Monday, October 18, 2010

Back on the Block

Coal Pier Striper Fisherman, 2010

So I’m back from vacation. It was a good one, but over too quickly.

The sun shined on us most the time. Toward the end of the week the wind blew hard. The rain came and went. I got a lot of exercise and sleep. We had some good meals. My wife and I celebrated our thirty-fourth wedding anniversary. I managed to read all of Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom and not miss the next-to-last episode of Mad Men.

I also got to meet a Flickr friend whose work I’ve admired, but whom I’d never met in person before. I had to go to the local jail to meet her. But that’s because she’s the nurse there. Still, it was the first time I’ve had to declare that I wasn’t carrying a firearm or be unlocked and locked in and out of various sally ports to visit with a Flickr friend.

What I didn’t get a lot of was dedicated time for photography. On most vacations I usually manage to carve out at least one full day to wander around by myself and make photographs. But this vacation was a larger family gathering, three generations’ worth. Even when excursions didn’t involve me there was someone who needed a ride back and forth to the ferry or across the island for something or another.

Still, I somehow managed to find the time to take more than 500 pictures. Most of them were taken during my morning walks, which means that among those 500 pictures there could be twenty versions of the same five subjects, all taken in whatever light was available between 6:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. So much for variety.

I’m in the midst of reviewing those 500+ images. Fifty or sixty undeniable duds have been easy to delete. There are a few I can see already that I might really like. It’s clear, though, that this isn’t the usual photographic magnum opus that some prior vacations have been. For one thing, I realized on this trip that I was photographing places I’ve photographed many times before through essentially new eyes because the photographic subjects I’m drawn to lately are different than the ones I was drawn to before. (More about that tomorrow.)

For now, I’m doing basic organization and triage so that I can start working through the pile of images. I find I’m good for an hour or two of this at a time. Any more and the images all start looking the same. Which, given that most were taken during the same two-hour interval on successive mornings, might just be the case.


  1. Welcome home, Chris!

    Man, do I ever know what wading through 500 frames can be! I shot almost that many this afternoon while hiking through a new recreation area nearby. A couple of hours in and I gave up on sorting and editing, wrote a couple blogs using some of the best I'd already found and I'll get to the rest when I can focus my eyes again.

    When are you going to tell us the real reason you were in jail?

  2. Welcome home, and Happy anniversary! Sounds idyllic. Can't wait to see some of what you did take. Great shot up above here! That jail meeting sounds interesting, to say the least.

  3. I knew working at the jail was good for something!

    Always great to meet a Flickr friend in person. Looks to me like you did a fine job squeezing in a few photo opportunities.