Sunday, October 11, 2015

Taking pictures with our daughter

Light among the shadows
London, ON
October 2015
Photo by Dahlia Levy
I took a walk with our daughter yesterday. The two of us have evolved something of a tradition, where every autumn we grab our cameras and take a walk on the path network near our house. She takes my DSLR, while I scaff my wife's camera for the umpteenth time.

All week long, we were watching the trees in the neighborhood slowly start to turn various shades of yellow, orange, red and everything in between, and by yesterday morning it was pretty clear it was shaping up to be the perfect day for a walkabout.

As we've done in past years, I hung back and watched our no-longer-little lady work. Like her mom, she sees the world through an artist's lens, painstakingly thinking about a scene before deciding how she wishes to tell its story. The deeper into the forested shadows we walked, the happier she got at the things we were seeing.

Dahlia didn't need to ask me how to shoot in this rather challenging environment of burned-out sun, deep shadows, backlit vistas and reflective water - she's well beyond her years when it comes to flipping the camera to manual and bending it, and light, to her will. Instead, the conversation flowed easily between the technical gotchas of dynamic range and the difficulties in picking from a seemingly limitless number of composition possibilities.

As you can imagine, spending a good chunk of a sunny Saturday afternoon with her wandering the color-flecked woods in search of optical goodness was, in a word, wonderful. I could have easily hung out with her until the sun went below the horizon, but as it was dinner beckoned. So we tossed the cameras back on our shoulders and headed for home.

The pic up there is one of my faves of hers because it was one of the unexpected ones. It wasn't about brilliant colors or dramatic vistas. Instead, it was a simple, almost touchable view of fallen leaves lit by a single shaft of sunlight, seemingly impossible to expose properly, yet she made it look easy. It frightens me, in a good way, how she turns thought into visual reality. Again, just like her mom.

The full set is stored here on Flickr. I think there's at least one more shoot in us - perhaps a post-color one - before the snow begins to fall. I'm already counting the days.

Your turn: What are you thankful for? Why?


Alexia said...

That whole album is stunning, Carmi. You have both captured such beauty and such variety. Thank you for the invitation to see these photos.

Kalei's Best Friend said...

Wow! the album is stunning... Someone sure has an eye for framing!... well balanced and the colors of Fall are gorgeous... Hope her future is in photography! such a natural.

Gilly's Camera said...

oh my. gorgeous images there!

What am i thankful for? Family and close friends, without a shadow of a doubt.

Michael Manning said...

Carmi: I had to come back and take a good look at your collection with Dahlia. I am confident that she has her Dad's talent, with such vivid camera shots of life and nature. The last time I've seen such a nice variety as this was about 9 years ago from a friend in New Hampshire. I am thankful for life, family and good friends like you! ;)