Beyond The Campfire was created to encourage readers to explore the great outdoors and to observe it close up. Get out and take a hike, go fishing or canoeing, or simply stretch out on a blanket under a summer sky...and take your camera along. We'll talk about combining outdoor activities with photography. We'll look at everything from improving your understanding of the basics of photography to more advanced techniques including things like how to see photographically and capturing the light. We'll explore the night sky, location shoots, using off camera speedlights along with nature and landscape. Grab your camera...strap on your hiking boots...and join me. I think you will enjoy the adventure.

The Dark Horse Region

The Dark Horse Region
A View into the center of the Milky Way

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Getting Away - Watching Blue Birds - A Day at the Pond - A Day Fishing

I had a rather disappointing and discouraging week at work last week.  Everything is fine really, nothing bad happened, but sometimes circumstances and events pile up to where I have to say to myself...'I've had enough' I tacked on a couple days of vacation to the weekend for some rest and recovery.

On Thursday Kris and I spent a good part of the day first sitting in the swing under the shade tree in the backyard listening to and watching all the song birds. By mid morning we headed out to the pond a few hundred yards behind our house.

We carried a couple of folding chairs, my camera, and found a shade to sit in.  For the most part we just sat there and talked...took a few photos...talked some more, and enjoyed the the morning and later the cooling effects of an afternoon breeze.

I had fun watching her get excited about taking some photo's...looking for interesting things to zoom in close to like the Lady Bug crawling on  Buttercups, one of the days favorites, and finding parts of the pond that would tell the story of that day.  Too often we hurry about looking for stuff and never see really it in our rush to find it, when by simply sitting and slowing down, the good things tend to come to us instead. That's what happened that day...ordinary things suddenly became interesting subjects to observe and photograph.

We shared the camera...I took a few...but she did most of the picture taking and did a pretty good job of it.  The day at the pond was split into two sessions...the morning, and then again that afternoon for a couple of hours.  Between the two we grabbed a bite to eat and stopped over at Romanza Johnson Park and enjoyed the flowing waters of Trammel Creek.  It was a good relaxing day.

On Friday, I loaded up the canoe, fishing gear, and packed a lunch, then headed over to Shanty Hollow Lake about a 30 minute drive north of Bowling Green.  It's a great little lake perfect for canoe fishing, but alas, the fishing turned out rather slow.  You know, I really didn't care...I just enjoyed getting out.

I spent most of the day there soaking up some sun, and exercising my canoeing and casting muscles.  I didn't even take the camera as I just wanted to unwind and not worry about anything interfering with that endeavor.

Although I enjoy photography and it has become a larger part of my life in recent years, I often feel like I've lost a part of my identity as the traditional activities like fishing and canoeing and even spending a day at a pond have succumb to the trials of making a living far more than I ever envisioned.  I realize circumstances change, our lives evolve as we get older, and often we allow complacency to fill the gaps that develop.  I suppose taking a couple of days to spend a day at a place like the pond, or to revisit those older passions, become more important the older you get.  I'm certainly grateful for having had the opportunity to do so.


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