We live in trying times, in a world torn asunder by violence and conflict at least that's what I read in the newspapers. It may be true, but I really couldn't prove it by my day-to-day experiences. Perhaps that's because I live in a small town; perhaps it's because I spend a lot of time photographing nature; perhaps I'm just an ostrich at heart but from where I stand, life looks much more positive than negative.
When I was growing up and reading National Geographic magazine, I would marvel at how rich and beautiful our world was. When I began shooting for the Geographic, I found that the vision of the world I had been looking at really did exist. It existed in a reality predicated on celebrating what was right with our planet rather than agonizing over what was wrong with it.
Armed with my camera and a smile, I would go out to photograph the very best each place and person had to offer. My intention must have been obvious, because the world kept showing me more beauty than I ever imagined. Gradually, I began to trust that anywhere I went I would find magnificent places and extraordinary people.
It became a self-fulfilling prophecy. The more I saw it to be true, the more I believed it. And the more I believed it, the more it happened. In photography as in life, how we approach something is all important.