Splinter Creek in Focus

Sonia Thompson

We love the way Splinter Creek inspires the creative mind, so we were especially excited to have a conversation with 18-year-old photographer Julia Hardy. The Oxford native and recent graduate of Oxford High School has been spending some of her free time focusing her lens on Splinter Creek. She'll be attending Elon University in North Carolina this fall, but when she returns home to visit her family, she'll look forward to taking her camera back out to the property. Here, she explains how she got started and why she loves nature photography best.

Photographer Julia Hardy with her camera at Splinter Creek.

Q: What got you interested in photography?
A: Watching nature documentaries has always been an enjoyable hobby of mine. I think my drive to photograph wildlife and nature most definitely stemmed from watching National Geographic and other nature docuseries. The shots that are captured on those shows are always so beautiful and interesting to look at. So why not try to capture my own shots that are beautiful and interesting to look at?

Geese flocking to the Splinter Creek lakes (photo by Julia Hardy).

Q: What do you like to shoot photos of most and why?
A: I think nature photography would have to be my favorite. I’ve always enjoyed the outdoors, and you just never know what you’ll see out there. Once something does come along, it’s like a reward, and I get to keep that reward as a photograph for forever.

An armadillo strikes a pose (photo by Julia Hardy).

A: What do you enjoy about photography at Splinter Creek?
A: Splinter Creek is great because it provides me with a natural outlet that is just 20 minutes from where I live. On top of the beautiful landscapes, there’s so, so much hidden life there. Splinter Creek has been a huge help in aiding with the progression of my photography, and I’d like to think I’ve gotten better since I first began, and it’s really all thanks to the woods and lakes of Splinter Creek.

Julia Hardy captures the strawberry moon from Splinter Creek.

Q: What are you most looking forward to when your family's Splinter Creek house is built?
A: I’m most excited to just be out there all the time when I come home for visits. It’ll be great to have a quiet place to turn to that is surrounded by such beautiful scenery. I know my family will enjoy every single moment spent there. Splinter Creek is a hidden gem within itself, and it has so much to offer to anyone and everyone who drives through the front gate.

The Hardy's family dog enjoys photography journeys with Julia (photo by Julia Hardy).

Lush trees and grass around the banks (photo by Julia Hardy).

Thank you, Julia, for sharing your work with Splinter Creek!

The delicate wings of a butterfly photographed by Julia Hardy.

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