Hoodoo You Think You Are

What do you see when you look at your photography? Do you see yourself? I see parts of my own personality in my photography. I tend to be a loner, I have a small but tight circle of people around me. Normally I choose not to include people in my photography, not a fan of  street photography. I love grand landscapes devoid of people. I took this picture in Bryce Canyon at the Amphitheater. These spire structures are called hoodoo. Hoodoo are formed over great periods of time by weather, rain and wind specifically. The top layer of rock is harder than the bottom layers so it erodes slower. This leaves the signature capstone look.

Hoodoo spire into the sky in Bryce Canyon.
Golden Bryce

I often look for unique angles and fields of view when out photographing. I think of myself as rather unique and unconventional. Often I find myself desiring to be the best photographer and am constantly comparing my work to others. I know art is by definition not a competition, but still I sometimes compare. This is a weakness because sometimes it drives me to capture images like other people capture them. This drives all creativity out of the process and creates copycat and uninspired work.  I always find i take my best pictures when I clear my head of the “best” works of art and concentrate on what I like and what I see.

Ironic I would talk about unique and inspired work when displaying a picture of one of the most photographed places in the world. There is a walkway that goes along the rim of the canyon so you are limited in your choices of shooting positions from above. There are literally bus loads of tourists getting off every morning who stand there with their cameras, phones, and iPads snapping every possible angle. The tripod holes are deep from photographers who came before me.

So what makes my picture special? Nothing. But it is special to me because I didn’t copy anyone intentionally. I walked along the rim and saw what I thought were the best places. I pulled out the gear I love and shot the beauty before me. There is something so wonderful about pulling up to a place and simply reacting to what you see. Planning out shots is great and scouting out locations is fine, but everyone should sometimes just walk into a place they have never been before. They should pull out their camera and look at what is around them. Shoot the beauty and see things through fresh eyes.

That really is the only way you could possibly take something you know is yours. Everything has already been done. So don’t worry about it, just take in the beauty and capture what interests you. Hoodoo you think you are?

Hoodoo spire up from the Bryce Canyon Amphitheater.
Bryce Castle

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