For Michael Priest, photography is a life force, a reflection of the excitement and movement of a world he views with unbridled enthusiasm. "I'm inspired by so many people and so many places," says the young artist, "and I try to let that inspiration lead me. I'm astounded by all the beauty that surrounds me. I want my photographs to reveal my sense of wonder and surprise at how varied the human and natural world can be. The idea of creating or capturing these images on film by simply painting them with light is amazing to me. I like to think of myself as an emotional photographer."
Priest was born in Dallas, Texas, and grew up in Scarsdale, New York. He graduated from the University of Vermont with a degree in Spanish and International Studies. Afterward, Priest enrolled in the International Center of Photography (ICP) where he has taken numerous photography classes. As an undergrad student, his work was featured at the Frog Hollow Art Gallery in Burlington, Vermont.
Priest has also established himself as a successful commercial photographer in Vail, Colorado. Specializing in outdoor portraiture, he was hired by the Vail Valley foundation as their official photographer of the 1999 World Alpine Ski Championships. He is also one of the photographers of the U.S. Disabled Ski Team.
His assignments have run the gamut from brochures in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and corporate shoots in in Manhattan, to wild life in Kenya and Tanzania. You'll find Priest's name on the back of dozens of books, where he has done author photos (including best-selling authors, David Baldacci, Patricia Gaffney and Fern Michaels)
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