Instagram Spotlight: Go West, Young Man

Photographer Aaron Huey likes to take road trips with his son, Hawkeye. But these are no ordinary road trips. Huey and Hawkeye explore the world with their cameras in tow. In fact, Hawkeye has over 85,000 followers on Instagram, and Huey and Hawkeye have been featured on PetaPixel and the Huffington Post. Hawkeye is five years old.

While many people think Huey simply brings Hawkeye with him on assignment for National Geographic, what he really does is plan trips just for Hawkeye to explore with his camera of choice, a Fuji Instax. Recently, Huey and Hawkeye took a five day trip out West, taking in Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, and the Navajo Nation. This was their fourth trip together since they started last spring when Hawkeye was four. Huey says he picks places that are essentially a visual scavenger hunt to give Hawkeye lots of material to photograph.

Lake Powell, on the Arizona/Utah Border. —Hawkeye Huey

Huey says that Hawkeye often approaches people and scenes in ways that surprise him. “Hawkeye can get interactions and expressions that I could never get. The Navajo market in Tuba City, Arizona, is a good example. The people who let Hawkeye photograph them would probably not let me if I asked. He is not threatening and always draws out a smile. Sometimes he even sees things that I miss. We passed this scene of a woman leaning on a pole with a yellow truck behind her, and I wanted to keep walking but he insisted on going back to take her picture. We did go back, and the picture is one of my favorites from that day,” he says. Although Huey is an experienced photographer, he says that Hawkeye’s perspective makes him take a second look at his own photography. “Hawkeye helps me to see things differently with his pictures. I am careful, maybe sometimes too careful, with my images and make things too polished. It’s a totally different angle to view the world from three feet off the ground.”

Statue of cowboy and horse, Kanab, Utah. —Hawkeye Huey

Old sign at the Hackberry General Store on Route 66 in Arizona. —Hawkeye Huey

Anna at the Tuba City Friday market, Navajo Nation, Arizona. —Hawkeye Huey

Las Vegas, Nevada. —Hawkeye Huey

Horseshoe Bend, near Page, Arizona. —Hawkeye Huey

Hawkeye shooting at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon. —Aaron Huey

Follow Hawkeye and Aaron Huey on Instagram.

*****

On the go? Download Nat Geo View, National Geographic’s new bite-size daily digest app for the iPhone. Each day editors select Proof posts, as well as our best pictures, stories, and videos, and send them straight to your iPhone. Check out all National Geographic has to offer in an elegant, easy-to-use app you can tap into wherever you are today.

Read This Next

See 100 years of the Lincoln Memorial in photos
Next-gen weather station installed near Everest’s summit
Hard hit by COVID-19, Black Americans are recovering slowly

Go Further

Subscriber Exclusive Content

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet