One Man’s Passion!

I have been a long time fan of PBS Create’s many painting and art shows.  Right now Stefan Baumann’s “The Grand View” is at the top of my list.  It is split 50% exploring and back story of our national parks and 50% painting with Stefan.  Good job!

A few years ago I was cruising around just looking for pictures to be made.  Birds, flowers, bugs, you name it.  I was getting disappointed at just finding the same old stuff and then I remembered my early days in nature photography.  Every common insect, every common bird and every roadside flower thrilled me.  They were all potential pictures.  The finished image was racing through my head even before I stopped the car.  Since those early days I had photographed a lot of birds, bugs and flowers.  In a lot of places.  Had I became jaded?  Had I lost the “pure joy” of photographing everything in nature?   I was not sure but if I had I was going to get it back.  It took about 15 minutes with a roadside Bull Thistle to reunite myself with the excited child that I once was.  I never again doubted my dedication and love for making images of everything in nature.

“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”
Henry David Thoreau

Mute Swan.

So tiny!  Immature Ruby-throated Hummingbird among the Prairie Coneflowers.

The Black Canyon of The Gunnison in Colorado is one of the west’s least known deep canyons.  It reaches one mile in depth, in certain areas.

Ice covered red leaves.  I found these leaves one morning but the background was very busy and distracting.  I finally found an angle where I could visually place these two leaves in front of a red brick shack.  I just needed to make sure that my depth of field was just shallow enough as to not render any detail in the building.

Dew covered Foxtail Barley Grass at sunrise.  I am somebody that is indeed easily excited over subjects.  They do not have to be the big “sexy” subjects to captivate me.  I have photographed this type of grass off and on for 30 years.

“I’m back here somewhere! Really!!” It was a dream of mine for 25 years to photograph a Pika.  My statement in the above paragraph about what excites me is true.  In fact to me the Pika ranked right up there with Mountain Lions and Wolves.  To get this guy in 2007 (Rocky Mt. N.P.) with a mouthful of  Alpine Avens, the plant that Pikas store with their winter food cache to act as a preservative for that food, was very exciting for me.

Female Cassin’s Finch, Colorado.

Plain ole opossum.  Just an opossum a few years back in Wisconsin.

Spring Tulip.

I amazes me just how much learning there is to be done in life.  It is truly a never-ending journey.  If science has humans living to be 200 years of age, those people will still be learning at the very end.  The one thing that I learned as a mere child was the more passionate you are about things, the more passionate you will be about even more things.  It is also contagious to those around you. 

I was on a photo trip in Colorado and I stopped at a lot of scenic pull-offs.  I would use them to visually scout for likely places to create images.  Of course I would sometimes make my pictures right there.  Other cars would stop and people would get out and make their own pictures.  Every 3rd or 4th car would have at least one person who did not see what all of the rest of us were looking at.  I mean all of that beauty in front of them, and they simply saw nothing.  I made it my purpose for the rest of that trip to infect those people with my passion.  It works.  When you are passionate about things, it will be passed along to others.  One person’s passion and purpose becomes that of a dozen.  A dozen is soon one hundred.  It is a wondeful sight when something positive and good spreads it’s wings.   

If I could only accomplish one thing among all of the articles I have written on my website, other people’s websites and this blog, it would be to pass along the deep-seated joy that I have always felt for seemingly a million different things.  A society that is over-joyed and excited about a lot of (good) things will make good things happen.  When you are passionate about anything there is no time to be perpetually negative.

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.”
Robert Louis Stevenson

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