landscape photography

The only Constant is Change | Drone across Oahu by Sean Michel

"Everything Flows in a state of Flux"

- Simplicius

Without sounding entirely too cliché, I am a firm believer in the statement that the only constant is indeed change. The moment we feel comfortable, or like we have a firm grasp on the way things are going and will continue to go -- life has a way of throwing us a curveball, for better or worse.

As a business owner and artist, these curveballs can manifest themselves in about a million different ways. Most of the curveballs at face value are exceedingly frustrating and require tedious work and attention to deal with. But the beauty lies squarely in the process. No matter what comes up, we more or less have to adjust and overcome. The process of accepting the changes, addressing them and shifting to accomodate leads to a more profound understanding of our business, our abilities and most importantly, ourselves.

Without divulging too much and getting boring, lately I've dealt with a lot of change. Some personal and a lot of business. Maintaining a straight course throughout has definitely been a struggle, but like I mentioned above -- it really has made me better all around. I have my things (as everyone probably should) that keep me grounded, one of those things is my drone. Another one of those things is getting outside and exploring the natural beauty that surrounds me. The two combined lead to some pretty awesome footage and a nice, clear headspace.

The two hikes that make up the bulk of this footage are on Oahu, closing two shots taken on Maui. One of the trails is down in the Honolulu area and I've had the good fortune of rounding out that trail multiple times. Once with my good mate Shane Sochocki, owner of Adventure Tours Hawaii and once with good friend and associate creative Taylor Johnson. Check out her work on her website, Taylor Creates.

The second trail is way up north, I never knew it existed until we went on Shane's recommendation. An awesome little trail run with beautiful panoramic-style views from Kaena Point down to Chinamans Hat from up top. I was blown away by the amazing payoff that such a small amount of work had gotten us.


Backpacking through Haleakala | Upcountry Maui by Sean Michel

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine called to invite me over to Maui for a backpacking trip through Haleakala. Having never even been up to Haleakala on my numerous trips to the valley isle, it definitely seemed like a good idea to go and check it out -- albeit this was a far more in-depth look at the national park than most people tend to get. To note, this friend of mine happens to own and operate a local tour company, Adventure Tours Hawaii, so he has a distinct taste for hiking, camping and generally getting amongst the elements on a trip -- IF he commits. I was all in - ready for a change of scenery for a short while and some time to reflect.

There really is no way to write a short version of what I experienced that will be even remotely palatable. People just need to experience this sort of raw nature on their own to truly appreciate it. The thing that struck me day after day was the silence. The sound of absolutely nothing. Not one bit weird, just overwhelmingly therapeutic and soothing. Maybe the rustle of a light wind, an odd Nene in the distance, but more often than not a deafening silence that was surprisingly welcome. It was easy for me to lean into that silence and appreciate the vastness of the crater and its surrounding landscapes.

Nature Therapy at its very finest.

I'll leave the rest to the photos below, words somewhat fail me on this one. What an amazing experience, my advice is to get out there and experience this or something like it, as often as possible. I can't wait to get back.