There are times when you make a photograph simply because it touches something inside of you. While walking on Duxbury Reef in Bolinas, CA many years ago, this young mother and child were exploring the exposed tidepools on the reef. They would walk a short distance, bend down, poke around in the kelp and pools, find something, look at it and put it back. I realized it would make a good story-telling image. I wasn’t crazy about the foggy/overcast sky, but it made for good light photographing people in close like this. It was their connection with nature that I liked. I moved around a bit trying to get the best angle of view and waited for a gesture or moment to happen. They were oblivious to me, so lost in wonder at what they were seeing and finding in the pools. That gave me the freedom to photograph the most candid way.
A few years later, I showed this image to the Nature Conservancy in D.C., and they loved the image and asked if they could use if for a legacy campaign to attract funding in the organization. I didn’t hesitate to say “yes”; I knew they didn’t have a big budget, but money wasn’t driving me in this moment. I could donate my image much like I would donate money to help make a difference. The ad was used in a variety of national magazines and postcards they sent out. I would smile when I’d see it here and there, glad that it worked so well for them, and hopeful that it made enough impact to attract people to consider the legacy investing.