Sore Thumb © Steven Willard
Every time I drive past this I say a little curse at the owner of the property for leaving such an eyesore.
Olympus OMD EM1MkII with Zuiko 40-150mm f2.8 Pro zoom, processed in Snapseed.
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Trinity Church, Milton, Connecticut © Steven Willard
I don’t think one has to be religious to appreciate the design of Trinity Church located in the hamlet of Milton, Connecticut. Designed by architect Oliver Dickson, construction of this Greek Revival church was begun in 1802 and completed in 1826. The church houses an organ that was installed in 1823, making it one of the oldest in New England.
Olympus OMD-EM1MkII with 12-40mm f2.8, processed in Snapseed.
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Fence with irises© Steven Willard
This is one of those situations where the eye sees differently from the camera. From the car, I saw the white iris blossoms separate from the white pickets and the stone corner post, both of which I have photographed before under different conditions. The trick of the eye, however, was that I managed to isolate the blossoms from the background at least until I got out of the car with my camera and looked through the viewfinder. At that point it was obvious that the blossoms were going to be lost against the background. My eyes had tricked me. It reminded me of all the portraits I had made with phone poles coming out of the subjects heads.
Well, I went ahead and took the picture anyway, knowing that it wasn’t going to work. The strange thing is that It kind of does anyway. That, I didn’t expect. It is as though, being familiar with the blossoms, and the pickets, and the stone, my mind could separate them, make order out of disorder. Does that make sense?
Olympus OMD-EM1MkII with Zuiko 40-150mm f2.8 zoom, processed in Snapseed.
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Suffer Social Distance
Some people suffer the effects of social distancing more than others.
Panasonic GX85 with Panasonic 45-150mm zoom, Processed in Snapseed.
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Connecticut River Museum, Essex, Connecticut
As often happens, what’s round back is more interesting than in front.
Scanned from a gelatin silver print, from Ilford FP4+ processed in MPK developer, Pentax 67 with 90mm lens.
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1932 Chevy Roadster © Steven Willard
Putting the weather resistance of the Olympus to the test. Yes it was raining.
Olympus OMD EM 1 with 12-40mm f2.8 zoom, processed in PS Express and Snapseed.
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Roadside Memorial © Steven Willard
I have no idea how many roadside memorials I’ve passed in my travels. I’m seventy-two years old, and I’ve driven all over America, and some foreign countries too, so the number must be pretty high. Some were probably too small to notice while traveling at highway speeds, others such as this one, certainly caught my eye. Some clearly mark scenes where accidents took place, dangerous curves or poorly marked intersections. Others are placed on perfectly straight highways, begging the question of how someone managed to run off the road. I rarely stop, they appear too suddenly unless it is on a section of road I travel frequently. I don’t think the mourners expect us to, it’s something more personal than that, or perhaps more desperate. A cry for people to notice that a friend, or child, has been take away from them. It’s something for us to think about, at least for a few miles.
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Well, it might have been a whale! Sometimes we see what we want to see.
Olympus Pen F with Zuiko 25mm f1.8 processed in Snapseed.
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Ornamental Grass © Steven Willard
I remember sitting in my car eating a sandwich, watching the effect of the passing clouds on this clump of ornamental grass. With every cloud the light would change; with every slight adjustment of my head, the composition changed.
When my sandwich was gone I picked up the camera from the seat beside me and stepped out of the car, made perhaps a dozen exposures, then time to go. Lunch break was over, time to get back to work.
Olympus OMD EM-1 with 40-150mm f2.8 zoom, Processed in Snapseed.
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Inverted, © Steven Willard
We have a tendency to look at things from the bottom up. Generally we scan buildings from the ground up, and landscapes from near to far, which usually means bottom to top. Of course there are exceptions; dramatic images of clouds or mountains for instance, or portraits where we usually are drawn to the eyes first regardless of where the eyes are in the frame.
As an exercise, I’ve been trying to make photographs that turn things upside down, that draw the eyes first to the top of the frame, then work their way to the bottom. It produces a tension we aren’t used to in seeing in images. Finding these images is not as easy as it sounds, and I offer it as a challenge.
These bare branches hanging down from a clump of pine needles reminded me of roots working their way deeper and deeper into the earth; the textured wall in the background serving the visual equivalent of earth. While this image was photographed as presented, it works almost as well when inverted. Try looking at it that way.
Olympus OMD EM5 file processed in Snapseed and Stackables on my iPad Air.