On Mother Nature and Scenic Photography
I do this kind of photography exclusively because for me the feelings evoked by the grandeur and the detail all around us shows me a glimpse of the divine. Without question being out there, alone even, is like meditation - a calm adrenaline rush. A different kind of emotion to that felt between portrait photographer and subject, but one that is equally valid and important.
I am not a portrait person. I am too quiet and shy to form any bond with the subject.
You hit the nail on the head when you said it is like meditation. That is why I love to shoot alone. Me, the scene, and the camera, when I am in the zone, work smoothly and quick. On those outings when the world intrudes or there is someone with me I never seem to get the shots I want. The exposure is always off, I get frustrated, and feel cheated. It is a personal thing, the prints and negatives are a happy perk, to the experience.
Ever sat the camera up, plopped your butt on the ground and waited for a couple of hours for the shadows to get just right? I mean sitting watching and listening. Not fiddling with stuff, talking, or wishing you could release the shutter. For some reason if I have a camera with me I can sit quietly for a really long time. No camera and I can't stand it. The Ad/HD kicks in..
Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI
So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004
Been there, done that, and you are absolutely right.
For another look at the divine, I peer into the eyes and the face of a child.
But I totally agree with your assessment, and the feeling that nature evokes.
I couldn't think of anything witty to say so I left this blank.
Absolutely Michael - my little boy keeps on reminding me that I do not need to leave home to be blessed.
Mark, sometimes I get caught up in the peace and quiet that I forget that I have my 8x10 set up waiting to be used. No rush hour here.
Amen to that, Francesco!
I find I am equally comfortable doing Fine Art nature photography and "hard science" photography.
I don't like to do portrait photography (though I sometimes do it anyway) because the portrait situation induces a sense of urgency in me - and I prefer working in an atmosphere of quiet contemplation and solitude.
Everything is analog - even digital :D
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My secret is out; don't tell my wife, she thinks I'm just a litter different.
I live in the middle of some of the finest nature in the world - it is almost too easy. It also tends not to move around too fast, so I have plenty of time to set up my camera...
-- Ole Tjugen, Luddite Elitist
I think what makes it unappealing for some is that uniqueness in subject matter is exceptionally difficult to find in landscape/nature/scenic photography. "Been there, done that" - "what else is new" - "not another slot canyon" - "clouds again, rocks again, trees again!!!!". We have heard it all before. Unlike portrait photograpy where you already have every subject as unique, as individual, as an adventure to begin with, today's landscape/scenic photography starts his trek knowing that 99% of what he will see or visualise will disappoint him as passé or trite (not to say that portraiture is easier - far from it; finding unique subjects is one thing, proper execution is another). This is precisely why I love it - the challenge to be unique is greatest for me in this type of photography. If I can succeed in the 21st century in creating my own signature to scenic photography to at least one other person then I have succeeded.
There is just something about the world around us that continually fascinates me as well. I love the interplay of light and shadow, of shapes and textures and of patterns and movement. It's just so intriguing!
But I am also fascinated by those same elements in buildings - the patterns of wood or chipped paint, the image of a past life invoked by the structures... sort of like the stories they could tell.
I like taking photos of people too, but tend to lean toward the unaware rather than the posed.