What Would Stephen Dedalus Do?

Looks Much Better Larger

Eye have lost my eye.  I took a lot of pictures today.  All of them miserable.  I have a pretty basic composition style that works and a natural eye for … Hey!  I just noticed my homophone up there…”Eye” for “I”.  Maybe I really am losing it. 

But back again to where I began.  I took a lot of bad photos today.  Generally I have a decent handle on composition and a natural knack for the Rule of Thirds, but I wasted a lot of time taking bad photos today.

The first photograph here looked absolutely sublime when I took it.  I’m not sure what happened that didn’t go right, but I muffed it.  I completely missed the narrative that I saw and flubbed the composition entirely.  Plus the color is washed out.  (I am using a camera phone, however.  I’ll give myself a break on that.)  I don’t know…I saw Brighton Beach (or do they call it a strand?) and instead I got a wall of concrete blocking my view of the river.

I loved this scene so much I clicked off a few more pics.  I was reading a somewhat winsome, but still dark, story in these views.  I was thinking Anne of Green Gables meets Stephen Dedalus.  That was a good start.  I wasn’t sure where the story would go, but if there were ever a place for those two to meet, it was on the shores of the St. Croix River today.  It seemed to be working.  It all looked correct.

A man of genius makes no mistakes.  His errors are volitional and the portals of all discovery.

Looks About Right As It Is

But look at these pictures.  What can be said about this one?  I see Stephen running down the strand, wet from a good manly swim, racing toward Anne who is, of course, properly attired in pressed broadcloth and lace.  The two will meet somewhere at the focal point of the photo and…and then what?

I’m not sure, but the idea was working for me so I kept taking pictures.  I got very involved in the quiet beauty of it all.  I took many, many pictures and with each I felt certain I was capturing a story…

(Having a camera is a lot like having a notebook.  Photos work as well as pen and paper, often work better.)

…and then I took this photo.

This is all that I need to see that my game was off.  Isn’t that big hulking tree trunk a bit much in the foreground?  I lopped off the top of leafless branches in the background.  And I used another large trunk to complete a claustrophobic box.   Even that I didn’t do well.  You can see a modern ramada there on the right.  I don’t like it. 

Too Large at Any Size

But still I can see Stephen and Anne coming together right there in the foreground…if that damn tree were not in the way.

I am just disappointed, that’s all.  When I stopped at this park along the river everything was perfect.  The sky, the water, the sand, grass and snow…it all worked so well together with all of those majestic trees lurking about.  The place was loaded with contradictions that the camera completely missed.  Here was a space empty and still and all I could see was life and activity.  I’m being a bit silly about Stephen and Anne, but the beach did feel like a stage.  What else would you do with space like that?  Perhaps it is the perfect widow’s walk.  There would be a story in that, too.

I will try again tomorrow.

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One thought on “What Would Stephen Dedalus Do?

  1. U No Hu

    Couldn’t u see that tree? Imean u make it sound like the tree was a surprise, but it’s the biggest thing in the frame? I mean u make it sound like u didn’t notice till u took the picture.

    Reply

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