About Greg Smith
Some 50 years back, a kindergarten teacher introduced me to show and tell. Sharing my Tonka dump truck set off an obsession with storytelling. As the years passed, I grew into a photographer, writer, editor and multimedia producer.
At my core, I’m a photojournalist, still serving on the board of the National Press Photographers Association, advocating for photographers and journalists, teaching others, and obsessively seeking telling visual moments. Fate and family led me 30 years ago to a home along an amazing tidal river in South Carolina, barely a side creek to the media mainstream. The birds, dolphins and oysters sucked me in. Gradually, I became a kayaker and nature photographer, focused on sharing my eye-level encounters with wildlife and seeking a visual sense of place that puts the viewer there with me.
Now, my wife and I have returned to the southern Rockies, with a home overlooking the Sangre de Cristo range in beautiful Westcliffe, Colo. I work (and maintain an apartment), two hours away at the very cool Western State Colorado University. Weekends find me in between, making pictures and skiing at Monarch Pass, wandering when I can into the wilderness, on foot, on skis, on snowshoes, in a kayak or even my truck.
My time feeding bugs and making pictures in the marsh both bolstered my patience and sharpened my eye for candid, telling moments as I stalk the woods, lakes, college campuses and city streets. It’s added a new edge to my lifestyle, journalistic and action assignments.
My education has never stopped. I’ve attended dozens of business, creative, technical and legal workshops, including the first Platypus Workshop for video storytelling. For five years, I immersed myself in the vanishing Gullah culture of the S.C. Lowcountry, helping write and illustrate the popular Gullah Home Cooking the Daufuskie Way, from UNC Press in 2003.
And in 2007, I returned to Ohio University to finish my master’s degree in Visual Communication. My 2009 master’s project, “Keeping the May River Wild,” screened at several film festivals, was named among the Best of ASMP and aired across South Carolina. It sums up my experience with the river and demonstrates much of what I’ve learned.
But it’s not the end: of my learning, of my growth as a storyteller or of my obsession with the river, indeed, with all of nature and how humans relate to it – as well as to each other.