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About Me

"Not All Who Wander Are Lost" (J.R.R. Tolkien, The Riddle of Strider)

Craig A. Elson is an Award Winning American photographer based in Los Angeles, California who has traveled to more than 60 countries throughout Africa, Asia, Latin  America, Europe and the Caribbean over the past 30 years. He is focused primarily on wildlife, landscape, and aerial photography and is happiest when shooting in golden light anywhere in Africa.

Craig first fell in love with photography during an around the world travel adventure while in college on an experiential learning program called Semester at Sea. Borrowing his father's Nikon N2020 film camera and a pair of zoom lenses, he set sail in the autumn of 1988 determined to document his journey on film.  Craig  subsequently spent the summer of 1990 following his graduation from college  independently traveling throughout eastern and southern Africa, mostly on safari, this time with the newer Nikon N4004s.  As has happened to many who have traveled there before him, Africa and its wildlife managed to deeply embed themselves in Craig's soul and not a day goes by without his thoughts turning to his memories and/or visions of future experiences there. He then returned to "real life" after that summer, embarking upon a career in the international media business followed by private equity and venture capital investing which afforded him the opportunity to travel the world some more, both for business and for adventure. His wanderlust grew and his camera was always by his side. But the realities of a busy professional and family life eventually set in and photography became mostly a fond memory for nearly fifteen years.

Craig's love for photography was rekindled in the summer of 2016 on his first trip to Africa since 1998. The siren's song of safari and some upgraded Canon gear, coupled with the growing technological wonders of digital, ignited a newfound passion for his craft. Photography has been part of Craig's life every day since returning from this three week long trip where he was able to introduce his three daughters to Africa for the first time.  The travel bug was stirred anew, and many adventures, both domestic and international, have taken place in the years since.  He switched over to shooting Sony in early 2020 and immediately loved the incredible auto focus system of  the a9ii and the fine detail brought out by the 61mp of the a7r4.  The switch to mirrorless coupled with the latest generation of much lighter long lenses has given Craig the freedom to handhold nearly all of the time while photographing wildlife.   And now, of course, the game changing Sony a1 has taken things to another level.  Craig has taught himself Lightroom and Photoshop for post processing and is amazed by and enamored with the wizardry of Topaz Labs as well. 

"I love photography because, for me, it is the perfect marriage of art and science, the creative and the technical - it forces me to use both sides of my brain while in the world's most interesting, beautiful, and wild places, to capture both fleeting and timeless moments. What could be more fun and more challenging at the same time for someone with a serious case of wanderlust?!!"


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