Travel Photographer Susan Seubert in the Antarctic

Travel Photographer Susan Seubert in the Antarctic

Skog Bay, Antarctica

The bridge in the early morning hours as we head towards the Antarctic Circle

I recently returned from an epic journey with National Geographic Expeditions where we traveled to the Antarctic Peninsula, the island of South Georgia and the Falkland Islands.  The seas were calm for most of the voyage, making for an excellent experience exploring this remote area of the Earth. As the on-board National Geographic Photography Expert, I have the privilege of leading the photography component of this departure. I lecture on the ships about photography and help people improve their technical and storytelling skills so that they return home with a great collection of images.  Below is a selection of some of my favorite moments from this fantastic adventure.

Please enjoy the pictures and thank you for visiting!

Watching Type A Killer Whales in the Southern Ocean from the National Geographic Explorer, a ship in the Southern Ocean, Antarctica

Watching Type A Killer Whales in the Southern Ocean from the National Geographic Explorer, a ship in the Southern Ocean, Antarctica

Skog Bay, Antarctica

A Crabeater Seal hauled out on the ice in Skog Bay, Antarctica

Skog Bay, Antarctica

A beautiful iceberg in Skog Cove, Antarctica

Skog Bay, Antarctica

A Skua flies through an opening in a large iceberg in Skog Cove, Antarctica

Skog Bay, Antarctica

Sailing through fast ice, Antarctica

Skog Bay, Antarctica

Adventures on the Fast Ice, Antarctica

Booth Island, Antarctica

Sunrise on our way to Booth Island, Antarctica

Booth Island, Antarctica

A Gentoo penguin colony on Booth Island, Antarctica

Port Lockroy, Antarctica

Port Lockroy, Antarctica

Cierva Cove, Antarctica

Two porpoising Gentoo penguins and a humpback whale feeding in Cierva Cove, Antarctica. This is a once in a lifetime image!!

Danco Island, Errera Channel, Antarctica

The remains of whaling at Danco Island, Errera Channel, Antarctica

Cierva Cove, Antarctica

Porpoising Gentoo penguins in Cierva Cove, Antarctica

Point Wild, Antarcica

Point Wild, Antarctica, where Ernest Shackleton’s men spent 137 days awaiting rescue.

Gold Harbour, South Georgia

We had a persistent rainbow at Gold Harbour as seen from our ship, South Georgia

Gold Harbour, South Georgia

A rainbow and King penguins on the beach at Gold Harbour, South Georgia

St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

Over 500,000 King penguins at St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

An illustration of the density of King penguins at St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

An Antarctic fur seal pup at St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

Molting Elephant seals at St. Andrews Bay, South Georgia

Hercules Bay, South Georgia

A Macaroni penguin shows off its crest at Hercules Bay, South Georgia

Hercules Bay, South Georgia

Dramatic light at Hercules Bay, South Georgia

Maiviken hike to Grytviken, South Georgia

Hiking a scree slope in the snow from Maiviken to Grytviken, South Georgia

Right Whale Bay, South Georgia

A large King penguin colony at Right Whale Bay, South Georgia

Right Whale Bay, South Georgia

Wind gusts up to 80 knots at Right Whale Bay, South Georgia

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The colorful houses in the morning light as we pull in to the harbor at Stanley, Falkland Islands

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The classic whale bone arch in Stanley, Falkland Islands

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The quaint town of Stanley, the capital city of the Falkland Islands

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A sheep herding demonstration at Long Island Farm outside of Stanley, Falkland Islands

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Long Island Farm outside of Stanley, Falkland Islands

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Wool from the farm at Long Island Farm outside of Stanley, Falkland Islands

Carcass Island, Falkland Islands

Carcass Island, Falkland Islands

Carcass Island, Falkland Islands

Magellanic penguins molting on Carcass Island, Falkland Islands

West Point Island, Falkland Islands

A Rockhopper penguin and Black-browed Albatross colony, West Point Island, Falkland Islands

West Point Island, Falkland Islands

Black-browed Albatross chick being fed, West Point Island, Falkland Islands

West Point Island, Falkland Islands

Black-browed Albatross chicks waiting to fledge, West Point Island, Falkland Islands

crew photo NGEX, Ushuaia, ARG

The amazing group of people that I work with on board the National Geographic Explorer on our last night after 3 weeks together exploring the Southern Ocean

Portland Oregon Travel Photographer Susan Seubert in South Georgia

It’s been a whirlwind of travel for the last few years.  Now, I’m officially bipolar, meaning that I have visited both extremes of the earth, both by virtue of traveling with National Geographic Expeditions.  The first trip was towards the North Pole in Svalbard, exploring the Norwegian archipelago by icebreaker.  Then, most recently, down to the Southern Ocean to the Antarctic Peninsula and the islands of South Georgia and the Falkland Islands.

South Georgia is one of the most incredible, and remote, places on the planet. During the turn of the last century, South Georgia was home to numerous natural resource extraction operations.  Animals were harvested to the point where a number of species, including whales, fur seals and penguins, were hunted to near extinction.  Since these operations were shut down during the 1960’s, a number of species have now recovered. Since South Georgia has a tiny human population, the animals are completely perplexed but not frightened by human presence.  For wildlife photography, it’s difficult to find a more interesting and beautiful place.

One of my images from South Georgia at a landing called Gold Harbour was used on one of the expedition program guide’s covers.  I’ll never forget this morning. We had gotten up before daybreak to catch the morning light and although we only had it for a few moments, we were able to capture a number of gorgeous images of the King penguins in the golden hour of dawn.

The Brochure Cover for National Geographic | Lindblad Expeditions South Georgia and the Falkland Islands

The Brochure Cover for National Geographic | Lindblad Expeditions South Georgia and the Falkland Islands

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Susan Seubert featured on National Geographic’s “What We Liked” Blog

What a great way to begin 2016!

National Geographic Creative maintains a blog of what pictures they like, and for January 1, 2016, they featured my photograph of a chinstrap penguin.  This image was made on Half Moon Island in Antarctica and the blissful bird appears to be dancing its way across the snow.

Chinstrap penguins on Half Moon Island, South Shetland Islands, Southern Ocean, Antarctica

Chinstrap penguins on Half Moon Island, South Shetland Islands, Southern Ocean, Antarctica

I love this image because the penguin is seemingly so happy, and joy is something that I strive to express in many of my photographs.

Thank you to the folks at National Geographic Creative for featuring one of my images!  You can see the full post here.

This image was made with a Canon 7D Mark II using a Canon EF 400mm f/4 DO IS II USM lens.

Aperture Priority f7.1, ISO 400, shutter speed 1/4000s.

Susan Seubert Photography in Antarctica

I just returned home from just over three weeks in Antarctica on board the National Geographic Explorer, an ice class expedition ship, where I served as the National Geographic Photography Expert.  It was an incredible experience that I will never forget.  Words cannot begin to express the vastness of the continent. Here is a link to a gallery of images from the two expeditions that I attended.  I hope you enjoy the images of the three brush-tailed penguin species, the Weddell seals, the incredible ice formations and the most elusive of creatures, the mighty Emperor Penguin.  More to come about this adventure in later posts.  Thank you and season’s greetings!

The National Geographic Explorer parked in Cierva Cove, Antarctica

The National Geographic Explorer parked in Cierva Cove, Antarctica

Gentoo penguins on Cuverville Island, Antarctica

Gentoo penguins on Cuverville Island, Antarctica

Iceburgs, Antarctica

Icebergs, Antarctica

Emperor Penguins on the Fast Ice, Weddell Sea, Antarctica

Emperor Penguins on the Fast Ice, Weddell Sea, Antarctica

Chinstrap penguins on Half Moon Island, South Shetland Islands, Southern Ocean, Antarctica

Chinstrap penguins on Half Moon Island, South Shetland Islands, Southern Ocean, Antarctica

Here is a time-lapse from Cuverville Island, where people and gentoo penguins go about their day.  Enjoy!

Susan Seubert Photography at Tanque Verde Ranch

I’m just back from two days in the saddle and on the ground photographing at the Tanque Verde Ranch in Tucson, Arizona with J Public Relations firm.

Tanque Verde is a beautiful cattle and guest ranch just outside the city of Tucson, situated on 60,000 acres of gorgeous desert landscape.  The property also is located adjacent to Saguaro National Park, home to its namesake cactus.

The property boasts all the amenities of a luxury hotel, however the authentic American West experience is what really drew me in. I’ve loved horses since I was a child and take every opportunity to pack my riding boots for a shoot.  The desert landscape is expressed beautifully at Tanque Verde.

The ranch offers walks with a naturalist guide who can identify the myriad native plants and animals that you’ll see either on foot or on horseback.

Certain nights they offer an outdoor bbq, complete with fire pits and margaritas – their signature prickly pear margarita is not to be missed!  You can get those at the Dog House saloon which is open daily.  If you want to take your holiday relaxation to the next level, check out their spa offerings.

I could have easily spent a week photographing at Tanque Verde, and I look forward to my next visit!

Giddyup!

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tuscon, AZ

Horses at Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tucson, AZ

A road runner, one of the birds native to the area.

A road runner, one of the birds native to the area.

 

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Joe Valdez, legendary cowboy, at the stables at Tanque Verde Ranch

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tuscon, AZ

The prickly pear margarita, the signature drink at Tanque Verde Ranch

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tuscon, AZ

The Tanque Verde Ranch Spa, for more relaxation

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tuscon, AZ

A young cowboy demonstrating roping

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tuscon, AZ

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tucson, AZ

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tuscon, AZ

An evening ride through the property of Tanque Verde Ranch

The Tanque Verde Ranch, a dude ranch located on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park in Tuscon, AZ

The outdoor bbq complete with fire pits and live music

Photographer Susan Seubert with National Geographic Expeditions in the Kimberley, Australia

The National Geographic Orion anchored at Prince Frederick Harbour, The Kimberley, Western Australia

The National Geographic Orion anchored at Prince Frederick Harbour, The Kimberley, Western Australia

I recently returned from a month spent in the Kimberley region of Western Australia working on board the National Geographic Orion as the photography representative for the National Geographic Society. This expedition is part of a larger program that National Geographic developed by partnering with Lindblad Expeditions to provide unique travel experiences for the adventuresome. I worked along side biologists, zoologists and geologists who illuminated the journey with their expertise. My contribution was pictures – documenting the trip every day and sharing these images with my fellow travelers. I also taught people how to make great pictures under sometimes challenging conditions.

The Kimberley is one of nine regions of Western Australia. It is in the northern part of the continent and is bordered by the Indian Ocean, the Timor Sea, and two Deserts: the Great Sandy and Tanami. The eastern border is Australia’s Northern Territory.

Because we were exploring by ship, most of our shore excursions involved landing by zodiac. This rugged area is sparsely populated, so there was rarely another soul in sight. The Kimberley embodies the true spirit of the Australian outback where one can observe saltwater crocodiles, dugongs, sharks and sea snakes in the wild. On land, furry animals are rare, but we were lucky enough to see a rock wallaby while exploring the Ord River. The Kimberley supports myriad species of birds, which made the trip that much more exciting.

A gray reef egret takes flight. Prince Fredrick Harbor, Mitchell River National Park, Kimberly Coast, Australia

A gray reef egret takes flight. Prince Fredrick Harbor, Mitchell River National Park, The Kimberley, Australia

At King George Falls, I was part of the expedition team leading a group hike up a 17-degree incline to the top of the falls. Because of the lack of rain during the wet season, there was no water at the top, but the view was worth the hot scramble up the rocky trail. Our group climbed without incident so we were able to have a good amount of time to explore the scrub-land that would be otherwise inaccessible during the wet season.

Me, at the top of twin falls. King George River, Kimberly Coast, Australia. Photo by Adam Cropp

Me, at the top of twin falls. King George River, The Kimberley, Australia. Photo by Adam Cropp

Below is a selection of images from my adventures on board the Orion in The Kimberley. I hope you enjoy them! You can see all of the images from the Kimberley adventure by clicking here.

Our technical stop at Timor Leste, where the local children sold textiles to us tourists on the pier.

Our technical stop at Timor Leste, where the local children sold textiles on the pier.

Vansittart Bay, Kimberley Coast, Australia

Hugging a Boab tree for good luck at Vansittart Bay, The Kimberley, Australia.  Photo by Cristiana Damiano

Man tasting ascorbic acid defensive spray from green weaver ants in the Kimberley, Vansittart Bay, Australia

Photographer and Naturalist David Cothran tasting ascorbic acid defensive spray from green weaver ants in the Kimberley, Vansittart Bay, Australia

B-24 Liberator plane crash site at Vansittart Bay, Kimberley Coast, Australia

C-53 plane crash site at Vansittart Bay, The Kimberley, Australia

Termite mounds, Vansittart Bay, Kimberley Coast, Australia

Termite mounds, Vansittart Bay, The Kimberley, Australia

A traditional owner explains the Wandjina Rock art at Ngumbri, Raft Point, Kimberly Coast, Australia

A traditional owner explains the Wandjina Rock art at Ngumbri, (Raft Point), The Kimberley, Australia

King George River, Kimberly Coast, Australia

The amazing sandstone formations at the King George River, The Kimberley, Australia

King George River, Kimberly Coast, Australia

Climbing up to the top of the waterfalls at King George River, The Kimberley, Australia

King George River, Kimberly Coast, Australia

King George River, The Kimberley, Australia

King George River, Kimberly Coast, Australia

A darter on the King George River, The Kimberley, Australia

Naturalist Anthony Capogreco checks underwater for jellies and crocodiles at Crocodile Creek, The Kimberley, Western Australia

Naturalist Anthony Capogreco checks underwater for jellies and crocodiles at Crocodile Creek, The Kimberley, Australia

Kimberly Coast, Australia, Mitchell River National Park

A venomous sea snake with a fish in its mouth swimming towards us at the mouth of the Hunter River, The Kimberley, Australia

King George River, Kimberly Coast, Australia

A basking saltwater crocodile, King George River, The Kimberley, Australia

Gwion Gwion, or Bradshaw Rock Art, dated to be perhaps 50,000 years old, at Jar Island, Kimberly Coast, Australia

Gwion Gwion, or Bradshaw Rock Art, estimated to be 50,000 years old, at Jar Island, The Kimberley, Australia

Sunset sail away from Slug Island

Sunset sail away from Slug Island, The Kimberley, Australia

Unless otherwise indicated, all of these images are copyright © Susan Seubert and may not be used in any form without express permission from Susan Seubert.  Thank you for respecting the images. 🙂

Susan Seubert Photographer: Learning by Observing

Four American Robin Chicks in their nest outside our kitchen window

Four American Robin Chicks in their nest outside our kitchen window

For the first time, I’ve had the pleasure and privilege to watch a robin build a nest, incubate eggs and have a successful hatch just outside of our kitchen window.  The American Robin is one of the most common birds found in urban settings and will often nest near, or on, homes throughout North America.  I’ve learned a lot about the behavior of Turdus migratorius by observing, and photographing, them almost daily since the babies hatched around the beginning of this month.

American Robin, nesting in a camellia bush in Portland, Oregon with 4 chicks

American Robin, nesting in a camellia bush in Portland, Oregon feeding her chicks blueberries

I read that the the incubation ranges from 12 to 14 days, which was spot on for this mother of 4.  Now we are eagerly waiting for the babies to fledge, as it appears that they are very crowded in their nest and their wing feathers look like they are well developed.

With so many chicks in one tiny nest, I wondered how the nest stays so clean.  It turns out that in addition to feeding the babies worms and berries, the robin also “changes the babies’ diapers” by removing the waste directly from the bottoms of the chicks.  This may not be the most appetizing topic, but I was amazed at how efficient the bird is at keeping house.  Below are some photos from the last week.  I built a “blind” in the kitchen in order to keep our peering eyes mostly hidden so as not to disturb the nestlings.  There was plenty of glare which the blind reduced, but it was still challenging photographing through dirty glass.  All of these pictures were made with the Canon 7D Mark II which has a beautiful sensor and a fabulous frame rate, which is what allowed me to capture such a fast and intimate moment.  The RAW files were processed using Adobe Lightroom.

The Kitchen Window Blind: Baby Robins in their nest in a Camellia bush

The Kitchen Window Blind: Robin chicks in their nest in a Camellia bush

It has been an illuminating experience to watch how quickly these cute little birds grow and I will certainly miss them when they leave the nest.

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

A mother American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of her chicks

An American Robin removing the excrement from the bottom of one of the chicks

 

Update on June 13, 2015

This morning, three out of the four nestlings fledged!  There is still one in the nest and it looks very ready to leave.  It’s preening and standing up to stretch its legs.  What a wonderful experience this has been.

Update on June 13, 2015

The last robin fledged this evening.  Sniff.

The last to fledge

The last to fledge