LAKE PLACID - Photographer Rolf Schulte has published a collection of some of his best images in a new book called "Adirondack Panoramas."
The book is the first for the 76-year-old Lake Placid resident who owns "A Point of View" gallery at 6047 Sentinel Road in Lake Placid. The 167-page book contains three main types of images: water, mountain views and wildflowers.
To celebrate the occasion, Schulte will host a book signing party Monday at 5 p.m. at his gallery. Copies of the book arrived at his gallery in late June and are selling for $39.
“Barn with Indian Paintbrush,” shown here in black and white, depicts colorful reddish wildflowers in front of a barn on Norman Ridge in Vermontville.
Photo — Rolf Schulte
"I've always wanted to get one book out," Schulte said. "When you do photography, there comes a time when you say, 'OK, I'd like to have a book out.'"
The book was designed by one of his four children, Margarete, who runs a printing business out of the gallery. She also helped hand pick the photographs.
Although Schulte has been taking photographs here since about the time he moved to Lake Placid in 1968, these images were captured in the last couple of decades with a medium-format panoramic film camera. He now uses a digital Canon camera, but he wanted to use these in the book because they "provide the detail and depth that he feels best convey the serenity of the Adirondacks," according to the book.
The images are of places such as Big Cherry Patch Pond near Lake Placid, wildflowers and rustic buildings on Norman Ridge in Vermontville and Middle Saranac Lake. There is even a photo of beautiful wildflowers growing in a field at the Lake Placid transfer station.
Schulte spent hours working to get the photos, often waiting hours for the proper lighting. That meant kneeling among the wildflowers, sitting atop High Peaks until dark and paddling to out of the way places.
"It is easy to think of many of Rolf's photos as chance opportunities or circumstances, but the reality is that many of those images were carefully planned," states the book. "His Adirondack panoramas cover a vast spectrum of landscape. They feature a variety of carefully chosen, scenic subject matter; often under the ethereally varied lights of cloudy skies."
Schulte became interested in photography as a child growing up in Germany. He said he learned the skill from his father and took his first photograph in 1948 at the age of 10.
"My father did photography, and he sometimes took me with him and he gave me a little camera," Schulte said. "Then he gave me a better camera. I went with him and he explained to me how to do photography. He was not a professional photographer but he was in World War I. They gave him a camera, and he had to go in the front of the line and take photos."
As Schulte grew up, he traveled to England, then South America and Canada. Eventually, he moved to New York City. After a fishing trip to Lake Placid in the late 1960s, he decided to move here.
"I always liked going out into nature and doing things," Schulte said. "First time I came to Lake Placid, I went fishing. I came for fishing, trout fishing. My oldest daughter was 2 years old. We came in the fall. I saw the colors on the trees. I was hooked. The next year we packed our stuff and came up here."
At the time, he worked in the restaurant business. He and his wife later opened Schulte's Family Lodge in Lake Placid, which still operates today. He opened "A Point of View Gallery" about six years ago.