Jake is a contemplative photographer and teacher based in Austin, Texas, with a limitless palette of subjects - whatever and whoever catches his eye, including street life and cityscapes, portraiture, landscapes, historical and travel sites, and everything else.
A retired psychiatric nurse and longtime practitioner in the Shambhala Buddhist tradition, Jake began to seriously take photographs when he got his first "nice" camera in 1976, following the home birth of his son on a Texas ranch. In the late 1990's, he began dedicating a month of each year to solo meditation retreat practice and it was on these retreats, while taking photographs on walks and explorations, that he noticed that his mind, now more still and present, was reflected in his photographs. He honed these skills through Miksang, the Shambhala practice of contemplative photography which he teaches in programs and retreats around the states and internationally.
Contemplative Photography is the photography of presence, as much a meditative practice as it is the process of taking photos. It's about softening the separation between subject and object, about opening one's heart and eyes in approaching the world and dissolving the separation between self and other, and about befriending and making porous the blocks that get in the way of receptivity. Contemplative photography is seeing and appreciating what's right in front of us in the ever-arising, ever-fresh moment.