A closing reception for conservation landscape photographer Robert McGinley’s exhibit “Topography, Light and Magic” at Blue Seven Gallery in Santa Monica Friday, July 31st will feature actor/environmentalist Ed Begley, Jr., who will speak about the importance of land and resource conservation.

The reception is scheduled from 7 to 9 p.m. at Blue Seven Gallery, 3129 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica.

The exhibit explores natural landscapes that are threatened by development and captures these environments at their most beautiful and vulnerable, a gallery spokesman said. Proceeds from the exhibit benefit both Heal the Bay and Santa Monica Baykeeper, organizations devoted to protecting California’s water resources.

“I am honored that Ed Begley Jr. will be joining me in order to raise awareness regarding land conservation in California and beyond,” said McGinley. “His well-documented green lifestyle and his passion for environmental causes underscores the wonderful synergy between the organizations my work is benefiting and the gracious green community in Santa Monica and the Los Angeles area.”

Photographed on farmland 35 miles outside of Chicago, the images present an array of landscapes. The collection, shot from 2001-2008, played a key role in the preservation of 425 acres of farmland in Barrington, Illinois, McGinley noted.

The photos were used as exhibits in the application process to federal, state and local lawmakers to create what is believed to be the largest permanent land preservation easement in the state of Illinois. The easement also protects a crucial watershed and threatened bird species that are located on the farmland.

“My photos are raw presentations of wetlands, prairie and woodlands during ‘Magic Hour’ at dawn or dusk,” said McGinley. “The images display the organic beauty of these settings, which are manipulated by natural elements such as clouds, fog and sunlight.”

McGinley is active in the preservation of land and water in his own home of Santa Monica, and is a member of the Trust for Public Land, Heal the Bay, Waterkeeper Alliance, and the Environmental Defense Fund.

For more information or to RSVP, please call Ali Sivak at (323) 936-1447 or ali@caapr.com/.