This past week hurricane Earl swept by the east coast and gave everyone out there a bit of a scare. Well, I say everyone but I really mean everyone that is not used to such storms. I used to live out that way, on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, to be exact. I still have family and friends out there as well. Of coarse with a hurricane it is possible for anything to happen but there is pretty much a guarantee that a few things will happen that are always consistent.
- There will be overwash on HWY 12 of Hatteras Island.
- Tourist will scatter and leave the coast ASAP (YAY!)
- Most locals will ride out the storm and enjoy the break from the onslaught of tourists (YAY!!)
Of coarse there are always varying degrees to anything so I am sure that only 99% of what I said came true. Having lived on the west coast for 7 years now I am comfortable with where I am and happy that I moved. I do, at times, miss the Outer Banks (or OBX as its dubbed) and the place that I grew up. The warm atlantic and its somewhat "healing" powers, the beautiful sunsets/sunrises, the seafood, and the overall relaxed feeling of living there.
Anyway.. to tie all this in to something photography related I want to swing it around to a specific person, Michael Halminski. He is a family friend and a landscape & wildlife photographer that lives in the very town that I grew up, Waves, NC. I randomly googled his name a couple months ago and was happy to discover that he is now blogging and sharing his photography from his adventures and specifically the Outer Banks. In a way Michael was a deciding factor as to why I even started into photography. My sister and brother always seemed to be into photography, and as a young lad I was of coarse influenced by my older siblings. Their involvement with photography varied and really never went much farther then a hobby.
As I grew up I looked to other sources for my need to feed my photography passion. That is when I looked towards Michael's work. My vision of the Outer Banks, and more specifically Hatteras Island, was influenced greatly by Michael's work. Even though I lived and grew up there I never really "saw" it. I was busy going to school and chasing after tourist girls. While I was out goofing off he was out capturing the soul of the island and its people. He knew where and when to go so that he got the images that he was after. He captured the things that many of us saw daily and never really appreciated. He captured Hatteras Island before it became overrun with tourist houses and stores. He was there on the beach when the fisherman were hauling in their nets packed full of fish or the nor'easter would run through and create beautiful dramatic skies.
Over time I have seen his work change and grow in many different ways, but the one thing that has been consistent is that his love for Hatteras Island is apparent in all of his work. Now that I am older I appreciate his work even more and especially the fact that he was out there capturing these points in time. Photography truly is about freezing a moment in time and being able to go back to that point and visit it again in a photograph. Without Michael's efforts the original, "TRUE", Hatteras Island would be lost under a pile of beach toys, rental homes, and 4x4 vehicles. His work is the record of years of dedication to the people, wildlife, landscape and very life that is Hatteras Island, and I am thankful for it.
To view Michael's work please visit his site Michaelhalminski.com