Rick Sawicki was once an engineer at the world's best-known research and development institution dedicated to national security. But once he retired, he placed his focus on capturing images of birds.

Rick Sawicki was once an engineer at the world's best-known research and development institution dedicated to national security. But once he retired, he placed his focus on capturing images of birds.

He will tell a story about how birds changed his life from 1 to 3 p.m. today, Jan. 23, as part of Osher Lifelong Learning Institute's free, public lectures.

Sawicki moved to Ashland four years ago from Livermore, Calif., where he was the chief engineer of the National Ignition Facility Program at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. There, he helped design and build the world's largest laser.

Sawicki also worked at Rockwell International, American Science and Engineering, Ford Aerospace and Hughes Aircraft. He has several patents in the area of deformable mirror technologies.

He received a bachelor of science degree from Dartmouth College in 1971 and a master's degree from University of California Los Angeles in 1974.

He has co-starred in a ScienceCinema video, produced by the Department of Energy for schools, explaining that waves are everywhere with Ed Moses, who also worked at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory as a scientist.

What gets your audience's attention? Great photos with a personal story.

How do you first introduce yourself to your audience? As a human being seeking enjoyment in life.

Favorite aspects about Ashland: Outdoor activities and cultural ambience.

What do you like to do in Ashland during your time off? Make guitars, hike, fish.

What do you still have on your to-do list? Create a song people will want to whistle.

Your answers are concise. How can we learn more about you? Talk to me.