Having just posted a bit of a 2014 review on Linkedin I thought I would set a marker down for the coming year; at least I will have the first shot ready for the 2015 review! I am mindful though of this story that suggests Google results analysis doesn’t really paint a pretty picture about the effectiveness of New Year’s resolutions. So, if we say it we need to make it happen.
What’s this photo about then? Well few things actually.
We had taken my son back to Bristol (UWE) after his Christmas break and there were all sorts of feelings as we left. He seemed concerned that he wasn’t prepared for the exams that he was going to return to on the forest day of term and was also worried about what he was going to do after the degree. However it was great to have seen him over the break.
On the way back to Exeter, with the day still left bearing time and opportunity, I decided to drive into Avonmouth a place that has long fascinated me. We drove around for a while, bleak empty streets lit by a beautiful afternoon light and then followed signs to Severn Beach. The road stopped abruptly but once out of the car the view was what I had both imagined and hoped for.
The Leica was in the back of the car but in truth it was one of those ’10 minutes earlier would have been good’ moments. At the ends of the day the light changes second by second. Further to this, much as I love the Leica it is a deeply flawed tool, the D800e would have been my camera of choice here but it was at home. The moment was passing even as I was trying to get the camera out of its bag.
The resulting image is a scarred and compromised observation. The clouds have an undeniable beauty but the aeroplane contrails are what really capture the sun. I have already removed some of these in this version of the image. The Nikon would sensor have definitely captured the dynamic range better though I’m not certain the Nikkors would have offered the subtlety of the Leica glass.
Some time ago we were driving through Cornwall and discussing ‘landscape’, in particular wind-farms. I like wind-turbines, I like the form of them. However, thinking out loud about whether I would either leave or Photoshop out the turbines on a horizon of a ‘landscape’ photo my daughter (14) said quite simply;
…but that is the landscape Daddy?
So as I look at this image I firstly think of my children, their concerns, their worries and their wise words. I then also think of my personal landscape for the coming year and wonder what I will be able to achieve in the year ahead.
However most of all I think that on this afternoon it would have been very easy just to drive home and not take the detour. And, that given the tools that I had available and the brief time that I had I have ended up with something from yesterday to carry forwards, to enjoy but maybe add to, revisit and develop in the future.
Things are rarely perfect but that shouldn’t be a barrier to action so here’s to your landscape of 2015, whatever it looks like.