Getting ‘Out the Door’

Pine barrens, Big Branch National Wildlife Refuge. Canon 70-200mm lens @70mm, 1/320ths sec, f2.8 @ ISO 100. I kept the aperture wide open to keep the distant tree trunks out of focus and thus 'foggier.' (Copyright 2011 / Andrew Boyd)

Pine barrens, Big Branch National Wildlife Refuge. Canon 70-200mm lens @70mm, 1/320th sec, f2.8 @ ISO 100. I kept the aperture wide open to keep the distant tree trunks out of focus and thus 'foggier.' (Copyright 2011 / Andrew Boyd)

EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED

Planning a photo safari can be a bit of a crap shoot: you can plan and plan and plan, then things change and aren’t what you expected. Maybe you oversleep your alarm and don’t catch that great first light you wanted. Maybe the sky after sunset is clear, and boring, rather than full of wondrous clouds for you to shoot. Maybe, maybe, maybe….

Here’s the one great, profound truth that always comes back to me: even when a trip idea changes, or seems to be ruined, staying home is the one surefire way to come back with NO great photos! Getting out the door can be more than half the ‘luck’ you’ll need, if you’re just willing to stay open-minded about the possibilities and make the attempt anyway. I have yet to see a great photograph made by a guy sitting on his ass.

This photograph is the result of just such a situation. I did indeed oversleep the alarm, running over a half hour later than I had intended, sure that I had blown the great, early light that I wanted. Then something unexpected, and wonderful, happened. The closer I got to my planned shooting destination, the foggier it became! What would have been mundane become sublime in the eerie, early fog of this day. I spent a wonderful hour before the fog lifted, making images, problem solving, changing lenses, changing ideas…the ordinary becomes extraordinary, all because I forced myself to go ahead and go.

So remember: getting ‘out the door’ and on your way is the most important step you’ll take!

Hi, I’m Andrew Boyd, a.k.a. The Discerning Photographer, and I hope this post has been interesting and informative. Please leave me a comment about it, let me know what you’d like to see more of on the site! You can also sign up for email delivery of all future articles or my RSS feed. Thanks!–DiscerningPhotog

Posted in: Gallery

About the Author:

Photographer, videographer and photo editor. Host and creator of The Discerning Photographer web site. Currently a Canon shooter.

4 Comments on "Getting ‘Out the Door’"

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  1. Enivea says:

    There’s a great moody feel to this, love it! Strange weather conditions in my area have also led to different shooting conditions – thanks for the tip on keeping the aperture wide open. I have a feeling I’ll be needing that on my trip home today:-)

  2. I saw some tweat today about ‘getting back out to shoot when the weather is better,’ and found myself thinking, ‘There truly are no BAD shooting conditions, just some are more interesting than others.’ This is true!

  3. Karma Hill says:

    Great job capturing the fog in the trees. Fog is so hard to make look like it does when your right in it. Was the sun going down behind the grove of trees? The light from behind makes for a really cool eerie affect.

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