"“My role is to be the observer, the curator of visual moments. I’m not there to make moments, I’m there to capture them.”
I've heard it said that it's more difficult to document one's own community than it is to travel halfway around the world and photograph in a foreign land. My experience has been that there are elements of truth to this statement. And yet, it's these nuanced moments that are so familiar to many photographers, that most tend to not give them second thought. There is this subtle "something" to the way I see the world as a documentary photographer and visual storyteller that captures my subjects in a way that is quiet, understated, and yet says something to each viewer of these decisive moments.
The images I capture of the everyday world I see in my local community through my cameras and the communities I visit in my home state of Oregon are a testament to this philosophy.
My name is Cliff Etzel and I’m a Pacific Northwest award-winning photojournalist specializing in family, wedding and end of life documentary photography as well as working with humanitarian for profit companies, NGO’s and non-profits.
My 30+ year experience for framing and catching fleeting moments and light is what gives my photos meaning and sets my photos apart from run of the mill photographers. In my photographic work, I feel there’s a real beauty in documenting authentic life experiences. My passion to document the lives of everyday people is inspired by the works of William Albert Allard, David Burnett, David Alan Harvey plus many others and my passion hasn’t diminished even after all these years."