photography, portraits, travel

N O M A D // no 5

We have more options than we think to live the life we desire!”

Starr (@appreciateandlove) oozes joy. That is the first thing Ellen and I noticed when we met up with her in Telluride, CO just days before she was to embark on her maiden voyage in “Rodger”, her newly acquired 160 sq ft 2008 Coachman Freelander.

She has now been on the road a little over two weeks with her 4 cats, Essence (the senior, the Queen), Jacob William, Princess Mia, and Petunia (“Tootie”).

“I embarked on my maiden journey for this off-season and to see how it goes! I have stationary home in Florida for the winter seasons if I so choose, an option for a home base. Keeping Roamin’ Rodger on site, docked for edits and organization for future galavants!  I have a couple of ideas for cat-related structures I would like to install. And to paint everything pink is another goal. Currently feeling out how the cats are doing / what’s fiscally reasonable moving forward. Planning on traveling around Florida in Rodger on my off days to visit loved ones and see things I’ve never seen before!”

I love the wild enlivened freedom of being able to take your home with you wherever you want. To have everything you need right with you, like the biggest backpack ever! To see my loved ones in their space, while I am in mine. Conveniently providing a balance of independence and freedom, with the comforts and sentiment of home. To root down when I feel like it, or to boldly adventure into the sunset at the drop of a hat (and a releasing of the emergency brake!)”

Starr lost her mom recently, so she has decorated her new mobile home with a few mementoes that keep her memory ever-present.
“My sweet and sassy mom loved quilts and this blue quilt was one she frequently used. Using it feels like a hug from her. And I’m trying really, really hard to keep her plant alive! I love having life in my home, a breath of fresh air and a sentimental connection. Also got the plant pot at a thrift store, another beloved pastime we shared. I love my mom!”

  

When asked if she’ll miss anything about the “stationary” life, she responded, “Yes, the sturdy ground beneath me to be just as careless and quickly moving as I want to be, dancing around without shaking a whole vehicle, etc! Also ease of access to facilities like laundry, recycling, a large sink. The general feeling of longevity of a stationary home strikes me as something I’ll miss. Seems to be a safety in being sturdier or rooted down. The space inside. I bump my head a lot!”

So then… why a nomad?
“I want to balance my desire to be near the ones that I love with the desire for freedom and to discover new places. Having my sweet cat fam with me makes anywhere I am seem like home, and when I can be nearby my loved ones but still have my own independent space it increases my comfort and the longevity of these adventures.
I tend to work seasonally in the hospitality / food service industry, so being in my RV for the season in one place for a couple of months and then traveling in the interim is a fluid and workable setup!”

I am touched by the camaraderie I see in people living the nomadic lifestyle. I respect the courage of those who seek to follow their passions, even if not ‘conventional.’ I want to be open to the possibility of being able to do exactly what I want, while being fiscally responsible still. By letting my own light shine encourage others to shine as well! And I see that with the nomadic community. We have more options than we think to live the life we desire!”


Ellen and I hit the road full-time in June of 2016. We are on a mission to inspire and educate everyone on the importance of getting outside. Check out my workshops and my prints, made #ontheroad in my mobile print studio. The revenue will help propel us further on this great adventure. Enrich yourself and others… and feel great about it too as you’re helping to ensure our public lands are cherished and to keep the wild spirit of the American Dream alive. Our goal is to visit all 59 National Parks in 3-5 years. LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT WE’RE DOING HERE



Want to learn photography and enjoy a guided experience? Check out my exciting, NEW workshop dates:
 
BIG BEND// LANDSCAPE + THE ART OF SEEING
PHOTO 101 // LEARN TO SHOOT LIKE A PRO // SELECT CITIES // USA
EVERGLADES // WINTER // LANDSCAPES + WILDLIFE
 
I’m excited to announce my “The Photographic Guide to Our National Parks” series of eBooks:
 
Rocky Mountain National Park
Grand Teton National Park
 
If you are interested in purchasing a “print from the road”, please check my prints for sale, or email me directly for a custom request:
 
Andrew Slaton // prints from the road
 
If you are interested in licensing any of the images/ video from this post, please visit my stock agency:
 
Tandem Stills + Motion // Andrew R. Slaton
  
For assignment work requests, please email me: andrew@andrewslatonphoto.com
 
Thanks for visiting AndrewSlatonBlog.com!
 
All images and content © ARS Media, LLC 2018
 
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photography, portraits, travel, workshop

THE MAGIC OF BIG BEND

I feel very fortunate to have been to Big Bend National Park a lot. I really mean it. A whole lot.

I’ve been to Big Bend at least 2-3 times every year since 2001. I’ve experienced the park in every single month of the year.

But this past December blew me away.

I’ve heard of snow storms hitting the Chisos mountains ever so often, but never seen it myself. Well, December 2017 brought a unique situation to the otherwise temperate Chihuahuan Desert.

A gorgeous snow storm hit the desert and Chisos mountains, bringing a rarely seen blanket of white to Big Bend.

It didn’t stick around long… maybe a few days. But the magic of seeing such a rare sight was just incredible.

I can say, that in all the times I’ve visited, I’ve never regretted being there. Whether it was hot as hell, cold as the north country, stormy, windy, dry. Doesn’t matter. There’s a magic to this place that you cannot explain. You just have to experience it.

The light is just magic here. And that’s why it was one of the very first places that I started teaching workshops.

I love sharing special places with people. I want them to love it as much as I do. And to understand it. To become concerned with its health and well-being. To want to take care of it. To treat it with respect, like I do.

So, if you love photography, and special places, you should come out to Big Bend sometime.

Join me for a 4 day, 3 night epic adventure into the heart of Big Bend National Park to learn everything from scouting a new location, to processing your images, the “art of seeing”, and most everything outdoor photo related and in between. Fall in love with Big Bend.

There are only a few spots left, so register fast…

— Andrew


Ellen and I hit the road full-time in June of 2016. We are on a mission to inspire and educate everyone on the importance of getting outside. Check out my workshops and my prints, made #ontheroad in my mobile print studio. The revenue will help propel us further on this great adventure. Enrich yourself and others… and feel great about it too as you’re helping to ensure our public lands are cherished and to keep the wild spirit of the American Dream alive. Our goal is to visit all 59 National Parks in 3-5 years. LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT WE’RE DOING HERE



Want to learn photography and enjoy a guided experience? Check out my exciting, NEW workshop dates:
 
EVERGLADES // WINTER // LANDSCAPES + WILDLIFE
BIG BEND// LANDSCAPE + THE ART OF SEEING
 
I’m excited to announce my “The Photographic Guide to Our National Parks” series of eBooks:
 
Rocky Mountain National Park
Grand Teton National Park
 
If you are interested in purchasing a “print from the road”, please check my prints for sale, or email me directly for a custom request:
 
Andrew Slaton // prints from the road
 
If you are interested in licensing any of the images/ video from this post, please visit my stock agency:
 
Tandem Stills + Motion // Andrew R. Slaton
  
For assignment work requests, please email me: andrew@andrewslatonphoto.com
 
Thanks for visiting AndrewSlatonBlog.com!
 
All images and content © ARS Media, LLC 2018
 
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photography, portraits, travel

N O M A D // no 4

We enjoy living with less and the tendencies of living in a home are to fill it with stuff, but stuff doesn’t equal happiness; if anything, it can weigh you down.”

We met the Fabers (@followthefabers) this summer in Wyoming, by providence. Ellen and I were having a beer at the local brewpub when Morgan ran up for the local run club that meets at the pub… Marc followed. I mistook Morgan for a waitress (still not sure why?!), and we struck up conversation.

It’s really eerie how much we have in common. They’ve been loosely spending their summers in and around Pinedale, living out of their 1981 Trillium 1300. It’s a molded fiberglass camper with 65 sq. ft. of livable space, if you’re being generous. They hit the road full-time nearly three years ago, when they left their home in Grand Rapids, MI.

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“We do miss is our family and friends and a sense of community, but we don’t have an end {to full-time travel} in sight,” Morgan reflects.

They just purchased a home in Wyoming, but have no plans to stop traveling. “We’re just going to use it as a home base and it’s in one of our favorite places in the country. Plus, now our friends and family can come visit us and have a place to stay instead of the other way around :)  Also, we plan on traveling in different ways.  Once Marc retires, we plan on hiking – a lot!”

They have goals to thru-hike the CDT, AT, PCT and the Arizona Trails, specifically. “We think it’s great to live minimally, and there’s something exciting about carrying all you need to survive (and thrive!) on your back!”

Ellen and I couldn’t agree more…

“We feel that we’re pursuing a life that is really intended for all of us. We want to gather experiences, not things. We want to develop friendships that encompass people from all walks of life. We want to explore this beautiful and crazy world that the Lord has created and revel in the beauty of it,” they said.

We don’t feel that God intended us to live in one spot, in one neighborhood, in one group of the same people, shut up into a routine and sheltered from the rest of the world.  The world is an incredible place filled with incredible people, and until you actually step outside of your comfort zone and experience that, you’re not really living.”

“Unfortunately for most people, ourselves included, ‘living traditionally’ is and was ‘living safely’ and in our minds, after what we’ve seen and experienced, that’s no way to live.”

They travel everywhere with their mascot, “Monkey”, a sock monkey given to the Fabers by a friend on their maiden voyage with their trailer.

“Yeah, we know, super creative. Just like our camper’s name, Trilly. We’re naming geniuses.” Morgan laughs.

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In the short time we’ve spent with the Fabers, we got a glimpse into their laid back, fun personalities. They are deeply caring and open people. They pour into others and the little communities they come across.

This sounds cliche, but traveling has restored our faith in humanity. People are inherently good and kind and that is not what is portrayed in our current society. The media and news paint a picture of fear and hatred and division and when you live ‘traditionally’, you’re constantly bombarded with those images and that fear of others or the unknown can be crippling. We lived in a neighborhood for years and barely knew our neighbors. We’d go to the same church with the same people and the same friends and not really ever try to branch out. Traveling has changed all that.  We are constantly meeting new people and doing new things. Our ‘neighborhood’ changes constantly and we make it a point to meet our neighbors.  I’ve always said, campgrounds are a great equalizer.  You have people from all walks of life and backgrounds and economic statuses. Where else will you find people with half million dollar rigs and others living out of tents because they have to, and everything in between – all within the same ‘neighborhood’ gathered around a campfire together? You won’t. If it weren’t for traveling – for camping – a lot of these people would never cross paths, but now, we call all of those people friends. It’s beautiful. ❤”

— Andrew


Ellen and I hit the road full-time in June of 2016. We are on a mission to inspire and educate everyone on the importance of getting outside. Check out my workshops and my prints, made #ontheroad in my mobile print studio. The revenue will help propel us further on this great adventure. Enrich yourself and others… and feel great about it too as you’re helping to ensure our public lands are cherished and to keep the wild spirit of the American Dream alive. Our goal is to visit all 59 National Parks in 3-5 years. LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT WE’RE DOING HERE



Want to learn photography and enjoy a guided experience? Check out my exciting, NEW workshop dates:
 
EVERGLADES // WINTER // LANDSCAPES + WILDLIFE
BIG BEND// LANDSCAPE + THE ART OF SEEING
 
I’m excited to announce my “The Photographic Guide to Our National Parks” series of eBooks:
 
Rocky Mountain National Park
Grand Teton National Park
 
If you are interested in purchasing a “print from the road”, please check my prints for sale, or email me directly for a custom request:
 
Andrew Slaton // prints from the road

 
If you are interested in licensing any of the images/ video from this post, please visit my stock agency:
 
Tandem Stills + Motion // Andrew R. Slaton
  
For assignment work requests, please email me: andrew@andrewslatonphoto.com
 
Thanks for visiting AndrewSlatonBlog.com!
 
All images and content © ARS Media, LLC 2018

 

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photography, portraits, travel

N O M A D // no 3

There are so many places to see! I get so excited when I’m on the road! It gives me life!”

We met Josephine (@josie.may17) out at Croton Spring in @bigbendnps. She was our camp neighbor. We hit it off immediately because her sweet rescue dog Shasta took to our crazy girls right away, and vice versa. She’s from Minnesota, and she was doing the snow bird thing this winter… she didn’t expect to get snow and freezing temps in Texas, but that’s Texas for you.

She had been traveling solo cross country for a little over three months in a 17’ travel trailer. All in all about 80 sq ft of livable space.

Josephine with Shasta and their home in Big Bend. 

Her journey is about freedom and seeing the beautiful world around her. “Well I️ told myself I️ had a year when I️ left and budgeted for that but the more I’m doing this I️ don’t know how I️ can go back! This is the life!”

She sews patches on to her favorite jacket to remember all of the places she’s seen.

“There are so many places to see! I get so excited when I’m on the road! It gives me life! I️ also learn so much about myself! And I’m falling more in love with who I️ am everyday!”


Ellen and I hit the road full-time in June of 2016. We are on a mission to inspire and educate everyone on the importance of getting outside. Check out my workshops and my prints, made #ontheroad in my mobile print studio. The revenue will help propel us further on this great adventure. Enrich yourself and others… and feel great about it too as you’re helping to ensure our public lands are cherished and to keep the wild spirit of the American Dream alive. Our goal is to visit all 59 National Parks in 3-5 years. LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT WE’RE DOING HERE



Want to learn photography and enjoy a guided experience? Check out my exciting, NEW workshop dates:
 
LEARN PHOTO + CAMERA BASICS // USA // 2018 – SEE IF I’M COMING TO YOUR CITY
GRAND TETON // SUMMER // LANDSCAPES + WILDLIFE
REMOTE WYOMING // ADVENTURE + LANDSCAPE
TELLURIDE // FALL COLORS + LANDSCAPE
 
I’m excited to announce my “The Photographic Guide to Our National Parks” series of eBooks:
 
Rocky Mountain National Park
Grand Teton National Park
 
If you are interested in purchasing a “print from the road”, please check my prints for sale, or email me directly for a custom request:
 
Andrew R. Slaton // prints from the road
 
If you are interested in licensing any of the images/ video from this post, please visit my stock agency:
 
Tandem Stills + Motion // Andrew R. Slaton
  
For assignment work requests, please email me: andrew@andrewslatonphoto.com
 
Thanks for visiting AndrewSlatonBlog.com!
 
All images and content © ARS Media, LLC 2018
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photography, portraits, travel

N O M A D // no 2

I am pursuing a greater version of myself.”

A few months back, we met up with a friend we made in the Tetons this summer for the eclipse, Heather Grow (@grow_explore). Back in September/October, we had the pleasure of rendezvousing with her in Telluride, and again in November in White Sands, NM.

Heather Grow, 28, like NOMAD 1 is originally from Virginia, and she’s been on the road full time for 4 months. She lives out of a ’03 Ford F-350 conversion van in around 72 sq ft. She built out the inside on her own.

Heather loving on her travel companions, Tripp and Sadie, inside her cozy home.

A defining moment of her life was her mother’s untimely passing when Heather was only 13. “I wear my mothers high school ring every single day. It helps me appreciate life and all that I’m able to do. Everyday out on the road makes me feel like I’m living for her, going places she never got the chance to. Her absence of life keeps me grounded and connected to each moment,” she told me. “I am pursuing a greater version of myself. Sure, I’m trying to find avenues to propel my passion of photography and i want to have work that can give me even more financial freedom.

But all of that is nothing in comparison to my drive to work each day to become a better woman. With each passing day on the road i find more clarity, my mind declutters, and I’m able to focus on things that have true substance and meaning. Slowly I’m stripping away old bad habits and ways of thinking, I’m living in the moment, and avoid dwelling on past mistakes or the future’s unknowns.”

“My mental, emotional, and physical freedom is the greatest and most beneficial pursuit I’ve ever had the privilege of taking on.”

Her mother’s high school ring is an ever present reminder for Heather that “life is for the living.”

“The only constant in life is change. I don’t know what next week, month, or year will bring. What I do know is I love traveling, the lifestyle that I’m settling in to, and I’m going to do it as long as it feels like the best path for life.”


Ellen and I hit the road full-time in June of 2016. We are on a mission to inspire and educate everyone on the importance of getting outside. Check out my workshops and my prints, made #ontheroad in my mobile print studio. The revenue will help propel us further on this great adventure. Enrich yourself and others… and feel great about it too as you’re helping to ensure our public lands are cherished and to keep the wild spirit of the American Dream alive. Our goal is to visit all 59 National Parks in 3-5 years. LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT WE’RE DOING HERE



Want to learn photography and enjoy a guided experience? Check out my exciting, NEW workshop dates:
 
LEARN PHOTO + CAMERA BASICS // USA // 2018 – SEE IF I’M COMING TO YOUR CITY
GRAND TETON // SUMMER // LANDSCAPES + WILDLIFE
REMOTE WYOMING // ADVENTURE + LANDSCAPE
TELLURIDE // FALL COLORS + LANDSCAPE
 
I’m excited to announce my “The Photographic Guide to Our National Parks” series of eBooks:
 
Rocky Mountain National Park
Grand Teton National Park
 
If you are interested in purchasing a “print from the road”, please check my prints for sale, or email me directly for a custom request:
 
Andrew R. Slaton // prints from the road
 
If you are interested in licensing any of the images/ video from this post, please visit my stock agency:
 
Tandem Stills + Motion // Andrew R. Slaton
  
For assignment work requests, please email me: andrew@andrewslatonphoto.com
 
Thanks for visiting AndrewSlatonBlog.com!
 
All images and content © ARS Media, LLC 2018
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photography, portraits, travel

N O M A D // no 1

I’ve started a new portrait series/ photo essay focused on sharing the faces and stories of our fellow nomads. They are tiny vignettes of big characters that we meet along the way. The idea is to show a wide array of people, and each of their varied reasons for choosing this unique way of life.

So let’s kick it off with my first subject…

Meet Steven Donovan (@es_dons). We met up at the Courthouse Butte Loop trailhead near Sedona, AZ to have a beer and hang for a bit. Originally from Virginia, he’s been all over and worked for a stint in Glacier National Park. He’s 24 and what you might call a “connector”. Great at creating a community of like-minded wanderers and adventurers wherever he goes. And he’s a fantastic photographer to round it all off. He lives out of a ’96 2 wheel drive Tacoma truck in less than 30 sq ft.

Steven muses about the freedom of his new lifestyle, and the pursuit of his passions.

One of his few possessions, climbing ropes. He meets up with new and old friends to climb, cliff jump, base jump… really whatever gets the adrenaline pumping.

“I’m pursuing my art and having it be shaped by the adventurous and raw lifestyle I’ve been living but ultimately I’m pursuing life. Being the youngest in a family of 9 all of whom are married with kids leaves me as the oddball with how I chose to live my life. They all like to tell me some of the choices I make are risky but I think the choices they’ve made are even riskier. Having kids, school debt, a career and responsibilities isn’t freedom at all and that to me seems to be the scariest risk of all. You’re risking your entire life.”


Ellen and I hit the road full-time in June of 2016. We are on a mission to inspire and educate everyone on the importance of getting outside. Check out my workshops and my prints, made #ontheroad in my mobile print studio. The revenue will help propel us further on this great adventure. Enrich yourself and others… and feel great about it too as you’re helping to ensure our public lands are cherished and to keep the wild spirit of the American Dream alive. Our goal is to visit all 59 National Parks in 3-5 years. LEARN MORE ABOUT WHAT WE’RE DOING HERE



Want to learn photography and enjoy a guided experience? Check out my exciting, NEW workshop dates:
 
LEARN PHOTO + CAMERA BASICS // USA // 2018 – SEE IF I’M COMING TO YOUR CITY
GRAND TETON // SUMMER // LANDSCAPES + WILDLIFE
REMOTE WYOMING // ADVENTURE + LANDSCAPE
TELLURIDE // FALL COLORS + LANDSCAPE
 
I’m excited to announce my “The Photographic Guide to Our National Parks” series of eBooks:
 
Rocky Mountain National Park
Grand Teton National Park
 
If you are interested in purchasing a “print from the road”, please check my prints for sale, or email me directly for a custom request:
 
Andrew R. Slaton // prints from the road
 
If you are interested in licensing any of the images/ video from this post, please visit my stock agency:
 
Tandem Stills + Motion // Andrew R. Slaton
  
For assignment work requests, please email me: andrew@andrewslatonphoto.com
 
Thanks for visiting AndrewSlatonBlog.com!
 
All images and content © ARS Media, LLC 2018
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photography, portraits

Shameless Wife Promotion

Let me take a moment to brag on my better half…

Being the wife of a photographer, Elle has the “privilege” (these are air quotes and denote sarcasm) of being my model when doing test shoots.  But she also gets free commercial photography when she decides to start a business of her own :)

So when she created Ellen Slaton Yoga last year, I knew we were going to have fun, impromptu shoots together.

I’m so proud of her dedication, hard work, and love for yoga and building her business.

And her talent for writing, and the down-to-earth, personal style is really shining through with her blog, Highway Sounds.

So I just wanted to share a few portraits from our short shoot the other day…

ARS_ESY_20140926_9196FF

ARS_ESY_20140926_9237F

It should be no surprise to me, her husband.  But I have to say, that she keeps impressing me more and more every day.

— andrew


 
Come learn light with me… check out my new workshop dates:
 
Grand Teton Photographic Tour/ Workshops 2014
More Destination Photo Tours/ Workshops 2014
 
If you are interested in licensing any of the images/ video from this post, please visit my stock agency:
 
Tandem Stills + Motion // andrew r. slaton
 
If you are interested in purchasing prints from this post, please check my prints for sale, or email me directly for a custom request:
 
andrew r. slaton // photographer // prints
 
For assignment work requests, please email me: andrew@andrewslatonphoto.com
 
Thanks for visiting AndrewSlatonBlog.com!
 
all images and content © ARS Media, LLC 2014

 

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