Friday, October 28, 2016


# 5   |   Evolution Lake, Kings Canyon National Park, California [2012]
Canon S70, 1/125th sec, f/8.0, ISO 50, 5.8mm (28mm @ 35mm equivalent)

This image is, in some ways, an example of the exact opposite of visualization. It is an example of what is commonly referred to as luck. Lots of incredible photographs happen out of sheer luck. The light and subject and vantage point of the photographer all align to make possible a memorable image. It was, also, regrettably made on a tiny, point-and-shoot camera so, looking back on it, I am admittedly a bit remiss for not having the foresight to use either of the other cameras I had hauled on this particular trip up and over Lamarck Col, through Darwin Canyon, and into Evolution Basin (I had, back at camp, a 4x5 Wista field-view camera, as well as a Canon 7D, each with a myriad of lenses). But no, I captured it by accident on the ol' S70, not realizing at the time the power the image would have on me once developed. The island, illuminated by the surrounding light, dwarfed by the monstrous walls of Mount Mendel dominating the view north. The shadows, the late-afternoon light, the clouds.

Returning, by a twist of fate, three years later to camp once again at Evolution Lake, I foolishly attempted to re-create the image with a 5D and 24mm prime lens. It was close, but (and I guess I knew even then, at the time) it would never equal the original. Re-creating an image never works, for in the mind of the photographer the original already exists, and the light and shadow and time will never again be the same. Indeed, that little fact is what makes photography powerful. Even if the image is made on a tiny, point-and-shoot camera.

Five stars.

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