Photographer Feature: Riko Austria (@rikoaustria)

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Once a week, we interview one of our Patrons or a photographer from our Slack community on!

We hope that you learn a new spot or new camera setup!


Who are you, and where in New Jersey are you from?

I’m Riko Austria and I like frogs. 
I originally hail from Jersey City, but I now reside in Hazlet with my beautiful wife and six month old son. If you follow me in IG, you know that he’s pretty much taken over my feed.
I like hiking, nature and being outdoors as much as I can. I frequent Cheesequake State Park, Holmdel Park and Deep Cut Gardens. I also love the beach so anywhere that has a shoreline is ideal. Lately I’ve been going to Sandy Hook because there are a ton of stuff to see and do besides the beach.

What are the three best spots for photography in New Jersey, and why?

I have yet to visit popular areas which others frequent, but for me the three spots that stand out in my memory are as follows:

1. Mt. Tammany…

…because of the variety of stuff to see and do, like hike through woods, wade in waterfalls, admire the diverse wildlife and look under logs for little critters (ok that last one might just be me) and not to mention the view from the summit is pretty amazing.

2. Buttermilk Falls

At full flow, the falls are absolutely gorgeous. and even when not in full flow, it’s still a sight to see.

3. Jersey City

There’s always something new and different every time I go back to my alma mater city. If you’re into urban and street photography, you’ll find endless amounts of it there. Street art in downtown jersey city is amazing. There is also the beautiful waterfront where you have a great view of the NYC skyline. 

What's your camera setup?

The two main cameras that I use are my Sony a6000 and my DJI Mavic Pro drone.

I have a few lenses in rotation for my a6000, but as of late, I’ve been enjoying my 50mm Macro and my 85mm.

What's your dream piece of gear? Think big!

Hmmm… I always seem to have a different dream piece at any given time, but it always seems to come back to either of these 2 lenses:

FE 600 mm F4 GM OSS, although I can’t really fathom spending 13K on a lens, but that’s why it’s a dream right?

Haha… this is a little more reasonable: FE 200–600 mm F5.6–6.3 G OSS

What's one bucket list photo of New Jersey you haven't gotten yet?

A decent milky way shot down the shore… I’ve shot some astro photography of the stars at Barnegat Light before, but haven’t caught the Milky Way the way I would like.

One tip for aspiring photographers?

It may sound cliché, but shoot, shoot and shoot some more. Different angles, points of view, lighting, etc… Experiment with settings and get comfortable with shooting… Even if it looks dumb, just go shoot… A few days, weeks or even years from now, you’ll find out that you can still learn something from those ‘dumb’ shots.

What's your favorite part of being a photographer?

Learning new things and applying them to my craft. As much as you think you know something, there's always something new.
riko austria photographer, Photographer Feature: Riko Austria (@rikoaustria)
Riko Austria
NJspots Community Member

“Photographer Feature” is an ongoing segment featuring our Patrons and Slack community members. Contact editor Abbey Dufoe for more information.

NJspots is a growing community. By sharing you can help.

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