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Passion Project

Passion Project

In the past few years, I have been lucky enough to talk with passionate individuals who are living truly inspiring lives. These people, whether they are writers, oyster-farmers, career conservationists, sustainable carpenters, or simply enthusiastic naturalists, have chosen lifestyles that involve freedom, adventure, and most of all a true appreciation of nature, art, and science.

As a naturally inquisitive person, the conversations started just as a benefit to my own personal curiosity, and most remained mostly undocumented. However, I quickly realized how important it is to share these stories, and I began to chronicle and curate them so that they can hopefully inspire other as they have done for me. At that point, inspiring people and stories spawned from every combination possible. People I met and admired. People I never met but still admired. People I met and never knew I admired until I started talking to them, unintentionally uncovering what made them tick, only to find out that they had a passion project all of their own. With each conversation or meeting, I left energized and exhilarated, with a stronger intention that I would go out and do something all my own.

Currently, my passion is a side-project, not my life, but I am learning a little bit from every conversation that I have from people who have turned their own passion into their everyday existence, and one day, hope to do the same.

Below are the stories...

Man standing with his hand shielding his eyes overlooking misty mountains

Will Harlan of Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine

By dontforget | November 3, 2019

Even after moving to coastal Carolina, a hundred miles away from the closest distribution center, I pick up a copy of Blue Ridge Outdoors whenever I return to central Virginia. The largest free outdoor lifestyle magazine in the country, “BRO” has great tips about hiking and camping, product reviews, and keeps me honest with my…

Interview with Stefanie Brendl of Shark Allies

By dontforget | August 26, 2019

We talked late into the night, the California sun had long set behind her. We were connecting via Skype and were starting to wrap up, but Stefanie Brendl was blowing my mind about her experiences diving with sharks, shark population trends, and of course, shark finning. I was enthralled. Stefanie has a story to tell.…

Amelia Mason of Skywatch Bird Rescue

Interview With Amelia Mason of Skywatch Bird Rescue

By dontforget | May 29, 2019

The chaotic chirping slowly started syncopating in time, like a band practice that was just starting to get into a rhythm. I was at Skywatch Bird Rescue and Conservation Center, and the resident birds certainly wanted me to know it. Skywatch Bird Rescue offers rehab and care for injured or orphaned wild birds to help…

Dr Paul O'Donoghue

Interview with Dr. Paul O’Donoghue of Scottish Wildcat Haven

By dontforget | May 10, 2019

You could hear the excitement in his voice, nearly quivering as he was describing them, “they are just beautiful”. Immediately you understand that Dr. Paul O’Donoghue will do whatever it takes to save the rarest cat in the world, the Scottish Wildcat. But years ago, Paul didn’t even know that such a creature existed. “To…

Interview with Neagha Leonard of the Ca Ba Langur Conservation Project

By dontforget | March 31, 2019

Every year, millions of travelers come to Ha Long Bay to explore and party in the beautiful crystal clear waters, however just miles away from one of the biggest tourist destinations in the world lies a small island with a world unto itself. This complex eco-system, with emerald waters and limestone karsts soaring up to…

Palouse prairie under clouds

Interview with Ben Stone of The Phoenix Conservancy

By dontforget | February 28, 2019

Often times, the efforts of conservationists and those who rely on the land for farming and ranching are inherently at odds. However, of all the organizations that I have researched and talked to, the objective of The Phoenix Conservancy has seemed to best bridge the needs between the two sides. Their mission clearly states their…

Craig Sholley of African Wildlife Foundation sitting with a baby elephant

Interview with Craig Sholley of African Wildlife Foundation

By dontforget | December 16, 2018

It’s not every day that you can interview a personal hero, but luckily for me, today is one of those days. Craig Sholley had the life that many wilderness lovers and environmentalists dream of, and throughout his illustrious career, he has had unprecedented exposure with mountain gorillas in Uganda, Rwanda, and the Congo, and has…

Tim Holbrook of Masonboro Oyster Reserve Co

Interview With Tim Holbrook of Masonboro Reserve Oyster Co.

By dontforget | December 14, 2018

It should be no surprise to any reader that in another life I was most likely destined to be an oyster farmer. Unfortunately, things just didn’t work out that way, and I have begrudgingly accepted my fate to make a living on dry land.  However, Tim Holbrook gives me confidence that my dream is still…

Sam Blount of Frontline Freediving

Interview with Sam Blount of Frontline Freediving

By dontforget | November 13, 2018

“It’s all mental, I mean you can totally freedive 100 feet,” Sam told me. “You’re shitting me”, I said, momentarily looking up from my audio recorder. Looking at his warm, genuine smile, I can tell he indeed wasn’t shitting me. “Well, not with that attitude”. I was worried it would be something like that. In…

Delaware Bay (Debbie) Oysters

My Secret Quest To Be An Oyster Farmer

By dontforget | March 29, 2018

Aquaculture and conservation don’t necessarily go hand in hand. Fish farming, for example, can be quite detrimental to the environment if done improperly. So, when sustainable food and environmentalism meet it’s a big deal, and luckily for us, it’s in the form of something truly delicious—the oyster. Recently, I had the opportunity to volunteer at…