Archive | April 2015

Wild Ponies

I’ve been pondering my upcoming trip, because  I go on vacation in a week.  The set plan is wild ponies of Assateague with some battlefields along the way.  Though, today I was finding myself restless and rebellious.  I’m not sure if the set plan will stick.  Time will tell. 

Anyway, as I was trying to decide if I am going to stick with the due course or change it up, I was thinking about my photography.  I know that I get some good shots and some shots that people really, really like.  Me…I’m constantly waiting for that one shot that just wows me.

Last year there was this moment.  It was early morning on a rainy day.  The beast and I headed out to seek out the ponies.  They were good at hiding.  We found some hiding in this marshy type area when two of them just took off in a full force down the patch of land that they were on to get to the third.  It was one of those moments that just has to be caught on camera.  Their manes flowing in the wind.  Of course, I took some shots.  

I did not catch the vision I had seen.  I believe it was a combination of low light and skills that still needed adapting, but alas the shots that I got…just didn’t wow me.

I came away from that trip with some amazing shots that I do like, but can’t help wondering if retuning there will get me that one shot that wows me.  Different opportunity, different lenses, more adapted skills.  I also cannot help but wonder if maybe that one shot is awaiting on a trip that has always been a distant goal.  I also realize that there will probably be more than one shot that has the possibility of wowing me, but I am my own worse critic.  I think we all are.  DSC_0273 DSC_0476 DSC_0550-2 DSC_0561 DSC_0579 DSC_0645 DSC_0752-2 DSC_0775  DSC_0834   DSC_0929 DSC_0935 SONY DSC SONY DSC SONY DSC

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Seagulls

I always thought that it was strange…the amount of seagulls that I would see in this midwest state I occupy.  Still, they are everywhere.  They, however, do not let people get too close.  Then I went to the beach.  Seagulls galore. This made more sense to me, but what do I know.  I’m not bird export by any means.  Still, these seagulls not only seemed at home…you could definitely tell they were no stranger to people, but even they have their limitations.

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Birds of Assateague

As vacation grows closer I was thinking about what kind of shots I want to come home with.  I should never plan, because that just never works.  These shots are proof of that.  They’re not as good as I would have liked, but had I planned them….they’d probably be even less so.  DSC_0167 DSC_0177 SONY DSC SONY DSCMontana Rose Photography

The Deer

DSC_0100This pictures makes me chuckle every time I see it.  It is not because it is funny, but the events that were taking place while I took this picture were quite humorous. 

The beast and I had just gotten back from watching the sun rise and were taking a walk trying to catch some ponies in action.  She had never experiences “wilderness” type environments, because I was selfish and she had this issue with other dogs and kids (she never attacked little kids, but they always want to pet and touch and she was not all about that).  It had really just become easier for us to just avoid these situations, because she was well set in her ways when I adopted her at 2.5 years.  Anyway, she saw the deer way before I did. 

She didn’t know what to think and the deer didn’t know what to think of her.  We were on the opposite side of road from the deer, because it had crossed when it saw us coming.  It, then, just turned around and locked eyes with the beast and she was not taking her gaze off of him. 

The deer was huffing and his ears were doing this thing that indicated he was not playing games.  He allowed me to snap a couple of shots, before he crossed to another side of the road (we were at a T crossing) and then turned to stare a few minutes longer.  I, of course, had to snap another and eventually pulled the beast away.  The deer still stared for a bit, but eventually hopped off on his way. 

Retelling the story…it seems to lose some of its appeal.  Of course a lot of things are usually a “had to be there” kind of thing.  Still, Bambi was going to take the beast down had she inched another step closer and it was funny to me at the time. 

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The Arch

Growing up, the St. Louis Arch was always a staple in my life.  It was not because we lived by it.  No.  I grew up in Oklahoma (and will always be a Oklahoma girl), but my grandparents lived in Illinois.  We would visit them at least once a year and it always involved us traveling through St. Louis. At some point those travels would always involve a nightly pass by.  I was always fascinated by the Arch; especially, at night.  The lights illuminating it…quite beautiful against that midnight blue sky.

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We never stopped at it, though.  My mom had been there once before and she never really liked doing anything that she had already done.  Even if my dad wanted, if it had been in my mom’s life prior to marriage and kids…it never got done with us.  Maybe that is where I get it.  There are some places that I have not revisited, because I’ve already been there.  Still, I would like to think that I would revisit some of those places…at least some day, so that my children can see it.  Alas, that is a soapbox and I will try to avoid that. 

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As I got older and started traveling on my own, I  would often visit places that involved me passing through St. Louis.  The first couple of times I felt that the Arch was too touristy and I refused to be that kind of girl.  Then I was really getting into my photography and decided that the Arch had some serious photographic potential.  I also decided life was too short not to be a little touristy every now and then. 

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When I first stopped at the Arch, I had just gotten my DSLR and it was used. Not knocking used, we use what we can afford, but it meant there were things I didn’t know (or understand since I had never owned a DSLR and didn’t get a manual with it).  For example, features or why there were these smudges on these beautiful, sunny day pictures (when my lens was clean).

Still, I needed the practice and I was in tourist mode.  I was able to get some amazing shots that I truly enjoyed and was able to clean up to a seemingly acceptable manner.  They are not of a nightly nature, because one thing I’ve learned is that even the most fearless of girls should not stop in St. Louis, down by the Arch, at night by herself.  I can hold my own, but just the same. 

I’ve not stopped at the Arch since, because I’ve already been there.  Still, I hope that one day, I can take my kids to see it just once. 

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Weddings

Last year, I photographed my first  (and so far only) wedding.

I was asked by a friend to photograph her daughter’s wedding.  I was skeptical, because that is a pretty big deal and I was unsure if I had the skills to pull that off.  I was quite honest about this and the fact that I had never done one, but she was convinced I’d do a great job.  After some careful thought and encouragement, I agreed.  I was so nervous.

DSC_0026-3 I was constantly reading sites and watching you tube videos.  It was a little overwhelming and being on a limited budget…I couldn’t invest in half of what they recommended.  Another friend had been shooting weddings and so I asked her advise.  She was encouraging and helpful.

Trying to follow everything that she said, I was at the church early enough to set up my cameras and try to get my lighting just right.  Everything was perfect.  Of course that was until the ceremony started.

The church was so dark and only had one window. Of course the pastor did not want any flash or distractions (completely understandable) during the ceremony.  I was trying to be confident.  I mean, I had my lighting set up and should have been good to go. Something about more people being added into the mix, being nervous about missing a shot, and not wanting to spend a whole lot of time (or actually having a lot of time) adjusting my camera settings…things went to great fiery place below relatively quickly.

I had never been more relieved when the ceremony and church requirements ended.  The bride and groom were amazing and just went with the flow.  It made it even harder, thinking that I had maybe missed some shots she wanted.  Still by the time it was all said and done, I had ended up with some amazing shots.  Plus, despite the “ceremony” pictures, they loved the photos that they got.

I was ecstatic, but I was still disappointed in missing what I thought would be the most important.  I will do better the next time.
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Little bit of Spring

It’s a rainy day today.  I actually don’t mind the rain.  Kind of love rainy days and the sun is always shining, we just can’t always see it.  The problem today is that Old Man Winter is holding on tight and so today is a very cold rain.  It’s less appealing when you have to walk your dog at 6am.  On days like this when I think Spring weather…the warmer side of that, will never get here….it’s nice to be reminded that it is already here and just has to put up a little bit of a fight to shine through. 

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