The last frame

hilo_7331_0911-EditOver the last few years I’ve developed a bit of a routine on the last day of a workshop. While the group continues to hunt for those last few shots, I turn off my camera, pack up my gear, and just watch. For me, it’s about reminding myself why I make nature images and stopping to smell the roses. It’s easy to get so caught up in your image making that you forget to take the time to just enjoy the scene.

Last month, I made my first visit to islands to assist Gary Hart’s workshop on the big island of Hawai’i. Challenges in my personal life threatened to derail the trip right up until the morning we boarded our flight. As April and I watched plans and details fall into place it became obvious to us that we were supposed to go. Once that was clear, it was up to us to just enjoy an amazing ride.

After capturing this image, I put my camera away, collapsed my tripod, sat down on some nearby lava and just looked. I spent the next 20 – 30 minutes watching the ocean, watching the sky and saying thank you for an amazing trip. It was pure magic. As the light faded, I noticed much of the group packing up so I wiped away the tears, grabbed my gear and headed for the car.

Now, as I go through the captured memories I find myself counting the days until I can go back. Until then, I still have this last frame.

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