I was practicing my panning skills on some gulls, when I decided to try for some abstract shots of the distant shoreline. This one turned out quite nicely.
Since we had a good dousing of rain on Friday night, I decided to hike up Cold Springs Trail to check on the water flow. There really wasn’t very much water, but thankfully it was still running clear and not mud colored. This hike was an experiment to see if I could make do with just the Joby – Gorillapod Focus, and not a full tripod. It worked really well when there were boulders to work from, but was nearly impossible to use at ground level. My knees were not at all happy about this experiment! However, with mirror lockup and a cable release, it did a great job holding the camera still.
I’ve been doing so much wildlife photography lately that I feel like I’m getting in a bit of a rut. So, it was very refreshing to search out some different subject matter and to look for interesting compositions in the exceedingly chaotic wilderness. I’ll have to make a point of going on more of these excursions this winter.
I’ve been spending (too much) time on Flickr looking at other people’s images recently. There are a lot of outstanding images, but after awhile it gets a bit overwhelming and everything starts to blur together and I feel like I’m looking at the same images over and over. It’s actually giving me a headache just thinking about it! Some amazing photographers have commented about the number of images being posted online and have pondered what it means. What can one person contribute when there are already billions of photos online? Perhaps the end result should not be the primary goal, but instead the process of creating should be what matters most. I find that the times that I push myself to discover new places and improve the quality of my work, are the events that I value the most.
As a result, I have challenged myself to ‘find’ more images in nature and attempt to push my creativity and compositional skills to the next level. I feel like I know my local area like the back of my hand, but it is astonishing how many photographic subjects go unseen, when you aren’t actively open to seeing new things. I have a feeling this will be a very educational challenge. So far, the successful images are few and far between, but that is all part of the process. Here are a few of the better ones, although they do have their significant flaws. Consider this a work in progress…
It seems like it wouldn’t be summer without a fire in the backcountry. Yesterday, the “La Brea” fire started approximately 10 miles SW of New Cuyama around 2:50 pm. All signs are pointing to this being a difficult one to get under control, particularly because it went from 150 acres to 1,200 in less than 3 hours! The following photos were taken near the UCSB lagoon and Campus Point beaches. Unfortunately, I didn’t see the smoke plume earlier, otherwise I would have headed up to the ridge for a better view. Maybe I’ll be able to get up there tonight.
“La Brea Fire Smoke” – UCSB Lagoon, Santa Barbara, CA
It’s not often that we get nice sunsets during the summer here in Santa Barbara. Last week proved to be an exception and there were several evenings with some spectacular light and clouds. The light show started on Sunday and I shared the experience with the local pair of kites at Lake Los Carneros.
“In Motion” – Lake Los Carneros, Goleta, CA
Ever since visiting Antelope Canyon I’ve been excited about photographing some local sandstone structures. In particular, the wind caves at Gaviota. I felt that morning would offer the best opportunity for interesting light, given that most of the caves face east or southeast. I’m really happy with the initial results and hope to make it back soon with additional camera gear. (All of the below shots were taken handheld with my G10.)