I’ve been obsessed with wildlife as long as I can remember, and at 16 I purchased a camera and telephoto lens with my first paycheck. It was the intimate contact with animals that captured my attention. After several years of photographing in Yellowstone country, I headed north for a place less crowded. I arrived in Alaska in 1995 with plans to spend five years photographing its wilderness. But like many, I have found that once you’re here it’s not easy to leave. Rather than traveling widely in search of wildlife, I spend time getting to know nature in my own backyard, seeking out subjects so often overlooked by others.