The Journey Into Art: Where I Started Series #1

July 27, 2019

This is the first a series of posts showing images that I had taken at the start of my photographic journey a number of years ago.

I am sharing these images and posts as a way of encouraging those starting out on this journey. Often the seeds of future work is shown early, embedded in the midst of work done before the awareness of what one really wants to share.

As I hope my professional life's experience is helpful to others, so I hope my 15+ years of photographic wanderings helps support and even inspire others starting on this path.

Each post will discuss what I remember from that stage of the process and how I now understand what I was doing at the time.

One cold Saturday morning in January 2005 I decided to go to Castlewood Canyon State Park and take some pictures. It was only 30 minutes from my house.

I did not know what I wanted to capture. I just wanted to go out and take some pictures. Something inside of me wanted to see what I could see with the camera. I really had no idea what I was doing but thought that just taking pictures was enough (since I knew how to operate my camera in auto mode).

Looking back, these were the two images from that shoot that caught my eye, as reflecting something that was nascent. (Actually I don't remember which ones I liked at that time, I am reassessing with my current eyes.)

These were the first series of images I took at a time when something stirred deep within to express something deep within. It was the start of a long exploration, fraught with many starts and stops, and a very slow unfolding of an awareness of what I was trying to do. I knew there was something I wanted to express, but I did not know how to make it tangible at the time. To be honest I did not really know what I wanted to express, but I knew there was something.

I think these two images show something that was to become more clear many years later. At this time I was mostly attracted to the unusual aspects of the landscape. And that is what I captured.

Frankly I don't even remember the camera I used. But I was shooting jpeg images with an averageconsumer camera of the 2005's. I was starting to search the internet looking for avenues of learning, because there was no way with a family and professional life that I could go to school for 2-3 years.

That was when I decided I could learn it on my own...though I really didn't know what "it" was at the time. And so I started learning everything about photography and very little about art. I did not know for years to come that it was an artistic expression I sought. But that is for another post.

And so started the journey...

I have taken the basic images and editing them as I see them now. This shows several things:

1. digital images maintain their integrity long after capture

2. the ability to bring out nuances in the images has improved over the years

3. my current artistic vision can reinterpret files taken years ago and show them as I see the potential and not how I processed them 10+ years ago.

At that time I did not push the color very far for fear of being called a photographic manipulator. Thankfully I am long over that concern!

(A brief digression seems relevant, since I am presenting 14+ year old digital images. I have saved all my images and now can easily review them in Lightroom. SO do not forget to back up all of your files!! I have lost and then had to restore these images multiple times from back ups as I changed or upgraded computers.)

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