Some weeks are about getting close, putting your nose up against the window, noticing every detail. But for me, this last week has been about the long view, looking into the distance.
There’s nothing like a road trip to get you looking long. The seemingly endless freeway laid out in front of you, promising hours and hours in the car until you reach that destination. It seems a shame to waste all that time, lucky for me, my camera turns that long, endless highway into an opportunity for a study.
California is fascinating. I live at the bottom of the state, the southern boundary, nestled right up next to Mexico. We are known for our beautiful beaches and temperate climate. And who doesn’t love the beach? Here’s sign in the distance meant for dog parents (although who is really reading when the beach is beautiful and the water feels so nice?).
When the high tide prevents you from going in one direction, you simply turn around and head the other way. This stretch of beach led us to a bridge where the river mouth allows the lagoon and beach to connect…and creates new playgrounds. Can you see the floaters in the distance?
I can never resist a sunset, although the marine layer along the coast has made them a bit unpredictable lately. We thought we might not see any sunshine as we headed to the beach last weekend, but a bit of sun peeked through the thick clouds. As we walked, we noticed the bubble man in the distance and I had to stop to snap some bubble photos.
You can see the sun trying to make its way through the clouds behind the bubbles. It’s such fun to watch the giant bubbles form and float into the distance just out of reach of all the hands trying to touch and pop them.
Another night I noticed the sun setting through the window at home. I headed out with my camera to see if I could catch the colors I was seeing in the distance. A bit of editing made the sky pop with the colors I was seeing.
Back to the road trip. We’re making our way up the length of the long narrow state, first crawling through LA traffic (with a quick stop for hugs and kisses from one grandson) and then back on the road, over the grapevine into the central valley to stop for the night. Of course, again I needed to catch the sunset through my lens, and through the gas station parking lot.
The next morning had us back on the road heading to see our other two grandson for the next leg of our adventure. The tomato trucks always catch my attention (you can see that I’ve written about them before), there’s something about the open trucks piled high with red, ripe tomatoes that makes me pull out my camera. I also learned that California grows the majority of tomatoes for the nation, with most of them farmed in the central valley area because of the hot, dry summers. I watched and snapped truck after truck after truck as we passed them on the long stretch of highway.
As we turned from highway 5 toward the 580, instead of trucks it was windmills that caught my eye. The Altamont Pass wind farm was one of the first in the United States, a response to the 70’s energy crisis (something I just learned after taking photos of the wind turbines). There are nearly 5000 perched on the distant hillsides as you make your way into the East Bay.
And when I turned back to look behind, I noticed all these cows on the hillside too, seemingly undisturbed by the windmills in the distance.
So, take the long view this week. What do you see in the distance? Will you look through a window, from the top of a hill, from the end of your driveway?
You can post your photo alone or along with some words: commentary, a story, a poem…maybe even a song! I love to study the photographs that others’ take and think about how I can use a technique, an angle, or their inspiration to try something new in my own photography. (I love a great mentor text…or mentor photo, in this case!) I share my photography and writing on social media. You can find me on Instagram and Twitter using @kd0602. If you share your photos and writing on social media too, please let me know so I can follow and see what you are doing. To help our Weekly Photo community find each other, use the hashtag #distance for this week and include @nwpianthology in your post.
Gaze into the distance…what will you see? I can’t wait to see what you find!