Jim's Feed
Mar 11, 2013
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Mars in the desert

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Outside Hanksville, Utah

By Jim Urquhart

I may be a Red Shirt but I made it to Mars.

According to Urban Dictionary (the finest source of American literature), a Red Shirt is defined as; A character in a science fiction or adventure story whose sole dramatic purpose is to get killed by the story’s villain and/or itinerant monster. Taken from the propensity of security officers on the original Star Trek series (who typically wore red uniform tops) to be killed in the episodes’ pre-opening-credits teasers.

GALLERY: LIFE ON MARS

When I was young I wanted to be an astronaut but I never had the discipline to follow through. At one point I wanted to be a scientist but I barely made it out of high school and later dropped out of college but not until after I learned a little chemistry for recreational use in my younger days.

Nov 14, 2012
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Portraying polygamy

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Rockland Ranch community outside Moab, Utah

By Jim Urquhart

If patience is a virtue I am damned to burn forever but I’ve made some friends in the process.

Growing up in Utah, knowledge of polygamy has long been part of my experience. I can recall standing on the side of the residential road looking at a nondescript home with a large cinder block wall surrounding it. My friend leaned over to me to tell me that a polygamist family lived there. He tried to explain to me what plural marriage was in the best way a 10-year-old could explain to another. I was confused. I had a hard enough time trying to fully understand why my parents were divorced let alone trying to figure out how there could be a home with several moms and one dad.

Oct 23, 2012
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Witnessing my generation’s gold rush

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By  Jim Urquhart

He stood there with a shotgun over his shoulder and asked me in no uncertain terms, “What do you think about oil drilling?” And in that moment, the seasoned oil man I had come across pheasant hunting with five of his friends in a field west of the oil boom town of Williston, North Dakota, had me stunned like a deer in headlights.

GALLERY: North Dakota’s oil boom

There was never a threat of danger, but there was definitely a bit of suspicion as to what my motives were. Being obviously out of place, having asked these guys where an oil drilling rig was and after telling them I was a member of the media, I had to pause for a moment.

Sep 3, 2012
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Welcome home to Burning Man

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By Jim Urquhart


Photographer Jim Urquhart poses at Temple of Juno at Burning Man. Photo courtesy of Brian Erzen

As I write this I am sitting in my little camping trailer the morning after completing my Burning Man 2012 coverage. I am exhausted, a bit dehydrated, sore, my hair has become matted like dreadlocks from the combination of sweat and fine dust and I reek so horribly of body odor that I can make the sense of shame blush. But I am so aware of myself, I am alive and thriving. This is why I love what I do and the opportunities and experiences that it makes possible.

Jul 3, 2012
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Escaping Toronto: The hassles of traveling with gear

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By Jim Urquhart

As I attempted to leave Toronto I found I had to go into deep Canadian mode to make it possible.

Last week I spent several days meeting editors and visiting a friend in the city. I had looked forward to the trip but I never expected it to be such a mind melting, dignity crushing, blood letting experience to simply go home when it was all said and done. Through my work I get to travel my fair share. Over the last several years I have developed several habits that help me ensure my travels go as planned.

May 23, 2012
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Burning ring of fire

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By Jim Urquhart

“Jim Urquhart; lowering expectations since 1977″

That is something that kept popping in my head as I drove home from southern Utah after covering the annual eclipse for Reuters the day before. That, and also regretting not purchasing a bumper sticker from a small gas station in the town of Beaver, Utah.

It wasn’t that my pics were bad – several had run in some the most respected online photo galleries of the event – but I knew I didn’t hit a home run.

May 9, 2012
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Montana’s fading cowboy culture

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By Jim Urquhart

“It’s been a wild ride. Thank you.”

And with that Renee and Kail Mantle closed a chapter of American history. On Sunday the husband and wife team held the closing ceremonies to end the last of 11 horse drives they have completed with their company, Montana Horses, after racing over 300 horses through the western outpost of Three Forks, Montana.

The duo, a redheaded former theater major preparing for law school and a tanned wrangler who is a former rodeo champion, have been operating Montana Horses off a plot of land north of town since 1995 when they started with just 14 head of horses. Recently the plot of land has grown to 500 acres where they lease hundreds of horses, each one of which Kail and Renee know by name, to dude ranches and trail ride companies throughout the west and in many national parks. The Mantle family has a long tradition of supplying and tending to horses, leasing horses in various western states since 1964.

Jan 30, 2012
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Angry Birds at Sundance

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By Jim Urquhart


Courtesy of Trent Nelson/The Salt Lake Tribune

I am not a star stalker nor am I a paparazzi. I am just a screaming photojournalist and the Angry Birds Champion of the World!

I was recently given the opportunity to work with Reuters’ photojournalists Lucas Jackson and Mario Anzuoni as part of the photo team covering the Sundance Film Festival. This was my second year covering the event, which is more like a triathlon in terms of photo work. The days can be long, you have to use different photographic skill sets and there’s a bit of competition for pictures.

Oct 7, 2011
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Piercing the veil of cyber secrecy

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By Jim Urquhart

In my mind I was begging and pleading for the set of 1983′s movie “War Games” and a young Ally Sheedy to be escorting me through my photo assignment. But what I unfortunately found was much less exciting, much more sterile and nowhere near as hot as Ally.

Last week I traveled for Reuters to a top secret cyber security testing lab and watch center operated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security at the Idaho National Laboratory in Idaho Falls, Idaho.

Sep 6, 2011
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Surviving the Burning Man experience

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“My body is not a temple, it’s an amusement park” – random quote.

Covered from head to toe in a fine alkaline talc while wearing a woman’s blouse, standing next to a completely naked middle-aged sun-baked man it hit me; Burning Man is not a story you cover, rather it is a visually mind blowing experience you endure.

    • About Jim

      "I was born in Salt Lake City, Utah. My love for photography began after a head injury in my teens left me without the dexterity in my hands and made it hard to communicate verbally for a time. My dad gave me his camera to use after a therapist suggested it would be good outlet for myself. I began my career in 1995 working as ski and snowboard photographer. Since then I have worked as a reporter, photo editor and photojournalist. I began shooting with Reuters in 2010."
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