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Seeing pictures in a new place with a new camera

Seeing pictures in a new place with a new camera

Welcome friends to my travelog 2023.  I am traveling in Europe for the next 4 weeks working everyday to make new work and exploring. 

I am struck once again by the overwhelming feeling that comes with being in a new place where everything feels dramatic and is calling my attention.  My first few days in Copenhagen and today in Bordeaux I have found my self making " record shots" and this is not my intention. I am a photographer who strives to see deeper into my surroundings and so far I've just been scratching the surface. I think this happens to many of us as we find a way to be mindful and intentional in a new place. For me I find that it helps to think in terms of smaller details and paying attention to how I feel as I am seeing new scenes.  I would be curious to hear from some of you how you help yourself to react and be more fully in the moment in a new place. 

6 comments

Bob Gordon

I have been to Paris eight times in the last 30 years. I find that the photographs I take first time in any location are pretty weak. My second and subsequent photographs from the same venue are far superior.

Mark Danley

I know only too well the challenge to embrace a new place and simultaneously want to transcend the banality of modern tourism. I’m becoming more of the opinion that depth can only come after the initial dazzle of newness begins to fade. That is partly why I eschew excursions in favor of setting in to a familiar destination. There’s also a danger in becoming too familiar with a place in that we then risk not being objective, and we perhaps fail to see what is happening around us.

Walt

Hi Ray! I’m super buzzed that you guys are having such a great time! I really understand what you’re saying about breaking away from making “snapshots”, it’s hard to do in a new place… accept that you are going to make pictures like that— they’re important too— and they will bring you personal enjoyment when you remember your trip.

The more intentional pictures will come… sometimes, a “happy accident” as I often find when I review a day’s pictures from a trip. I guess I’m saying to relax, let the pictures reveal themselves for you… don’t sweat it.

Happy Birthday! Looking forward to seeing your new work!

Walt

Hi Ray! I’m super buzzed that you guys are having such a great time! I really understand what you’re saying about breaking away from making “snapshots”, it’s hard to do in a new place… accept that you are going to make pictures like that— they’re important too— and they will bring you personal enjoyment when you remember your trip.

The more intentional pictures will come… sometimes, a “happy accident” as I often find when I review a day’s pictures from a trip. I guess I’m saying to relax, let the pictures reveal themselves for you… don’t sweat it.

Looking forward to seeing your new work! Happy Birthday!

Carsten

… over the last vacation trips I stopped intentional “searching for good photos”. I realized that my first intention should remain the experience of the place in that limited moment. I made my photos and went home with an impression of “there is no really good photo on the film worth being printed”. And then I was positively surprised by what the negative showed me. Trust your experience and don’t search intentionally. You are experienced enough to find the good spots without being distracted from the moment you enjoy the place you are at that particular moment. Enjoy Europe!!

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