Editing photos shortly after returning from photographic trips can be a double edged sword. On the one hand, I am always excited to see the new images while the trip is still fresh in my mind as I want to release new work as soon as possible. But on the other hand, I have found it helpful and often times more freeing to wait a few days to begin editing as it allows me to be more creative in my choosing and editing process. Every image I have posted on this blog, are images that have been chosen after revisiting some older work that was not initially chosen on the first round of editing. Work that I believe is not inferior to my other work, but it just took some time to allow my mind to see things a little differently. Many times on a trip, I have a very good idea of exactly what I want to come back with and anything that does not follow that plan or theme, is simply looked over because it wasn't what I was looking for at that time. But by revisiting these images, I am looking with fresh eyes and not feeling handcuffed to follow the original plan. Therefore, I come away with new work from trips past.
A Time to Remember
This image was from my first trip to Acadia some 3 years ago. My plan was to come back with the beautiful colorful boulders from boulder beach. So images like this one that had incredible light and had an enormous potential for a black & white, was overlooked because it did not fit the theme I was trying to accomplish. But now that I am free from that, there is still good quality images to be edited and released that may be completely different from my initial release of images.
Sometimes it has nothing to do with a particular theme or plan, but more with I just couldn't see what was right in front of me. The light in this image was incredible, but upon my first look, I completely missed it. When I go back and revisit images and trips like this, there typically is no pressure because I have already released some work from here and really don't expect anything else to come out of it. But nearly every time, I find something new and exciting that in many cases has become some of my favorite and best selling work.
This image is 5 years in the making. I had been here for 5 straight years, and the light is always beautiful, but I really wanted some clouds in the sky to complete the image. Upon my initial pass over some 500 images from the trip, I did not think I had a shot of the Watchman that was satisfactory. Several months after my return, I went back to look over everything again and began an edit to see what the potential may be. I have to say, I was quite surprised when I finished the edit and came away with this as the final product. I don't know why I missed this on the first pass, but I am excited to have found it on the second.
Though the clouds held up the sunset, the light here was still quite beautiful with all of the colors of the tundra and the mountains looming in the distance. Another case of just slowly going back through and looking for some different perspectives with some nice colors and leading lines.
Some advice I could give fellow photographers and aspiring artists is to take a step back to bring about a fresh and new perspective. Sometimes you may have to go over images several times. Making plans is a very good start, but I have learned when the plans don't work out because of factors out of my control, I don't go to a "plan B". I allow myself the freedom to simply walk around and look, or often times research what else may be in the area that I was not planning on photographing. I find these other places of interest and simply go there and become an explorer. Slowing down to take everything around me in, in hopes of finding subject matter that I fall in love with. At times it can be overwhelming going in with a plan, and finding yourself in a place that is not familiar. And it will most definitely take some time to become acquainted with this new territory. But you never know, it just may become your new favorite place.