When I left the area I was shooting for this assignment to go back to work, I knew I didn't have what I wanted. I had spent my lunch hour searching the streets for a shot that never materialized.
There are days where you go out and can't stop taking pictures, and then there are days where everything on your camera is a bust. I am to the point now where I know in the field if I have hit the mark or not 90% of the time. I come home with images and go through the motions of editing them, but I know in my heart there is nothing on the camera worth keeping.
That is how I felt on this day, and this shot of the bridge light posts was the only shot I kept. While I wasn't successful in finding a shot for the perspective assignment, I wouldn't go so far as to say that the day was a complete waste of time.
First off, even though it doesn't meet the goals I had when I went out to shoot, I do like this shot. I was exploring the bridge in this scene when some really dark clouds approached from the east. The sun was still in the foreground, so the contrast between light and dark was pretty amazing to see. Shortly after I took this shot I had to seek shelter from the hail that followed.
So even though I was searching for other shots, I didn't pass on shots I found in the process of looking. I try to leave myself open for pleasant surprises, and many times that openness rewards me and I come home with something unexpected.
I never look at trips out with the camera as a waste of time regardless of the outcomes because part of what I love about photography is that it motivates me to see things I may never have seen otherwise. I will go out of my way for little else, but when it comes to taking photos, I am always ready to ignore the beaten bath in search of a new perspective.
I guess in that regard, this assignment was a success.
On Taking Assignments
I frequently listen to the On Taking Pictures (OTP) podcast, which I highly recommend to anyone looking for good conversation about creativity, especially as it related to photography. In January 2014 the hosts, Bill Wadman and Jeffery Saddoris, began a new segment of weekly assignments that they gave to listeners. Results of the assignments are posted on the OTP Google Plus group. I decided that I would commit myself to the assignments for a year without interruption, and that I would complete each one before the next assignment was announced on the show each Tuesday morning. My 'On Taking Assignments' blog posts are the culmination of my year-long focus on these assignments.