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.

Prairie Sunrise

Prairie Sunrise
Prairie Sunrise

Thursday, March 2, 2017

The Photographer's Home Territory

Some years ago we moved to Kentucky from Oklahoma. Oklahoma as my ancestral home will always retain a special warmth for me, but we've been in Kentucky now for 13 years and it has for many good reasons become our home. It did not take long to recognize the scenic beauty that surrounds where we live and before long I began to explore the nooks and cranny's that define this part of Kentucky. As a result I created, several years ago, an on going project called 'The Alvaton Collection' which consists of photographs taken in and around the Alvaton area in south central Kentucky, most of them within a few miles of where we live.

As a photographer I am always envious of the ability of many of my photographer friends who travel across this great land and even the world for some of them, to photograph the scenic wonders waiting for them. They come up with some amazing photographs of wonderfully exotic locations. I've never been able to do such traveling for various reasons, so instead I simply focus on my Home Territory and discover great images just waiting for capture outside my front door.

The photographers home territory is the most important location to shoot for many reasons, the most obvious being the convenience of it. Most photographers probably do spend a lot of time shooting in their respective locations, but I'm not so sure many of them focus on just one geographic locality; that is to stay within a few miles of their home and capture its flavor and appeal through all seasons, lighting conditions, and scenic structure. The Photographers Home Territory can provide a tremendous amount of photographic rewards and what is so appealing about it is, because of its closeness, you can capture it year round in every kind of lighting conditions.

The idea is to look beyond what you see everyday and start looking at it with a photographers eye. That old dilapidated barn you pass by every day and hardly pay attention to while driving to work can become a mysterious symbol of days gone by when captured on a foggy moggy morning at first light. That ordinary cornfield takes on a nostalgic glow when the first light of morning filters through its stalks.

Just about any farm pond can become a magical wonderland on a cold freezing morning.

Even if you live in the city, capturing the essence of your home can become a tremendous adventure when looking at the streets and buildings in different light through a photographers eye.

The idea here is to get started. Create a project, call it whatever you want to, but concentrate on your home territory and over time as you build the portfolio, you will gain a new respect for the scenic value of where you live. It is a great way to develop your photographic skills and to improve your ability to see photographically.

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