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Miguel Garcia, 960 Design’s Founder, Interviews Photographers M.D. Vaden

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row height=”auto” css=”.vc_custom_1476928166444{margin-bottom: 0px !important;}”][vc_column width=”1/4″][vc_raw_html]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[/vc_raw_html][/vc_column][vc_column width=”3/4″][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1522833172891{margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-bottom: 0px !important;}”]We are excited to bring you a close up look at a professional photographer Mario Vaden (M.D. Vaden). This is an Exclusive Interview for 960 Pixels Design.

Recently, we got the chance to catch up with one of our favorite photographers of the redwood landscape. His name is Mario Vaden (M.D. Vaden) and he’s the people’s champ when it comes to looking for champion trees. There aren’t many photographers that can capture a photo with good composition and layout and even much less photographers that can capture the beauty that is the redwoods and bring it to life as vividly as this man. We have really enjoyed and appreciated the photography he has taken because most of us “Humboldt dwellers” never really take the time to appreciate these historical monuments that have been here for centuries. We continually came across the most amazing photographs of Humboldt County and the redwood landscape and noticed it was mostly one photographer, M.D. Vaden. Mario has brought attention to natural wonders (i.e. Hyperion (World’s Tallest Tree)) that actually live in Humboldt may never see and he has caused awareness about the need to protect these beautiful living organisms.

He’s really good at what he does because he’s done it for so long, when he got started he was offered part time gig to look for and measure large trees; this gave him the opportunity to do something he loved (which we always encourage) and contribute something of epic proportion to the Humboldt photography community. He began sharing his expeditions and tree discoveries while also being careful not disclose too much information in regards to the whereabouts of these gems.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row content_placement=”middle” height=”small” width=”full”][vc_column][vc_single_image image=”5655″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row height=”auto” css=”.vc_custom_1476928185366{margin-top: 20px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;}”][vc_column][vc_cta h2=”Does Your Marketing Need Professional Photography?” add_button=”right” btn_title=”Contact Us” btn_i_icon_fontawesome=”fa fa-envelope-o” btn_add_icon=”true” btn_link=”url:https%3A%2F%2F960humboldt.com%2Fcontact-us%2F|||”]We have worked with hundreds of organizations and delivered professional photography to help strengthen overall marketing campaigns.[/vc_cta][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row height=”small” width=”full”][vc_column][ultimate_carousel speed=”200″ autoplay_speed=”3000″ item_animation=”fadeIn”][vc_single_image image=”5672″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” onclick=”link_image”][vc_single_image image=”5671″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” onclick=”link_image”][vc_single_image image=”5670″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” onclick=”link_image”][vc_single_image image=”5669″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” onclick=”link_image”][vc_single_image image=”5668″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” onclick=”link_image”][/ultimate_carousel][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row height=”auto” css=”.vc_custom_1476928166444{margin-bottom: 0px !important;}”][vc_column width=”1/4″][vc_column_text]About the Artist
Mario Vaden is a certified arborist, an avid hiker, and loves trees. He has helped discover some of the most coveted natural wonders across the pacific northwest including Hyperion, Tsunami, and various others.

Hiking in our forests is dangerous, do not attempt hiking without the guidance of a professional or someone with plenty of experience.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”3/4″][vc_single_image image=”5675″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]It’s important to note that many of these photographs are taken in places that are hard to reach and would otherwise remain unseen to the public. M.D. Vaden is true pioneer in the art of champion tree hunting and capturing the beauty of our forests, going to extreme lengths to get capture iconic perspectives of our beautiful landscap[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row height=”auto” css=”.vc_custom_1476929221158{margin-top: 30px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;}”][vc_column][vc_column_text css=”.vc_custom_1476929568180{margin-bottom: 0px !important;padding-bottom: 0px !important;}”]

The Birth of Champion Trees

Mario Vaden loves trees. It didn’t take more than few minutes for me to visualize the passion Mario has for searching for these Champion Trees across the north west. He has been involved in tree-related business and hobbies since 1980 which included mostly hiking and pursuing these elusive natural monuments hidden in the forests of Northern California, Oregon, and parts of Washington. As time progressed, Mario began to have a tendency to go off the beaten path and explore areas most people would never venture toward. He is fascinated by Fungi and many of the little details that make up our beautiful forests. There is a small community of people that partake in these expeditions searching for these hidden wonders and Mario quickly built a reputation for his journeys and ability to find epic trees littered across our beautiful forests like Redwood National Park.

Why Doesn’t He Share Locations with The public?

It’s not because he’s selfish. Many organizations encourage tree searchers like Mario Vaden to enjoy visiting these monuments but because of their priceless nature their location should remain private. Mario shed light on this a little more and doesn’t discourage those that are passionate about natural beauty to pursue their dreams. He believes those that look the hardest are typically the most respectful to these epic monuments of nature.

When trees get discovered and start to receive tourism and visitation from the public start to experience a depression in the the area that surrounds them naturally. The foot traffic and presence of humans begins to compact the soil and change the environment around these epic trees. All of a sudden these natural wonders begin to get thrashed by foot traffic and tourism which is why they should remain hidden gems; hidden gems that should only be found by those that are really interested in finding them.

How do you decide where to look?

I’ve been doing this for quite some time and have a good understanding what areas have been explored. We have a network of tree searchers and explorers and have a solid understanding of explored and unexplored areas. At times we revisit old locations to look for changes in the landscape or we visit areas that we have cross-referenced and know have received little exploration. Typically we look for areas with a few qualities: Areas with plenty wind protection, a solid amount of moisture, and have some level of old growth.

What Kind of Trees Are You Looking For?

We are always looking for champion trees. Champion trees are trees that meet certain qualities that are abnormal and exceed specifications in one form or another. Below we have outlined the top three attributes associated with Champion Trees:

  • Tallest – We look for trees that are simply the tallest tree by height; we also consider the type of tree and compare them in their respective breeds.
  • Biggest By Trunk – As the name implies, we measure the trunk and we define these champions by the dimensions of the trunk (volume / size).
  • Biggest Girth – These champions have large diameters and get measured for diameter size.

We are always looking for champion trees, interesting tree shapes, and cool photogenic landscapes and mark them wit GPS. I have taken some amazing photography but due to the rising amount of landscape photographers there has been others emulating my work which makes exploration and finding more hidden gems one of my higher priorities. I want to continue to offer amazing original hard-to-get photography that captures the essence of these natural wonders and share it with the world.

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Protecting These Natural Wonders

The main issue with this type of photography and interest in the landscape is tourism and human manipulation of the environment. There have been many cases where the location of a tree is shared and people start to visit it in larger amounts and the soil gets compacted because of the foot traffic, vegetation is reduced, and in worst cases littering occurs.

If I we’re a park ranger I would promote fires and letting them run their course naturally and I only mention this because these forest fires cleanse the seed bed. We know many of these trees can grow in hotter areas but we need to place an emphasis on the reproductive aspect of tree growth. I’m not a forest ranger and I’m not on the insider loop to hear advise and counter arguments but I do believe natural forest fires can enhance the natural environment. It reduces redwood branches and wood pieces that cover the ground floor of the forest – make it very difficult for new tree seed to reach soil and have a realistic opportunity to develop in to a full tree.

Who Inspires You?

I often mention to people that ask me this question that I am inspired by Ansel Adams. A great California Photographer with a philosophy similar to mine, take great photography but enhance it enough to bring the picture to life and just a bit closer to the real experience. They say photographs typically doesn’t do a true spectacle justice and this is true for the most part but as professional photographer, there are techniques to enrich the photo enough to bridge that gap. Sometimes a photograph can capture a view that even a climber or visitor would have never viewed or imagined by simply taking it from the right angle at the right time.

Sometimes A Photo can do it justice, sometimes a photo can provide an experience some people may never witness in person themselves, and that to me is justice served.

That is pretty much how the conversation ended with Mario and it couldn’t have been a better quote. The man is a true legend in terms of Humboldt Redwoods Photography and we are grateful for the photographs he has shared (yes, even in low-res) on his Facebook pages and website. Keep doing you M.D.! Keep doing you..[/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Some of text has been edited and modified for clarity and to enhance the reader’s experience. Many of the topics on information we’re paraphrased to convey the topics of M.D. Vaden. If there are any errors or mistakes in this informative interview please email us at [email protected][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]