Do you remember a few weeks back, how I told the story about my excitement to have plenty of time to peacefully photograph a flock of birds in the water, but instead an 18-wheeler roared past and scared them all away? Well this is the photo I got right afterwards. I'm honestly not even sure why I like it so much. It's the type that didn't seem that special at first, but grew on me as time went on. And to be completely transparent, I almost didn't send this out as a Photo of the Week for that reason. I was worried that it wouldn't appear very interesting to you. But the more I thought about it, I realized two things - that we should never hold back our love for something based upon what others may think, and that if I love this photo, you just might too. So here it is, take it or leave it. But I really hope you take it.
"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."
There's a creek near my house where some ducks like to hang out. Like, a lot of ducks! Probably close to fifty, I'd guess. Anyways, I went there after the rains to photograph them. I actually find ducks to be really beautiful. After observing them for a while, what I noticed was that many of them would periodically dunk themselves underwater and then quickly rear-up, like a horse on it's hind legs, and violently flap it's wings. I knew I wanted a photo of it, but the tricky part was knowing where to point the camera. There were so many ducks, moving around constantly, giving zero warning as to which duck was about to begin the dunking/flapping ritual, and leaving me only seconds to point, focus and snap the shot once the ritual began. But, with a lot of luck and even more patience, I was able to capture the moment. Water droplets still on it's head from the dunking.
"Not the cry, but the flight of the wild duck, leads the flock to fly and follow."
What I love most about macro photography is how it not only magnifies the image, but also the beauty. For example, it's not unusual to walk past a flower bed with bees hovering around it. It may be pretty, a pleasant scene, but most of the time it's not an exceptional thing to see. It's rarely jaw-dropping. Our eyes simply aren't designed to see such tiny details - we see the larger picture. But when captured through a macro lens, details emerge that the naked eye is not capable of displaying. The lens literally allows us to see what we otherwise would never have been able to. Like a whole new world hidden inside the one we already know.
“To me, photography is an art of observation. It’s about finding something interesting in an ordinary place… I’ve found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.”
Photography is funny sometimes... I'll spare you the boring details, but I spent a fairly significant amount of time, and drove many extra miles to get this shot. It was taken not very far from where I live, however getting lost, one-lane roads and miles long center dividers to prevent u-turns made the excursion longer than expected. But, I arrived safely, parked the car, and quietly snuck up on these birds, doing everything I could to not startle them. Once close enough, I raised my camera, got the image in focus, and snapped a shot. And right as I did, a massive 18-wheeler roared down the road and scared them all away. At first I was mad, as my expectations were to have plenty of time to capture the stillness of the moment. However, almost by instinct, I then snapped a shot of the birds in flight, and it became one of my favorite photos I've ever taken (I'll share it with you soon). While first I was upset at the 18-wheeler, I soon realized that it actually produced something special. Look for beauty no matter what happens. Lesson learned.
"The water is always deeper than what it reflects."