Just about every morning I take a walk in my neighborhood. The weather has been perfect lately and the fog has had a magical quality to it. I carry my iPhone with me because, well, because I always carry it. At this point, I think it’s actually part of my body. I’ve been trying to capture what the fog “looks” like, but really haven’t gotten anything that makes me go “That’s it!” Sometimes what we see with our eyes is different from what the chip in the camera is able to capture.
A few days ago, I decided it was time to venture out with my big camera, not just the one in my phone. I was specifically out to photograph something, but sometimes you see the coolest things while you are getting to your destination. It was time for a photosafari.
The word safari evokes mental images of stalking big game animals in Africa. Throw “photo” in front of it and most people will think of stalking those same big game animals with a camera instead of a gun. But a photosafari doesn’t have to involve a passport and an incredibly long flight to southern Africa. (I’ve made it twice and it’s painful.) No, a photosafari is something you can do in your own backyard, or just down the street. You never know, you might just discover things you never noticed before when you open your eyes and look around.
I’ve said it many times before, but generally I like photographing people. I love expressions and characters. That said, when I’m on a photosafari, I often find myself looking for the small things. I look for the things we wouldn’t notice normally. Not faces, but unusual patterns or textures in the landscape around me. And I like to get close to the small things to capture details.
My blog is called Adventure with a Purpose for a reason. When I started writing it, the purpose was a couple big projects I was working on that I felt people needed to know about. I wanted to show readers that the people of Russia were no different than you or me, and I wanted to show people about the serious problem with the Moskito Indians in Honduras as they dived for lobster.
Over the last year or so, I’ve been working to convince people that “adventures” don’t mean zip lining over the New River Gorge (although that looks like a LOT of fun). Adventures can be simply turning off the television, getting outside and exploring your surroundings. They don’t require a passport or a road trip. West Virginia has amazing opportunities for adventures literally just down the road.
The important thing is to keep looking at the world around you, and to keep trying for that “perfect” fog picture. Or whatever else it is that flips your switch.
Just keep looking!