photography (and other observations) by John Matthews


It's Fun When You Don't Even Have to Try

Well, I already missed an edit yesterday so my post streak currently stands at 1... I'm justifying the lapse due to the fact that it's been sub zero for most of the past 36 hours and let's face it, it's not that easy to hold your gear steady when your nostrils are stuck together. Today totally made up for it, though, as I had a really fun day, photographically speaking.

My day started with the image below. I had just taken off my jacket at my desk and looked out the window to see that I had parked in such a way on an existing set of tire tracks that it appeared as though I did a big donut in our parking lot and spun around a coworker's car to park perfectly. I thought it was a pretty cool looking scene so I snapped this shot. Literally less than 60 seconds invested in this shot.

Later this afternoon I had to stop by a client's place of business to buy a gift certificate. As I drove down his street I saw this huge shadow cast down the middle of the roadway. I pulled over a little and stuck my phone out the window and grabbed this frame:

Again, a 20 second shot and a 30 second edit and I had a pretty cool looking image. I called it 'Half Sun' a play on the half moon cookies that Utica is famous for.  Now in the above image, my client's business is down on the far left hand side of the street. His business is called Gerber's 1933 Tavern and is a renovated speakeasy dating back to Prohibition. Mark Mojave, the owner, is a former city developer and has a great sense of city history and has done a great job restoring a treasure of a building. I wound up parking across the street on the right side in the shade in the above photo. As I exited my vehicle the first thing I saw was an old garage door with a newer looking sign above it. I took a quick shot as I walked over to my client's business. 

So far with the above three images I have a total amount of 2 or 3 minutes invested. I'm just shooting at scenes that are catching my eye as I go about my daily business. On my way out of Gerber's the sun caught my left eye and as I turned to look at it, I noticed these great shadows and details on Gerber's exterior wall. I snapped these photos (really dug the light in these): 

Less than a minute to grab those shots. Probably about 10 minutes total in editing/cropping, etc. And definitely a lot of likes on my social media streams with all of them. Probably about 45 likes total. The amazing thing about today was that it was completely effortless... some days it is such a struggle so I'm really glad to have had a day where things just sort of fell into place and I wasn't forcing anything. Do I wish I had my Fuji? Of course I do. But my mobile phone was handy and it served the purpose of capturing a perfectly suitable set of images. I can't complain about that. 

Today's lesson: if you're in a groove, ride it. It's fun when you don't even have to try.