Here's a collection of photos from a morning in Denver (and some thoughts on why I am just now sharing photos that were taken almost 5 years ago)
I really like Denver. It’s a beautiful city. I am sure some folks think of it as a place to fly into before heading up into the mountains, but I don’t think of it that way. It’s a destination unto itself. Obviously I take a lot of photos of cities, because that’s where my travels take me, and so I have really come to appreciate what each city has to offer.
Now I love shooting landscapes as much as anyone. In fact, I think if you ask 100 photographers what they like to shoot, you would probably hear “landscape” most of the time. Probably almost all of the time. It’s just what people think of first...including me.
But shooting in cities really gives you a lot more variety.
There is just so much to see and shoot in any city - they are all a veritable photographic goldmine. Given the time, I would shoot even more cities than I have already. I like it that much. I’m getting kind of fired up just thinking about it!
Thomas Hawk has an ongoing project to shoot the 100 largest American cities. The work he produces from these trips is fabulous, varied, and interesting. It’s quite an inspiration to me, and is a great example of finding interesting subjects among the “everyday stuff”, looking way beyond just landscapes.
(But of course, given the chance, I will shoot landscapes to my hearts content!)
In cities you have the typical cityscape and skyline stuff of course, which are among my favorite things to point the camera at. But you can also shoot individual architectural elements and details in buildings and other structures, signs, graffiti, street scenes, museums, train stations, cafes (I’m thinking of Europe here), and of course street photography (something I have really never tried). Heck, you could even shoot food, though I don’t do that, and that “feels” more like an Instagram sort of thing to me. :-)
So yeah - lots of stuff to shoot in cities...and it’s all great!
My travels have taken me to Denver twice - not nearly enough, though I have been able to get out and shoot there on each trip, and I really liked it. I hope to return. There is plenty more for me to do there, and a couple of my photography friends are there too.
I must admit though that I have not been to the Mile High City recently - in fact, these pics are from all the way back in July 2010 (my last trip there was in Oct 2012). So you may wonder why, nearly 5 years later, I am getting around to posting them now? I have shot so much since then, in so many different places. Shouldn’t I publish the more recent stuff?
There are a couple of reasons, actually.
I stated back at the beginning of this year that one thing I am going to focus on in 2015 is to increase the volume of what I create. In other words, I am going to publish more work.
So while that does mean getting out and taking new photos (which I have been doing quite a bit, and have several big trips coming up), it also means getting in the archives and processing many shots that have never been touched - and there are a LOT of them. What good are they just sitting in my library? No one can see them there. It’s like they don’t exist.
I have a library of over 130,000 images, but only had about 2275 images that were published/shared on Flickr (where I keep a copy of everything) as of the start of January. That’s just a rounding error. I’ve got a lot to do!
And while there are plenty in there that are junk and won’t ever be shared (we all take a lot of crappy photos), and some of that volume is due to bracketing multiple exposures to create an HDR - there are still plenty more that are worth getting out there. I have made it my mission to get a LOT more published. As of right now, my Flickr stream is over 2650 photos, so I am making good progress thus far in 2015! that's nearly 400 photos added this year!
So that’s reason #1 for publishing older shots that haven’t yet been released into the wild - my plan for the year is to up the volume, and there is a lot of untapped volume in the archives.
But all of that also ties in with my recent post entitled “old photos, new results”, wherein I discovered the joy of going back to previously overlooked shots and processing them with the skills I have acquired since the last time I saw them. So much has changed in the last few years in terms of my style, my capabilities, and the capability of the various software programs that I use.
Many of today’s shots were just sitting there in my library, untouched, because I passed over them in favor of others that were easier to process or that better caught my eye, or I gave them a try and couldn’t get them processed to my liking, either through lack of effort, lack of time, or more likely, lack of skill.
So that’s the other reason - there really are some diamonds in the rough. When you come back and look at your older RAW files - but you bring your new skills and vision with you - you quickly realize how you can take something you didn’t like years ago and turn it into something you do like today.
So don’t hesitate to dive into the old stuff - you may quickly find that you can produce some really nice new stuff out of it!
Well, I guess that’s about it for today. I appreciate you following along on this creative journey with me - I’m having a hell of a good time with it. And of course, I hope you enjoy these “old” photos from Denver. My two trips to Denver have resulted in about 1000 photos in total, so that’s another way of saying you will probably see another post like this one someday. :-)
And in case you are curious, every single photo today is a single exposure - no HDR on any of these. Things really do change, huh?
And last thing - have you ever heard me say how great it is to get up and shoot sunrise? I obviously had some great light that morning - well worth the early rise!