Skip To Main Content

Aaron Freland photography exhibit opens Feb. 21

Aaron Freland

The nature photography of Marshalltown native Aaron Freland will be featured in MCC’s Ray Frederick Gallery Feb. 21 through Mar. 23. Freland is pictured here in Rocky Mountain National Park. His exhibit will include older family photos including these three from 1966 in Badlands National Park, 1969 in Yellowstone National Park, and 1975 in Zion National Park. (PHOTO CREDIT: This photo of Aaron Freland was taken by Corey Peacock of Laramie, WY.)

 1966 Freland Family photo1969 Freland Family Photo 1975 Freland Family photo

Marshalltown Community College Academic Advising Specialist Aaron Freland will share a display of his nature photography in MCC’s Ray Frederick Gallery, room 306, on the Marshalltown Community College campus. The Freland exhibit opens with a reception from 12:15 to 1:30 pm on Wednesday, Feb. 21, and will be on display through noon Friday, Mar. 23.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the opening of MCC’s Ray Frederick Gallery.

Freland’s exhibit will include not only his own photography from many of the country’s national parks, but also family photos dating back as far as 1956 depicting his parents and grandparents as they spent vacations developing their love of nature, the national park system, and photography.

“I grew up traveling, and it’s something my family has enjoyed dating back to my grandparents,” explains Freland. “For an average family like ours to have a good camera back in the 1950s was pretty unusual, but my grandparents had one and they loved to use it. I’ve even been able to replicate some of the same photo scenes that they captured decades ago, which is very special to me.”

Freland has traveled to a variety of national parks during his lifetime, as well as to national parks and wilderness areas across most of Canada. Beginning in 2013 he took up backcountry backpacking, which involves overnight stays in remote areas and carrying everything needed on his back for several days. His photography exhibit will also include information about wilderness camping, including the equipment and safety measures he and his fellow backpackers take to ensure their safety.

“I will be displaying photos from a variety of federal lands, including sites within the U.S. National Park Service, U.S. Forest Service, Parks Canada, and various state parks,” says Freland. “Some of the areas I’ve photographed required hiking for days into really remote spots, which has become another passion of mine. Most of my photos are taken with a Canon SL2 using a variety of lenses, but some have been taken with my iPhone.” Freland says his photo collection includes thousands of images accumulated during the course of his lifetime.

“I’ve just gone somewhere every summer since I was a little kid, usually camping for three to four weeks each year,” says Freland. “I had a small digital camera when I was growing up, and I recall that my favorite high school graduation gift was a SLR camera. The travel, the camping, and the photography have been a family tradition, and I continue to enjoy every minute of it!”

A native of Marshalltown, Freland graduated from MHS in 2007, MCC in 2008, and Iowa State University in 2011 and 2013. He works in the MCC Admissions Office assisting students with academic advising and other needs.

The Ray Frederick Gallery is open weekdays from 9 am to 5 pm, but the Gallery will be closed Mar. 12-16 while the campus is shut down for Spring Break. For more information, contact MCC Art Professor Tim Castle at 641-844-5776 or

Related Articles