Hello Everyone!

I’m Andrew and I’m an aspiring nature and landscape photographer. I’m a Northern California native currently living in Stuttgart, Germany. I’m an Army officer, and after 25 years in the military I will be retiring next year. Now is the time to figure out what I’m going to be when I grow up. I am trying to figure out how to pursue photography full-time. I will figure it out. I know it’s easier said than done but with a pension I will have a bit of a safety net. I welcome any (positive) advice. I know it will be difficult.

Photography is an activity where all of my passions in life intersect and I’m never happier then when in the great outdoors. I’ve been interested in photography for as long as I can remember but didn’t get serious about it until a little more than a year ago. While I was familiar with the basics and shot in manual mode most of the time, it has been a steep learning curve to say the least.

I just posted my first photograph to NPN and the feedback was amazing. Thank you so much for putting this awesome community together. I can’t wait to get to know everyone.


Welcome to NPN, Andrew! It seems that you already have found out what a great place this is to grow and evolve as a photographer. Nice image, you just want to step into the image and walk around the corner to find out what is there.

Thanks Ola!

I took that at the Plitvice Lakes National Park in Croatia last October. I waited at that spot for about 30 minutes waiting for the path to be clear. Unfortunately that never happened and I had to remove some people in PS. I can’t wait to get back there.

This really is an awesome community!


Hello Andrew, and welcome to NPN. Congratulations on your upcoming retirement. After my military service, college, and 35 years in telecommunications I made it out as a somewhat functioning human being. Been retired for many years now and outdoor photography has filled my days that many others were out golfing… :sunglasses:

Thanks Paul!

Congrats on finding healthy ways to enjoy your retirement!


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That NP is on my list on places to visit and photograph. Hopefully I could go there during low season to avoid the crowds.

Welcome Andrew. You are setting in a great location for landscape photography. I was stationed in Kornwestheim and did a lot of travel in southern Germany and a lot of Europe. This is where I got my start in photography when we found an unused darkroom in the USO club across the road from our barracks and they allow me and friend to open it up, of course we had no idea of what we were doing but it started a life long hobby.

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Hey Garry!

I know Kornwestheim well! I’ve been fortunate enough that this is my sixth tour in Europe. Most of that time was spent in Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg. I know southern Germany and the Alps pretty well. I only wish that I got serious about photography much sooner.


Hi Andrew,
and welcome to NPN! That’s a really lovely image.
I hope you will enjoy this community as much as I do.

Stuttgart sounds just like my time zone. :wink:

Thanks Jens!

Haha, yeah, same time zone. I’m in Frankfurt often. I really am loving it here!


Hi and welcome Andrew - I’m glad you found your first critique session a positive one and I hope it’s the first of many. Not everyone can take having their work reviewed and so I’m glad you’re accepting it for what it is - a real desire to help and to improve. We’re all in the same boat - grab an oar!

Hi and welcome to NPN, Andrew. You have found the right place to get valuable critiques about your photos and also share your knowledge by critiquing other people’s photos. We are a very friendly community, as you have already experienced. Your photo in this note is really mesmerizing, not just by the boardwalk line but especially by the gorgeous light in the background. I share the feeling already expressed by others that I look forward to seeing more of your images.

P.S.: You’ll love retirement and will find your time all happily spent mostly on photography.


Thanks for your kind words! I’m looking forward to getting to know people here.


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Thanks Kristen,

Throughout my life accepting criticism has been one of my weak points. I’ve gotten better as my occupation leaves little room for thin skin and it’s the only way to grow in any endeavor. It’s funny you use the analogy of rowing because that’s one I use at work every day.



Welcome aboard! Great to have you here at NPN. We look forward to your images and contributions.

And THANK YOU for your Service! Kudos to you!

Jump right in and don’t be shy!


Thanks so much Lon! It’s good to be here!