This series of aerial (helicopter) photographs provides a microcosmic glimpse of earth’s beauty, a testimony into its transformative power, and speculation of humanity’s ability to thrive and co-exist on it.
The impetus for my project ʻĀina: Threshold 4° F began in 2017 as an aerial photographic project inventorying the anthropogenic impact on the Hawaiian islands. I felt an urgency for this work as Hawaii’s climate approached the +4° F threshold that would trigger a destructive 3-6 foot sea level rise, the extinction of many ecosystems, and the loss of ancient cultural sites. Aerial photography provided the perfect vantage point for documenting the human impact and loss taking place in the island’s landscapes, a view that was not readily apparent nor accessible from the ground. With the 2018 eruption, a rare opportunity afforded itself to historically document the earth’s regenerative process. As the weeks unfolded, observing the sheer mass and intensity of the lava river as it advanced through subdivisions and farmlands was profound. I was compelled to wonder what triggered this event—and did the anthropogenic induced climate changes play a role in its intensity? Only time will tell..