December 16

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What is Your Photography Happy Place?

By Dan

December 16, 2019

What is your “Photography Happy Place?”

Do you have a location you like to visit often, that always seems to inspire your creativity and your desire for taking pictures? A place that often looks different, depending on the season, the weather, the time of day or the particular kind of light that’s falling upon it?

If so, how often do you visit that place? Once per week? Per month? Once each season? Multiple times over the course of a single season?

And when you do, does this place never fail to motivate you to immerse yourself in your photography try out different approach and techniques as you respond the slight, or dramatic differences in the subject matter?

Does it usually inspire you to shoot, and do you usually walk away with an image, or a set of images that you love, that continue to extend and fuel your passion for photography?

And are they often very different from the images you have shot there during previous visits? Maybe it’s because the subject matter usually looks different, or maybe because it often looks the same, and so you’re forced to experiment and push your creativity into new areas in order to come up with a unique look each time.

The Knik Glacier is one of my happy places. Yes… it’s ok to have more than one. I’ve been visiting this location numerous times every season for the past 8 years or so, and each time there’s something slightly different about the way the ice is arranged, or the way the light is hiding the glacier or the surrounding peaks.

I went out there again last week, and it looked very different than it usually does. With numerous freeze/thaw cycles already occurring this winter, the lake in front of the glacier is totally free of snow right now, and the movement of the ice has left a strikingly beautiful collection of ice shards jumbled up against the shore.

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Exploring the scene with my X-T3 and my favorite trio of short Fuji primes, the XF14mm f/2.8, XF35mm f/2 and XF50mm f/2, I had a wonderful hour of creative happy time framing composition of these intriguing ice shapes.

My initial approach was to shoot wide angle so that I was showing the ice and the mountains, but after awhile, I decide to focus solely on the amazingly intricate and wildly haphazard collection of thin plates. I called it “Mother Nature’s impossible jigsaw puzzle.”

When will you visit your photography happy place next and what do you hope to find?

About the author

Hi, I'm Dan Bailey, a 20+ year pro outdoor and adventure photographer, and official FUJIFILM X-Photographer based in Anchorage, Alaska.


As a top rated blogger and author my goal is to help you become a better, more confident and competent photographer, so that you can have as much fun and creative enjoyment as I do.


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