Photo drives

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Thanks to Gohlke, I’m thinking about instances when I’ve tried to photograph something that caught my attention while I’m driving or riding in a car. It’s an interesting exercise. Things always look different from a car and it’s often difficult to capture the way that movement and speed change my perspective.

In the rare instance when I’m not driving, I can practice actually shooting from the car. This is good practice (and yay for digital) for figuring out what works and what doesn’t and how movement at 70mph translates into static images.
furrows
pacheco pass
buttes
The expected workflow though is to recreate from the sidewalk what struck me from the road. Sometimes I’ll make a special trip to a location I’ve been noticing for months. In these cases, I don’t always know if what I’ll find is what I see when I’m driving. I just know that I’ve noticed something interesting on a drive and it deserves further exploration. In these cases, the drive is merely scouting for the photography.
western motel
downspout
motel capri
corn-palace
Othertimes I actually go out driving with the intent of photographing things which I see from the road. I’ve only really taken photodrives when I’m already traveling. This is distinct from stopping the car and exploring on foot. These are photos where I explore by car and hop out when I see something interesting.
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O'Keeffe country
Finally, there are the times I see something during regular everyday driving which is so compelling that I immediately pull over and get out my camera. I’m trying to force myself to do this more often. But it’s hard. Driving is typically about the destination, not the journey—commuting or errands even moreso in this department. Delaying my arrival is always a difficult decision.
Everything must go.
cold sunrise
trash day
The last two scenarios are interesting as they force my brain to work really fast. It’s not enough to notice something interesting. I have to be able to figure out exactly what caught my eye and determine if it’s worth stopping the car before I’ve driven too far past it.

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3 responses to “Photo drives

  1. Pingback: Westward the Course of Empire | n j w v

  2. Pingback: Zen | n j w v

  3. Pingback: Processing someone else’s photos | n j w v

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