Published Feb 6. 2012 - 4 years ago

Fishy photos: Jim Levison

Jim Levison specializes in saltwater fly fishing in Montauk, New York. He guides and he takes pictures.

While I was researching for the series on the recently started Fishy Photographers, I simply searched the web for fly fishing photographers, and Jim Levinson's web site popped up, showing some beautiful pictures from the US north east. I contacted Jim, and he agreed to participate and answer my questions.

Hook-up under the high sky -
Montauk blitz -
Blitz at the lighthouse -
Stripers in the surface -
Jim Levison

How did you start photographing - and what made you choose fishing related photos in particular?

I started like many of us do as a young hobbyist in my mid 20's who was fascinated by the camera and started playing around with one. I then always took the camera on my travels.

When I got interested in fly fishing in the early 1980's I would usually bring my camera with me. When I retired from the New York City Police department in 1993 I took many extended fishing trips and always brought my camera equipment with me. I became a professional fishing guide in 1999.
I always took my cameras when I had clients and I began to acquire some very good saltwater fishing images. I began to submit some photos to some fishing magazines in the US and got a few published. I then began to study what the magazines were looking for and soon found I was getting quite a few photos published.

Florida Albacore -
Big sea -
Eating frenzy -
Jim Levison

Do you have a particular subject, region or a style of pictures that you mainly shoot or are you more all-round?

I specialize in saltwater fly fishing in Montauk, New York but my stock is more comprehensive. I also sell freshwater fly fishing images as well as some upland bird and waterfowl hunting images. I have images from many parts of the US as well as South America, the Caribbean and Russia.

Creek waterfall -
Argentinean rainbow -
Brown trout -
Jim Levison

Where are your photos used? Books, magazines, brochures, ads, web sites, prints, gallery exhibits or other places?

I have had my photos published in every major outdoor American magazine as well as some European publications. They have also appeared in fishing books including the covers.
I have also had my photos appear in commercial advertising for fishing products. I do sell some of my work at art and outdoor shows and thru the internet.

Is photography your main source of income - if at all a source of income - and do you do other jobs as a supplement?

My photography has been a decent source of income but I also have a police pension and income from my business as a saltwater fly fishing guide. photography is about 20-25% of my income.

Can people buy your pictures and if so, then in which form and where?

I sell my photos both framed and unframed prints up to size 17" x 22" online at my website. For larger sizes people need to contact me.

Where do you currently live and work?

I currently live in Sag Harbor, New York and guide in Montauk at the end of Long Island (120 miles east of New York City) My salt water fly fishing web site is

What's in your bag? Preferred cameras, bodies, lenses and other gear?

I shoot Canon DSLR's. I currently have two bodies, a 7D, 1D Mark IIn.
My lenses are
- 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5
- 17-40mm f/4
- 24-105mm f/4
- 70-200mm F2.8
- 300mm f/4 and a 400mm DO f/4
I rarely take all the equipment only what I need for a particular job. I like to use hard waterproof cases on the water like a Pelican case.

On the Rio Manso -
In front of a Rio Manso waterfall -
Jurassic rainbow -
Jim Levison
Jim himself -
Jim himself
Jim Levison

Contact Information

Jim Levison
1125 Millstone Rd
Sag Harbor, NY 11963
Cell Phone 917-714-3222

Shallow water striper -
Shallow water striper
Jim Levison
Striper scales -
Striper scales
Jim Levison

Add new comment

Log in or register to pre-fill name on comments, add videos, user pictures and more.
Read more about why you should register.