David Little’s happiness is contagious, in front of and behind the camera. Photo by Amanda Williams

David Little, a well-known photographer in Cordova, has been creating memories taking beautiful landscape and astral photos since he moved here in 2005. His passion for photography began when he was 10 years old. Little lived all over the world — from Japan to Australia — before settling in the last frontier.

A day in the life of a photographer varies, but he always has his camera with him, he shared.

“A lot of my photos are serendipitous. I just happen to be there anyway. I am not going out purposefully looking, I am just there,” Little said.

The Cordova Times asked Little 10 questions to get to know the down-to-earth photographer a bit better.

How did you get great at taking photos?
By taking thousands of bad photos. I grew up as a little kid over in Japan and just took photos. I had these little miniature cameras and had opportunities to develop the film. I took photos because doing so was interesting to me. But I got better and kept on taking them. Just by getting out, looking at stuff and being interested in things and taking photos. If you’re going to be good at anything, you’ve got to put X amount of hours in.

What is your favorite thing/setting to take pictures of?
I’d say Cordova. I was at Yellowstone a few weeks ago (a road trip with my daughter), and I was riding by, and everyone is stopping to look at this one eagle. I am thinking we (here in Cordova) have got eagles, lots of eagles. Don’t get me wrong, there are some cool, awesome stuff in Yellowstone. But for the most part, I am not inspired anywhere else to take photos like I am in Cordova.”

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Can you share something exciting you experienced while shooting photography in Cordova?
The aurora! It’s still amazing. If we get a good aurora, it really keeps me awake.

Where are you from?
By the time I was 12, I had lived in Japan for 6 years. I moved around a lot. I don’t consider one place home. When I go visit family, I either go to Australia or North Carolina.

What advice would you give aspiring photographers?
Keep trying, keep working on it. Print your best photos, get them off the screen. It will help you improve and it will change your photography.

Tell us a joke, or something you would get a laugh from!
I was Time Magazines person of the year, go check it out!

Is there somewhere in the world you would love to take photographs?
In southern California, La Jolla (down by San Diego). I want to go down there and check that out. The desert in California also has some cool stuff.

Who is your favorite photographer?
I like to look at a lot of different people’s photography. I like Ken Duncan from Australia does a lot of panoramic stuff.

What gear do you use?
Generally, a Nikon mirror-less camera and an older DSLR is good for aurora photography. Sometimes, I would say whatever works.

Final words, anything you would like to share?
Any advice I could share about photography: it’s not about the equipment. Somebody said the most important part of the photograph is 8 inches behind the camera (I believe that was Ansel Adams.) If you don’t have the mind or eye for it, you could try all you want to, but it must be you, its personal. You have to have passion.

To view Little’s work, visit his Facebook page: facebook.com/David.L.Little, where his pictures can be viewed by the public. If interested in purchasing his work, message him directly. A 2023 calendar of his spectacular photography is also available for sale at the Whales Tale, the Cordova Museum or by getting in touch directly.

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Amanda Williams is a freelance reporter for The Cordova Times. She is also Aquatics Resource Management Assistant for Copper River Watershed Project. Williams is a Navy veteran who served during Operation Iraqi Freedom. She has worked for a variety of newspapers in the Lower 48. She first came to Cordova as a VetsWork intern working for the Forest Service as a public outreach specialist on the Cordova Ranger District.