New View in Familiar Place

I return to the Palouse over and over. I love it. It make me feel at peace. I like to sit at the top of Steptoe Butte and follow the lines of the hills in a rhythmic pattern. Up and down, up and down. It has meditative quality.

And each visit I find new a new scenes. Sometimes along the roads that I travelled many times. The color of fields, the light, the clouds, the patterns – all change, all the time.

And sometimes it is simply taking a look in a different direction. Like in this case. I drove this road many times but always in the opposite direction and had never seen this tranquil scene up until now.

Follow Your Heart

When I go on a photographic trip the hardest decision is always picking a destination.

Last week I had a knee surgery (which went quite well and I’m recovering quickly). The weekend before that I was going on a photo trip. I knew it would be a while I’d go again, so the choice was really hard.

The way I often make such decision is first decide whether I want to explore a new place or visit again a place I’ve been too. Once that is over I decide within that group which place to go based on time of the year, weather, etc.

The way I decided this time was simply by following my heart. So, I went to the Palouse. After so many years and so many visits I still love this place.

It’s rolling hills have calming, meditative influence on me. Despite its growing popularity I still have my places where I can be alone. And I keep discovering dirt roads I’ve never visited before.

When I arrived there I realized it was the right choice for me. Calm and peace filled my heart. First day I did not even get the camera out. I was just looking at the hills following their lines in their slow rhythm of a heartbeat.

Funny Moments

Sometimes photographing in popular locations yields quite funny pictures.

I was photographing in Carrizo Plains in California. A couple ventured into the flower field as I was taking a series of timed exposures to be used for time stacking later.

I knew they will have no impact on the final image. But when they noticed me they started crouching. Not sure if it would really help were I taking a single exposure but it made for quite funny image.

I waved them that they were not creating any problems for me and yelled “Thanks”. And they happily proceeded to take pictures they wanted.

The final image I was after:

Photos for Meditation

I found certain photos to be great for meditation. I can stare at the for long time and think about something that I cannot remember anything of later. They are just so calming and simple.

Spring Time in Carrizo

I lost myself in the sea of flowers.
I closed my eyes
        to let other senses enjoy the scene.

The warm touch of the sun.
The gentle caressing of the breeze.
The soft singing of the birds.
The sweet scent of the spring.

I stood in the sea of flowers in silence.
I wanted to take it all in.
Until I lost myself in the sea of flowers.
Until I became a part of it.

_DSC9354-Pano

The Spring is Here

spring has come to Skygit Valley. Last weekend I went there to photograph daffodils but ended up photographing less daffodils and more of other scenes of Skygit Valley rediscovering it for myself. Even when there were daffodils in the frame they were taking very little part of it.

First, my attention was captivated by the snow geese taking rest in Skygit Valley during their regular migration.

Then I got fascinated by the smoke and steam coming from tall pipes and blending with the sky.

Then I noticed puddles in the fields and was looking for interesting reflections.

Then I went after complete abstract shots like this.

Then after lonely trees.

Then finally, by the end of the day I finally stood by a daffodil field. Even then I more enjoyed how the sky was painted with clouds then the flowers themselves.

An Old Clunker

A few weeks ago I went to the Palouse. I’ve been there many times. I find the experience of spending hours in the fields listening to wind and whispers of wheat moved by the wind relaxing and meditating.

Despite visiting the Palouse every year and some years several times a year I find something new every time. This time as I was driving on one of the Palouse roads I passed a blue old truck left rusting in a field. Had it been there before and I simply had never driven that road before? Or was it dragged out there recently? No idea.

My thought was that it is kind of interesting but it is not what I came for. I came for beautiful landscapes that the Palouse is rich with. The old rusty clunker was not quite a beautiful landscape. Neither it was making landscape beautiful. After all I could photograph it on the way back if I wanted. Thus I passed it by and kept on going.

As I was returning on the same road I decided to stop and take at least on photo – just to pay a tribute to the old clunker. I was stuck around it for about two hours. I could not stop photographing it. There were so many images, so many stories in that old truck.

First, I liked the truck filling the whole frame, leaving little room for anything else.

Then I wanted to show it in the field.

Then I realized I like its symmetry. While having background almost symmetrical.

The I liked how the blue truck blends with the blue sky. I wanted more sky.

Then I got closer to the truck. (I always start from a distance and then come closer to the subject. That way I don’t ruin anything I might want to include in wide frame.)

I liked the rhythmic change of blue to yellow and yellow to blue.

Then even closer.

That was too close. As I saw shadow of a rear view mirror I realized that I missed  those strong lines before. I had to step back to get them in.

Now really close. Focusing on individual details of the truck.

Lines, shapes and colors.

Lines and shapes. Lack of color.

Now closing on rusty patterns. This looked like Chinese characters to me.

And this looked like a map of some islands surrounded by water.

And of causes needed to capture the truck make and model sign.

“Ok. Enough.” I told myself and started walking back to the car. Only to see something interesting on the other side: bright white lines of the side mirror supports against dark black shadow of the truck.

Thanks for following thru all this store to the end with me. Times and times again I find that there are infinite possibility around us. No need to drive around. There are lots and lost of images in each and every place.