Self Portraits by Paul Zizka-Sponsored Feature
I am usually alone when I shoot landscapes, so when I want to experiment with a person in my images I am left with no option but to enter the frame myself. Since I am both the model and the photographer, these shots often require many takes and a lot of running back and forth, into frigid water and out again in order to nail the composition and ensure a satisfactory outcome. These photos are taken during long nights out chasing the aurora borealis, on trips abroad to places like New Zealand and French Polynesia, and just minutes away from my home in Banff. I have an incredible amount to work with just a few kilometres from town.
The impact of these self-portraits is two-fold. Placing a person in the shot gives the reader an emotional element they can relate to – the human experience in nature. But it also adds the story of the photographer himself, and how he is relating to his subject, instead of simply standing behind the lens and out of the picture. As a landscape photographer I find the inclusion of the human element heightens the sense awe and wonder evoked by the image. Our world is so beautiful, especially in its most natural form. My hope is that these images inspire people to want to preserve the natural places left on this planet for the generations to come.”
Paul Zizka is a professional mountain landscape and adventure photographer based in Banff, Alberta. Specializing in photographing in difficult conditions and hard-to-reach places, Paul has a passion for documenting the interplay of light and weather in the mountains, shooting alpine endeavours, unique international locations, and capturing the spirit of adventure. Paul’s award-winning photos have been featured in a variety of publications, including Huffington Post, The Guardian, Outdoor Photographer, explore magazine, IMPACT and Canadian Geographic. His commercial clients, such as Banff Lake Louise Tourism and Parks Canada, depend on his photography to bring Banff National Park to the world. Paul’s first photography book, Summits and Starlight: The Canadian Rockies, hit the shelves in October 2013 (published by Rocky Mountain Books). See more of his work online at Zizka.ca.
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