Winner of American Wetlands Month Photo Contest for the last two year…
Karl Konecny had winning photographs in our 2016 and 2017 American Wetland Month photo contests. In 2016, his photo of a red-legged frog perched on a mossy rock captured our attention with its vibrant contrasting colors. In 2017, it was a black and white photo of reeds built up on the surface of a wetland. The picture was taken while walking with a friend, Konecny reflects, it was “just dusk and we came upon the wetland, I didn’t have a tripod so I braced against a tree and there it was.” Perfection.
Karl has been taking photos for 40 years. Most days he walks with his dog, a lightweight camera, tripod and a few lenses on his 34 acres on the North Umpqua River. Photography has made him notice the little things; patterns in rocks, a wave in the river. What always catches his attention, he says, is water; he loves the river and the adjacent wetlands.
20 years ago, when Konecny bought his home, there was a coy pond in the front yard and a historic freshwater wetland that had been drained by the original homesteaders for an ill-considered orchard. Konecny, removed the pond filters and has been slowly filling the drain lines on the former orchard. By keeping the bull frogs away, the coy pond, has become a red-legged frog haven, bursting with egg-masses, tadpoles and baby frogs throughout the summer. Wildlife has flocked to the larger wetland as well; surrounded by forest, elk, bobcat, deer and many species of birds are seen throughout the year.
Finding ways to capture nature during his walks has made Konecny an expert in lightweight, unobtrusive equipment, “I want to feel like I can always take a picture. Taking photos allows you to focus…I am always asking, what is the picture? What is it going to say?”
We can’t wait to see what Karl will send us this year. We are sure it will transport us to a wetland, somewhere on the North Umpqua.
More Images from Karl Konecny