A Thousand Words
Photographer Adam Clark figures out how to capture the soul of skiing in a photograph.
In this second episode of season two of “Westward,” we meet Adam Clark, a seasoned pro in the niche world of ski photography.
When Adam Clark was 17, a doctor on board a whale-watching boat in Alaska gifted the curious teenager, who was on vacation with his mother, his 35 mm SLR film camera. Clark, who grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah, and still lives there today, began using the camera right away, snapping photos of everything he could—including pictures of his friends on powder days at Alta. He got his first photo published in Powder Magazine before he’d even graduated from high school.
Although he dabbled with college and a profession outside of the ski industry, photography eventually lured him back to the mountains and he returned to Utah to focus on a career in ski photography, something he wasn’t even sure was possible at the time. Shooting skiing, Clark has said, “is my number one thing, my creative outlet, my hobby, and my job. It’s all I do and who I am.”
Now, Clark is one of the most respected and successful ski photographers in the business, snapping imagery for the likes of Patagonia, The North Face, Teton Gravity Research, Powder, and yes, Flylow—you’ll find many an Adam Clark photo throughout our website, catalog, and other material.
And here’s why Clark has been so successful and why his images speak volumes: He’s not just shooting a powder turn. He’s capturing a moment, a feeling. A skier on a pre-dawn skintrack. A storm brewing outside a hut window. A road trip with friends, ski gear crammed into a crowded truck. A powder day with snow as light and airy as a cloud. Clark’s photos transport you to that moment, making you feel like you’re actually there.
Westward Series: Season 6
What is it about Vermont? There are places with bigger mountains that get more snow and less subzero temps. But there is no place with a more committed core of skiers. Raining? No problem. Bulletproof? They invented bulletproof. Negative 20 and 30mph wind? Better be ready at 6am so you can get first chair at Stowe.