Conversation With William Neill – Landscape Photographer and Educator

I have been a fan of William Neill for as long as I can remember. I can remember seeing his work way back in the late eighties, and I was always interested because he did such stunning landscape photography. For many years, he also had a monthly column in Outdoor Photography magazine.

William Neill in Yosemite November 2019

Several years ago, I searched for well-known photographers to be part of the instructor team for an Antarctica workshop I was running. I chartered a whole ship on this workshop, the Ocean Nova, and then loaded it with 50 photographers and five instructors.

Jeff Schewe, William Neill and Kevin Raber
Jeff Schewe, William Neill and Kevin Raber

It was funny as I would have thought if a photographer got a call from someone offering them a free trip to Antarctica that they would jump through the phone with an enthusiastic YES. But not Bill. He questions whether this was the trip for him and whether it might be too much for him to do. After a bit of convincing and arm twisting, he said yes, and I am sure he has no regrets.  After he accepted the invitation for the trip I told him he couldn’t bring a tripod.  Listen to his response to that in the video below.

He even made an excellent book from it, Antarctica Dreams. You can view his portfolio from the trip HERE.

After the trip and during my tenure at Luminous-Landscape, I did the first Master Series with Bill. I spent five days with Bill in the field shooting different locations in Yosemite National Park and doing several interviews. During that time, we forged a real good friendship.

Last November, Jeff Schewe and I were traveling from Death Valley to Yosemite, and we met up with Bill there. He was kind enough to share some of the secret locations with us to get some great photos.

Some Of The Images In Light On The Landscape book
Some Of The Images In Light On The Landscape book

Bill’s latest book project is Light On The Landscape. This book carries a subtitle of Photographs and Lessons From A Life In Photography. It’s an exceptional collection of his life photographs with a story behind each one regarding the image’s thought.

A page spread
A page spread

Since most of us aren’t traveling, this is the perfect book for a great few evenings of photographic pleasure and inspiration. Bill’s images take the stress out of today’s disturbing and stressful times and transport you into the scene and reminding us with the text why all of us love photography so much. Truly an exceptional experience. Thank You, Bill!

The Video

I thought it was an excellent time to have a friendly and fun catchup conversation between a couple of friends with all that Bill has been doing. We have a great talk about some of our photography experiences beginning in Antarctica. It’s a great conversation, and I want to thank Bill for allowing us to share it with you.

Closing

Bill is an exceptional person and his passion for photography and generosity in sharing his passion make him one of the most respected living photographers today.  He is an institution in Yosemite National Park.  I’m proud to say he is my friend and I know he has made me a better photographer.

Some More Spreads and Images


Kevin Raber
August 2020
Kevin Raber
Indianapolis, IN

Photography is my passion and has been for 47 plus years. My career in photography has allowed me to travel the world, meet some of the most interesting people on the planet and see things I could never have dreamed of. My goal is to share the passion of pictures taking through photographs and teaching with as many people as I can hoping it brings them as much joy and happiness as it has me. I do this through photoPXL.com, this site as well as Rockhopper Workshops and other projects as well as teaching at my Gallery in Indianapolis.

Article Type: Columns, Videos, MISC

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