Stroke not stopping iconic SWFL photographer Clyde Butcher


He’ll wait in a swamp in the Everglades.

Or on a beach all night for a moonrise.

And when the moment is just right, Clyde Butcher photographs those moments and scenes that take your breath away.

“With nature and my photography, all the images come from your heart, and you have to have a place that feels right,” Butcher said.

The famed picture maker in the Big Cypress National Preserve isn’t taking his ability for granted after suffering a stroke on the morning of May 6.

“I had no control, and I couldn’t move my arm, couldn’t move my leg,” he said.

The stroke temporarily left him without the use of his right side. But within weeks, he was back at his craft — even if it required some adjustments.

“I had my walker out on a bridge with traffic, and I set my tripod up out on the bridge,” Butcher said. “But I got the pictures.”

Physical therapy has gradually helped him regain the use of his limbs. But just to be working again was a different kind of therapy.

“To photograph, I don’t even think about having the stroke problem,” he said.

Now, the pictures he takes are testament to more than just the iconic Florida landscapes he’s brought to life for three decades.

“I think this should be a clue that other people who had problems like I had, you gotta get past it,” Butcher said. “You gotta get through whatever it is, if you have a passion about whatever you’re doing.”

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