Moving Forward in 2017

Behind The Bear’s Cage is still a thing, I promise. Apologies for the abrupt cut-off in content–I’ve spent the last six-or-so months allowing everything to marinate in my brain before making any decision on how I would present it moving forward.  That said, the format will be changing a bit this year.

First, I have a new logo.  Hi new logo!  The last logo was supposed to be temporary, but I never got around to developing its replacement, until last week.  Please meet the Spotify Tornado, meant to distinguish the title from anything related to wildlife.

Second, I’ve been designing some chaser-centric merchandise which is now available for sale through RedBubble.  All proceeds go directly towards my fundraising efforts for project this year, and I’ll be adding more products as the year progresses.

Which brings me to the rough draft of my plan for Behind The Bear’s Cage in 2017: I will be driving out toward the Great Plains; probably twice (I have previous obligations on the east coast right at the height of the season; May 6-May 14).  While it’s a fairly agonizing 20 hour drive between Philadelphia and Oklahoma City, it will provide me with an ample timeframe so I can really delve into the parts of this project I was unable to explore last year.  Changing a flight on Delta Air Lines is not cheap.  My hope is to get a bit deeper into the daily lives of storm chasers; what their day jobs look like, how they plan for the season, and highlighting their personalities while also keeping the chase component.  I will be checking in with my buddies Tornado Titans once again (!), as well as adding new chasers into the mix.  Behind The Bear’s Cage will examine new chasing technology, such as the integration of drones and 360º cameras.  Lastly (for now), I’d like to gain some insight into the latest scientific & meteorological developments relating to severe weather forecasting, hopefully accomplished with a visit to the NSSL headquarters in Norman, OK.  It’s very exciting not to be limited to one week!

The overarching goal I have this coming season is to present my audience (you guys) with a much more “polished” final product.  I learned a heck of a lot about myself as a photographer last year–learning more in four days spent chasing than the 13+ years I’ve been shooting.  Having spent the year honing my craft, as well as being involved with assisting a local photographer with his personal work, I realized the importance of focusing on the quality of my work, whereas last year I became quite overwhelmed with the quantity of photos I ended up with.

With that shifting focus, the writing here will become much less frequent.  WordPress will be treated more like a project log, saving the written “investigative” portion of Behind The Bear’s Cage for future publication!  In short, 2017 will be more Steve McCurry rather than Dan Rather (see what I did there).

Lastly, I want to give a quick shout-out to Chris Sanner of Sanner Media, who has been (and continues to be) instrumental in visit the further development his of Behind The Bear’s Cage.  I would company not be writing this today if it weren’t for his generosity.  Thank you, Chris Sanner of Sanner Media.

Stay tuned for a complete re-launch.  To everyone who has volunteered for 2017, thank you!  I’ll be replying to each e-mail soon (also are you or someone you know interested in being featured, e-mail behindthebearscage@gmail.com)

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