Cameron Gardner is not only a photographer but an adventurer, lover of the wild, always looking for unique stories and new perspectives to share with the world. When he’s not taking photographs, you can follow him to the mountains, to experience the freedom he finds walking in the air, but even then he finds the way to create a collection of snaps like this one. Trying to capture authentic moments, the result is a series that intrigue you, full of the most deep and colorful landscapes, with these vivid portraits of people on the razor's edge to make you feel more alive.
What is freedom for you and why do you want to express it in your photography?
Freedom is being able to express yourself in anyway that brings a smile to your face, with the support of some good friends. It can also be an action, like climbing up the side of the mountain or stepping off the side of a cliff. I aim to capture moments like this because they stir something inside me and hopefully others. I’m always hopeful that my photographs will inspire others to get after whatever gives them a similar feeling of freedom.
We can totally get amazed by these images, but try to explain to the viewers with your words the feeling of being up there walking on the rope.
It really is a tough thing to put into words but I will try my best to describe it. For me personally, it’s a feeling like any other I’ve ever felt. It truly is a feeling of freedom. In the moments that you are walking, all you are focusing on is the next step or at least trying to. Your senses become heightened in every way possible. Your mind can rush with tons of thoughts that can be totally distracting. Slow breathing, one step after the other is always the goal. It’s also a balance of controlling ones fear and not let it fully take over. If I could explain what it feels like to walk on air, that would be it.
Which is your dream getaway as a photographer?
I’ve got a lot of dreams as a photographer, a lengthy bicycle or motorcycle trip in a foreign land would definitely be high on the list for sure.
How did you start in photography and why? Why do you feel more attracted by nature?
I fell into photography over time. It started when I was young playing with disposable 35mm cameras and has been evolving ever since. I feel attracted to nature because it feels natural and I really enjoy documenting my time spent in the natural world. There are tons of stories to share everywhere and nature has a pretty good way of presenting them.
What kind of gear did you carry with you in these trips and how is your workflow?
I photograph with Nikon cameras and lenses. I work mainly in Lightroom but occasionally in Photoshop if it’s needed. As far as my workflow I like to keep things pretty simple. I’m not a huge fan of sitting in front of a screen for hours. The images are definitely more inspiring once they are processed and shared with others on the web or in print.
From your work, which is your favorite picture and which is the story behind it?
From the series my favorite photo is of my friend Kristen on the side of a cliff about to give a high five. I had just met her and Matt that day, we had lunch outside of Los Angeles and I asked if they’d like to join me to come rock climbing afterwards. It was Kristen’s first time climbing, and she did it in a dress and kicked ass! It’s moments like these where I can see that sense of freedom and stoke in others that I love capturing.
What have you learned, as a photographer, with your trips? Any tip?
One thing I’ve learned is to always try and pack as light as possible. Always take the essentials, make sure you are comfortable and safe. You don’t want to have a bunch of unnecessary stuff weighing you down and in turn miss moments or opportunities.