Great Outdoors ~ Ode to Yosemite
Well, this is way out of order but I was just blown away by the GRANDNESS of Yosemite. I continually said to Marla..."Babe, Stop... Look around at where we are!" I've had the opportunity to admire Ansel Adams work over the years as well as some reading about him and WOW, did he capture this place to a T. It was great to tread the same ground as guys like Adams and John Muir. While hiking in the Mariposa Grove, which house's the most humongous Sequoia's I've ever seen, we came across this older gentleman who was quite a spectacle. He had setup and old large-format camera on his tripod and would Tweak this and Turn that. Plug this. Click that. All the while appearing and disappearing from underneath his hood to grab something from Sharon, his wife/assistant. (They make the best assistant's!) He had secret tools on his belt in leather compartments. I knew we would be friends by his sheer amount of sweet gadgets he had. As I stood there I began to feel ridiculous. I see Sharon hand her husband ONE, UNO, 1., Un...a single slide of film. I began to say to myself..."What have we done". As I stand there with my camera in hand, knowing I had another 458 images left on my 8GB card, I proceed to watch dozens of others come by to grab a shot or 14 shots of "Grizzly Giant". (This is a huge Sequoia which stands 209ft and is 96.5ft around.) I am struck by how we've lost the art of photography. How can I come home with 7 shots of this tree...all subpar. What if I only had one shot? Would I study the subject more? Would I take my time in setup? That image would mean more to me b/c I found MY view of this tree. MY interpretation. While this guy was packing up, I asked..."Do you have a card...Somewhere that I might see your work...?" He said, I don't have a card with me, but if you search the web for...B-O-B--K-O-L-B-R-E-N-E-R, you will find me. After leaving the valley and gaining internet access, I looked up Mr. K-O-L-B-R-E-N-E-R and found that I had run into a special person. Mr. Kolbrener was an assistant and fellow instructor of photography at Yosemite with none other than Mr. Ansel Adams himself. I was blown away. His work is truly astonishing! If only I could go back and grab on to his coattails or leather belt compartments in this case, I would have studied his every move. He continues to shoot and has exhibitions of his work traveling the world which is showcased along with Adams.
It was a great moment for me. Here I am this peon in the world of photography and we have greats like Kolbrener and Adams before us to remind us of the ART of photography. Reminding us to let a little piece of ourselves be in every image. Reminding us to express ourselves. And most of all, reminding us to look for the small things in life. The beautiful shadows, streams, fog, weather, reflections, shapes, textures, faces, etc. God has blessed us so much with these things to enjoy. Slow down and look close.
These images were captured in Yosemite and were inspired by Nature and greats like Kolbrener and Adams.