The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.

~ Dorothea Lange

One of my groups a week ago were all members of a photography club. I generally don’t do the classic photography workshop type of program. I am usually more interested in helping people see the natural world with a new set of eyes, learn about an area and its wildlife, and begin to see how they can improve their photography by becoming more observant. This group turned out to be interested in photographing a wide variety of subjects, not just the wildlife I am found for them, but so much more. With the weather being less than ideal, I decided to visit some areas that might offer a diversity of photographic topics given the conditions of overcast skies, occasional drizzling rain and mist. It seems they were up to the challenge of the weather and, from what I have seen online, they produced some beautiful images. And, as usual, I always learn something by being around photographers. I normally don’t take many photos when I am leading a trip, but I found that once I got this group to a location, they were very content to wander and look for subjects, with occasional help and interpretation from me. So, here are some images of things we saw, other than wildlife, on a couple of misty, gray days. Thanks to my group for giving me reason to pause, stretch myself, and appreciate some of the other beauties in our world.

marsh B&W

Marsh scene (click photos to enlarge)

Crab pots

Crab pots

Abandoned boat at Swan Qtr 2

Abandoned boat in Swan Quarter

boardwalk at Pettigrew

Scene along the boardwalk at Pettigrew State Park

Lake Phelps in fog

Lake Phelps in fog

cypress silhouettes

Bald cypress silhouettes at Lake Phelps

oxalis B&W

Wood Sorrel leaves

cypress tree in lake mattamuskeet B&W

Cypress tree in Lake Mattamuskeet

reflections along boardwalk

Reflections along boardwalk

reflections along boardwalk with wave

Those same reflections when you make a wave in the water

Pungo sunset

Pungo sunset

Marbled Salamander

Marbled Salamander under a log (okay, I can’t help but look for wildlife, I admit). I am not sure what is wrong with its hind leg, it looks very swollen.


8 thoughts on “Viewfinder

  1. Good times and glad to know you enjoyed it as much as we did! When I was looking at the photos of the salamander I was wondering if that was a snail snuggled up with him and not a swollen leg? I didn’t notice it the day we were there.

    • Thanks for the comment, J.B. I shared the pic with a herpetologist at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, and here is some of his response – only one salamander; looks like a male, though sometimes it’s hard to be certain just from color pattern (this one is less brightly patterned than some males, but more so than most females); I don’t know what would cause the leg swelling; maybe a bacterial infection of some kind. It could also be from an injury or some kind of venomous arthropod bite, etc.; and no eggs are visible; the pellets are most likely castings from a millipede.

  2. Those reflection shots are stunning! I love the whole collection though and the Dorothea Lange quote is perfect. May I borrow the quote it for a blog post? It describes how using the camera on my walks has changed the way I see things. I notice so many more things than I used to. It does train you to better observe nature, doesn’t it? Wonderful post.

    • Thanks, Jane. I can’t help myself….every time I am on that boardwalk, I end up taking some of those tree reflection shots. I had a print of some other reflections for sale in a small gallery and every time I went in, staff had turned it upside down because they thought it was a photo looking up into the trees (it was a very still day I took that photo). And, the quote is one I found online, so feel free to use it. I agree, the camera has helped train my eye – I see things I might not have seen otherwise, but, I also try to put the camera down from time to time just to take it all in.

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