Seriously, I cannot remember the last time it was this cold in spring time, I just want it to be nice for a few weeks before the heat blast of summer hits me in the face.
Goals – Feeling good physically about myself includes getting out of the city. One thing I miss about living in New England is being close to nature. I read an article this week that we spend 96% of our lives in doors and that is just depressing, As a child I spent most of my free time outside. Mainly because my mum kicked us out of the house and told us to go outside and play. I miss the rolling hills of Vermont and New Hampshire and the scent of the Maine sea air.
NYC is exciting, its overwhelming with the energy and volume of people, but it can be draining to your soul. In order to capture some of that close to nature feeling, I purchased a NY State Park pass and used it for the first time this weekend.
The pass allows me to enter by car any of the NY State park. The weather was not very good this weekend but on Sunday while it was overcast I decided to take a drive and explore Jones beach. I had only been there twice before. Once for a concert and the previous week for sunset photographs. The park is not fully opened for the season so this time I drove out in the mid-morning stopped at each open parking lot, got out and explored. The rain storms were in the distance, the clouds were rolling in with threats of rain, yet there is something peaceful I feel about being near a stormy sea. Its the power of nature and the knowing that no matter what happens, the earth and sea will go on as it has for billions of years.
Getting out also leads to working on goal #1 – Improving my photography. This weeks challenge was to take a photo and post it with out any edits. No processing in Lightroom or Photo shop. In addition I added that the photo had to be taken with a 50mm lens, which limits the distance and what I can fit into the frame. I’m finding that it challenges me to photograph things I would not normally photograph, like this.
If you cannot tell what this is, its a dumpster at Jones Beach. Its rusty and old, I had to make sure the sun was in the right spot get enough light, crouch down and move around to get the pattern into the frame the way I wanted it to be. I think it came out pretty well.
I also watched a couple of videos this week from the Creative Live website/mobile app. Topics covering The Art of Seeing., Maximizing the potential of remote locations, Arctic to Antartica ( I now want to go there!) and a series on Capture to Print. The series covers the process from taking a photo to transferring it into print. This subject interests me because I want to print some of my photos to hang in my house but have found previously that some do not come out the way I see them on my monitor and I want to be able to correct that. I think having a better understanding to the technical side of the craft will help me in the long run.
Since the stormy skies were too good to pass up on Sunday, I took a few shots with my 16-35mm lens wide angle lens and used a neutral density filter to allow a longer exposure. I made a few adjustments in Lightroom. Setting the black and white points which help balance the other colors in the photo, added a little contrast, clarity and sharped the details. I think my favorite tool in Lightroom is Dehazing. It removes the atmospheric haze from the photo. If over used, it can name the photo look fake, but by add 10-30%, it makes the colors and details pop.
A comment from last week asked me why I was not working on one of my previous goals for work, updating my resume and looking for a new job. The reason why is that work has been changing, I was given some new responsibilities and training classes for Scrum. (a project management process). These changes are going to give me skills that I can use in another company when the right time comes to move. I also acknowledge that I have always been very career orientated and feel that I need to focus more on my personal development and interests.
The upcoming week I’ll be attending a workshop with the Institute of Intuitive Photography. perhaps learning some new skills and meeting new people with similar interests. I also plan on getting outside and maybe exploring another new NY State park.