Often, when it comes to lifestyle photography, the human behind the lens takes a backseat to the end product, as the action telescopes into the scene before him. Sometimes the person holding the camera gets written off as a stand-by. Not so with Photographer Lance Koudele.
Rather, looking at his photos makes one feel like he’s the epicenter of the action. Check out more of his craft on his website.
Meet Lance Koudele
He’s the man behind many of the photos featured on this website. He’s added spice to our social media presence (pro tip: get the daily dose on Facebook and Instagram). He’s an all around adventure guru, a master of his craft, a guy with a wild hair, and an all-around badass. Get to know him.
What makes shooting around Hood Canal and on the Olympic Peninsula special?
Geographically, it’s one of a kind in the continental U.S. It’s a rich rainforest surrounded by ocean waters teeming with wildlife, and a bit of contradiction in that it’s so close to a major population (Seattle) yet very isolated at the same time. The access to fresh seafood is the cherry on top.
You shoot quite a bit of landscape and adventure photography around Hood Canal. What gear/technology do you use to keep focused on what you do best as a photographer?
There is a lot of talk about the SONY mirrorless cameras these days. However, I really like the feel of a single-reflex camera. The Canon 5DMK3 is my go-to as a result.
Gear is gear, though. It’s really about establishing a relationship with the subject. If it’s a person in front of the lens, it’s all about connecting with them—the gear is secondary. Creating a genuine intent to be with them in the moment makes photos great. That’s my favorite part of taking photos in my opinion.
Which photographers influence your work?
What has been your favorite place to shoot around Hood Canal?
I loved Rocky Brook Falls—such a gorgeous and easily accessible spot. I think the sea kayaking in the canal was pretty amazing as well.
What is it you want to say with your photographs?
I want to inspire people to explore the world, no matter where they are. It seems that as people get involved in nature they also explore deeper into the better side of who they themselves are too. To me, our collective disassociation from nature is the root of a lot of our troubles as a society. Reconnecting to it brings so many positive things.
You shoot a lot of drone footage. Why do you focus on this type of shooting? Any predictions for 2016 on drone photography.
I love the angles that drones allow for video. It also allows me to change up the thought process from shooting stills to video. It’s nice to switch things up.
The future for drones? Drone registration will indeed be happening. I suspect there will be further development of licensing as well. Currently it is too easy to get a drone and start flying it without any supervision. That really makes it dangerous for bystanders. One day they will be as common as GoPros with a limited range from the user but very intelligent so as to avoid objects.
What’s your favorite image you’ve made around Hood Canal?
Well, it’s not my photo, but it’s me curled up in the fetal position jumping out of a plane. At the end of our trip we went tandem skydiving—such an amazing experience—and a wonderful way to cap off a fantastic visit to Hood Canal. I definitely encourage everyone to try it.