Peter Lik, an Australian photographer, captures such exotic beauty that familiar landscapes assume an otherworldliness.
His photos are eerily exquisite, and one recently sold for over $1 million. A pro at being behind the camera, Lik will be in front of it with The Weather Channel's "From The Edge With Peter Lik," premiering Thursday, March 31.
His aim is to remind us of the beauty inherent in the United States.
"I just fell in love with the beauty of the country and some of the epic landscapes that you've got out here that you all take for granted," he says. "It's my job and my passion, more than that just to showcase the beauty of America everywhere. It is because you guys live in the best bloody country in the world. There's no doubt about it. And I've gone from all of the states, up to Alaska and Hawaii and just seen it all over the place. It's a big country. And I'm really passionate about taking the network and the show to another level where I can bring you through more of a sensory experience when I'm walking on live volcanoes, snowstorms, the deserts or wherever it is."
While he's taking viewers to remote outposts, Lik is dashing in a cavalier sort of way. There's no denying that the man has style, but he's no metrosexual.
He'll often traipse around in a straw cowboy hat that sits just right. This isn't an urban cowboy hat that's more about posturing; it's a hat with purpose.
"I just feel comfortable with it," he says. "It blocks the lights from the camera."
He wears a thick cotton shirt in a deep green that shows off his arms. Lik cut off the sleeves, again for comfort. On his wrist is a thick leather cuff from an ex-girlfriend.
He always wears jeans, and they're worn in with a few holes, but better for the wear. His preferred shoe is a Blundstone boot from the Tasmanian company.
"Your feet don't go stinking," he says, which could well be its new ad campaign.
A man who looks happy trudging through hip-deep snow and standing on a volcanic ledge moments before it disappears into the sea might not be expected to be a clotheshorse.
Surprisingly, Lik says, "Shopping, I love it."
He's a fan of Dsquared and of Diesel clothing. Lik also likes Forgotten Saints, a rock- and punk-infused line of shirts, pants, vests and accessories.
"I'm developing my own fashion line," he says, "hats, jackets. We are drawing and designing right now. It's a cross between Diesel and Varvatos."
"I love clothes," he says. "Clothes are a reflection of you and how you feel. I would rather pay three grand for a jacket I will have forever."