Clyde Butcher's photography captures Florida

Lloyd Sowers reports

- Striking scenes of nature in Florida are close to the heart of Clyde Butcher.

"One of the things I try to do is get people to have a connection with Florida," says Butcher, whose black and white photos have become so well-known, some refer to them simply as "Clydes".

With his old-style camera and wooden tripod, we've seen Butcher photographing natural Florida and speaking up for preservation. Now, with pollution causing green slime on both coasts, Butcher wants new marshes built to clean the water.

"If we can build an $8 billion complex on an airport, we can surely spend enough money to keep our waters clean," he says.

It takes on added significance along the Pinellas Suncoast as communities dumped massive amounts of sewage into local waters following torrential rains.

"People ask me who's going to fix it," says Butcher. "I tell them we're going to have to fix it." He hopes his photographs don't become memorials to Florida's natural treasures.

The Clyde Butcher photographic exhibit "Preserving Eden" is on display at the Tampa Bay History Center in downtown Tampa through January 8.

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