Sauquoit, New York
For nearly 75 years, Susan Kiesel's family has owned a camp in Old Forge, New York, surrounded by the spectacular scenery of the Adirondacks. The natural beauty of the area's lakes, mountains, and streams has drawn Kiesel outdoors since her youth, inspiring her to take up photography seven years ago after a career as a teacher and floral designer.
"We live on an old 50-acre farm brimming with fascinating wildlife," Kiesel says of the home she shares with her husband, William, in the hamlet of Sauquoit. "When I decided to start taking pictures, my family offered to buy me a digital camera. At first I refused, but they went ahead with it anyway, and I've been hooked ever since."
Kiesel paddles out in her kayak at sunrise and spends many mornings chronicling the movements of the region's wildlife. However, she took this photo of a beautiful drake wood duck from a field blind. "It was the first wood duck I'd ever seen in this area. It was a breathtaking sight," Kiesel recalls. "I feel blessed to be out there capturing the spirit of the Adirondacks every day."