Month: September 2018

Seeing What isn’t


This is an accidental picture. I wasn’t even thinking about looking for a picture. I looked up and thought “this doesn’t look good.” I did what I could to stop it. I froze time. That’s my magic power. That lasted all of the 1/500th of a second. The clouds kept moving. So did I. I’ve been having a discussion with another photographer about image making and photography in her comments. I’m not sure we are n the right track. What really matters is vision. I doesn’t really matter how you get there. I try very hard to make a statement about my vision in a particular picture. Today’s picture is meant to inspire awe in nature. Maybe even a little fear. I could have gone an entirely different direction and turned the picture into something light and frothy. That wouldn’t be what I felt when I looked up and saw giant storm clouds rolling in over the horizon. Even with my post production, which is a huge part of image making, you might not see …

Time and Place


A friend of mine said that music exists in a time and place. He wrote that as part of an acknowledgement to the death of Marty Balin. Who is he, you might ask? He was one of the founders of a seminal band in the middle 1960s. They were called in various incarnations, either Jefferson Airplane, or Jefferson Starship. They were way ahead of their time. Today, probably the only two well-known songs that you never hear on radio is “White Rabbit” or, “Somebody to Love.” You might know the Starship’s work a little more. That got me thinking. Pictures do the same thing. They exist in a particular time and place. If you went through almost 50 years worth of my work you’d see style changes. You see my move from black and white film to color film photography and finally, to digital color capture. You’d also see something more important. You’d see the change in my subject matter.  And, the pictures would reflect me. Me, at a certain time and place. Because, all …

Rebirth


This is the heart of us. Green. Water. Renewal. I published something like this a couple of weeks ago. I like this version better. There is more water. More droplets. And, much better framing. You already know what I think. So I’ll leave it here. The picture is fairly simple. See it. Take your time. Frame it. Expose it. Develop it. That’s it. You are done.  

Magical


Sun, rain, sun, rain. Rinse and repeat. Sometimes it’s a little bit inconvenient, but it is worth it in the aftermath. Plants, veggies and flowers are growing in wonderful ways. Skies are turning into light shows almost every night. There is a clean and crisp (for about an hour) feel to the air. Unfortunately, it’s still fairly hot and humid for most of the day. That doesn’t seem to be ending anytime soon. Two week forecasts indicate our summer-like weather will not relent in the next two weeks.  There is a cold front coming, but unlike Texas and states to the north who are experiencing 60 degree days, ours will last for a few hours. Whoopee. I guess you can tell that by now I’m getting a little impatient for fall weather. I always thought that people who are from here don’t mind our seemingly never-ending summer. That’s not true. They complain about it as much, or more, than I do. I keep wondering why I bother to stay. Of course there is the culture …

Second Growth


I told you. We have a second growing season down here in the swamp. I found this scene on a walk. A long walk since we weren’t dodging raindrops. I’d say this is a good exercise in seeing, but how could I miss? The flowers were calling to me from thirty yards away. The only thing that I had to do was frame them in a way that made sense to me, and hopefully, to you. I wanted them reaching for the light and the sky. I think the picture works. The picture makes me smile, or laugh. Speaking of laughter… oh, never mind. I just hope the world was laughing at him, not the country. We still matter.  

It Exploded


Sometimes, the sky looks like it’s on fire. Of course, it’s not. It’s just autumn light bouncing off the clouds in wonderful ways. It’s one of those things that you just have to be there to see. Which brings me to this. Recently, there have been a whole bunch of bloggers writing about breaking the log jam we call photographer’s block. You can also call it writer’s block. Writer’s have different issues to work through. So. I’ll concentrate on photographer’s block. The tools for breaking it are fairly simple. If you can’t think of something to photograph, put your camera on your shoulder, go outside and take a walk. Photograph whatever you see. It may not be your “photo-thing,” but carry on.  Even if you don’t develop your images, you’ll learn something about yourself. I have a number of friends who think that if they don’t travel, they can’t make a picture. That’s just silly. After all, that’s what Storyteller is about. For me, it’s a place to experiment and practice. I do that so …

A Summer’s Evening


Another one. Another picture that makes you smile. A version of yesterday’s post made from a different perspective. And still. That weird light refraction followed me. I have no idea what it was. I think it was some strange bit of light bouncing around the water droplets in the air. Usually, that reflects something in the red spectrum, making the raw frame a little gray and muddy. Not this time. Perspective. That’s a good word. Let’s talk about that. A friend shared a post on Facebook. It was about #metoo. It was well written from the point of an expert in what I’ll call systems of belief. She was waiting for a plane with another expert. A man. A guy sitting across from them asked why they were there. They told him. He proceeded to go off on a tangent mansplaining his point of view rather than asking her for viewpoint. Her colleague proceeded to take this guy down. He did it gently and mentioned that he lost a great opportunity to learn from an …

Far Away


I looked up. I saw it. I have no idea what caused that bright streak in the middle of the cloudy picture. I’ve seen a lot of amazing things in the sky. Some have names. Some don’t. But, that streak? I can’t tell you. I can guess. I made the picture in the late afternoon sky after a violent but short rain storm passed through. It’s like that the sunlight was bouncing around water droplets in the sky. It could be seen with the naked eye which is why I took the picture. Sometime these sorts of things reveal themselves in development or post production. Not this time. It was there in the sky. Oh sure. I did a lot of post production, but that’s because I wanted to make the picture how my mind’s eye saw it the overall scene. I wanted you to see what I saw. I think it’s pretty. But, it could be God’s finger pointing down at us. It could be that he or she or whatever you believe is …

A Little Bit of Soul


About nature. In some regions of the country and world, winter lasts for just a few days. Even when the weather turns cold, it is mild compared to places located further north. With mild weather we get — drumroll please — a second growing season. When I first moved here I was amazed. I’d never heard of such a thing. Anybody who grew up here, or was from here, knew. They taught me. I learned. These days I can recognize the signs. New leaves appear on plants that were once done with the summer heat. It helps that there is a lot of rain this time of year. The lingering heat combined with rain and humidity make outdoors a natural greenhouse. Anyway, the spring and summer crops — such as they are — have been planted. The picture. I saw it. I worked sort of hard to frame it with the sun backlighting the leaves. When I got into the studio I decided to take it to the limit. I backtracked. The limit was too …

Smile


Just smile. Sometimes that’s all you can do. That’s why I published these two pictures of a little guy, who is starting out young, making his way down the stairs at the Good Fellas second line, last Sunday. This is probably his first second line. His confidence will build as he prepares year after year. This is probably the last of my pictures from the event. No worries. There is another one on Sunday. The big one. The Young Men Olympians. This one will be about a million divisions long and will take at least four hours to complete. It’ll probably sideline us with some kind of heat related ailment. Oh well. We do it for the stories we can tell. Smile. It’s good for us. For me, I lost two photographers this week who were mentors to me in my early days. My work is influenced by them, even now. My thinking is influenced by them. That’s why I figured out where to stand so I could photograph both divisions of this second line. …