An interview with Lars Andersen, river guide and Florida author

If you are even moderately involved in the Florida canoe/kayak scene, it won’t take long before you stumble upon Lars Andersen.  His name pops up all over – he’s an author, a river guide, owner of Adventure Outpost, lifelong Floridian and an expert in the natural and cultural history of north Florida.Lars Andersen

With his wife, Lars owns Adventure Outpost, an outfitter and guide service in High Springs.  He offers tours at more than 60 Florida waterways, including the Suwannee, Silver River, Chassahowitzka, and trips to Cedar Key and St. Augustine.

He writes about many of his adventures on his blog, and even wrote a wonderful history of Paynes Prairie in his 2003 book “Paynes Prairie: The Great Savanna,” which also includes a complete guide for hikers, bikers and kayakers.

Lars keeps a busy schedule guiding kayakers down Florida’s best waterways, so I was thrilled that he was able to take some time to answer a few of my questions.  He told me all about his interest in Paynes Prairie, his favorite rivers, and his go-to kayak.

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An Interview with Marks and Joey Culver, Florida Nature Photographers

I spend a lot of time browsing the Web looking at nature photography.  It motivates me, and inspires me, and challenges me in my own attempts at wildlife photography.

So I thought I was used to the conventions of nature photography – that is, until I stumbled upon the blog of Marks and Joey Culver.  This husband-and-wife team are carving out their own niche as black-and-white film photographers, and they seem to love Florida just as much as I do.

Marks and Joey Culver

Marks and Joey Culver – Photo by Culver Photography

I was so captivated by their photography – and the haunting, antiquated look of much of their landscape photography – that I sought them out for a Q&A session.  They graciously agreed and told me all about their technique, their collection of antique cameras and their fondness for tree roots (yes, tree roots).

F.A.: If I’m correct, you each took a very different route to Florida.  Marks, you were born here, and Joey, you were born in the Netherlands and raised in Africa.  How do you think that changes your perspective on the landscape?

Marks: Yes I was born here in the town of Holly Hill, Fla. My family settled here in the early ’30s. They owned a chicken and cattle ranch, along with a citrus grove. My dad died when I was 7 so I became a farm hand then. My grandparents raised me. Always being in the woods and on the farm gave me a different look on life. Everywhere you looked there was something different. You appreciate that the woods and land,  will take care of you if you take care of them. So, whenever there was free time my grandfather would drag out his cameras and off we’d go. He bought for me my first camera when I was about 9 or 10 years old. From then on I was a camera junkie.

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