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Tuesday, March 27, 2012


What is photography for you?

Labels: How-ToColumnBasic Jones
The waves continued their joyous, unending march toward the shore. Each breathtaking curl serving as an exclamation point to the truth of my musings. I sat there fully connected, totally in the experience.

And now, fully connected, it was the time to take out my Canon EOS 7D and set it up for sharp wave photography. Continuous shooting (H), 7 frames per second. Auto follow-focus. Shutter priority at 1⁄2000 sec. to completely stop the action. ISO on—believe it or not—Auto to assure that I always have a 1⁄2000 sec. even if the light changes. If the light goes dark and the ISO rises to compensate, I'd rather have a little more noise and get the shot than have the ISO hit its limit and the shot be underexposed.

My zoom lens took me out and almost inside the waves. Time after time (actually around 700 shots that day), the shutter clicked away. I wasn't looking for the perfect wave as surfer photographers might; I was just looking for each wave's perfect moment. Each wave's consummate moment of pattern, line and color.

With the backlight, there was a split second as a wave broke where its crest thinned out and evening's light pierced through. It happened so fast that if you blinked, you'd miss it. But I wasn't blinking, and neither was my 7D. I'd gasp and shoot, and my camera froze those moments as if the waves were made of ice, not water.

Finally, exhausted and happy, I screamed, "Thank You!" at the top of my lungs and headed back to the car. Mother Nature assured me that it was all right to leave. She would have plenty more waves for me whenever I returned. Truly great lady, Mom Nature.

That night, in front of the computer, I relived the whole experience. Equally connected, I took one of my favorite images and spent a long time dodging, burning and sculpting it till its two-dimensional, one-sensory form—the photograph—gave me the same feeling that my three-dimensional, five-sensory experience had given me earlier that evening. When I was done, I stared at the image on the screen and one more realization:

That God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes!

Dewitt Jones posts daily photographic images on his Facebook page. Go to www.facebook.com/dewittjonesfanpage. You also can sign up for Jones' weekly Photos of Celebration at www.celebratewhatsright.com.


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