>> Sunday, August 8, 2010
On Saturday I went for a walk at Beaver Lake Nature Center with my friend M, who is a fellow artist and photographer. It was a great day fun-wise - we had an absolutely grand time. I always love getting to spend time with someone else who looks at the world from an artist's perspective. Plus, M has a great sense of humor and picks on me fairly ruthlessly, and I very much enjoy the bantering. He's good company, in lots of ways.
Sadly, it turned out to be one of my worst photography days in a long, long time.
The lighting was very strange, with a bright blue sky but lots of thick, fluffy clouds that significantly diminished the amount of light. Once again, I struggled with some of the limitations of my camera, getting supremely grainy shots when I turned up the ISO high enough for the light conditions, and getting a lot of shots that were badly underexposed. At least, I'm going to blame the camera, because it's just not possible the problems were my fault. (ha!)
Anywho, among the many, many shots I took, here are the few I like.
We spent a lot of time fiddling around, trying to get some unusual and super artistic shots of all sorts of things. Nearly all of my experiments failed miserably, but it was fun anyway. I did like this shot that M took with my camera, though. It sort of feels like that's how the tree looks to that little vine trying to climb it... if the vine is very near-sighted.
One of the problems with getting better as a photographer is that my standards get higher and higher. I'm getting pickier about what I like and don't like, photos I would once have thought were fine are no longer making me happy. I guess, all things considered, that's a good problem to have.
We met quite a number of flying buggy friends in the course of the day, most of whom were decidedly uncooperative about being photographed. I managed to get a few holding still long enough to snap a picture, though. But photographing bugs always just makes me want a macro lens. I want to capture all the weird lenses of their eyes, the scales on their wings, the hairs on their legs, their exoskeletal joints. Some day...
I looooove dragon flies. They always remind me of a wonderful weekend I spent with my best girlfriend, many years ago now, camping at St. Regis canoe area in the Adirondacks. It was a lovely hot summery weekend, and we spent much of our time swimming. Whenever we stood still in the water, the dragon flies would commence massive territorial wars over us. Apparently our shoulders were prime sunning spots for them. Their aerial acrobatics positively astonish me - for heaven's sake, they can hover. They come in an incredible array of iridescent colors. And as if they weren't just plain cool enough already, they also eat mosquitoes. Oh yes, I do love dragon flies.
Finally, I'll throw in some shots of a trio of turtles we found sunning themselves on logs. If you look closely, you can see their silly webbed feet streeeeetched out, presumably to catch as much of the sun as possible. So cute. (You really have to look hard at that second one - the guy on the left has his back leg hanging. Once again, major lighting problems).