I did a ton of these photos during sunset at Mile Rock Beach while in San Francisco. When I find myself in the right spot at the right time I go a little shutter crazy and end up taking dozens of photos. I'm going to reserve judgement and just say that's a good thing.
The Pacific coast is lined with these big rocks just off shore. I imagine that back in the old days there were shipwrecks during storms and now are historical sights to dive and explore. The two furthest rocks here are Lobos Rock on the left and Blackhead Rock just right of center. They must be well known to mariners.
I don't know why I'm so obsessed with the past. When I look at photos of a scene my brain looks for context, we all do that. So with a scene like this, or something completely different like the street scene from Barcelona I posted the other day, I take a step back in four dimensions. By that I just mean just naturally tent to view a scene or subject from a context outside the current moment. I'm not sure why I do that, maybe everyone does it and it's not unusual. I wonder if there is a name for that? Good, bad or indifferent it does open up a whole new world of perspectives, especially in my photography.
So there you go, time travel 101.
This is another image of a Barcelona alley at night as I was walking around after a meal of Tapas and Sangria. Honestly, I could never find this spot in a million years, the area is like a casbah of sorts, narrow passages going this way and that, no rhyme nor reason for anything. It's such a fun place, you can get delightfully lost and the worst that can happen is you end up in a bar sipping another Sangria as you contemplate your next move.
Of course not all cities are like this. The fact that you feel safe here speaks volumes about the people of Barcelona and their values. The only north American city where I've experienced something similar is in Vancouver, but that's relatively new and doesn't have the same old world character. Barcelona is a fusion of ancient and modern, cobblestones and Starbucks.
Another difference that comes to mind is that in north America if you stand somewhere and imagine what that spot looked like two or three hundred years ago you'd probably be standing in a field or forest. In many parts of Europe it might look similar to the present day minus the electricity and such. Europe has a long memory stored in the buildings, alleys and cobblestones that somehow seeps into me anytime I am here.
I get up early because I find solitude at dawn, more so than any other time of day. The energy is fresh and going for a walking or doing something alone informs the rest of my day.
Like this picture, I think each day we have some place to go. For me, having quiet time is setting aside the space to contemplate my next steps and put in motion a direction of travel for the remaining hours.
Sometimes I don't go very far in a day, but that's okay. I might look back and think I didn't accomplish much and then feel stressed or disoriented because I'm not where I thought I'd be. But my thinking is that I learn from my missteps or detours just as much as anything else. That's part of growing, learning to take stock and continuing to persevere. So even if I don't reach the far end that day, something was gained in the journey. That's what I tell my self, and in truth, that's what I believe.
I took a picture of this lady walking along the beach in Fort Lauderdale just after dawn. I could tell she was enjoying her alone time and I felt compelled to capture it. However in my minds eye I thought of this dreamscape as a metaphor for solitude and what that means to me; that we each must find some time alone to set and / or readjust the course of our day, and possibly our lives.