Personal Project | Mike Corrado
If you love photography, the personal project is a gift you give yourself—a gift of permission to pursue whatever serious or fanciful subject catches your imagination. That’s the beauty of it: the personal project exists for its own sake.
This is the first in an occasional series of stories on personal projects and the photographers who love them.
Mike Corrado’s long-time interest in the water fowl of Avalon Park & Preserve in Stony Brook, New York, began with frequent visits to the location with his family. The park is near his home, it’s got a great walking trail and, not the least, he discovered it was ideal for photography—which is not only Mike’s passion, it’s his profession: he’s Sr. Manager; Pro Relations & Marketing Business Development for Nikon.
At the start, Avalon was simply a peaceful place to go, which is no small consideration for a person with a high-activity job. Then it became a peaceful place to go and take pictures—”to get away for a few hours,” Mike says, “quiet and alone with the birds and the camera.”
So just for fun, and to see what results he could get, he began photographing the common birds—the ducks, geese and swans. Then he discovered there were also cormorants, egrets and herons—”the slightly more exotic birds that would frequent the area only in warmer weather.”
What kicked things into high gear was a certain area—”in the brush, behind an embankment”—that was full of birds. It was there he noticed a nesting swan and found he couldn’t wait until the eggs hatched and the cygnets—the young swans—were out.
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