Hey guys it’s Sam Axness here! I consider myself to be a part time adventurer who sprouted from the flat lands of Wisconsin, however I feel the most at home in the mountains. For years I spent countless hours immersed in video games or behind a computer screen but I’ve more recently been on a mission to connect more deeply with world around me. My thrill seeking attitude mixed with my never ending curiosity is what pushes me to experience new things everywhere I go. I strive to inspire others to break out of their comfort zones, get outside, and live more positive, adventurous lives through my photography.
Share this Post
“Your smile is a messenger of your good will. Your smile brightens the lives of all who see it. To someone who has seen a dozen people frown, scowl or turn their faces away, your smile is like the sun breaking through the clouds.”
Do you remember the first time you picked up a camera?
I always loved taking pictures with disposable cameras growing up. It was a thrill to finally get the film developed and look back on the memories I captured.
Favorite source for inspiration?
It’s not a specific place but I’d say going for a drive somewhere or longboarding around spark a lot of thought and ideas. I love late night cruises to anywhere, especially on summer nights, they’ve been a form of meditation for me for awhile.
Tell us about your latest adventure...
What made this hike interesting was after a miscommunication between my friends and I, they ended up on a different trail while I thought I was trailing behind them to the top of this one. I hiked the 4 miles to the top to find no sign of them. I romped around the top for awhile hoping they were on their way up behind me, and they finally showed up just in time to catch the sunset. We all ran around snapping pictures as the rays of the sinking sun flooded the valleys of the seemingly endless mountains on the horizon. This was definitely one of my top 3 favorite sunsets to watch.
I’m currently on the road across North America with two good friends for a project called Explore the North. This trip is is symbolized by the Canadian motto “A mari Usque ad mare” which translates to “sea to sea” which driving coast to coast is exactly what we are set out to accomplish. The mission of our excursion is to share our encounters with the world, inspire others to explore more, and to spread a positive mindset, all through our captivating imagery. My favorite stop so far was at Hautes-Gorges-de-la-Rivière-Malbaie National Park(I know, it’s a mouthful) where we hiked up L’Acropole des Draveurs to see this stunning view.
Favorite song on the road?
Peaches by Into the Valley Below has got to be one of my favorite driving songs. It’s certainly been a defining song on this journey.
Any current books you're working on?
Im currently reading Walden by Henry David Thoreau, it’s a wonderful book that any nature lover can enjoy.
Favorite source for inspiration?
One of my good friends actually told me about it and let me try one. Since the first can, I’ve loved the originality of Just Chill and it’s calming effects.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I’ve never really been one to have a concrete plan for the future but I don’t see myself settling down for awhile. I would love to own a modest home in a smaller city in Colorado or Oregon because I can’t see myself living somewhere that doesn’t have a mountain view. All the while, I’d still want to be traveling with photography (and eventually film) projects with a dog and/or a girl by my side, experiencing as much of this world as I can.
One spot to visit in your hometown
When I’m back in my hometown of Eau Claire, WI my favorite thing to do is longboard around town and see what’s changed. I always seem to end up at a place called Phoenix Park, which is a rad park downtown that has various events and live music.
Any last words?
Make sure to follow me along on the rest my Explore the North journey and if we’re coming to an area near you we would love to hike with you!