I keep trying to think of new places to go that won’t be breaking the government’s plea for us to stay close to home. It’s not that I get tired of photographing my ever-changing garden or the dusty back roads, but this past week had me wondering what I could take pictures of that I hadn’t done over and over again since March of 2020.
I have been doing renovations on my house since the snow left, but I always want to take short breaks to spend time pointing my camera. I sent a text to my friend Jo asking her if she could get away for the morning and if she had any ideas for a short photo trip. Riverside Park was her reply. Gosh, I hadn’t thought of going to the park.
The cool, overcast morning was good for wandering the park. There were hardly any people. I had expected the usual bicycle-packed lanes, children on the playgrounds and people on the grass and river beachfront. But on this brisk Tuesday morning the place was almost deserted. Yep, it was a great day to be walking around with a camera.
I had planned on making myself “think black and white.” I thought that might be best for the morning’s flat light, and I began by searching out subjects that would produce a workable range of gray tones.
I focused on the train bridge at the end of the park, a wall of “Love Locks,” geese and seagulls on posts and pillars and park trees. I intended to convert the photos I made to B&W. However, there was more colour than I expected. The grass was green and there were flowers growing in small gardens, many of the trees were in bloom and graffiti artists had decorated the concrete walls under the train bridge. Gosh, there were lots of deep colours on that dull day and I decided many of my photographs would be better in colour than B&W.
There’s a lot to photograph in a park. All one has to do is get creative and try new points of view. Walk around any subject that seems interesting and try angles that aren’t normal. I saw Jo put her camera down on the brick pavement, use her camera’s self timer and I expect a small aperture so she could extend her depth of field for a few very low perspective shots. Getting low or climbing on something for a high view changes how the subject looks.
I was using a 24-120 mm lens and Jo had a 28-300 mm lens. Both are versatile walk around lenses. The 24-120 mm is new to me and I wasn’t sure how sharp it would be on my full-frame camera, but it’s great and the wide-to-long focal length was just what I needed at the park. I expect it will supplant my 24-70 mm as my go-to walk around lens.
For those that haven’t yet, you might add the local park to your places to get creative. I expect mornings will be the best time to be able to do photography uninterrupted. Try to look at the place in a new way and search out the unusual shots. I plan to spend another morning there to see what new subjects I can find.
I’ll finish with a well used quote by American photographer Ansel Adams, “Photography is more than a medium for factual communication of ideas. It is a creative art.”
Stay safe and be creative. These are my thoughts for this week.
Contact me at www.enmanscamera.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.