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Local teen off to Alaska with National Geographic

ENCINITAS — Few would trade in San Diego sun for subarctic temperatures. But with National Geographic running the show, it’s no wonder that San Dieguito Academy, or SDA, junior Cameron Crow will be swapping out trunks and towels for backpacks and hostels in Fairbanks, the Arctic Circle, Denali National Park, Anchorage and Kenai Peninsula, Alaska, July 21 to Aug. 6 courtesy of Student Expeditions.
The deal sweetens with one look at the Alaska 2010 Itinerary. Activities include, but are not limited to, trekking, kayaking and hiking. To complement the outdoor workout, Crow’s noggin will be getting an exercise of its own. The students involved will, at times, be split into groups for separate instruction in photography, wildlife and conservation or climate/ geology. Crow’s particular tutorials will culminate in “a photo-essay about a person or topic that piques (his) interest,” according to ngstudent
Crow as a cameraman sparked in seventh grade thanks to yearbook and journalism and developed during his freshman year at SDA.
“(At SDA) I started a photography club,” he said. “In the beginning, every week there would be a photography assignment and then we would share.”
Photography teacher Susan Coppock has been instrumental in the process, and Crow raved about the club’s summer photography trips to downtown and Anza-Borrego Desert.
Crow, too, offered up his technique.
“I look at the subject, then look in the foreground, then outside. Lighting is a huge part of it.”
Never shying from a chance to put himself out there, Crow has showcased and sold photographs at SDA’s Exhibition Day and most recent Arts and Technology Festival. Knowing Crow, two family friends recommended Student Expeditions to the budding photographer. In Crow’s words, “They thought it would be cool for me to try.”
Surprisingly, the Student Expedition application required writing rather than visuals and two teacher references. “It was like college apps almost,” Crow said.
Still, opportunities abound once on the taiga terrain, as Crow and others will, “Set out on photo shoots to improve (their) photography skills and capture the color and character of the places (they) encounter,” said.
Seeing as Crow’s favorite shots are “nature, landscapes (and) abstracts, because there are a lot of details,” Crow stands to further his craft while making connections with National Geographic.
“I want to use this experience to one day work with them in the future,” Crow said.
To see more of Crow’s artistry, check out his two entries at the San Diego County Fair and visit