Photographing the world from your Class B motorhome.
Author Archives: Kevin
Have you ever heard someone say, “Photographs don’t do the place justice”?
What makes it so difficult to capture the grandeur of Yosemite, the otherworldliness of Yellowstone, the serenity of the California Coast, or the sheer power of a steam locomotive? I believe the issue lies in the details. A camera can never see the full range of light as well as our own eyes, so details in the highlights and the shadows are easily lost. Therefore, most photographs are only poor reminders of the beauty that was experienced in person.
I’ve developed a style of photography that concentrates on preserving those details, a style that offers all of the grandness of traditional photography, but gives the viewer enough granularity of focus to please those detail-seeking eyes. I don’t want to offer the viewer a “reminder” of their most favorite places. I want them to feel like they can visit those places anytime they want, simply by looking at the print on their wall.
Rochelle and I love our Roadtrek Agile, because we can pick up and go at little notice, with only the barest preparations. The last two weekends we threw our cameras, a change of clothes and a bag of groceries into Charley and headed off to some of our favorite California shooting locations.
If you’ve driven up or down California, you have surely seen our major highways, and you probably stopped at one of the numerous rest stops that show up every hundred miles or so. But what you might not know is California is home to another, completely different highway. One that offers some of the most picturesque rest stops you’ve ever seen. Of course, this highway is for the birds.
And no, I don’t mean it’s full of potholes and run-down truck stops. I mean it is “literally” for the birds. It’s called the Pacific Flyway, and every year hundreds of thousands of birds make their winter migration up and down it through the State of California. And being welcoming hosts, we’ve set aside vast tracks of land in the middle of the State for our feathered friends to sit back, rest up and grab a bite to eat. Continue reading →
Rochelle and I have two things that get us out of the house on a regular basis. One is our Roadtrek Agile Motorhome “Charley” and the other is our love for photography. It’s a pretty cool combination. Charley takes us wherever we want to go, without giving up any of our much-cherished creature comforts. And our passion for photography gets us out of bed, and off to visit some amazing scenes that many folks might skip in favor of an extended breakfast.
Lately, we’ve been spending some of our long weekends north of San Francisco in what I’m going to call the “Great Photography Triangle”. Our triangle starts at a point just north of the Golden Gate Bridge in Marin County. From there, we travel in a northwesterly fashion through the Point Reyes National Seashore to the second point on the Sonoma Coast. From there, our travels take us directly west to the picturesque town of Petaluma. And finally, we travel south to reach our starting point, which we merrily pass by on the way home.
Of course, no photography outing consists of straight lines. In fact, our “Great Photography Triangle” looks more like a drawing from a two-year old, with lots of crisscrossed lines, smudges, hand prints, cereal spills and, well, you get the picture. Photography isn’t so much about finding an exact spot as it is about finding the light. And if the light isn’t there, maybe you can find a nice bakery instead which, by the way, is always my number one backup plan. Continue reading →
Do you dream about seeing one of those big, fat, royal blue ribbons adorned over one of your favorite photographs? It’s a major accomplishment to win a ribbon at a photo contest, and it can be a milestone on your path to photographic excellence. But every path has to have a beginning, and I’m going to help your find yours in my latest story at Improve Photography. You can find the story here.
We just got back from the Eastern Sierras and the Fall Colors are out in full. You probably only have a few days left to enjoy one of California’s most popular photography events.
We began our journey by loading up Charley, our Roadtrek camper van, and heading over Yosemite’s Tioga Pass. The pass tops out at 11,000 ft., but it’s a good road, and they’ve kept the really steep parts to a minimum. The only problem with traveling through the Yosemite high county is how much will power you’ll need to avoid stopping at every turnout. There are vistas that will simply stun your eyeballs with their size and grandeur, and then there are those lush Tuolumne meadows that might just beckon you to spend an afternoon lazily wondering about, or enjoying a secluded picnic. But fall happens but once a year, so try to keep your eyes on the road and your mission in mind. I know it’s tough, but nobody ever said photography was easy!
Mainstream photography has been around for over 100 years and you might think it and the artists who practice it would be pretty well established by now. But there are always going to be a small number of artists who break the bounds of conventional thought, master the latest technical innovations and find new outlets to share their enthusiasm for the art.
I recently had the chance to write about nine of these photographers for Jim Harmer’s Improve Photography website. Their work is inspiring. I hope you have the time to visit each of their sites to see their amazing selections of photographs.
Sometimes the quickest way from point A to point B isn’t all that quick. There are just some stretches of road that are so long, and so boring, they test your ability to keep your sanity. That’s why Rochelle and I load up our iPhones with a wealth of podcasts before we hit the road. With a nearly unlimited number of subjects, produced by some incredibly bright and creative minds, podcasts can entertain you, help you learn new things and keep that mind of yours occupied as you barrel down the highway. Continue reading →