I just got back from an extended trip to learn that Larry West died on December 15.  Larry was an exceptional photographer, a great naturalist, and a good friend.  He was an enormously helpful to me at the very start of my career, and was indeed extremely generous with information, advice, and encouragement to a whole generation of nature photographers.  In the mid-1970s he and I started offering week-long photography workshops in Michigan which, to my knowledge, were about the first field workshops anywhere in the US specializing in nature photography.  After my work took me in a different direction, he continued these workshops on his own.  He also authored a series of well-received “How to Photograph” books.   Larry’s presence will be missed by many.


  1. Maurice Henning December 24, 2015 at 11:53 am #

    Amen, A John Shaw and Larry West presentation in Cincinnati over 30 years ago inspired me with the very best techniques for nature photography.

  2. James Doyle December 25, 2015 at 3:33 pm #

    I am saddened to read about the passing of Larry West, John. I also lost my father this past month and as he was a photographer also, I’m sure Larry will not be without people to continue the conversation about photography.

  3. Bob December 25, 2015 at 7:11 pm #

    I got my first real training with Larry 25 years ago more or less. Mike Kirk was around to. Spent time with them on Sanibel and at a program at Treemont in the Great Smoky Mountain National park. My second workshop in MI with him was about 10 years ago. Larry and Mike were always willing to talk to me on the phone and lend a helping hand. I’ve not spoken to Larry in quite a while. They both will be missed.

  4. Bruce McLaughlin January 14, 2016 at 11:29 am #

    One of the most enjoyable experiences I have ever had was during the two or three one-week workshops I took with Larry and John in Michigan. I have been to other workshops but these topped them all. They had and infectious enthusiasm for their work and a genuine interest in helping the students. Larry will be greatly missed by many. I am so sorry to hear of his passing. I