All photos ©Stephen Underhay
Stephen Underhay has just summited Pico de Orizaba, the highest mountain in Mexico. Recovering in his hostel, he’s still managed to find some time to answer a few questions for Explore Nation’s latest 5 Minutes With. We’ve been in contact via social media for quite a while now, so I’m more than stoked to have him on board. Enjoy!
1. What’s your current location?
Mexico City! I’m just finishing up an amazing two week trip with my girlfriend and two weeks of climbing Mexico’s highest peaks.
2. Was there a particular moment or event that motivated you to pick up a camera for the first time?
I was fulfilling a lifelong dream to visit Africa and wanted to show my friends and family as much of the beauty I could. It’s sparked a passion that has opened up a lot of new doors for me.
3. How would you best describe your photographic style?
I would call myself an adventure landscape photographer. I try to express the beauty and rarity of landscapes under difficult conditions.
4. Has your environment / location inspired your work in any way?
Of course! It’s easy to get off the beaten trail and suffer in the Canadian Rockies!
5. You’re an ambassador for This World Exists. How did this opportunity come about?
Ryan, the founder, contacted me via social media. He’s awesome and it’s an amazing group of people so it wasn’t hard to convince me to get involved.
6. Where is the most memorable destination your work has taken you so far?
I’m currently working on a mountaineering project called “North America’s Highest.” I’m attempting to climb our highest mountains before I turn 30. I was fortunate enough to summit Pico de Orizaba – Mexico’s highest peak and the third highest in North America. That’s something I’ll never forget!
7. You work full time as a firefighter. How do you maintain a good balance between that and your photography?
I think being a firefighter is the only job that you can balance two passions equally. I love my career and work with awesome people. Thankfully it affords me a lot of down time to go adventuring.
8. What is the ultimate goal you would like to achieve with your work?
I’ve been given so many great opportunities I’m doing my best to take everything one step at a time! I’m sticking to my original goal of trying to inspire people to get outside and find their own adventure.
9. If you could go anywhere in the world to get a photo, where would it be and why?
The summit of Denali to finish my project! And then I’d love to go back to Africa. It’s a very special place.