Photographing the Magic of Appalachia

February 27, 2023  |  Appalachia

Discover Appalachia Through the Lens of Photographer Michele Sons

One of the most under-appreciated photography locations in the United States is Appalachia, a region that stretches from Alabama in the south to New York in the north. Appalachia is not home to towering mountains, arid deserts, or epic displays of geology; however, a skilled photographer who takes care to connect with this place is able to create fantastic photographs that are personally expressive and evocative.

Photographing Appalachia - A Conversation with Photographer Michele Sons
Great Smoky Mountains NP

Today's guest on episode 306 of the F-Stop Collaborate and Listen Podcast, Michele Sons, is one such photographer. Her attention to detail and personal connection to Appalachia, fog, and geographic peculiarities has given her photography a voice in the crowded space of nature and landscape photography.

Michele has come to specialize in quiet, contemplative images of the Appalachian region and beyond. She has worked with National Geographic for years on their Beautiful Landscapes calendars, and other clients of hers include The Wilderness Society, Great Smoky Mountains Association, Eastern National, Gladstone Media, and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy.

If you want to learn how Michele is able to make stunning images of this seemingly less-than-iconic location, then you have come to the right place.

Photographing Appalachia - A Conversation with Photographer Michele Sons

On this week's episode, we discuss:

  • Michele's 111-page e-book, Riversong, all about the New River Gorge in Fayetteville, West Virginia (Use the code FSTOP20 for 20% off).
  • Michele's personal connection to place and how she goes about making images that are connective in this way.
  • Michele's approaches to making images from less than iconic destinations.
  • How photography has served Michele in a healing capacity.
  • How Michele's mental health has shifted since she took up photography full-time.
  • Michele's strategies and challenges for monetization as a full-time photographer.
  • How knowing yourself can lead to better photographs.
  • Michele's "The Feminine Landscape" project.
  • Our mutual obsession with fog.
  • And a lot more!
Photographing Appalachia - A Conversation with Photographer Michele Sons

If you enjoyed our conversation, you can catch our bonus episode on Patreon where Michele and I discuss her strategies for using lead magnets to increase her mailing list.

Other topics/links discussed on the podcast this week:

Photographing Appalachia - A Conversation with Photographer Michele Sons

Here is who Michele recommended on the podcast this week:

I love hearing from the podcast listeners! Reach out to me via Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter if you'd like to be on the podcast or if you have an idea of a topic we can talk about. We also have an Instagram page, a Facebook Page, and a Facebook Group - so don't be shy!

We also have a searchable transcript of every episode!

Thanks for stopping in, collaborating with us, and listening. See you next week.

P.S. you can also support the podcast by purchasing items through our B+H affiliate link.

Scroll down to see more of Michele's fantastic Appalachia photography!

Posted in Photography Podcast and tagged Podcast.