Written & Photographed by Aaron Frank, Northwest Photographer
Spring was in the air, the Milky Way season had started and our search for stars after the grey season was at an all time high. It was a 70 degree day so we loaded up the car and were flowing with excitement for our starry adventure. We arrived to an empty parking lot, loaded up our camera gear and got on our sun filled trail with stars on the brain.
After fourteen miles of traversing hills, chasing sunsets and star gazing with amazing friends the darkness fully set in. This is when our hike truly began. I had never been on this side of Mount St. Helens before so we took full advantage of the scenery. Scoping out various locations for astrophotography and Milky Way angles we happened to stumble upon a location I fell in love with. I took out my phone and searched for the moon rise location knowing I had struck my form of gold.
The anxiousness of pushing a button, have life stop for 30 seconds and get goosebumps as the display lights up was endless. I had found the spot I have been searching years for and wanted to practice my new love of time lapses out. I popped a new battery in, set up my tripod up, set my camera to endless photos and watched the night pass us by.
Nature keeps me in a state of happiness and gives me an appreciation of how blessed I am to experience it. It has inspired my work by allowing me to show how powerful a sunset, purifying a waterfall and raw a Milky Way filled night can feel. At the end of the day my true passion is to inspire others to start an adventure and fall in love with nature like myself.
Home grown in beautiful Washington State. Aaron Frank is an aspiring landscape and astrophotographer with nonstop adventure in his blood. Follow along his Instagram: @PNW_WAnderer_
At Park Lake, the waves were no longer moving water — they were but stands of a hair on a bow, moving across the reeds, like the strings of a violin.
Photographer Cory Zanker revisits a favorite hiking destination, only to find the view obscured by smoke from Western wildfires. He made the most of the situation and found the silver lining.
For Jerad Armijo, photography is soothing, surreal and a fantastic way for him to cope with depression while creating beauty for others to enjoy.
For this photographer of the month, photography is a way to more fully experience life. He doesn’t think of it as hiding behind a lens, removed from life.
We have all been there. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and not recognize the crucial need for fresh air. A minimal escape can reset your mentality in a crucial way.
Not only does Matt MacPherson find the light of sunsets and sunrises beautiful and exciting, but he likes spending the time in between doing grueling day hikes without having to get his camera gear out.
During backcountry trips, Alex Spaeth is inspired by landscapes both big and small that make him pause and think how fortunate he is to be there to appreciate fleeting, yet lasting, moments.
Photography provides this photographer a means to capture and absorb some of the beautiful places he has been lucky enough to explore and share those experiences with others.
Photography has pushed Riley Rhodes out of his comfort zone and has helped him with social anxiety. What matter is that I’m happy with the art that I am creating.
January's photo of the month is like something out of a storybook: A giant waterfall flows off of a cliff and into the sea during an epic sunset.