First Times

Photograph of Ava riding a horse.
Ava rides a horse for the first time (photograph by Trudy Gray)

My granddaughter, Ava, was with my wife the other day when they drove past a field with horses. Ava got excited about the prospect of seeing the horses and was able to get a closer view of the critters from the fence. But that wasn’t enough.

Trudy subsequently contacted the owners of the horses to arrange for Ava’s first horse ride. Yesterday, they visited that ranch and Ava got her first taste of horse riding and my wife. Trudy documented it with her Sony RX100 II.

This is four year old Ava riding a horse for the first time in her life. Her excitement leading up to the horse riding lesson was uncontrollable. I’ve never seen a little girl so excited and this photo explains the joy of her first time perfectly.

I see a lot of horse riding in her future.

That’s A Different Story

Bull moose in a lake. Northern Colorado
Bull Moose – Northern Colorado

I suppose I’m a traditional type of person in that I find emotional comfort in certain traditions.

For internet purposes, I practice the tradition of “Moose Monday.”

I’m not quite certain of the origins of “Moose Monday” as it’s been observed by quite a few people I associate with. I’m I the reason? I don’t think so, but I may have contributed to the delinquency of others.

The Moose Collective. I think the first guy other than me who I recall using the phrase was Matt Dirkson and he too appears to have this insatiable appetite for photographing wild moose but we aren’t alone. Birds of a feather so to speak, it was inevitable that we collide and join a growing a photographic tradition of naming specific photographic themes for days of the week. Some days are better than others, literally.

Still, no one person gets credit for anything organizational in a collective. It’s more symbiotic than organized. We have “Moose Mommas” in the group too, so it isn’t a guy thing, I know that much.

These things aren’t just limited to Moose either. Us moose people in the collective are sort of a sub-collective. There are many sub-collectives in photography and we all appear to be traditional people from what I can see. Many of us are obcessed with our traditional ways, so we find our collectives and carry on.

To add to the confusions, I’ve picked up a nick-name as well.”The Moose Whisperer.” I’m not certain of the origin of that name, as I’ve heard it used many times over the years describing me but that’s a different story.

 

Until I’m Gone

Photograph of a misty fog over a lake in Colorado
Dawn in the Rocky Mountains

A much needed dose of peace and tranquility.

Some mornings you wake up and the world’s conflicts are thrust upon you.

I’m cognizant of the fact that I’m far more fortunate than many to be able to experience peace and beauty in my life.

This photograph is a reminder that not everything in this world revolves around politics and war.

May you enjoy peace and tranquility in your life.

I hope I can keep it this way until I’m gone.

Daydreaming of The San Juan Mountains

Panoramic photo of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado
San Juan Mountains – Colorado

After three weeks of website work, I’m taking Friday off. My mind is burnt and I’m daydreaming about getting into the mountains.

Today’s photo was taken near Ridgway, Colorado a few years back.

I’ve visited this location many times over the years. It’s a grand view and the variation in weather, sky and autumn color from year to year always makes for a new and interesting scene.

I’ll be working in the San Juans this Autumn and taking bookings for private photo tours. Check out my main website for more information.

Rainy Moose Monday

Moose Photography in Colorado
Shiras Moose Cow – Northern Colorado

It is raining here in Denver this morning so I abandoned any thought of going to the tree in the lake. The weather should be improving this week.

Opportunities will improve.

Here’s a moose photo for Moose Monday. Taken on July 15th, 2015 during one of my scouting trips in North Park.  Canon EOS 7D 1/800, f/8, ISO 1000, 300mm.

Try It, You’ll Like It

Colorado Landscape Photographer Gary Gray
Georgetown Loop NGRR

It is “Train Tuesday” isn’t it?

I’ll use this photo as the example shot for today’s blog post.

For the amateur photographer looking to better understand compositions in landscape photography.

There’s a concept called “Previsualization” photography gurus often preach.

There’s another concept I call “revisualization.”

Previsualization in essence is thinking about what your photo is going to look like before you actually see it and make the image. Previsualize your scene, when you see the required elements you have something to work from because it’s recognizable. It works, if you have capacity for abstract thought. All abstract thought ability mileage varies from photographer to photographer though.

Revisualization is different from all that, but it plays into previsualization as a precursor.

I often challenge myself to shooting with “one camera, one lens” for a day of heavy photography. This forces me to use that lens exclusively for an extended period of time and learn exactly how it will perform on that body and in general on other bodies in dynamic situations.

My first choice in lenses for this exercise are prime lenses. For example, the blog photograph today was taken with a Canon EOS 1Ds MKII using the EF 50mm f/1.4 during one of my photography workshops. I shot with the above mentioned camera/lens combination that entire day. My physical location was determined by the position my client wanted to be in. I was there to assist, not do my own thing. I get the shot I take once the assistance isn’t needed. Now I’m in a position not of my choosing, with a fixed camera/lens and I have to find a shot at the last second.

A fixed camera/lens combination automatically takes you out of your comfort zone because it removes the possibility of certain types of shots. You’ll often find that you have to compose a shot on the fly and it’s not necessarily the previsualized scene you had in mind. A couple hundred of frames in, if you’re learning anything, you’ll literally get the picture.

When it’s all said and done, you could wind up with some really nice photos you may not have thought of if you had brought that big super-zoom instead.

Getting out of your comfort zone is a good way to learn.

Try it, you’ll like it.

My 2018 Colorado Landscape Photo Tours Are Now Open For Booking

Colorado Landscape Photographer Gary Gray
The San Juan Mountains

 

I have taken a couple of weeks off from getting photos and have been working in the office on some long overdue web site updates and such.

Google never liked my main business web site due to it not being “mobile friendly.” I don’t really care what Google wants me to do, but I have to be realistic. If my web site doesn’t show up on a mobile phone web search, that’s people who aren’t finding me.

I design and maintain my own and others web sites and as I grow older, it’s become a challenge learning the ins-and-outs of SEO optimization and site functionality.

Basic redesigns are done and online now. I’m still doing fine tweaking on some of the pages here and there.

I’ve just added the “Colorado Landscape Photo Tour” page to the main web page. That should get me in the search results. My goal is to have everything I’m doing turn up on page one google search results. Should be there by the end of this month.