My name is David Bernstein and I have been in love with photography and nature since I was about 5 years old. I grew up in the suburbs of Boston, MA and now live in gorgeous Jupiter, Florida.
My father is a talented photographer and he certainly helped me discover my passion for the art. He built a small darkroom in our attic when I was very young, and I still have fond memories of developing film and photos with him on the weekends. I loved when he would let me use the foot-pedal to start the enlarger, and eventually, by the age of 7 or 8, he started teaching me how to spool film. (Some of you reading this might have no idea what I am talking about thanks to digital photography!) I loved being in the darkroom with him, I loved watching the photos begin to develop in the chemical bins, I loved printing my contact sheet to see which negatives could possibly be good shots. I was hooked.
I took photography all four years of high school, and when I graduated, I remember there was talk about possibly installing computers in the photo department to begin teaching digital techniques. This seemed crazy to me!
Unfortunately, in college I stopped shooting and focused more on my studies (and having fun). During this time (2001-2005) digital photography was changing rapidly and the quality and price of equipment was improving daily. I was still very anti-digital and felt that film was the only pure, true form of photography.
Finally, in 2007, I broke-down and purchased my first DSLR (a Canon Rebel). I didn't immediately rekindle my passion for photography, as I used the camera mostly as a point-and-shoot. However, one winter day I took my dog Sophie for a walk in the park and I happened to see an incredible-looking duck swimming in the creek next to the path. I had never seen a duck like this before and I needed to find out what it was. I went back the next day - this time with my camera in hand. I took a few distant shots and posted them to a Boston bird forum I found online. I learned that the duck was a Hooded Merganser, common in the winter in New England. For whatever reason, this discovery sparked something in me, and from that moment on I was hooked on birds.
I have always loved nature. I loved camping and mountain biking when I was a kid. On my 8th birthday my father took me to Hunt's Camera store and bought me a cheap, used, 300mm zoom lens because I told him I wanted to be able to photograph the birds in our yard. I used that lens to photograph every Song Sparrow and House Sparrow that landed in the yard.
When most kids are asked "what do you want to be when you grow up?" they usual answers are "baseball player," "fireman," "doctor," etc. Whenever I was asked that question I always answered "Photo-naturalist."
It turns out I grew up to be a "salesman"... as I am currently a Strategic Account Executive for a large software company. When I am not with my incredible wife, Tanya (who is neither a birder nor photographer), I spend the majority of my free time birding and taking photos.
I still dream that one day I might be able to make my hobby a true profession, and support my family doing so, but I have a feeling that day is a long way away.
Thanks for visiting my site and I hope you enjoy looking through my work. Be sure to check back often as I am constantly posting new photos all the time! Also, if you have any questions about any of my photos, or questions pertaining to purchasing any of my work, do not hesitate to send me an email and I promise I will get back to you as soon as possible.
David B Bernstein