Archive for the 'Inspiration' Category

Nov 04 2010

Do the work

It’s time…time to jump the rut.  This last year been incredibly busy but I won’t use that as an excuse.  Neither will I complain that my current job doesn’t allow me to carry a camera at all times…not even my iPhone.

Just about every waking moment I spend thinking about light, looking at everything around me for possibilities, pre-visualizing compositions, exploring new techniques (in my mind), reading everything I can get my hands on, etc.

Days and days then pass and I haven’t even created a single photograph.  Not one.  Lack of inspiration is not the culprit.

When I don’t have any external pressure to produce new images I can sometimes go for weeks without taking a photograph.

So I think I’ll force myself to start posting here again more regularly.  Hopefully that will develop into the creation of new photographs.  And if I can’t find anything new, well, then I’ll post something old.

At least the good news is I’m not sure anyone else really looks at these posts.  So if I repeat myself, or repost something old, I will probably be the only one that knows. But hey, at least I’ll be doing the work.

This is not one of those cases where I was pre-visualizing, marvelin at great light, or contemplating a great composition.  I was a passenger.  Along for the ride.  Nothing to see but dust and harsh sunlight.  There aren’t even shadows.

But on this rare occasion I did have my iPhone with me…and ready.  Heck, these days, anytime I can have a camera with me I’m ready, ready for anything.

I saw the camels ahead of the vehicle on the left, braced the iPhone on my shoulder and hoped my timing would suffice.

I like the graphic and simple look.

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Nov 01 2010

New Perspectives

As I approached this photograph, I tried to keep two things in mind. What is my connection to the scene before me? And how do I express my feelings without bringing too much of the medium of photography into the final image.

As I have l become to understand, I tend to be very medium-based in my photography. So I was forced to push those tendencies aside and capture images that I not only connected with but also represent a Pictorial Nature.

I went to a nearby location that has a connection for me. I have photographed here countless times.  However, this time I didn’t approach it with the beauty and grandeur that I normally do.  No need to capture the grand scenic landscape this time.

I limited myself to a fixed focal length lens and tripod in order to slow down and connect with the scene. No fancy techniques, rapid drive-bys, or zoom blurs here.  Additionally, I went in the middle of the day without regard to the dramatic and colorful lighting I would normally seek. My intent was to capture the scene as it is and not force any extrinsic components into the image.

The ability to stand before a scene and capture an image without regard to the commercial viability of the final image or the possibility for public popularity was enlightening.

I was able to let go of the normal aesthetic and formal intents of my usual photography and simply engage the scene and create an image I had in my mind. I didn’t need to worry about whether or not it was of publishable quality or if the gallery would be interested in showing the photograph.

In the end this final photograph came out almost exactly as I had envisioned it in my mind.

Check back soon as I plan to publish a book review here.  David duChemin and Craft & Vision are producing some amazing ebooks at prices that can’t be beat.

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Oct 28 2007

The Power of Three

Published by under Inspiration

Threes, originally uploaded by Michael Walters.

What is it about threes?

I was on Brown’s Lake catching some of the biggest rainbow trout I’d ever seen. The fly fishing technique we were using requires one to watch your line like an Osprey. Even glance away for a moment and you may miss a strike.

The broken-to-overcast skies were constantly changing the light on the landscape. I was struggling with what to watch. As a photographer it is nearly impossible to not be looking for a composition when in such a beautiful place with dramatic light. On the other hand, the fishing was the best I’d ever seen on a lake. Oh the dilemma.

STRIKE – “Damn, was that a fish, Dad?” “Yep, you really have to watch that indicator” he says. Guess I missed another one. Meanwhile, my dad is knocking the crap out of the fish. Helps that he is a pro. I think he may very well be the best fly fisherman in the world

So what is it about these trees that keeps grabbing my attention? It must be that there is three, and only three, on the shoreline. Plus the fact that they are separated by what must be the Golden Mean.

Threes occur everywhere:

the rule of thirds
tall, dark, handsome
win, lose, or draw
eat, drink and be merry
a hop, skip, and a jump
the good, bad, and ugly
ready, set, go
Tom, Dick, and Harry
wine, women, and song
lock, stock, and barrel
hook, line, and sinker
stop, look, and listen
morning, noon, and night
mind, body and spirit
thought, word, and deed

For some reason the brain finds it easier to assimilate and process groups of three.

Four seems to be more of a static representation.

Two is either balanced or imbalanced, either aligned or confrontational.

One is lonely and wanting for more.

So why three?

I found a post somewhere on the net by Robert ??? as follows:

The philosopher Pythagoras thought three was the perfect number, expressive of beginning, middle and end. The idea of Trinity is central to many religions. The Hindu Trimurti is made up of Brahma (Creator), Vishnu (Preserver), and Siva (Destroyer). The ancient world was ruled by Jupiter, Neptune and Pluto. Three-forked lightning, the trident and a three-headed dog figure with these characters. The Fates are three, the Furies three, the Graces three, the Harpies three, the Muses were three times three. In Greek mythology a threatening and critical Pythoness sat on a three-legged stool called a tripod.

Man is traditionally threefold (body, soul and spirit), as is our world (earth, sea and air). Historic enemies of man have been the world, the flesh and the devil. Today’s realistic enemies seem to be fear, ignorance and hatred. The Christian graces are Faith, Hope and Charity. The kingdoms of Nature are animal, vegetable and mineral. The primary colors are red, yellow and blue.

So for whatever reason, I liked these three trees. And as always, I had my camera with me. I waited for the lake to settle, the light to improve, set my fly rod down, and captured these three trees.

And for what it is worth, I think I caught three more fish that day.

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