Below is another image from my time at Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary. While taking pictures, I learned a lot about the way prisons were run. How inmates and employees interacted and early influences on the current penal system. I hope to go back in a few months, but for now I’m very happy with the images and knowledge I left with.
With about a half hour to kill before my haircut appointment, I took a trip down the escalator to check out the subway stop to fuel my newest obsession with photographing trains and the stations they frequent daily. I’ve lived in Virginia for over two years and have just started exploring its complex interiors. Having toured and ridden the subways of London, Paris, Tokyo, and others. I’ve come to appreciate the architecture and designs incorporated by many. Inspiring my respect and appreciation for what comes from the minds of true artists and respected methods that often convey the visions of gifted minds. It’s easy to take things of this nature for granted, as we are so focused on our daily travels and mindsets. Please think of the countless times I’ve focused on my phone screen or kept my head down to avoid unsolicited contact. There was a moment when I focused on the moment at hand, fixated on this colossal and timeless gift to creativity.
Breakfast Outing in Maryland
Due to the time we arrived at Maryland’s Stony Park farm, the sun was so strong, that getting the images I had hoped for were dashed by how overwhelmingly bright the sun was, It wasn’t until much later in the day when we stopped for ice cream, that I would dare take my camera out of the bag and attempt a shot or two. As a born and raised city boy. One whose lived his entire life in an urban setting. Getting out of my element and experiencing a completely different way of life is mind blowing. The experience has a child-like effect on me that can only be compared to that as a wide eyed kid in a toy store. My love and admiration of farm life, tractors and barnyard animals is boundless. So when the sky began to offer shade. I made sure I had an image to take home and boast about. Here’s my capture of the steering wheel and headlight of the tractor parked outside of the creamery.
In recent weeks I’ve been asked several times, once by a complete stranger, what I loved most about photography, and what I most liked to shoot. In each instance, I went on a far out rant about my years of shooting, and other useless nonsense. that by all means, made me look as if I was nuts. Earlier this week, I had a chance to chat with one of them. During the exchange, I backtracked and brought up his question. Explaining my recent awkwardness and how I would have just responded with, “Everything.” Essentially because I love all aspects of the art. The colors, shapes, and tones. The storytelling elements of a good capture, and the moods they create. I look back with pride regarding the friendships and trust I’ve built during photo sessions over the years. Holding my camera, pressing the shutter and going through the days session bring me a joy that’s hard to explain. Getting off my soapbox and back to that original question, “What do you love most about photography?” My simple reply is and always will be, “Everything.”
Exploration often leads to Discovery.
As I continue to work on my balance issues. My drive to be more independent, to explore more, and to not so awkwardly engage with those I wish to photograph with the confidence that once led me to less traveled roads and adventures grows stronger.
Attempting to do things I was forced to take a break from have become more attainable. That thirst for adventure, exploring, and creating, sometimes, off-limits subject matter sharpens. Having lived in our condo for over a year now. I can’t help but question why I haven’t explored the many nooks and crannies of an architectural achievement. Unsurprisingly, we often find inspiration while venturing into areas and corridors just off our daily path. Coming upon this paint inspired me to get a lower perspective and reminded me of stopping at a fire-damaged automotive repair shop on my way home from Boston.
Somehow, this recently captured image reminded me of how important it is to stay open-minded and open to advice and criticism. As someone whose bread and butter has always been writing and critiquing others’ music and product. I wholeheartedly admit to not taking criticism of my work or the backlash on my opinions and beliefs very well. As of late, however, I’m trying to become more open to criticism while being more helpful when applying my views of other people’s work. It’s not easy. However, we can all benefit from listening to and accepting other people’s views, critiques, and advice. As the future quickly becomes the now. I aim to learn and apply the knowledge and criticism from those who think well enough to help. Luckily for me, many do.
As a photographer, and in general, dawn and dusk are my favorite times of the day. My favorite time to breathe what’s left of our fresh air. My favorite time to watch the colors change due to the rising or setting sun. Both are somewhat inconvenient, considering I usually wake up with the sun and enjoy dinner as it develops. However, with today’s rising temperature and a sense of drive. I could leave the apartment, return without waking my better half, and enjoy a moment of complete solitude while capturing a few unguarded moments.
Working from home is one way of closing yourself off from social interaction. Enduring a dark, rainy day ensures I won’t be going very far. However, today’s combination of both did little to extinguish my desire to attempt anything remotely creative. Thankfully, the rain left its impression on our living space. As drops of rain collected on our windows and doors. Enough to make for a pretty cool idea. In working on using light, shadow, and other aspects to achieve my future goals of using natural light to create mood in my portraits. I find that experimenting with various elements will benefit me in the end.
It is what it is
Taken from the second floor of a parking garage. I only had a moment to catch this and would have explored the rest of the space if not for the fact that my better half wanted to go home before the pizza we had ordered got cold.
After enjoying some Dim Sum in Hanover, we took a short cut through Laurel to avoid a long thread of highway traffic. As we were driving alongside Brock Bridge Correctional Facility. We came across some abandoned houses that warranted further exploration. With my history of trespassing, the “Let’s keep it safe.” motto of my wife, and my recent binge watching of “Stranger Things.” I decided to take a few shots without getting too close to the creaky house. Better safe than…