And the Camera Stayed in the Car
Last weekend, Tanya, Nahla and I went car camping for three days. As I normally do when we go on a trip, I dutifully packed up the camera gear. However, the gear stayed in the car the entire trip. I didn’t take a single photograph.
Tanya, I imagine, thought this was wonderful. Instead of me getting up at oh-dark-thirty and driving off someplace, I stayed in the tent. Instead of being restless about going someplace to catch the best light in the evening, I sat by the river with Tanya and enjoyed a beer.
And for me? Somehow not taking any photographs was strangely liberating. There was no pressure to bring home at least one good shot, one image worthy of posting on the blog. I spent most the long weekend sitting by the river with wife and dog, doing nothing more strenuous than reading a book.
While I sat by that river, I did notice the interplay of light with the water and the forest throughout the day. Several times, I thought, wow, that would make a good photograph, but I stayed in the camp chair. Maybe it was the heat (the temperature was in the mid 90s (mid 30s C). Maybe it was that I didn’t plan on any photographic subjects prior to the trip (normally I looks for possible subjects and places to go while planning a trip, even if it is not a “photo” trip). Or maybe I was just giving the creative juices a rest. Whatever, the result was the same – the camera stayed in the car.
While it felt good to take a rest from the camera, I don’t expect it will happen again soon. Next week I will be off on a six-day backpacking trip and will be bringing plenty of camera gear along. You can bet it will be used and often. But for one weekend trip, I was liberated.
Since my blog is about photography, it feels wrong not to present an image, even if the theme of the post is about not taking photographs. So, here below, is an image from White Pass, Washington that I took several years ago. We camped about 15 miles east of White Pass last weekend. This shot is a closeup on part of the upper portion of Clear Creek Falls, taken from above the falls.