Wildland firefighter silhouetted by flames. Photo by Kristen Honig
Kristen Honig will discuss her observations, show her photographs, and present a brief, behind the scenes look at what it is like to be a wildfire photographer at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 20 at the Los Alamos Nature Center.
Honig’s wildfire photos have been recognized by National Geographic and featured in magazines and publications, including Popular Science, Outside Magazine, High Country News, Wildland Firefighter Magazine, Fire Management Today and in the novel On the Burning Edge.
This special presentation is free and made possible thanks to the Los Alamos Photo Club and the Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC).
Los Alamos and the surrounding areas have been exposed to more than a half-dozen significant wildfires since 1977, including the 2000 Cerro Grande Fire that consumed more than 47,000 acres and damaged or destroyed more than 350 structures. The Cerro Grande Fire had a lasting impact on the community and inspired local photographer Honig to document not only the beauty and destructiveness of wildfires but also the sacrifices and camaraderie of the firefighters who battle them.
Join Honig to learn how she takes such “heated” images and what it is like to photograph these incredible events.
In the summer of 2002, Honig worked as a wildland firefighter for the National Park Service, where she gained invaluable experience working on the fireline and interfacing with Incident Management Teams. The following summer, she was awarded a federal contract as a wildfire photographer with the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC).
During the past 15 years, Honig has captured scenes from the front lines of more than a dozen wildfires throughout the western United States for the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, and NIFC. By maintaining the same physical and training requirements as the firefighters on the line, she is afforded the unique opportunity to work alongside hotshot crews at the most active parts of the fire. Though the work can be dangerous and exhausting, she views it as a rewarding opportunity to document not only the beauty and destructiveness of wildfires but also the human spirit of the men and women protecting the forests and surrounding communities.