My name is Michael Kennedy, a resident of Olympic Valley, CA near Lake Tahoe. I’m a freelance writer, photographer and teacher.
I’m drawn to the serenity, adventure, and astonishing beauty that inhabits Lake Tahoe and its surrounding areas.
As a visual storyteller, I feel a sense of obligation to share this worldly, and unworldly enchantment with others as though I might be held accountable if even the least of these moments were to go unnoticed.
I photograph to discover on my wall a new composition I would enjoy seeing such as a landscape, portrait, or wildlife image that engages and inspires me in some meaningful way.
As a young boy I was surrounded with visual stimulation: boats, planes, and great storytellers - on a remote Bahamian Island, Cat Island. It was, and still is, an unspoiled gem nesting mysteriously in the Bermuda Triangle with its pink sands and crystal-clear blue water. The smell of salt air and Avgas still lingers in my memory decades later.
On Cat Island I developed a habit of intense curiosity, of noticing things others took for granted or simply didn’t observe. Without knowing it at the time I was following Jim Rohn’s advice:
“Wherever you are, be there! Be there to absorb it. Take a picture if you can. Take pictures in your mind. Let your soul and heart take pictures. Get it. Capture it. Absorb it.”
To this day, I do what I can to get it, capture it, and absorb it… but to also share it with others through my lens and my blog on BlueWolfGallery.com.
As Jack London said, “Don’t loaf and invite inspiration, light out after it with a club, and if you don’t get it, you will none the less get something that looks remarkably like it.”
Every day I light out after inspiration with my camera and curiosity – and find it:
From Monet sunrises to Van Gogh sunsets…
Among the mighty trees, symbolizing strength and resilience…
And into the forest where the textures, smells and colors inspire with their own artistic expression…
And on the tarmac among the creatures of the sky with their grace and power… and that familiar smell of Avgas.
And on the faces of our pets with their own stories of adventure, heartache, and resolution to share.
It’s everywhere I look. I’m immersed in it.
I feel a sense of the ultimate, as if there’s some form of cosmic fun at play and I’m a lucky participant.
Even if I didn’t feel I was being held accountable for sharing this infinite beauty with others, it would be impossible to keep it all to myself.
It’s rewarding, and often times astounding, when we take a moment to listen, breathe in the fragrance, look around and become better noticers.
I can’t help wondering what’s past the next tree or waterfall, or beyond the next vista. But one thing I know for sure, there will be something that will delight and rattle my soul. Like a surfer chasing the perfect wave, it’s an endless search for awe.
Nature does everything in her power to get my attention, to pull me away from the TV and technology. Not just to experience the spectacular, but to enjoy the mundane as well. Even the rocks along the water are seductive.
My stories and photographs capture a way of life that’s a few miles off the highway, but a million miles from ordinary. My work has been featured regularly in Palisades Press (formerly Squaw Valley Times), and Sierra Sun. Featured articles have been published in Tahoe Quarterly Magazine as well: "As The Old Crow Flies" and "A Life Of Lofty Achievement", about local heroes Brigadier General “Bud” Anderson and Stephen Wampler.
I suppose the biggest difference between me and my contemporaries is I never grew up. I’ll always have a beginner’s mindset. It’s with that passion and that sense of wonder that keeps me clicking away.
Subscribe for updates (scroll to the bottom of this page. bottom right) to keep up with the latest on my travels and new work, or feel free to reach out to me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Send me a note if you’d like me to place any order for you today. You’ll love the quality of the work and the memories it represents.
A Life of Lofty Achievement
In this Summer 2021 issue of Tahoe Quarterly Magazine, read about Stephen Wampler's incredible ascent of El Capitan with cerebral palsy and how he exemplifies his positive spirit and inspirational message, passing it on through his outdoor camp.
As the old crow flies
In this Summer 2020 issue of Tahoe Quarterly Magazine, read about local war hero, Triple Ace Fighter Pilot, & Living Legend, Brig. Gen. "Bud" Anderson.
Like many boys his age, a young Bud Anderson would run through his yard with a toy airplane held high over his head, dreaming of flying around the clouds with his own set of wings one day...
Each year I spend hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars keeping Blue Wolf Gallery (BWG) going. For the past four years and counting, BWG has remained free and ad-free and alive thanks to patronage from readers and clients like you. I have no staff, no interns, although my wife, Nicola, is my Muse and helps when she can — BWG is a thoroughly one-person labor of love that is also my life, passionate obsession, and my livelihood. If this labor makes your own life more livable in any way, please consider aiding its sustenance with a donation. Simply click on the "donate" button above. Your support makes all the difference in the world. Thank you.