| Exploring’s greatest excitement is discovering the unknown. During the 1980s Robin Ingraham Jr. ascended more than one hundred peaks with best friend Mark Hoffman. He quit climbing and turned his attention to mountain photography following Hoffman’s untimely climbing accident and death in 1988. Ingraham still crosses rough trailless terrain and high passes with back packs often exceeding seventy pounds in search of seldom visited wilderness areas. In 1994 he sold all of his climbing equipment, and began purchasing large format camera equipment (4x5) which he now uses exclusively.
As a Christian, Robin has come to see an inextricable link between spirituality and photography. In the quiet of a mountain meadow or forest, it’s easy to see both the wealth of God’s gifts, and see how fleeting life’s moments become. One of life’s great privileges is to be able to capture moments of His artistry on film and to then be able to share it with others. In thinking about the numerous times being led to behold beauty of God’s creation, Robin believes it is important to listen to that inner voice guiding us. This is the essence of exploring and experiencing life, God, and the need to express ourselves which the Father bestowed on us. There is certainly a given degree of perception, and interpretation to render scenes with creativity, but God is the artist. We are merely observers led to see, or pass by His wonders. We must look to see, and seek to find those things which are important. All too often we can be presented with a unique moment, but not see it. It is important to be open to the possibilities to see God’s artistry within creation, and in our lives.
Whether exploring with a rope or a camera, Robin believes it is essential to see continuity and relationships between subjects and lines. Beyond the physically demanding challenges, both photography and mountaineering seek the same outcome; the great view. A great composition only breathes with life when bathed in beautiful light. When will it happen; in shade, at sunset, sunrise, or soft filtered light? It requires anticipation and a bit of imagination to see what is not yet there. Seeing the interplay of light on a great view is as inspiring as seeing the world like a child for the first time. A great photograph frames unique elements of lines, shapes, colors, and light, but it is important to recognize that we are merely spectators, and Who actually created the wonders. It is truly a gift to be able to see those incredible moments and to preserve them.
Robin has written feature articles for Climbing, Rock & Ice, the American Alpine Journal, Outdoor Photographer and has had photographs published by the Sierra Club, Country Magazine, Nature Photographer, BrownTrout Publishers (calendars & past cards), Yosemite Concessions Yosemite National Park Calendars, Chockstone Press books, and Sierra Press books Other works include the National Park Service usage of his photography as a seven by nine foot mural in the Yosemite Wilderness Visitor Center in Yosemite Valley, and has organized numerous fine art photography shows. Robin currently works as a graphic designer while pursuing a career in fine art photography.