While flipping through old NANPA printed publications recently, it hit me that I’ve been contributing to our communications for nearly 25 years, so it seemed timely for NANPA’s 25th birthday year, that I share a bit of NANPA’s communication’s history. I started writing for NANPA immediately after the 1994 Forum in Ft Myers, Florida and volunteered in some capacity –committee member, committee chair, advisor, editor/proofreader, project manager, etc. since. I can’t count how many articles I wrote, researched, interviewed for, ghost-wrote, assigned or edited through the years. In the early years, all communications were printed and mailed to members; and I saved sample copies of almost every issue.
As I skimmed through years of NANPA’s history on those pages, I noticed that some things really haven’t changed that much. Some of NANPA’s earliest supporters and ambassadors, such as Franz Lanting, George Lepp, Mark Lukes, John Nuhn and Art Wolfe are still involved with our organization. NANPA’s mission hasn’t changed much either, and we’re still committed to ethical photography of our environment and being the connecting point in the nature photography community.
Some things that did change were NANPA’s logo and the design and delivery of our newsletter. I scanned a few covers and invite you to join me on a historic pictorial of the last 25 years
NANPA’s newsletter was originally called Currents, and Roger Archibald was its first editor. I don’t have a scan of the first issue, but I recall that all the photos and text were in green on a cream-colored paper. As you can see from this Winter 1994 cover, a black and white film-strip logo had been designed. To save costs, it was printed on matte paper using 2 ink colors—green font with black and white photos.
By 2000, Currents had upgraded to a glossy paper and a new look. The green film-strip theme appeared on top of all the pages. Sharon Cohen-Powers was editor, and each issue had a different theme. George Lepp wrote the cover article about the future of digital cameras for the September-October 2000 Technology Issue.
The May/June 2007 issue featured a sleek, new four-color design that was also on a glossy paper. Having the capability of printing in color was a big deal for nature photographers, and it also made it possible to illustrate text and actually publish nature photographs in color instead of black (or green) and white!
In 2008, NANPA began printing full-color quarterly magazines that showcased our members’ photos in full feature articles. At the time, most magazines used vertical images on covers, but Currents editors/designers (Loupe Media) chose horizontal photos for the wrap-around covers which were works of art.
NANPA joined the electronic newsletter era in 2009 with the introduction of a Bimonthly Digital Newsletter called Ripples. In this example, you’ll notice a change from the black and white swan film-strip to the NANPA swirl logo with new colors. The name was later changed to NANPA News, which is still being distributed today.
Several pages of each issue included a Portfolio section of an individual photographer who also had a wraparound cover. The 2013 Spring issue of Currents magazine featured Daniel J. Cox’s Portfolio: Arctic Documentary Project.
In Art Wolfe’s “Oxpecker on a Giraffe in Samburu National Park, Kenya,” the photographer placed the oxpecker in the upper right quadrant of the image, making it stand out more than if it were centered. He also contributed an article and photos in this issue “In the Field With Art Wolfe.”
NANPA is proud of our heritage; and as a nature photography organization, will continue to showcase members’ photos in whatever medium the future brings. For now, you’ll find them in NANPA News, our website and blog, social media sites, emails, and in electronic and print formats of Expressions.
If you’re interested in submitting stories and photos to the blog, https://nanpa.org/learning/publications/nanpa-blog/
This year’s Showcase Competition entries are being accepted until September 16, 2019. Prize winners will be featured on NANPA’s website and in Expressions.
NANPA Executive Director