Friday, March 23, 2007


Rail, close up
London, Ontario, March 2007

One of the limitations of most modern SLRs is that the lovely screen on the back can't be used to compose the image. You can only review the picture after you've taken it: you're stuck using the viewfinder before you take the shot. The upshot of this is it's more difficult to compose high- or low-perspective photos. Which really ticked me off as I walked along the rails (I know, Mom, not bad) and thought a low-angle perspective would be neat.

Not content to leave without my originally-imagined composition, I picked the cleanest looking spot to crouch way, way down, listened even more intently for any distant rail activity, and got down on the ground. I shot quickly before getting up, dusting myself off, and scanning quickly over my shoulder for any rail cops who happened to be in the area.

There were none. I guess there are more rail pictures in my future. As with so many of my other recurring themes, I'm not sure why they become recurring themes, but I'm glad that they do, because they give me something familiar to work with when I head out into the not-always-pretty world to capture something memorable.

Your turn: What themes do you follow when you shoot, write, live?


Olyal said...

Great photo (as usual) but I think I have to agree with your Mom... definitely not safe!
Michele sent me today!

Catherine said...

I'm not sure about themes in my photography - I think it will take a while for me to figure out what keeps cropping up. In my poetry, the past definitely keeps finding its way in. Even when I think I'm done with the genealogy theme, suddenly there it is again :)
Michele didn't send me, so I came anyway!

sage said...

I love railroads and pictures of tracks get me longing to wander.

For photography, I like to shoot pictures of people doing stuff. I also like water and rocks and reflections.

Shephard said...

It looks like a newly paved road up a craggy mountain.

I often follow the theme of "fur" because it's so prevalent in my world. :)

Michele says hello! 3x today! woo hoo!

Anna said...

Great shot Carmi...and recurring themes is where it is at.....always finding a different perspective is quite challenging!

What rule do I follow when I am shooting, writing and living?

Always be transparent and real.

:) Have a good weekend friend!

Cupcake Queen said...

love the makes me want to take a train trip...michele sent me!

Anonymous said...

At first glance, I thought it was some sort of road or runway. But what odd terrain!

I like the mood of this shot, Carmi.

Anonymous said...

Your photos are always so compelling. Especially this one.

*I* actually used my camera today - there's a post dedicated to you, actually.

Lee Ann said...

Carmi, that is an amazing shot. Low angle is perfect.
Almost seems there is a message with that photo~~~
so much of the world to see while traveling by train...much the same as the photos you share with us.
Beautiful Carmi.

Michael K. Althouse said...

Well, as you know, I love anything with strong lines running through and out of the shot. I happen to favor trains, bridges and other structures. Interestingly enough, my writing and my photography don't really mesh all that often. Weird, huh?

From Michele's,


Unknown said...

I tend to shoot way too many photos of my garden growing. Totally boring to anyone but me. And when I do it's not to be artistic like Naomi, it's to use as a record for what works and what doesn't work, so honestly, not great art.

But I'm sending you to Secret Agent Josephine today to see her photos of her baby at the beach. Just astoundingly beautiful work.

Gyrobo said...

I keep dutifully devolving into alluring alliteration.

kenju said...

I am not aware of any themes to my photos, Carmi. I shoot mostly people in my family, flowers and travel sites. My photos don't become art - they just record our lives.

tommie said...

themes seem to be kids, gardening, and decorating.....sounds like surburban stay at home material...dang, who knew I would turn out to be one of "them"?
But I want to capture this year on film (discs) for the husband most importantly though....even if he can't be here, he can "see" the year he missed.

-E said...

I find I take photos of bugs a lot. Something about capturing bugs doing their thing makes me feel content.

Michele sent me.

awareness said...

Great question, Carmi. With respect to photography, I always seem to gravitate to flowers and landscapes and kids. Pretty typical, really, though I'm learning more and more about light and angles from a friend who is a photograher. He's been very helpful with my myriad of questions. I have been trying to stretch my learning, and have been motivated by the always interesting shots you and Anna post.......

Like Mike, my photos often don't correlate with my writing. The words come first, perhaps and not the other way around? I don't know, really. Though this may change after I have accumulated more and more shots.......I will find more matches.

Themes in my writing? Initially, I started my blog as a means to rant on politically, and to capture my thoughts and observations about the world I work in. But, as I look back on my posts, I can see other themes germinating and taking root. Spirituality, human interactions, human stories, perception, I'm at a point where I would like to take a next step with the writing, but am at a loss right now what that would be. In the meantime, I will continue to write from my perspective and from the lens through which I take in the world around me.

take care..........enjoy your weekend. we're off to "catch" the running sap!! Will take camera.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful shot. I can see why you took the chance to take it. Sometimes the urge to photograph something comes on very strong, doesn't it?

As for the themes, sometimes a theme pops up when I'm out shooting, I'll notice architectural lines or maybe even a mood will emerge as I'm caught up in the whole process of the shoot. Maybe it's a moody day and I'll try to capture that feeling in my photographs, etc. I have noticed a lot of rusty garden tools around our house (guilty look) and I found the rust so beautiful that I've been taking photos of that lately.

I don't have a theme for my writing, other than follow my muse!

As for my life, I notice a theme emerges whenever I get a new goal.
Here's to more great photos!

HRH Courtney, Queen of Everything said...

Paths. I'm trying to get a sequence of paths in different seasons.

Carli N. Wendell said...

I take pictures to capture an image I want other people to see, and I pay no attention to detail. As long as the picture comes out, I don't care. I am SO not a photographer, and I never have been.

When I write, I write what I need to get out of my brain, or what I think is funny. Sometimes I have an itch to see if I can get people to laugh. I think, perhaps, I'm not really a writer either but a stage-frighty comedian.

I think that's Zach Braff's voice on the Pop Tart commercial that's on right now.

Bobkat said...

I love this photo - the low perspective maks the track really look like it's going somewhere and taking me with it. Perhaps that is wishful thinking seeing as I tied to my desk at the moment! LOL!

Hope your family feel better soon and that you avoid getting it. I had bronchitis as a teen really bad. Not fun so get well soon Carmi's family!

Bobkat said...

Oops - forgot to say. Michele sent me to see you this time :-)

CynAnn said...

You really should publish a book, Carmi. Your photography is just so introspective and wonderful.
My favorite subject when I do take photos is flowers and trees

Jill said...

Another great shot, Carmi. The track just carries me forward and away!

Lori Schmidt (LoriProPhoto) said...

Hi Carmi

I like the low perspective of this shot, but gotta say ..... be careful of these tracks. I would have someone with me as lookout if I had to attempt one of these and I live right next to the tracks, our house is 200 ft from them!!!! We recently got a set of crossing booms which even though we have never had an accident at the crossing at the bottom of our property, I am constantly amazed as I stand at my kitchen window, to see the chances that people take, in fact how many people used to and still do, not even slow down for the tracks. Let's face it the signals could fail and then what, we have a clear view one way but not the other. I have had cars come over them with all four wheels off the ground!! Okay that is my rant and it isnt aimed at you LOL just venting.

Well as you know my one common theme is tadaaa - Horses - LOL, but recently because of the inspiration of many photographers and friends on the blogs I visit, I have started looking more closely at stuff. So macro types shots are at the forefront of my mind at the moment.

Looks like your snow is melting. Hope you are warming up, we are soggy and wet, had 3 inches of rain yesterday and as our soil around here is clay it is a nightmare!.

Have a great Sunday.


Anonymous said...

Nice Carmi. I realy like rail shots.

srp said...

I have read of a gizmo you can get and attach to your viewfinder that turns the view so you can see from above. That would help a lot.

This is a great photo, no matter how you got it. But, there is just something about getting down on a railroad track that seems a bit, well too dangerous. Not talking about trains or police but have you seen what runs across those tracks... rats and other wild critters, leaving all sorts of droppings behind with all sorts of nasty things in them. OK I have grossed myself out now, and believe me, that is very hard to do.

It is still a great picture.

OldLady Of The Hills said...

GREAT picture, my dear...Though a bit scary where you took it. But I know you are one careful Dude! (lol)
Michele sent me back to you today, my dear!