The other night I showed up at the beach at dusk. Sometimes when I’m taking photos things just happen and its good to be ready. In this case a woman was posing for photos on an adjacent pier about a hundred meters away. Her friend was taking pictures of her with his phone. It was getting dark so I set my ISO way up and took this shot.
The waters edge is a like a boundary into another world. For me, looking out over the water is like looking into the unknown. Standing at the edge of what we know and gazing beyond is an idea I sometimes think about.
If I’m honest I can find the unknown in my everyday life. Often I’m presented with challenges to overcome. When that happens its like looking into a gulf of uncertainty. I may know how to navigate but I’ve never been THERE before; there are risks. So the unknown is part of life, if not why be born in the first place. When we choose to go beyond what we know we are crossing out beyond the shoreline.
This water is normally choppy but just after sunset the breeze dies down and the water becomes like glass. That’s when I see all kinds of opportunities for compositions like this. It’s amazing how much difference an hour makes in the look and feel of a place like this. I love summer evenings by the river.
The spot where I’m standing is popular for Pokemon Go. Quite a few people show up here at night, more so than just a couple months ago. They create a festive atmosphere even if they are concentrating on their mobile screens. I haven’t tried the game myself but I have a feeling its just the beginning of a whole new wave in gaming. I should open up a hot dog stand here. I’ll have an app that they can use to buy the hot dogs even though they are standing right in front of me. It’ll be a big hit.
An hour or so earlier there were afternoon thunderstorms. After the storms move away they left small cloud remnants that collected the colors of dusk. You can see a little of that action going on here in shades of pink as the sun recedes well beyond the horizon.
I love how long the evenings are in summer. Pretty soon it will be autumn and it starts getting dark early again. But now its fun to be outside until well after dark; taking pictures, playing Pokemon or selling hot dogs with my new killer app.
I went to this point at the waters edge not sure what I’d shoot. I took a few shots of this or that but nothing really clicked (no pun intended). I was walking back to my car when I looked back to see this group of people talking at the waters edge. This ended up being the shot that I liked the most.
I suppose standing at the waters edge is a metaphor for a border between this world and the next. When we stand there we look out and contemplate. At least that’s how I interpret this scene. For all I know they could be talking about where to go for dinner. Anyway, in my photograph they are looking out in contemplation, that’s my story and i’m sticking to it.
This place is ten minutes from home and one of my favorite spots to go. Sometimes I come in the morning but mostly at dusk. There is an automated gate that closes just after sunset. I tend to linger and several times I’ve been asked to leave by the ranger. I will get permission one day to stay later so that I can get some clear shots of the night sky. But for the time being the shot will be of people in contemplation at the waters edge.
This is one of my favorite places to come and walk the beach. It’s on the southern tip of Lido Beach in Sarasota. The reason I like it so much is that’s it’s secluded and at the very tip of the key. Right behind where I’m standing is the end of the key and fishermen typically stand there to catch fish coming in or out with the tide.
There are hotels up further to the right, but this spot is a park so if you come here during the sunset hour you can get lost in the scenery, breeze and warm water at your feet without the crowds you get in front of the hotels.
I work in an office all day and when I come here and walk in the water its restorative. It’s a natural consequence of being outside in a place like this. I have a dog that sleeps at my desk during the day. When I take him out for a mid-day walk he likes to lay down on the pavement and soak up the sun. He will not move until he feels better. I suppose that simple act restores something missing from being inside. The same is true for me when I come here to Lido, I am restored.
This is a shot of Moose Pass from the train between Seward and Anchorage Alaska. I love the pristine reflection of the mountains on the water. The sun was behind the train and you can see how it casts shadows of the trees onto the water. It’s a nice effect that I didn’t really notice until I looked at this later.
I was fortunate to be on this train. I know nothing about Alaska and I just assumed that the ship I was on would dock in Anchorage. Little did I know that wasn’t the case. Fortunately I received a pamphlet on the first day of the voyage offering transfers to the airport. I figured it would be a thirty minute cab ride at most. Little did I realize it was a four hour drive. I opted for the slightly longer train in hopes that I would have a better view of the scenery along the way. I definitely did and the train ended up right at the airport terminal so it was completely hassle free.
Travel shenanigans aside, I will always take a train if it’s an option. There is so much more to see and it’s nice to stand up and walk around, more practical in many respects. In this case the scenery was great and I was super happy it turned out this way. If not for reading a brochure I almost certainly would have missed my flight home in Anchorage and, this never-ending scenery that is the great state of Alaska.
I continue to look for reflections on water whenever I go out shooting. The most exquisite, at least for me are reflections on still water. This is a view of the DeSoto bridge in Bradenton. It’s one of two main bridges, but this one is due to be replaced. In the meantime I’ll continue taking pictures until they tear it down. When the water’s calm I go a little crazy capturing reflections.
If I may digress a little, reflections have a deeper meaning with respect to our psyches. I believe that how we perceive people, the world, even ourselves is based on reflections. Maybe that sounds deep but really it’s not. How we perceive is based on a reflection of our own makeup. I see things my way and you see things yours. So anyway, I suppose that might be one reason I like reflections. That, and they look cool.
Back to the bridge. I have no idea how they plan to replace this bridge. The traffic over it is enormous and it is a lifeline; the hospital is just on the other side off frame on the left. So you can’t just tear it down, seems to me you have to build another one, THEN tear it down. Those engineers have their work cut out for them. Let’s hope they reflect on it long and hard. Ahem.
When I was on the ship I was constantly taking photos of the landscape. Much of it was open waters bordered by mountains and peeks. That’s different from what I’m used to looking at back home so I soaked in as much as I could. This was taken as the setting sun casts a warm glow on everything. The way the ship moves around these straits I could never really tell which direction was west unless the sun was low enough in the horizon. Even then I would think it was in the wrong place, it’s a good thing I wasn’t steering the ship.
In the summers it never really gets completely dark. That was a new experience for me. It would be fun to travel further north and experience the constant daylight of the summer months (It’s on my bucket list). I would wake up in the morning to see the dawn light and then look at the clock to find it was three-thirty or four. Most mornings I was up around five, it was hard to sleep knowing it was light outside.
I walked to the bow of the ship where there is an observation deck and a helicopter pad. People would gather here at sunset or when there was some interesting spectacle. I came to catch the sunset, but on account of how slow the sun sets I stayed for an hour just watching the scenery. This is just a snippet of that.
This is sunset over the Twin Dolphins Marina in Bradenton Florida. I took this the other night from a bridge that crosses the Manatee River into Bradenton. The river meets the Gulf of Mexico just a few miles beyond and in it’s waters are dolphins, manatees and all manner of fish. At this point it’s not a river in the traditional sense, more an estuary where the water flows in and out with the tide.
The bridge overlooks the Twin Dolphins Marina where folks have pleasure boats. However a number of people live here on their boats full time. There is a restaurant straight ahead called Pier 22 that we frequent on account of the outdoor patio and food which is very good.
This is one of those places that I pass when running errands in Bradenton. When I’m driving the bridge I don’t get a chance to enjoy the view so much. But today I parked my car and walked across the bridge at sunset. Not surprising, there were a lot of other people walking across for exercise the scenery. Sometimes it pays to just take it slow and enjoy the sights in my own backyard.
When I was last in Vancouver I took a ride in a seaplane and captured this as we circled around the city. I’ve been meaning to do this for years and glad I finally did. I’ve walked just about every inch of Vancouver and seeing it from the air was a great way to put it all together.
As you can see there is a lot of green space which, in my opinion, is a sign of a healthy city. To the left is Stanley Park which is a little like Central Park in New York only more wild.
I overlaid the image with a texture to convey an almost mythic quality of the city. Maybe it doesn’t seem that way to people who live and work here everyday, but when you draw back and get a little perspective you have to agree there is something amazing here.
Vancouver is nothing if not a big concentration of towers. Surely other cities have more, this is only a slice of Manhattan, but this city is surrounded by mountain peaks. It’s the combination of the towers and mountains that strikes you when you visit. That’s then followed by a million other impressions coming at you from every direction in this great city on the Pacific.
The rains we had recently created some very nice sunsets. I came here on a whim to see if I could get some shots and lucked out on account of the clouds and light. Just as much as the sunset I like to capture the quality of light. When that blazing ball recess below the horizon everything we see is from reflected light. And the lower it sinks the more atmosphere it travels through casting a soft and warm glow. If the conditions are right, that glow is unlike anything else and is the closest thing to a feeling magic I’ve ever experienced.
I have recollections as a child playing outside in the long summer evenings. I remember the glow of light and the special feeling I got from it. But I would have forgotten were it not for my pursuit of photography. As a landscape photographer I recognize and appreciate the quality of light. At times like this it can be other worldly.
Anyway, I get carried away and take dozens and dozens of photos. Sometimes many of them are great, but then the problem is I have a million great photos of the exact same thing. Its like money in the bank I suppose, store them away for a rainy day.