This is the Bridge of Sighs as it frames a crowd of people beyond. In this case I am focused on the crowds rather than attempting to obscure them. It’s a different perspective but something I’ve been exploring lately. Lets just say it’s a slightly different take on travel photography.
My idea is to have crowds of people juxtaposed to architecture or in iconic settings. If it’s done right there’s something that makes us want to look closer. Normally crowds are not that interesting but therein lies the challenge.
Also I write about it because it helps me make sense of new ideas like this. The more I integrate it the more I can repeat this idea in different settings; it’s a form of study.
Writing is an integral part of photography for me. I take a photo, work on it and then write about it. In the end I have a something more than just a photo. All the while I’m learning something new and having a little fun. And as they say, it’s all good.
I took this a couple years back on Sanibel Causeway, which connects the mainland to the small island of Sanibel. We have a lot of causeways and bridges in Florida because there are so many islands. When I first moved to Florida the unbelievable number of bridges was one of my first impressions.
Wherever there is a causeway you’ll find people standing at the waters edge with a fishing poll. In many ways this is a typical scene when driving around either coast.
The setting sun illuminated a large column behind the fisherman. I walked around and took a bunch of photos but within thirty minutes it had moved our way and we were covered in dark clouds. As I jumped in the car it started to rain and within a few minutes there was thunder, lighting and zero visibility. That’s a fairly common occurrence during the hot months.
Here is another vision of Venice that I took from a boat. A vision is what best describes this place; it seems not entirely real. When you’re in Venice the real world seems to fade away and become distant. Venice holds its own kind of reality, like the fabled Brigadoon. And then the opposite happens, you leave and the magic dissipates and you feel that Venice was like a vision.
Anyway, like some other photos I’ve produced, this was taken hand held at night from a boat. I’d normally use a tripod to get a better exposure with a lower ISO, but using a high ISO my camera’s sensor is able to recover most of the details of the night scene.
Do you ever notice that when you go to an amazing place you feel like you want to live there? Or maybe you feel like you’ve been there before. The excitement of seeing new places and the feelings it produces are why we travel in the first place.
This is travel photography with a twist. It’s from a place that doesn’t seem real until you go there. It seems to have a reality slightly removed from the real world. Maybe I should call it vision photography, …or maybe not.
I took this photo of Corniglia from a small boat travelling along the Cinque Terre coast. It was a very hot day so sitting in a boat was a good option. We passed several little villages just like this and I was thinking it would be hard to imagine a more picturesque setting. The villages look remote and isolated but in fact are connected by trains, roads and a hiking path.
In one sense it was a shame I only had a day here, but now I know where to come back for a proper visit.
When you look closely at these towns on the rugged slopes you realize they’ve taken centuries to build; the locations are most improbable. I believe they were originally properties of barons and such and the inaccessibility was a deterrent to pirates. Now they are communities with traditions, culture and hundreds of years of history. And based on the way they are built, I think they’ll be around for many more centuries.
I snapped this while walking through the streets of Calata Doria in Liguria Italy. Try as he could, this gentleman couldn’t remember what he had for dinner last night. I offered a suggestion but he said they didn’t have a Taco Bell nearby. This is my version fake news.
For some reason this man looks distressed but in reality I don’t recall that being the case, he was just taking a load off his feet and I happen to catch him with his hands just so. We all make expressions throughout the day that if taken out of context can send the wrong impression.
I feel a little like paparazzi when I take street photos of people. I prefer to have people look natural, but if they see me aiming they’ll react. The idea is to capture people unaware; it’s a more interesting study of human behavior.
The trick is to be as unobtrusive as possible. One technique is to line up a scene and wait for someone to walk through it. But if I’m too obvious folks stop and wait for me to finish, it gets a little awkward.
As luck would have it I ended up in New York on the hottest three days of summer. It was stifling during the day and muggy late into the evening. When it started to rain I headed down to Times Square to take some photos. Despite the crazy weather some people still showed up to see the sights. It was an amazing experience to be there in those conditions because there was so much to photograph.
I have an idea in my mind to capture people in crowded places. It seems I’m always traveling to places that are heavily populated. So rather than try to pretend people are not there I look for ways to make the crowds part of the composition.
I enjoy this idea because it allows me to examine things in a different light. The images are studies of crowds and crowded places. A natural inclination for landscape photography is to not include people but with urban exploration it has a different set of rules.
This is a sunrise from the Fort Hammer Bridge in the town of Parrish, Florida. The western part of the county is all beaches along the Gulf of Mexico, but the eastern part is all farmland and natural surroundings. I took this while standing on the new bridge that opened just last week.
If you look carefully you can see smoke rising from a fire in the horizon. It’s brush being cleared for another development. The inland communities of Florida are growing and new home construction is continuing out where only farms existed. It makes you wonder where all the farms will be in the future.
This view is of the preserve below the bridge that is protected and, a sanctuary for wildlife and migrating birds. It’s also a place to kayak and row, the local rowing club is just behind my vantage point.
Because I did not set the shutter speed correctly this image came out looking double exposed and blurry, like an impressionistic painting. This is not something I intended but looking at it now it feels a little like my memory of that evening in Venice.
In my short visit I experienced sights, sounds and feelings. The more I go back to look at the photos the more my memories are formed. But it’s totally subjective and what I remember is unique to me alone.
There is much in life I don’t remember because I never took the time to. If we don’t think about something it may not make an impression and is soon forgotten. However when we do, we build memories from our impressions.
Memories are like paintings, they are renderings, not true recordings. In the case of art, impressions are more important than fact.
The sounds of the oars in the water, the chatter of the gondoliers, the lights of the overhead windows and the evening shadows across the buildings; all of these combine into an impression that is so perfectly preserved with a simple camera mistake.
I’m embarrassed to say I have no idea where in Rome this is, nor the name of it. I ran in here to escape the rain and was astonished by the architecture and frescos, not to mention the silence as compared to the busy street just outside.
A vertorama is like a panorama, only vertical. I took three images, the first at eye level and the third straight up. When they are stitched together they create a perspective that shows more than you normally see at a glance. It’s a little disorienting but fun to look at just the same.
There were no signs warning against photography so I felt free to take my time and compose the image. Some churches will charge a small photo fee that I’m more than happy to pay. These churches are studies in architecture and art, it seems to me the more they are shared the better. I’d like to think I’m doing my small part to share this amazing cathedral with the rest of the world, completely free of charge.
I take so many photos from this spot at Bradenton Beach they may as well name the pier after me (no, not really).
Piers make great leading lines and they always attract people. So if you’re a photographer and you sit near one long enough you’ll see all kinds of things to take pictures of. And, by the way, this pier and several others nearby were recently built to replace old piers destroyed in storms. I’m happy to say that after a recent hurricane the new ones had no damage at all. Yay!
This spot is popular with surfers and sometimes they use the pier to launch. When I took this, another offshore storm was creating waves, which in turn brought out the surfers and photographers including yours truly.
The pier is made of massive concrete blocks attached to pilings. It took about a year to construct and I remember wishing it would be finished. The day finally came and now they’re magnets for everything from surfers to seabirds, not to mention photo guys like me.