Just look behind you

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It’s difficult to go to Yosemite as often as I do and still find fresh images. The challenge lies not in the scarcity of subject matter, but rather in it’s abundance.

Photographers flock to Yosemite for good reason. As one of the most photographed locations in North America it offers many iconic views. Especially when visiting for the first time, the instinct is to capture the vista exactly as you’ve seen it time and time again. I still enjoy looking at those scenes but really try to get past them and look for alternatives. That’s an easy enough task when I’m in the park by myself but can be a bit daunting when on a workshop. People taking workshops in Yosemite are paying to see those iconic views. Often they gauge the success or failure of the whole trip on a particular, preconceived,  shot. Recognizing that, we go out of our way to put folks in position to achieve their goals. That puts me, in the same iconic location.

Some of the views in Yosemite demand your attention. I find I become a lot freer to see alternative compositions if I just succumb to that demand visually. I appease myself by spending some time just taking in the view; sometimes with a camera, sometimes I just look. Appetite whetted, I turn around and start looking for a scene.  That’s what happened with this frame taken from Swinging Bridge. With the frozen majesty of Yosemite falls and dozens of camera shutters firing directly behind me, I found this quiet scene that spoke volumes about the morning.


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