Dennis Minty: A Life of Adventure

Dennis Minty: A Life of Adventure

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Celebrated photographer, best selling author and eco-tour guide Dennis Minty has seen a side of our planet that few can dare dream of capturing

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Photographer, author, eco-tour leader, environmental educator. There are many titles and accomplishments that one could attach to Twillingate’s Dennis Minty. Proud Newfoundlander may rank highest among them. 

“There’s something magical that begins to happen when I’m outside in good lighting conditions with good things to see and I’ve got my camera,” shared Minty, a self-taught photographer with world class talent. “It just really connects me with whatever place it so happens to be. I have to say I’m most connected to Newfoundland and Labrador. That’s sort of how I made that union, by making images of it. It goes far beyond the actual product, beyond the image, it really connects me to the place and helps me see and enjoy and live more deeply.”

Traversing The Globe

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After years spent traversing the globe with stops in Antarctica, the Galapagos Islands, Africa, New Zealand, the Hebrides, Iceland, Greenland, and Costa Rica, working at everything from environmental education, to dairy farming and a polar bear guide, Minty, at 50 years of age, took the next grand chapter in a life chalk full of adventure, becoming a photographer. 

“I don’t know any photographers, professional photographers, who are successful who don’t work at it,” says Minty, who has been honoured nationally and internationally for his work. “It doesn’t come easy to anybody. It’s the same as any serious craft, it takes a lot of practice. There’s a technology associated with the cameras, and there’s also the art of seeing. Unless you have both of those things, you’re not going to make images that have impact. It takes a long time. The technology is actually the easier part, it’s the art of seeing that’s the harder part.”

In-Depth Eco-Tours

Working and living in Clarke’s Beach, Minty has become renowned for his extensive and in-depth eco-tours, showcasing the beauty of Newfoundland and Labrador in a different light. 

“There are the icons like Gros Morne, whale watching and sea bird colonies and those kinds of things. People get really excited about those, but the way we travel is we travel slowly,” 

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Minty explains. “We meet people and talk to a lot of people and I give our guests some background on the kind of culture that we have so that when they meet people they have an idea of how they live their lives. The role of the fishery and demise of the fishery and all those kinds of things. They really like the community of Newfoundland and to meet people and talk to them and hear stories. Our tours are as much about learning

Morning Walk, Port Rexton, Newfoundland

photography as they are being exposed to Newfoundland and Labrador culture.” 

Completely Unique

And what is it that Minty attributes Newfoundland’s appeal on a wide, tourist-alluring scale? Her beauty? Mystery?

“Compared to the other Atlantic provinces it has a wildness that the others lack,” he says. “They are largely pastoral kind of provinces. There’s nowhere else in Canada like it, it’s completely unique. The people that are born into it tend to develop a deep passion for it, even if they don’t know it. Those who move away, a lot of them just hanker to come back. It really gets into people’s bloodstreams somehow or another. What that is I don’t know. Part of it is lifestyle, for sure. We’re a fairly relaxed culture. You just don’t see that in too many other places.”

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For a selection of works or to book a photo tour visit mintynaturephotography.ca

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Dillon Collins is a writer based out of St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador. Multi-time MusicNL nominee for Media Person of the Year. Lover of heavy metal, hoppy beverages and the loveable canine.

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