona. In our spare time, we keep a flower garden, which we study spring, summer and fall.
The purpose of our National Parks Tour was to practice the art of panoramic photography, using new digital techniques to blend and stitch many image files together, capturing each national monument in single supersized prints. Since then we have returned to simpler image-capture methods. However, regardless of the photographic technique, every image on this site has been prepared for one objective: the birthing of a high-quality print. We love the walk; we study with passion; but—always—our hiking and image capture is done with one product in mind: The Print. We are skilled photographic printmakers as well as experienced photographers. Every print purchased from BruceEllingson.com meets the highest standard of quality, is hand-signed, includes authentication papers, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
If you would like to keep up-to-date with our walking about or join in our study, we welcome you to sign up to receive email updates as we add to our image collections or visit us on our Nature's Image fan page on Facebook.
In 2015, Marge and I published a book documenting our National Parks tour entitled National Parks West. The book offers a glimpse of 11 amazing National Parks and monuments in 30 richly printed landscapes as well as another half dozen images of us at work. In addition to our reflections on nature and photography, the book includes all the technical camera settings, time of day and location information for each scene of the natural world. A few copies remain and can be purchased here.
In Walking, Thoreau made the argument that humans must leave their houses and offices and walk beyond their city limits to experience the wild, the untouched, the natural world. "I believe in the forest, and in the meadow, and in the night in which the corn grows," he wrote. Take a walk, he advised, and study the wild places of human origin. We have taken his advice…and with our cameras we celebrate what Thoreau called "The Wildness."
We would love to share our view of this Wildness with you.
Enjoy the journey,
Bruce & Margie Ellingson
Some articles about our work that you might enjoy:
, be sure and check out Bruce's Badlands
& Witter Gallery
slide shows with audio commentary.