Have a Camera

Down at the pistol range, the self-defense guys are fond of saying that the first rule for surviving a gunfight is to have a gun. As a target shooter, I don’t get involved in those discussions, but I feel similarly about cameras. Wherever you go, you’re going to see something beautiful and/or interesting – if you’re looking for it. I don’t always carry my dslr with me, but I almost always have my iPhone, which has a 3 megapixel, easy to deploy camera.

Had I run into the house to get my Nikon after I saw this snake on my driveway, I would have missed the picture. I shot this with my iPhone. It's not art, but it is a picture of the snake in my driveway.

My son recently returned from a semester abroad in Ecuador. As a biology student, he spent time in the cloud forest, the Amazon rainforest, and the Galapagos Islands. He did not plan to take a camera. Not only did I beg him to do so, but I gave him the camera my wife and daughter have been sharing. Upon his return, he had to leave immediately for his summer job in Idaho, so I’ve got his images, some of which I’ll share here.

My son left most of the photography to other students with fancier cameras, but he got images like this with a little Canon A590.

Describing the diversity of species he encountered in Ecuador, like this blue-footed booby, John told me that reading Dr. Suess prepared him for this trip better than all of his biology classes.

On the Galapagos Islands, the animals have no fear of humans, so you don't need a huge lens to photograph the fauna.

Some people ask you to smile when they take your picture. I like pictures that make me smile. I'm glad John had a camera when he saw this.

My wife sometimes tires of my constant picture-taking, insisting that she’d rather take pictures with her brain. Well, I’ve lost too many memories to trust that method, and I’ve watched my parents lose many more. She can do what she wants, but I’m always going to have a camera with me.

Laurie took a shift behind the wheel as we drove the 900+ miles from Eugene, Oregon to Ojai, California. We had no time to stop for pictures, but I so loved the clouds that I snapped this with my phone.

John loved his semester abroad, but his canopy work in the rainforest was difficult and unpleasant. He spent a week cataloging the color of various leaves. This photo illustrates the tools he was using and two other things he said about working in the rainforest: everything was always wet, and people got a little tense. I'm glad someone got the picture.

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Filed under Camera Gear, Motivation, Nature Photography, Professional vs. Amateur, Travel and Vacation

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