I’ve been having some fun with my new camera, a Nikon D7000. Since leaving a newspaper I’ve learned to record and mix audio, shoot and edit video and I’ve just recently decided to commit to being a better photographer. That meant getting a serious camera. This Nikon has video, but I prefer to use my Canon Vixia . I’ll post some videos later, but for now here’s my favorites so far with the Nikon. The garlic comes from a stand in Highland square that was just covered with beautiful organic produce.  I really think organics look different than the factory raised vegs you buy in big grocery chains. It’s like they stamp them out by machine. Everything is the same size and color.

The rest of the photos come from the Highland Square Arts Festival. The man with the white beard had a craggy beautiful face to me, like there were a thousand stories hidden in the lines. Initially I wanted to get him and the artist who was sketching him, but it turned out to be an impossible angle. While I stood there watching it finally dawned on me that all I really wanted was the image of that face.

If I had to write about the bearded man without a photo, it seems like it would be fairly easy to do, but the images of the musician here with dreadlocks would be tougher.  What I was really interested in was the light and how it looked on his arms and shoulders. There’s really no way to describe that in words. Sometimes the thing that works best is the image.

It’s hard to get a decent background at a festival — people are always moving through the shot on the way to their own good time. It’s a challenge to compose something that you will want to look at later.  It really teaches me to think outside my writer’s brain, which is a contemplative exercise that goes on long after the experience.  The really good photographers I know do all their thinking on the front end. They know what they want almost before they see it. With this beautiful little girl, I knew what I wanted, but getting it was maddening. She was there, but so was the crowd, the trash, and everything else you might expect in the background.   This shot of the older dancers was a little easier because the clutter — namely the tent of the next booth a nice blue tarp that faded into the background.

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