I couldn’t let this challenge go by with only an artificial light example. This one is all about the best light source we all use – always changing, always challenging, and always creating interest – the sun. It also highlights the golden hour surrounding sunset – in this case at the Bosque Del Apache in New Mexico. Since my previous post for this challenge featured a silhouette, I thought I’d use another silhouette, this time a Sandhill Crane coming in for a landing, against the sunset sky. I think this photo also goes well with Thanksgiving – how can you not be thankful to see something like this?
I’m usually looking for natural light for my photos but since the focus of this challenge seemed to be artificial light, I chose this photo from Lima, Peru where they have nightly fountain light shows which are pretty incredible. I liked this one for the fountain effect but mostly for the silhouette – where the light isn’t……
In my previous post for this challenge I mentioned that I like wildlife photography because it is always unexpected and unplanned. I thought I’d post this photo of an endangered Channel Island Fox to illustrate that fact. We had been on Santa Rosa Island for 3 days and I had been out every morning and evening with hopes of getting a photo of these illusive animals. As we were waiting for our boat to arrive to go back to the mainland, my wife and I were sitting by a small tidal pool watching some birds play in the water. As we were chatting, I saw movement over her shoulder and I saw a small face (the foxes are about the size of a house cat). I told Dee to freeze for a second so I could get a shot of this totally unexpected visitor – this was that first photo. Once again, I relearned that when out in the wild always expect the unexpected…..
To me, unexpected is what photography is all about. That is why I could never imagine actually posing someone or something for a shot. It is probably why I also tend towards wildlife photography where you have no control over your subjects. That being said, I chose a different interpretation of this challenge taken on the French Riviera. We had just gotten off the train and were heading out for a hike when there, right in front of me was….Marilyn….just her face – about 50 feet high. I liked the mural but I also liked the geometric framing of the mural from the station – a totally unexpected photo but one that brings back memories of that moment very vividly and fondly.
A friend of mine recently got back from a trip to South America and to Machu Picchu. That got my looking at some of my earliest photos I took there after I switched to using a DSLR instead of a point and shot. It also got me looking at how I processed (or didn’t process) some of those photos and I redid a few just for kicks. This is a photo of one of the shacks just inside the entrance to Machu Picchu – a popular place to meet up with others in your group. We were up there on a cloudy/rainy morning and I liked the view of the shack as you looked back out into the mountain valleys with only the peaks visible through the clouds. Its nice to go back every now and then to revisit those great memories – and rediscover some decent photos.
I took this at a local surfing area a week or so ago. I actually went with the intention of capturing some good wipe-outs as the surf was larger than it has been lately. This was part of a sequence that I took but as soon as I saw the photo, I was reminded of the old “Wide World of Sports” intro which referenced the “agony of defeat”. I knew that had to be the title for this photo…..
Thought I’d post another for this challenge using the same set of subjects but with the focus on a different “layer”. This time the focus is on the “middle” generation who is a beautiful young woman speckled in mud from working to repair their home made of logs, branches and held together by mud. I again used depth of field (aperture) to control the separation of the layers of the photograph (the other family members). Hope you enjoy this additional “layer” of their story….
There are always great opportunities for uncovering layers in a photographic sense. My choice for this week is again one of favorite photos from our India trip earlier this year. We met a family of migrant farmers who were homesteading on national park land. I was struck by the stately beauty of the matriarch of the family and the youthful beauty of her progeny. I was able to capture all three generations (layers) of the family in one photo – to me it tells a story of togetherness, resilience, and a set of family values far different than most of us are familiar with.
As an aside, I was going to submit this photo to a local contest but a former judge of the contest recommended cropping the family out – something I though ruined the photo by deleting the story of the family layers…..
I’ve been trying to get a decent photo of an American Kestrel for over a year. They are kind of skittish and have eluded me in New Mexico, Yellowstone and across much of the Southwest. Last week while at the dog beach (when I took the photos for my last two posts), I unexpectedly found one sitting on a sign post – obviously trying to enforce the instructions on the sign. I managed to take this shot of him standing his watch and keeping the beach safe from all intruders……