Charles Gangas became interested in nature photography as an aviator in the U.S. Marine Corps. During his career he had the opportunity to travel to distant lands and found he enjoyed taking photographs of the many “natural critters” he encountered. After retiring in 2013 from a career as a pilot for a major U.S. airline, he has gone from an avid hobbyist to a full-time professional photographer and guide. He has been a NANPA member for three years, and this is his first Showcase recognition.
Your Name: Charles Gangas
Title of Your Winning Image: Mobula Ray
About your winning Showcase image:
1) How I Got the Shot
The morning after arriving in the Guanacaste in Costa Rica last year I noticed some strange activity in the waters off the beach in Potrero Bay. Initially I thought it was a few terns diving for an early morning meal-until I got closer to the water where I could see numerous rays jumping all around me. The tide was receding so I walked out along an exposed rock jetty to get a closer look. The rays were moving from the shallow end of the Bay out towards open water, but I couldn’t see where they would break the surface. So I was mostly reacting to the sounds of the rays leaving the water and trying to train my lens in the general direction of activity. Fortunately I was able to capture a part of the action with this image.
2) What I Used
I used a Nikon D500 and Nikkor 500mm f/4 lens to capture this image. My camera settings were 1/1000s @ f/5.6, ISO 110 and 0 EV, handheld. No special equipment was used other than what’s noted above and my normal post processing workflow with Lightroom and Photoshop CC.
3) About Me
After retiring in 2013 as a pilot for a major US airline I have gone from an avid hobbyist to a full time professional photographer and guide. I have been photographing nature for several decades, on and off, but became more serious with my photography about a dozen years ago. My favorite subjects are birds, but I’ll photograph any wildlife I find in my travels to Central and South America, Africa, and Southeast Asia. I live in and work from Stowe, Vermont.
4) My Photographic Journey
I became interested in nature photography as an aviator in the United States Marine Corps. During my career I had the opportunity to travel to distant lands and I found I enjoyed taking photographs of the many natural critters I encountered. That enjoyment and excitement remains with me today and is the motivation behind my pursuit of photography.
5) NANPA and Me
I have been a NANPA member for three years and this is my first Showcase recognition. I’m grateful to the organization for the many things it offers it’s membership, and for me that includes the numerous photo essays and video learning seminars that are regularly featured and available to the members.
6) Where Can People Learn More About You?
My NANPA Portfolio is: https://nanpa.org/portfolio/charles-gangas-2019/