When I Shutter

Carrying my tripod around Great Sand Dunes Nat’l Park

There’s something deeply fascinating to me about photography. Maybe my fascination comes from the many clip art images I peruse every week in search of that perfect image to use for my job (or a blog). Maybe it’s the static nature of photographs. They are one frame — one 100th, 200th, or 500th of a second of time — that captures a moment that only existed momentarily. When I photographed sports games a long time ago, I was always amazed at how dynamic a football play looked when it was frozen on film. The eyes of the running back, squared with the defender; the dirt and grass kicked up by both seemingly stopped in mid flight; the football, motionless. Photography is deeply fascinating to me.

I only get a few opportunities every year to focus on photography (usually when I go on vacation), so my collection is not as vast as many other photographers. Of course, when I do go on vacation, I usually return with a thousand photos or more on subjects as minute as the seat of a park bench and as grand as a mountain valley. I’m an equal opportunity photographer.

My story begins when I received a Canon point-and-shoot camera for my 18th birthday. It had an electric zoom on it that I thought was uber-cool. I took it on a mission trip the next summer to Haiti and fell in love with taking pictures. Haiti was desolate, to be sure, but also so beautiful. Ever since then I’ve taken pictures on vacations and day trips. My point-and-click was replaced by a Canon Rebel in 1999, then a Digital Rebel in 2004. Digital photography opened up new doors for me and I studied the craft with great intensity, often learning best by experience. I learned about ISO and lighting, shutter speed and exposure, composition and movement. I’m still learning, though my camera is getting a bit old now. It works, though, and for that I’m grateful.

I launched a Flickr.com account a few years back to share my photography and I’ve added a few images to it since. I like to tweak and fiddle with things, so you’ll probably see new photos added and some old ones disappear over time.

— John

This slideshow requires JavaScript.