People Ask: How Do You Find Your Photos?
During presentations and lectures, one of the most common questions I get is “How do you find all these interesting things you shoot?”
The answer is multi-faceted. I receive my inspiration from varied sources:
Friends and acquaintances frequently mention some interesting thing they’ve seen in their travels, at which point I whip out my iPhone and start taking notes. I’ve found some really fascinating images as a result, including a family cemetery in the middle of a residential development in Plano, Texas.
There are a handful of Texas-Centric Facebook pages where people from all over the state post photos of old buildings, small towns, scenic wonders and glorious Texas skies.
A partial list:
I Love Texas
And then there’s the implementation of the adage “Not all those who wander are lost” from the poem all that is gold does not glitter by J.R.R. Tolkien in The Lord of the Rings.
Frequently we travel from one place to another across this great state and as a rule, we elect to take the back roads to do so. We see more interesting things and meet more interesting people this way. It may take a little (or a lot) longer, but the back roads are SO much more interesting than the highways. On more than one occasion, we’ve told our GPS to take us in the general direction of a destination and avoid all highways and toll roads. This is always fun – and the method in use when we’ve discovered fascinating things like Texas Nessie.
You have to pay attention to your surroundings while you’re driving, or you’ll miss the gems that dot the countryside. Slowing down a little is also a good idea…
I will frequently just head out of the Metroplex in some general direction and stop when I see something that interests me. I prefer this on the Harley, as I’m more connected to the environment and I “see” a lot more of my surroundings this way. Your mileage may vary…
And then there’s the mental list I keep of a handful of critical sites I “need” to capture – my bucket list, if you will. There are always a few things, like the Dome Caterpillar, that are at the very forefront of my mind that I absolutely have to capture and cannot stop thinking about until this task is complete.
In preparation for our trips I frequently consult our road atlas. I prefer the stapled variety as opposed to the spiral-bound edition. This way I can remove the staples and take out individual pages, or lay adjacent pages next to each other for continuity. A lot more detail can be found in these reference books than what you see with a web-based map – and you can get a better idea of the comparative size of the various towns and cities this way.
The Roads of Texas – stapled: