Lens-Artists Challenge #33 – NATURE
“Never stop exploring… with Mother Nature by your side, the possibilities are endless.”
This week Patti has challenged us to explore Nature – one of my favorite subjects. Living here on Kiawah we are surrounded by some of Mother Nature’s most glorious work. This past week we focused on just that in a 2-day seminar/shoot with Alan Ross, former assistant to and disciple of Ansel Adams. (As I’ve mentioned before, we have an amazing community of photographers here, and are fortunate to host wonderful speakers from time to time.) Alan was terrific, sharing interesting background on Ansel as a person and as a photographer. Through his work with Ansel he met and photographed many other famous photographers (such as Imogen Cunningham and Dorothea Lange),and he also shared several images and personal stories about them. His educational sessions focused on visualizing and composing images with intent as well as some post-processing methods to help us fine-tune our message.
“The world is abounding with beauty.”
One of the nice things about having been involved with such a session is that it forced us to go out in weather we might normally have avoided (our shooting session was in very foggy conditions with a bland, cloudless sky). Further, we were committed to 2 hours, which pushed us to be creative and find subjects we might otherwise have ignored. Finally, there was a cloudburst at the end of our shoot which I was fortunate to have captured. A very short burst of sun broke through the rain and fog for just a moment – I’ve included it as my opening image. Once I’d seen the magic of the light I decided to see what would happen once the rain stopped. Sure enough, the brilliant clouds in the image above appeared for a very short time before night fell and the rain returned.
“The function of art is to hold the mirror up to nature, and there simply isn’t a mirror big enough.”
On my way to the photo shoot the scene above greeted me as I was turning out of my street. I loved the thick fog surrounding the tall palmettos and had to stop to capture it. Happily, since I was heading to the shoot, my camera was all set to go and was sitting next to me on the passenger seat. Serendipity 😊.
“My last word is that it all depends on what you visualize.”
Based on our week, of course I had to close with a monochrome landscape and an Ansel Adams quote. Visualization was the aspect of photography that Alan’s sessions most emphasized. He talked about giving thought to the photograph before composing it, and visualizing not only the image but also the affect we hoped it would have upon the viewer. We had two separate shoots in the same area, with 10 different photographers in each. Amazingly there were no two photos alike. This supported Alan’s view (and Ansel’s as well) that each of us has our own vision which is unique and different from others around us. As always, it’s not what we see but how we see it.
Many thanks to Patti for her creative challenge, giving me the opportunity to explore nature’s gifts here on Kiawah. Hope to see you all next week when Ann-Christine sends the next challenge our way.
PLEASE NOTE: Several of you have notified me that my comments are going to spam. I’ve reached out to Akismet, the company that manages WP spam. They were very responsive and have assured me that they’ve addressed the issue, but that it is also important when comments are incorrectly put in spam that the blogger check the NOT SPAM field. Please do check your spam each week to make sure comments are not being lost, and check the appropriate field when necessary.
AND ONE MORE THING 😊: For those of you who have enjoyed my images from our journey to Israel and Petra, I’ve completed my Blurb book about the trip. You can see the entire book at: A visit to the Holy Land. Just click on the book, then hit the little diagonal arrows above it to see it in 2-page, full-screen mode.
All photos created with Fuji X-T2