A few moons ago I found myself working on a fascinating project in Panama documenting Fritz Hanselmann and his team of underwater archaeologists excavating a 17th century shipwreck. We were looking for ships belonging to the legendary English pirate Captain Henry Morgan. Morgan was on his way to sack Panama City when a storm sank five of his ships at the mouth of the Chagres River – these were the ships we were searching for – but Panama had other plans for the team. Instead of finding Morgan’s ships, we discovered a merchant ship laden with swords, bolts of cloth and other goods.
I was on the project for nearly 30 days – and out of the 30 days – had exactly two where the water was clear enough to shoot. The shipwreck was located very close to the mouth of the Chagres river, and every time it rained, the visibility underwater went to just about zero. Photographically, the project was a great exercise in patience and persistence – gearing up day after day, to be greeted with water that I couldn’t see the end of my arm in.
The great team of researchers made the days fly by, and in the end the currents worked out in my favor for just enough time to capture what needed to be captured.
Read the full story on National Geographic News – Rare Spanish Shipwreck From 17th Century Uncovered Off Panama – Photos by Jonathan Kingston.
Stoked to announce one of my images was recently featured on the Nat Geo Creative blog in the post titled A Wave of Emotion. I did not see this perfect heart shape in my camera while taking the image on the island of Molokai, Hawaii – but sure was glad I was pressing the shutter release when this happened!
A place very close to my heart – it makes up less than .1% of US land but has over 25% of the plants and animals found on the nation’s endangered species list. Please join me in helping the Molokai Land Trust save the last of wild Hawaii. I am giving away signed 12×18 prints to the first 10 people who donate $125.
UPDATE: THE CAMPAIGN WAS A TOTAL SUCCESS! HERE IS THE ORIGINAL INDIEGOGO CAMPAIGN PAGE
When I was living in India, I managed to spend some time in the Andaman Nicobar Islands where I captured the above image of a young man free diving in the ocean. I would have never guessed that this image would find its way onto the cover of Jake Stephens debut album “How The Water Feels” – but am super stoked that it did! I met Jake many moons ago at Virginia Tech where we spent every free second rock climbing. Jake went on to ride as a nationally ranked cyclist (inspiring one of the songs on his album The Ride to Key West) and work as a solar company executive. Over a year ago Jake made an abrupt break from the rat race to pursue this creative endeavor. The album drops on November 15th. Pick it up on iTunes HERE!
One of the questions I am most often asked about Lightroom is how to combine two Lightroom catalogs into one. This need arises for me every time I return from an assignment – as I keep a traveling catalog on my laptop and a master catalog on my desktop. When I return home, I combine the traveling catalog into the master catalog using the following technique…
The dance begins again. Packing, unpacking, weighing my bags and double checking my equipment list. I am heading north to Alaska with National Geographic/Lindblad Expeditions for the next three weeks. Most important item besides my cameras? My Xtratuf Boots. Follow my adventure on Instagram @JonathanKingston
When I began shooting video more regularly, it did not take me long to figure out that in order to get smooth shots I needed a fluid head for my tripod and a shoulder mount for ‘run ‘n’ gun’ situations. The fluid head I am currently using is the Manfrotto 502 (HERE) and my shoulder mount of choice is the Zacuto Marauder (HERE). Two things that slow me down when switching from video to stills (or vice versa) are changing the tripod heads (which I found a solution for HERE) and re-mounting the camera to the various base plates for every system. For still photography, I have been using Arca style base plates for over a decade, and figured there must be a way to adapt the Zacuto and Manfrotto camera mounts to the Arca-style plate on my camera.
There is… Continue reading Use Zacuto, Manfrotto and Arca-style heads without changing your camera’s base plate