The photographic moment
Preparation meets opportunity for Green Bay photographer
BY LEE REINSCH
GREEN BAY — The longest-running travel and tourism TV show in the country has chosen a photo by a Green Bay photographer for the cover of its next calendar.
Nik Thyrion’s “Wisconsin: The Sunrise State” is Discover Wisconsin’s pick to illustrate the month of March as well as to represent 2023 in next year’s calendar.
Discover chose the work from more than 1,000 entries.
The image features a wood-planked path winding its way over a sand dune and disappearing into a blazing raspberry mist that melts the line between water and sky.
Thyrion, 33, said he snapped the photo in late summer of 2021 at Kohler-Andrae State Park in the Town of Wilson in Sheboygan County.
He describes himself as a “landscape and sunrise photographer by passion” and said he was at the park with the express purpose of capturing that sunrise.
“I just didn’t know the morning was going to be that spectacular,” he said. “From the fog, to the dew glistening off the grass. Everything was perfect.”
Listen to your mother
Discover Wisconsin announced the opening of the photo competition in March and accepted entries through May 31.
Thyrion said at first, he did not plan to toss his name into the hat.
“I never win anything,” he said.
But then an influential person led him to change his mind.
“My mom pushed me to enter it,” he said.
His mother has long encouraged him to pursue his love for photography. “But like a typical son, I never really listened,” he said.
Then Discover Wisconsin got in touch with him via his Instagram, @nik_lives_life, and said they would love for him to participate, he said.
Thyrion said he’s been shooting photos for a little more than seven years and has had his work featured in a magazine for motorcycle enthusiasts as well as on a few travel websites.
“I balance the line between professional and hobbyist,” he said.
He used a Canon 5D Mark IV camera with a 16-35mm 2.8 L series Canon lens to make the image.
Thyrion has a day job at a semi dealership, where he works as a service advisor.
He was born and raised in Green Bay, with “a massive family, five brothers and sisters, all raised by a beautiful, strong mom,” he said.
That beautiful, strong mom of his would take the six of them all over the state on family road trips to experience state parks.
“So I think that’s where my passion for the outdoors definitely sprung,” he said.
Create your own opportunities
His advice to anyone just starting out or wanting to improve their game? Just get out and do it.
“No matter what,” he said. “Go out and shoot, spend time in the field and get comfy. The more comfortable you get, the more you will start noticing natural lines and the natural beauty of things, not to mention creating opportunities that will eventually lead you to the perfect scenario that I was in when I took this photo.”
The 2023 Discover Wisconsin calendars measure 13 inches by 10.5 inches and are available for purchase for $14.99 at shop.discoverwisconsin.com.
They are published in conjunction with the Wisconsin Counties Association.
“This is an insanely beautiful state,” Thyrion said. “You just need to go out and discover it.”