Lens on Lake Minnetonka: Settled Down, Enjoying the Sunsets

Photographer Nelson Hill returns to Wayzata after a decade in Hollywood.

Walking along the water in downtown Wayzata one evening last April, Wayzata resident Nelson Hill came across an image he had to stop and appreciate. “I had my camera with me and saw the amazing sunset, so I had to capture it,” says Hill.

Hill has been in Wayzata for the past two years, after living in Los Angeles for the previous 10 years. In L.A., he was in the fast-paced production world, working on music videos, commercials, photo shoots and movie trailers. Now, Hill has settled in Wayzata, where he’s able to pursue his passion for photography.

This particular image, Sunset on the Tracks, which took second place in the Wildlife & Nature category of our 2016 Lens on Lake Minnetonka photo contest, was unexpected and spontaneous. “I was right next to the tracks across the street from Gianni’s,” Hill says. He set up his camera on a tripod in order to keep it still long enough for the minute-and-a-half exposure he used.

When it comes to photography, Hill is a professional. He takes photos for weddings, real estate agents and for families during other significant life events—baby or family photos, engagements or business portraits.

“I love how photography is always challenging,” says Hill. He knows that in order to make a photo work, there are a lot of factors that need to be accounted for, such as light, the lens, the angle and the background. When he’s not working, Hill enjoys taking photographs of landscapes the most. “It’s always nice to get out on the lake, farm or woods, and set the camera up and get a good sunset,” Hill says.