Sunday, July 27, 2014

Dilapidated House - Eastern Sierra

Our Compelling Fascination With Decay

An old house crumbles in a cruel and irreversible battle with time. From disrepair to rot to ruin, it decomposes before our eyes, its elements returning to the Earth, inch by inch, splinter by splinter.

How did you end up this way, Old House? Who lived in you, and why did they leave? Why did they stop repairing you? Do they still drive by? Do they remember living comfortably, protected from the elements by your once-viable roof and walls? 

a photo of a dilapidated old house in the eastern sierra region of california
Dilapidated House - Eastern Sierras

We are compelled to look and to wonder. Perhaps this old house, disintegrating into the elements of a remote and unforgiving wilderness, serves as a metaphor for our own inevitable decline.

Of course I wanted to take a photo as I drove by, but I told myself to keep going. I didn't have much time. The drive to San Francisco would take most of the day. I had to keep on schedule. 

But a mile down the road, I made the decision to turn the car around. I couldn't leave this old house forgotten. I needed to make the photograph, to capture the dignity of this lonely, crumbling house while it still stood.

Thank you, Old House, for sheltering a family, for being someone's home, and for capturing our imagination.

Camera:    Nikon D800E
Lens:        Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8G AF-S 

(Shot handheld while leaning over a fence)

Wishing you great light and meaningful moments!

Copyright 2014 Daniel R. South
All Rights Reserved

Monday, July 21, 2014

Point Sur Under Textured Skies

Reshooting a Favorite Location

This is one of my favorite photographs. 

The Big Sur coast is magnificent beyond description. There are scores of impressive viewpoints along the roadway. I have always enjoyed this quiet spot where one can watch the waves roll onto the beach in the morning light.

I have taken a number of photographs from this point over the years. The silhouetted cliffs provide an interesting foreground framing element. A lot of folks take photos from here, however, so I try to look for unique compositions.

a photo of point sur under textured skies big sur california
Point Sur Under Textured Skies

On this particular morning, a series of high, wispy clouds passed above the rock. For a moment, two separate sets of lines led toward the lighthouse - the beach and the waves below, and the clouds above. 

I had to work quickly; the clouds were fast moving and stayed in the frame for less than a minute. I tried to time my shot as they passed over the center of the frame. 

Several elements came together to make this shot, the lines and silhouettes, the clear, haze-free air, the color and angle of the morning sun, the glow in the distant sky - and of course, a uniquely beautiful location. I'm glad that I thought to stop and shoot once again from a favorite location. Persistence met with good fortune, and the results were magical.

 Canon EOS 5D Mark II

Lens: Canon 24-105 f/4L IS

Wishing you great light and meaningful moments!

Copyright 2014 Daniel R. South
All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Red and White Chapel - Mykonos

A View from the Countryside

The Greek island of Mykonos has hundreds of chapels spread along its shores, hills, and roadways. Many chapels were built by sailors in hopes of safe passage on rough seas.

I had time to photograph only a handful of these lovely chapels, many of which are reserved for use only one day a year. This rustic beauty was one of my favorites.

a photo of a red chapel on mikonos island greece
Red and White Chapel - Mykonos, Greece

The chapel is located on a small, winding road in the countryside, far from the crowded shops and restaurants of Mykonos Town. The altitude here afforded a clear view of the sea. I liked the contrast of the blue of the sky and water against the red roof and dome.

Camera:    Nikon D800E
Lens:        Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8G AF-S VRII

Wishing you great light and meaningful moments!

Copyright 2014 Daniel R. South
All Rights Reserved