Hey, I'm Erin.
I believe that powerful images can change the world, and want to see what happens when we focus on learning and growing together.
I am a travel photographer, passionate outdoorswoman, and curious on-camera host who is in love with this planet.
What gets me most excited? I’ve got a few things at the top of my list: Spending meaningful time outdoors. Learning about the rich traditions in the places I visit. Listening to a story that’s been passed down through generations.
The space I’m in is somewhere in between photography, the outdoors & travel, and personal development. Welcome.
Want to take a step back with me? I’ve always been into travel… but I didn’t *actually leave* the country until I was 21. When I was a kid, this sense of wanderlust would follow me around like a cloud over my head. I’d thumb through National Geographic, pretend I was from another country, and watch shows about places far away from my childhood home. Anthony Bourdain became my hero as soon as he graced my television screen.
Like travel, I always loved photography, but I was so freaked out about making money with *art* that I didn’t pursue it professionally until I (ironically) needed to in order to support my blog. I believe that’s what happens when you try to avoid your purpose. It comes back to remind you what you’re really here for.
Seeking to understand before being understood, quiet moments in nature, learning from the land’s original stewards, experiencing culture through food, Purpose with a capital P, and Jesus.
Playing small, doing it for the gram, too much luggage (there’s a metaphor there somewhere), hustle culture.
Hopefully in Greece! But there’s also a chance I’m swimming with whales, photographing layers of sand dunes, on a glacier hike, or just answering emails in my apartment.
Journaling, getting outside, making art, and listening to a book or a motivating podcast.
"You see, I believe that’s what happens when you try to avoid your purpose. It comes back to remind you what you’re really here for."
I spend about a third of my time traveling, keeping my eyes & ears open for mountain layers, signs of wildlife, or a really good story.
When I’m home in LA, you can find me out on a trail, editing my images, probably daydreaming about Greece and getting what I’ve learned from my travels down on paper—err… my blog.
I don’t want to tell people’s stories as much as figure out the best way to share them. I’ve found that people know what their own story is. We have to be listeners and keen observers before we can ever be storytellers.
I believe we need to take care of this planet, ourselves, and each other.
Summer 2009 - Went on my first backcountry wilderness trip. It totally kicked my ass, and challenged me in the best ways. This trip is what pushed me to become an adventure trip leader.
Summit selfie while on my NOLS trip
WHERE I'M FROM!
2007-2011 - I was spooked about trying to make money with photography, and created my own major: Visual Arts & Environmental Studies, as I uncovered the importance of intersectionality in all things. I’ve been obsessed with the combination of art & science ever since.
High school - Fell in love with photography shooting on my Dad’s old Nikon FE.
2015 - Got my first ever full-time office job in Colorado. Seven months later, I got fired… oops (“it just wasn’t a good fit”). Used my savings to build a bed in the back of my CR-V (still one of the most-read posts on this blog) and go camping for a couple of months out West.
2014 - Started this blog and began sharing my travel photos as @erinoutdoors on Instagram. Internet, meet Erin Outdoors.
2010-2014 - Worked as an adventure & wilderness guide for teenagers around the world. Perhaps you are wondering why I would, in my right mind, elect to spend the majority of my time with 10-15 teenagers in an unpredictable outdoor setting. You’d be right to wonder. It’s a demanding job. But it was also one of the most rewarding things I have ever done.
WHAT LIVING OUT OF MY BACKPACK LOOKED LIKE!
2017 - I quit all my side jobs to focus on blogging & photography–– I was too busy not to! Upgraded my camera gear. Became a member of the Sony Alpha Imaging Collective. Led my first adventure trip for my blog readers. Moved to Los Angeles.
Lots to appreciate about Colorado
ON SET IN MEXICO!
Summer 2016 - Did my first official brand collaborations. Modeled for REI’s holiday catalog in Argentina. Kicked things up a notch on my blog… I really wanted to make it full time!
2016 - Ah, the freelance life. I had lots of jobs–– social media manager, server, babysitter, house sitter, plant sitter, dog sitter… you get the idea. Hit 10k followers on Instagram. Bought my first Sony camera.
2019 - The mini-series I host with REI, In Our Nature, launched. I turned 30. I spoke on the TED Stage. Photographed humpback whales, a longtime dream of mine.
2020 - Took a hard pivot, started my #OurGreatIndoors series during quarantine, and went viral. Onward! :)
2018 - Stayed committed to the vision, and put my focus and energy into projects that aligned.
In the British Virgin Islands with Adobe
Thanks for coming to my TED Talk… I’ve always wanted to say that ;)
In My Backpack
My HydroFlask bottle with water (that stays cold all day)
The stuff that works best for me in the field.
Trail maps. Because you can’t always rely on your phone.
Sunscreen, bug spray, bear mace, chapstick & layers.