Next up on the Flylords Photographer Spotlight series is Abe Blair. Residing in South Lake Tahoe, California, Abe’s best know for his landscape style photography and “get it right in camera” photos. Where many might think post-editing may take place it rarely does with Abe’s work. Abe is an accomplished fly fishing and raft guide and resident artist at The Eadington Gallery in Tahoe City and South Lake. Check out the full interview below to learn more about Abe and his work.
Abe: I have been a professional photographer since 2000. I received my first film camera in 1994 and quickly began to take it snowboarding and fly fishing with me. After high school, I dove into the ski and snowboard industry as a photographer. In the summer I worked as a whitewater and fly fishing guide in the small town of Maupin, Oregon on the Deschutes River. I did this for about 12-15 years. Meeting my wife during the latter part of that career we moved to the Lake Tahoe area and I started to pursue fine art landscape photography.
Abe: I have been into photography for almost 30 years and paying the bills through photography for about 20 years.
Abe: My landscape photography style is known as in-camera creations that often look like they spent a lot of time in Photoshop, though I do not use it. “Get it right in camera” is my Mantra.
Abe: Currently, I shoot with a Nikon D850. For landscape work I usually use my 18mm Zeiss lens, and when on assignment for fly fishing my 24-120mm lens is always mounted to a camera.
Abe: My favorite place to photograph other than my beautiful backyard of Tahoe is in Alaska.
Abe: The first image I had published was in Transworld Skateboarding back in 1995. Since then I’ve had hundreds of pages printed around the world in ski, snowboard, skateboard, fly fishing and landscape photography magazines.
Abe: This photo of the Space Needle in Seattle, WA circa 1999 is probably my most personal favorite because I think it showed the future of my landscape photography style before I even knew that it would become what I was known for.
Abe: Without a doubt, Jeff Mitchum has been my largest influence and mentor in landscape photography, and growing up as a fly fisherman in Oregon Brian O’Keefe was the photographer who influenced and helped me get started in the fly fishing industry.
Abe: The best advice I can give someone about outdoor photography is to always put 110% into everything you do. Have a perfuse amount of patience and put any ego aside. It’s not a very glorious profession like some think but the rewards of travel and meeting super cool people really are amazing!
Abe: The advent of low light photography I feel is our generation’s “color film” it was changed the times of day or night that we can photograph. When capturing the Milky Way the exposure is the easy part ISO 6400 f2.8 for 20-30 seconds. The tricky part is knowing where it is in the sky.
Abe: My favorite place to fly fish is Alaska and the second is anywhere on a warm salt flat.
Abe: When I was a guide in Oregon I reached out to Brian O’Keefe about submitting to his new magazine Catch. 10 years later I am a staff photographer for Catch and have traveled the world for them and a few booking agencies. I have been very blessed and lucky to be able to make a living with a fly rod in one hand and a camera in the other.
Abe: Last year I checked off both Jurassic Lake and hiking and photographing the Fitz Roy mountains in Argentina/Chile. Next on the list would be spending some time chasing anything with fin and fur in Africa.