Photography has given me a lot over the years. One of the biggest gifts has been the ability to see beauty. It really is everywhere, if you choose to see it.
It’s been a trying month for me, which makes it easy to view the world through a negative lens. Recognizing that that’s what I’ve been doing made it possible for me to choose to change my lens and see the beauty again.
While visiting my cousin, across the water from Boston, I went for a walk on the beach. It’s not your typical beach. Think rocky, muddy, bits of trash laying around, and plenty of glass (most of it was smooth from the waves.) What im saying is it would be easy to focus on the negative qualities of this beach. Instead, I paid attention to the light.
I thought I would shoot the skyline at sunset, but the light lit up some trees that line the beach, in an amazing way, and they demanded to be photographed. The color was so intense on the trees that I decided black and white was the way to go for an Ansel Adams type edit.
Shot with the default camera app and edited with Snapseed and Mextures.
Shannon and I stopped at this lighthouse on our lighthouse adventure day. This seems like the obvious composition to me, but it works so well. I tried other angles, but it just doesn’t have the same visual impact as this one.
After we took our shots, we decided to film a segment on focus stacking for our photography students. We explained how to approach a scene like this, and how to get everything in focus from front to back.
If you think you want to learn about advanced techniques such as focus stacking, you may want to join us over at the Light & Landscape members area, where we are teaching photography to over 20 students right now. I don’t even want to announce the price here because its ridiculously low at half off for the first month with a money back satisfaction guarantee. If you want more details, you can contact me at email@example.com or Shannon at firstname.lastname@example.org
My girlfriend and I recently spent several days camping in Acadia. This gave me the opportunity to revisit places I shot a few years ago, including Jordan Pond. I also explored some new areas, but this pond might be my favorite spot out there.
I took photos there one afternoon, and then we returned again the next day with our kayaks, for a fun paddle on the water.
This image spoke to me, so I wrote some more meaningful words to go along with it:
Often, we seek reflections on water. We love to see a reflection because it creates a sense of harmony. We see something we love, and find it even more amazing when there is an exact replica.
Sometimes, the water isn’t reflective at all. Beneath the surface lies a different kind of beauty. This beauty takes effort and awareness to recognize.
[I know its a bit harder to tell in the black and white version, but the majority of these rocks are under water]
Shot with a Nikon D7000. Edited in Lightroom, Photoshop, and Topaz Impression 1.
Apparently, this is a famous building that everyone shoots, or paints, out in Rockport, MA. I shot this a couple of years ago, and never quite knew what to do with the edit. I’m not a huge fan of photos taken during the middle of the day, but this one worked for me because of the clouds.
It is a replica of a former fishing shack well known to students of art and art history as “the most often-painted building in America.”The original structure was built in 1840 and destroyed in the Blizzard of 1978, but an exact replica was constructed that same year.
I’d never sen it before, which is a good thing, because I wouldn’t want to be influenced by anything I might have seen. Honestly, there weren’t too many unique compositions for this scene, so I tried a long exposure with my 10 stop ND and then went with a painterly edit in the end.
Now that I live within driving distance of her, Shannon and I can have more photo adventures, which is what we’re doing right now. It’s been just over a month since we shot in Oregon, and here we find ourselves on the coast of Maine.
We tried to go shoot a shipwreck at this beach, but the sand had buried most of it. There really wasn’t any point in shooting it this time. At least the sand patterns were really cool.
Now we’re on our way to more lighthouses and a state park.
Last night, around sunset, we had stormy skies that had a few breaks in it. I was feeling optimistic, so I went for a walk down between the ponds. For a moment, it looked like the sky was opening up right where I needed it to. Unfortunately, it closed back up after 5 minutes, and about 15 before sunset.
Instead of walking back with nothing to share, I stopped at the house on the corner to take my first shot at it. It’s abandoned and falling apart, obviously. There is so much cool detail and texture on the outside. I plan on exploring it more thoroughly one day. For this shot I just wanted a wide shot of the property. Next time I’ll be up close with my super wide angle iPro lens. I may even see if I can have a look around the inside.
Shot with ProHDRX. Edited with Snapseed, Mextures, and iColorama.
I’ve been in a Maine for a week now. I have to say that this place is the opposite of where I grew up in Silicon Valley. I was pretty worried the first couple of days, because of culture shock. I knew this town of 4000 people was going to be small, but it felt even smaller once I actually saw it. It’s definitely going to take some time to slow down and adjust.
I feel like I’m going to be forced to disconnect from the 21st century and get back to nature. Thats not necessarily a bad thing. The few times that I’ve been able to get out, I’ve found Maine to be incredibly peaceful. There are so few people that its very easy to find yourself in a remote area surrounded by nature.
My biggest challenges are not having a car, cell phone service is spotty, and wifi signal is awful in this house. If I go anywhere outside of civilization, my cell phone is useless, so I need to get a physical map and a compass, since I don’t know my way around. And a new challenge that just popped up is my iMac suddenly lost power while typing this up. Yay for old farmhouses.
Thats enough complaining. Trust me, I could go on about several other things, but I’m just going to have to accept that my old way of life isn’t possible here right now.
On the bright side, I already made a new photographer friend here. She is still learning, but is already creating cool surreal composites. She was nice enough to show me around the other day while she searched for the perfect pond with lily pads. There doesn’t seem to be too much talent out here outside of the two of us, and maybe one or two other people. I suppose thats a good thing for me. She already wants to open up an artist space together to display our work and run workshops. I’m still feeling the market out before I commit to that though.
(This was shot with the default camera app on the iPhone and edited with Snapseed.)