Why Do You Take Photos?

It’s a valid question, isn’t it? Especially in this day and age when everyone has a camera in their purse or pocket.


It’s a valid question, isn’t it?  Especially in this day and age when everyone has a camera in their purse or pocket.

Personally, I’ve been taking photos most of my life. It’s a passion.  Maybe it didn’t start out that way but over the years (probably early on) it developed into something I can’t not do!  It’s therapy, peace, my happy place, grounding, get my butt out of the house, contemplation, wonder, wander and a whole lot more to me.  The fact that I can share little bits of my world and the world around me isn’t always that important.  Sure, if I can take someone back to a place they grew up, vacationed at, or get someone to see the world around them in a different way, or if I can evoke some sort of emotions by sharing one of my images that’s a bonus.  Mostly, I photograph for me. (Yes, I do sell images as a way to share my passion, but that’s another post!)

Sand Harbor Tahoe Sunset_
Sand Harbor, Lake Tahoe Sunset
Sand Harbor Tahoe Rocks BW_
Sand Harbor, Lake Tahoe

Does this mean that every photo is going to be compositionally perfect, technically correct and worthy of putting out in the world?  No, of course not.  Sometimes images are just a recording of a moment in time, a memory to keep and possibly just because we thought it might be a good image.  We know that isn’t always the case when we get home and upload the images and think, “what the hell was I thinking when I shot that?”    Sometimes we go out shooting to learn new things and we come back with nothing suitable for anything but figuring out what we did wrong.  You know what?  That’s all ok!

Neither of these images from Sand Harbor at Lake Tahoe is perfect. I can see I’m going to have to go back and rework/fix the black and white image especially.  If I feel like it.  Depends on what I think I might do with it.  In the end, Lake Tahoe is and always will be a special and magical place for me.  So, if you like these images, great!  If not, it’s ok with me, they bring back memories, make me sigh and help me remember one of my favorite places on earth.

You’ve heard it a million times, art is subjective.  What I like and what you like are rarely going to be the same.

So, why do YOU take photos?  Tell me in the comments! I’d love to hear your stories.


Here’s a lesson learned. Sometimes when learning in groups of people, it’s easy to take other people’s opinions and toss them aside. Not in a mean way, but in a “they have no idea what I was trying to do with this image and I’m not them and this is what THEY would do, not what I would do, sort of way. After posting this image in a mentorship type group I am in,  I did mention that I should probably take out the white house on the left….it is a bit distracting but…I’m a big Realist (for those who don’t already know me). I shoot what’s there, I don’t shoot to manipulate or change what I saw. Anyway – this person agreed and also said I should take out all the white spots along the shore. I get it. I do, and I did. I still get it and agree. (don’t tell that person! hahaha) But, it was also a lake, with a shoreline, with houses on it.

So…in the end I suppose it would depend on what my intentions were/are with the final image. This one? I have no idea. In all honestly I’m not sure I should have even spent any time editing it at all. For what? Will it sell? Will I hang it in my home? I’ll post it online but for what? Well, in this case to show a lesson learned.

I’m stubborn sometimes with editing – I like what I like and what I do. I appreciate and respect what others do and their skills. I also stay pretty hard and fast to who I am as a photographer. Mostly. I do play, it’s how I learn. Sometimes those play times produce quite wonderful results!

So – there’s a little lesson today – most of us I know are quite open minded or we wouldn’t be in these groups trying to push forward and learn more, but…be open minded! more. always. Even when there are reasons (whatever they may be) that you wouldn’t normally choose to listen to someone else.

Mini Lake Iceberg-2Mini Lake Iceberg

If you feel so compelled and moved by this and would like your own print for your own home click on the lower image and you can buy it!

So, what do you think?  Better without the house and other houses along the shore?  What would you do with this photo?   Let me know your thoughts, I’d love to hear them!


This quote popped up in my Google+ stream today

MonoLakeSky with quote

This quote popped up today in my Google+ stream.  It’s been a theme of sorts lately in discussions I’ve had with some of those who both inspire and kick me in the artistic rear as well.

The image is by one of those people: Karen Hutton  If you don’t know who she is you really should go check out her page.  Inspiring. Motivational. Funny. Fun. Just a few words one might use to describe her.

The cool thing is, this image and quite a few others are available for you to use, for FREE! You can get them here:  KAREN HUTTON FREE STOCK IMAGES.  Do I have my own images I could use?  Of course, I’m a photographer.  It’s part of what I love about the photographic community though – we all love to share.

I really have a lot more to say on the subject of the way we choose to look at life and any given situation but that’s for another post.  Time for me to go put my feet up and maybe clear my head of the clutter that seeped in today.

One last thing – if you download Karen’s images – I’d love to see what you use them for.  Please be sure to read the terms of use and as good internet users, always use fair attribution which is explained when you download the image pack.  🙂