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by Site Hub

Change in Focus – My Journey in Photography, episode 1

Over the past couple of years we have experienced many changes in our lives. We have had time to reflect on our work, families, experiences and health. As for me, my photography has been one of those things I have reflected on, hence convincing me to change my focus.

My love of photography started by photographing my own children when they were young. As my photography skills have grown and matured, I have learned to enjoy the peace and quiet of our environment. Over time, my focus has shifted from portrait to nature, wildlife and landscape photography. Actually this is kind of funny because my college photography instructor told me to never take photographs without people in them after reviewing my assignment of images with no people! Just goes to show what time and experience can do!

I think this transition really started a long-time ago but I failed to recognize it until I started this reflection! I was fortunate to be a member of a business association that afforded me the opportunity to travel within our country and Canada. I traveled most often with a wonderful friend that also enjoyed photography. We would almost always extend our business trips to include personal time so that we would be able to take in all the sites that were included in that area.

One of our trips was to Seattle, Washington.  We had been fortunate enough to see the beautiful site while riding the Seattle ferry. We knew we needed to go! We boarded the tour bus from downtown Seattle and off we went. We were able to capture images of the mountain and Christine Falls. We shot so many rolls of film…yes it was a time of film cameras! We were so excited when we arrived back in the city…we searched the area to see if we could find a retailer would develop our film so we could see if our images captured our memories. We spent most of our food budget on film development! It was worth it. (1994)

There was another trip where the meeting was in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Our mindset was we did not know when, if ever, we would get that far west so we best go see Mount Rushmore. That’s right…just a mere 437 miles. We rented a car and headed out. We stayed in a cabin in the Black Hills, it snowed…we were not prepared for that but we did not care. We traveled up the mountain and as the monument came in to view, we were awestruck. It was amazing, breathtaking and well worth the trip. As we stood there looking at this amazing memorial tears flowed from our eyes…we could not stop taking pictures. While in the area we also visited Custer State Park, traveling the Sylvan Lake Shore Trail and and Wildlife Loop Road so we could see the bison. Crazy Horse Memorial was another stop. (1996)

Well it was now time to head back to Minneapolis to catch our flight home. Not so fast…we decided to visit the Bad Lands on our way back. What a spectacular area of our country this was. We constantly stopped along the way just to take in the view. Our cameras were constantly clicking.  No time to develop our film as we had to get to the airport prior to our red-eye flight back to New York State. Once home we developed our film and met up to review, compare and share our pictures and memories.

I guess I did not realize that was the beginning of my love of nature, wildlife and landscape photography. I thought I was just capturing memories.

Mary Beth Lovejoy, photographer


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