Meet the talented professionals and hobbyists out there day after day — and sometimes at night — capturing the beauty of Lake Erie. 


Doris Lejarde Britton
North Olmsted, Ohio
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Photography is just a hobby for Britton.
What she shoots: "When I retired from NASA in 2008, my husband bought me my first DSLR. Ever since then you can find me out and about with my husband, almost everyday shooting anything interesting we see on our road trips and hiking around our Metroparks. I started learning landscape photography and got interested in portrait photography when my granddaughter was born and progressed to bird and wildlife photography in the last few years."
Tips: "My advice to new photographers is to shoot as often as you can. Always carry a camera with you (even a smartphone) and capture everything that catches your attention. Don’t stop learning."

Sara Cifani
of Cleveland Redhead
Lakewood, Ohio
Socials: Instagram and TikTok
For hire:
 Prints available for purchase online, along with t-shirts, puzzles, throw pillows, coffee mugs and more.
What she shoots: Nature and architecture. She enjoys "bringing these still moments to life with music on Instagram."
Tips: "Be in the moment and let the photo come naturally."

Alex Farmer
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Farmer sells his prints on his website but is not available for hire.
What he shoots: "Photo and video content that’s primarily focused on showing the beauty of Cleveland, Ohio, and its surrounding neighborhoods. I grew up in Cleveland have been shooting the city my whole life!"
Tips: "Just keep shooting photos — and take shots of everything! Portraits of your friends/family, a public park, a local parade … start taking photos with whatever gear you have right now. The more you shoot, the better photographer you’ll be!"

Karen Glosser
Chautauqua, New York
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Rates available upon request. She is also represented by Portage Hill Art Gallery in Westfield, New York. 
What she shoots: "As a fine art nature photographer living near Lake Erie, I spend time with my camera in our area’s abundant wild places, whether it be woodlands or water. I am especially intrigued and always in awe of the many moods of this incredible Great Lake. I love shooting big waves on wild and windy days and I enjoy creating images that capture her more serene days. I often use in-camera techniques to create painterly images that stretch the viewers imagination."
Tip: "Don’t be afraid to create work that comes from your heart and don’t be afraid to share it! When you create something that speaks from your soul, it will resonate with others!"

Kat Goldwarg
Niagara Falls, Ontario
Socials: Twitter and Instagram 
For hire: For editorial and commercial purposes only
What she shoots: Nature. More specifically, flowers, weather-related images, waterfalls, wildlife and the Niagara Gorge. "I work in the park and live across the Niagara Gorge which allows me to easily take photos and videos of the subject matters I enjoy for a minimum of 10 hours a week," she says. "And I walk many kilometers a day, sunrise being my favorite time to take photos because the light and atmosphere are always perfect. Evenings after work are great too to take pictures since that's when rainbows tend to appear by the waterfalls."
Tips: "There's no need to be afraid to experiment. Always trust your instinct. Knowing the rules that make for best photos is useful when you're learning but, as creativity evolves, it's beneficial to experiment with framing style, tilting, taking photos from a different vantage point. Photo sessions don't only have to take place when on a special trip or at a big event. Photography can be the most interesting when capturing everyday occurrences around you, which are ever-changing even if in one place. I've found that the best travel photography happens where a photographer lives."

Patrick Grab

Erie, Pennsylvania
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Rates available on request
What he shoots: Landscape photography. "What set out to be a useful gear for real estate photography turned into an immediate passion for highlighting Erie’s immense beauty," he says. "One unique scene led to another and now there is a full gallery of artistic landscape photos."
Tips: "Be flexible! The best moments are often the least predictable."

Darla Graff Photography
Erie, Pennsylvania
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Graf sells her photographic images through her website, as well as at art galleries, stores and photographic art exhibits in Erie. She also publishes an annual wall calendar titled “Beauty in Nature."
What she shoots: Graf is a fine art, nature and wildlife photographer who shoots on the shores of Lake Erie and at Presque Isle State Park. 
Tips: "The first hour before sunrise and the last hour after sunset are the most magical times of day for the perfect light," she says, adding to "always be respectful of nature."

Kris Holsten
Toledo, Ohio
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Holsten sells her prints via direct message.
What she shoots: "I love shooting sunrises and sunsets. I try to make it out every morning weather permitting. There is no better way to start your day then watching the sun rise over Lake Erie. Some of the most beautiful sunrises I’ve ever seen right here in my own backyard in Toledo."
Tip: "Love what you capture and it becomes the best hobby ever!"

Ryan Lachanski

Socials: Instagram
For hire: Lachanski mostly sells prints but is available for projects via his website. Rates available upon request.
What he shoots: "I shoot primarily landscape and cityscape images. I also do some automotive and portrait work. I shoot as often as my busy schedule allows."
Tips: "Photography is all about finding good or interesting light. If you have that you can make a great image out of almost anything."

Gabe Leidy Photography
North Ridgeville, Ohio
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Prints and calendars are available on his website
What he shoots: "Lake Erie’s bipolar moods, landscapes and stellar sunrises/sunsets were among my earliest inspirations to pick up a camera. I’ve been actively shooting for six years or so, concentrating on landscapes, cityscapes and wildlife of Northeast Ohio — and the world beyond. The goal of my imagery is to infuse positivity and hometown pride into the lives of others, while inspiring them to explore the world for themselves."
Tips: "The photography journey is different for everyone. Ideally, it is a tool to bring out the best in yourself, those around you and the world at large."

Karin McKenna
Cleveland/Catawba Island
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: For editorial and commercial clients, including food photography at her downtown Cleveland studio. "Rates vary by project and I’m happy to help clients through the whole process of planning a shoot and explaining pricing," she says. 
What she shoots: "I love shooting the beauty that can be found all around our state, and especially enjoy getting up early on a foggy morning on Catawba Island to capture the morning light hitting those zillions of tiny glowing drops of water on spider webs and flowers along the shoreline," she says. "I work from Ashtabula to Toledo and from Cleveland down to Columbus and Athens. Anywhere that I’m lucky enough to be sent to tell a story."
Tips: "Just enjoy taking photos! Whatever it is you like to photograph, just keep shooting and having fun with it. It’s a wonderful way to relax and to forget about troubles and stressors and to immerse yourself fully into the present."

Daryl Mummey
Willowick, Ohio
Socials: Instagram
What he shoots: "I try to capture the incredible beauty I see in nature. And because I live on Lake Erie, my subjects are usually Lake Erie sunsets, lighthouses, storms, waves and wildlife (especially birds). Moving to the lake three years ago was what motivated me to buy a camera and start my photography hobby."
Tip: "The photography tip that is most important to me is to shoot from a unique perspective/angle. If you stand and shoot where everyone else does, your photos won’t be unique."

Rebecca S. Nieminen of Storyteller Photography

Northeast Ohio
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: "Absolutely!" Visit the pricing section on Nieminen's website for more info on rates, including portrait sessions.
What she shoots: Specializes in fine art landscape photography and high quality portraiture. "Much of my landscape photography features Northeastern Ohio, and I especially love visiting Lake Erie during violent weather," she says. "Many of my photographs look almost like paintings and have a soft, dreamlike quality with gorgeous golden light and dramatic, colorful skies. My work has been featured in many Northeastern Ohio art galleries. I try to capture new landscape images every single day and often wake before dawn to catch the sunrise."
Tips: "A great camera and lens are important, but the artist's eye is just as important when it comes to creating beautiful work."

North Coast Aerial Images
owner Mike Pinzone
Cleveland/Lake Erie Islands
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: "I am available for hire on a very limited basis. I am extremely lucky to have a handful of great customers that enable me to capture some really interesting things."
What he shoots: Pinzone does drone photography and videography. "I love the challenge of shooting on and around the water."
Favorite memory: "I was so lucky to be able to follow and capture the Miller Ferry's new addition (Mary Ann Market) last year. I am a notorious planner, and that project took so much coordination — to follow the boat from Detroit, through Canadian waters, and around the islands before coming home for the first time was so cool. It was a huge honor to be able to capture those moments on such an important day for a great family business."
"Learn everything you can, try as many things as you can and plan as much as you can."

Igor Oliyarnik
Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
Socials: Instagram and Facebook
For hire: Yes. Visit his website to request a custom quote 
What he shoots: Landscapes and cityscapes are his bread and butter. "I try to go out to shoot every day," he says. "Even when I’m not specifically going out to photograph, I almost always have my camera on me because you never know when a picture-perfect moment might happen. Composition and lighting can make or break a photograph, so that's what I focus on the most," he says. In addition to an interesting subject, I always look for patterns, leading lines, favorable lighting conditions, reflections, symmetry and so on."
Tips: "Don’t spend a lot of money on the latest and greatest camera right off the bat. You probably already have a great camera in your pocket. Get out and shoot with your phone as much as possible. The limitations of the phone settings and zooming abilities force you to be more creative with your shots, ultimately making you a much better and more interesting photographer when you decide to upgrade to a more serious camera."

Jeff Perry of WNY Scenery
West Seneca, New York
Socials: Facebook and Instagram. His Instagram portrait page can be found here
For hire: Rates vary depending on the project and application. Portrait rates are available through his webpage.
What he shoots: "I love shooting long exposure nature and studio portraits. Nature include waterfalls and landscape. Portraits include models and business professionals."
Tips: "Stability. You can get a great photo with any camera with a steady tripod and correct settings."

Susan Phaneuf
Lakeside, Ohio
Socials: Instagram
For hire: Visit her gallery here to purchase prints.
What she shoots: Primarily landscape and nature photos.
Tip: "Find a subject that you are passionate about and start there. For me, capturing the natural beauty of my favorite place (Lakeside, Ohio) is what grew my interest for the art form. Then, I began pushing myself to learn new perspectives and techniques to photograph my subject in fresh and interesting ways."

Matt Shiffler Photography
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Shiffler is a full-time professional photographer and gallery owner who does editorial, commercial and wedding work.
What he shoots: "Growing up an avid fisherman, my photography evolved from my love of nature and the outdoors. My photographs focus on the beauty of the Midwest and capturing the humanity of all different types of people. I love to teach through photography and through social media. I am able to bring people on my travels that otherwise may not be able to."
Tip: "My top photo tip is insanely simple: “Photograph what you love.”

Thomas Wasinski of Aerial Agents 
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: Drone photography services start at $225. Rates available upon request.
What he shoots: Cityscapes and industry are his specialty. "I've been out flying drones just about every day dating back to 2013," he says. "Shooting photos and recording video with a flying camera, even in the bitter cold of Northeast Ohio. I harness the power of drones because I can cover more ground in a shorter amount of time, obtain an overall perspective and stay out of the way of hazards on the ground. No tripod needed."
Tips: "Expand the scene. Over shoot your frame by snapping the area to the top/bottom or left/right of your scene. Stitch them together in Lightroom by highlighting them, then clicking 'Photo Merge' followed by 'Panorama.' This will make one photo out of your three or more frames. We've merged more than 15 together using this technique. It helps you bend reality to your favor."

Gabe Wasylko
Socials: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter
For hire
: Wasylko specialize in portraits, editorial imagery, events, residential and commercial real estate, pet photography and imagery license agreements for print/website use. "With the scope of every project being different, please inquire for rates and details," he notes.
What he shoots: "My love of photography was born out of a passion to capture the beauty in Cleveland, Ohio each day while inspiring those who have ties to the city, near and far, to embrace and celebrate what makes Northeast Ohio a great place to live, work and call home. In 2021, during the midst of the pandemic, I set a goal to take one photo of Cleveland a day and share it on social media to better my photography craft and celebrate the small bits of beauty in every day. Whether it was waking up before sunrise to capture the perfect light on the shore of Lake Erie or creatively documenting growth of Cleveland’s vibrant neighborhoods, I welcomed the challenge of freezing the moments we take for granted in our day-to-day life. From there, I found that my motivations changed from just capturing Cleveland’s natural beauty to giving those who have a connection to the city something to celebrate and be proud of. Today, my focus remains on capturing beautiful land and cityscapes each day, as well as expanding my passions into portraits, real estate, events and a blossoming pet portrait business.
Tips: "The best way to learn and grow as a photographer is by consistently showing up each day and practicing as much as you can. Formal training and classes form fantastic foundations for the craft, but going out to shoot helps you find the muse that satisfies your creative itch."

Brad Wood Photography

Port Colborne, Ontario
Socials: Facebook and Instagram
For hire: "An image has no purpose unless it is seen and it is the greatest honor to custom print my images for clients. I personalize my images and print them to meet the customer's budget and to enhance their environment, evoking long lasting memories."
His journey: As a geologist, Wood has been exploring — and mining for diamonds — around the world. He's lived in Ontario, Alberta, the Northwest Territories, South Africa and Namibia. "My travels have taken me to many parts of the world, but I always seem to be drawn to the water and the desert," he says. "I honed my photographic skills by engaging with many inspirational photographers and have taken several photographic workshops and classes over the years." 
What he shoots: "I get out as often as I can on Lake Erie in my little red fishing boat, that was given to me by my grandfather when I was 13," he says. "I am particularly attracted to classic lighthouses, sunrises/sunsets, automobiles, geologic and geographic features, fishing and Great Lakes ships. I also seem to be attracted to the moon and the night sky, having developed my astro and lunar photography skills over the last 15 years."
Tips: "Just keep talking pictures and to be confident that your eye will naturally find an award winning composition. Don't try to meet the expectations of others; set your own path to fulfillment!"