But This Was Different, and I Could Tell

The party could be described as standard, the guest-list repetitive, and the food expensive. The room was beautiful, with a view of the ocean at high tide. I’d been to countless others just like it. Some attendees enjoyed the loud noises, vapid discourse, and rare delicacies. But this man was different, and I could tell.

***

I did it. I finally did it. I’ve been afraid for some time now by the prospect of approaching strangers and asking to photograph them. I prefer to make portraits with people I know or stealthily capture the visage of complete strangers. But this time was different, and I could tell.

***

It’s an odd thing, using someone else’s photography equipment. I’m a rather big advocate of “getting to know your gear.” I believe that the path towards taking better images starts with a photographer’s decision to learn his or her gear, and I mean really learn the gear. The lens I had on my camera was brand new to me; I’d never even held it before. But this lens was different, and I could tell. Continue reading

The True Sword-maker

grampy_040117_1We are Spadoni.

Since I was a small child, I wondered what our last name meant. I knew it had Italian roots, but I wanted to know more. Grampy use to tell me that it meant, “sword-maker,” which pleased me very much. However, whenever I relayed this information to my friends, they would laugh and tell me I must be joking them.  Continue reading

Golden Hour

“Photos graphe,” or light drawing, can sometimes say more about the photographer than it does about the scene being captured.

Have you ever looked at a photograph online, one that depicts a stunning landscape with emerald colored canopies or oceans of vivid blue? Have you ever seen a portrait where the subject’s eyes are illuminated with a sparkle? I have, and I think we are all conditioned to think to ourselves, “wow that person got lucky,” or “I wish I had the camera that person had.” This is foolishness. More often than not, a stunning photograph is indicative of an artist’s hard work, dedication, and commitment to her/his craft.

Boston sunrise


There is a time of day when the light stretches across the earth, gilding everything it touches in a golden glow. Photographing during this time can create truly breathtaking images, but it can be hard to predict. There are some who plan out weather patterns and try to anticipate the golden hour, while others simply stumble across it. I would like to say that I tend to be the former, but in reality, usually I’m the latter. This image was taken during the most intense golden light I’ve ever been fortunate enough to experience. I took it from a top floor of a Boston skyscraper. The cars, the water, the buildings, everything seems to be dipped in molten gold!

I look at this image and it reminds me to make an effort when it comes to taking photographs. The best photographers rise early, stay up late and are planners. They don’t stumble upon golden hour, they seek it out! I hope to be more intentional with my landscape photography. 

So, how about you? Does interesting light find you, or are you out there finding it yourself?

Timing and Patience

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Are you the type of photographer who walks up, assesses a scene, and snaps a few photographs before lowering your camera from your eye and moving on? Perhaps all of us do that at one time or another, but I urge you to experiment with patience, and try to wait for a scene to develop before you press the shutter button. Continue reading

How Are We Suppose to Become Invisible?

kiss_110214_1Street photography is hard – plain and simple; taking stealthy pictures of people in a public place is a challenge even for the most skilled photographers on the planet. How are we suppose to become invisible and capture precious moments without being noticed?

I have found that trying to capture an intimate moment with a clunky dslr is near impossible. The closest I have ever come to complete photographic anonymity was in Rome. The streets were packed and the city thrummed with a constant energy. Nobody looked at me, and nobody noticed my small mirrorless camera.

I love this photograph because every time I look at it, I am reminded of how serendipitously I stumbled upon this couple kissing. There are literally hundreds of people featured in this image, yet the light from the setting sun perfectly illuminates the couple. They are oblivious to the word around them, and so I was able to bring my camera up to my eye and snap a quick shot. I am not a street photographer, but whenever I have the chance to dabble in the discipline, I am often times rewarded with a beautiful moment like this one.

I have to remember to dabble more often,

Linger

linger_040915_1Linger, linger on my love
Clad in armor of white.
Linger a moment longer love,
Stay with me through my fight.

Dearest, you never think that it will have an end,
But Eros makes his prey blind to times flights,
And here we are, your tomb, my closest friend.

Would that you were in my bed every night,
And every morn be first to wed my sight?
But eyes gaze and arms reach to spite, my dread.

Ahead of me a flock of doves alight.
The grey clouds abate. Blue skies take their stead.

I know you’d want me to show strength ahead.
If you were here you’d want to see my smile.
Maybe someday my smile will daily spread.
I’ll try, I vow, for you, I’ll try, meanwhile.

My eyes close. I lift my head. I linger.
A warm breeze. A faint smile. We linger.

Linger one moment longer, love,
Draped in your gown of white.
Now linger on no more, my love,
I’ve made it to the light.

You can read more from TH Ponders here

Behind the Photograph: Light Striking a Twisted Pine

A lot of times, people ask me, “where did you take that photograph,” or,” how did you get your image to look that way? Many of my photos are from far off cities and distant mountain ranges. But this image was taken right around where I work. I want to talk a little bit about how this image came together and make a point or two about keeping your eyes open for the beauty around you.

light_tree_06142017_1 Continue reading