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Wondering about Wandering Well-worn Paths

Wondering about Wandering Well-worn Paths

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Do you, like me, have certain spots and subjects you frequently revisit photographically?

By Jack Howard

October 21, 2010

As much as I love traveling and exploring brand-new locations, there's something amazing about revisiting certain spots again and again to challenge yourself to grow as a photographer.



See this shot of a cranberry bog? This was shot in the shadow of 30 Rockefeller Center, just above the skating rink earlier this week. Seems Ocean Spray was having some sort of promotional event that day!  And I happened to have a few minutes to spare to explore and experiment with one of my favorite new photo toys, the Lensbaby Tilt Transformer. And I think the way the angled focus slice intersected perfectly with the bogger's boots which are interrupting the berry pattern works very well in this instance.

Rockefeller Center is one of the spots I have revisited again and again as a photographer quite simply because I never really know what I'm going to discover when I wander into this area with whatever camera and concepts I happen to be carrying around with me that day.

It seems there's always something to shoot at Rockefeller Center, even when nothing as random as an ersatz cranberry bog has taken up temporary residency. There's the rink from fall to spring, the skyscrapers, the fountains, holiday lights, and of course, the parade of people from all corners of the globe.  It's one of those places I find myself revisiting sometime simply because I have been there before, and I look forward to the challenge of looking again with fresh eyes to make new images.

I've got other frequently revisited spots within a few hours of my home, and I'm sure you do, too.  Mine include the shore scenes of Monmouth County. I grew up in Manasquan within earshot of the crashing waves of the Atlantic and I can't even begin to tell you how many frames I've fired at waves since then–E-6, C-41, Scala, and more RAW formats than you can imagine over the past 25 or so years. Wide-angle, abstract, telephoto, HDR, Time lapse, drag-shutter, tiny shorebirds, gulls and cormorants, surfers and whitecaps, sailboats, ugly fishing ships, lightpainted night frames, and so much more.

And as I looked out at the fall foliage that's nearing peak color this morning, a thought entered my mind: maybe tomorrow afternoon if the light and weather is agreeable, I'll shoot up into the foothills a few miles from home, to the Chimney Rock Overlook and Buttermilk Falls–a spot I'm now realizing is quickly becoming one of my newest well-worn paths to revisit, rediscover, and reimagine as a photographer.

Do you, too, have spots you visit and revisit as a photographer? Tell us your stories!


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