Patience Pays Off

Sometimes you see a great image opportunity but your gut says it could be better; it's instances like that where patience pays off.  I like to "pre-visualize" the elements of the scene I'm photographing and then wait for all the pieces to come together.  Other times I orchestrate the scene and place people where I want them.  But the best images happen organically, like the samples posted here. 

I had already shot a good number of images of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC when this man stood before the statue.  The sunset was perfect but other people were moving in and out of the scene, causing distracting blurs.  This was a 3 second exposure and I was praying the man wouldn't move.  Finally, he was alone and I clicked the shutter.  I didn't plan for him to be there, but without him this would be a much less dynamic image.

I had already shot a good number of images of the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC when this man stood before the statue.  The sunset was perfect but other people were moving in and out of the scene, causing distracting blurs.  This was a 3 second exposure and I was praying the man wouldn't move.  Finally, he was alone and I clicked the shutter.  I didn't plan for him to be there, but without him this would be a much less dynamic image.

By being observant to what is happening naturally, and waiting for the right moment, the results can be magical.

The High Line Park on New York's west side is a lovely place for a stroll, but on a rainy morning as this, few people are there.  I saw the potential of this scene but it needed the right focal element--people.  I stood in the rain for at least 10 minutes before I saw this mother and son walk toward me.  I let them pass then took out my camera and framed the shot.  The woman's umbrella didn't look right but at the last minute she folded it under the canopy of trees; I snapped off four quick frames and caught one where they were in synchronized step.

The High Line Park on New York's west side is a lovely place for a stroll, but on a rainy morning as this, few people are there.  I saw the potential of this scene but it needed the right focal element--people.  I stood in the rain for at least 10 minutes before I saw this mother and son walk toward me.  I let them pass then took out my camera and framed the shot.  The woman's umbrella didn't look right but at the last minute she folded it under the canopy of trees; I snapped off four quick frames and caught one where they were in synchronized step.

This shot, at the Musee de O'rsay in Paris, is another example of exercising patience.  This is one of those "no-brainer" shots, but no one was around.  I waited for over 15 minutes until this man walked up and looked out the clock window.  Once all the elements come together it doesn't take long to capture a great shot.

This shot, at the Musee de O'rsay in Paris, is another example of exercising patience.  This is one of those "no-brainer" shots, but no one was around.  I waited for over 15 minutes until this man walked up and looked out the clock window.  Once all the elements come together it doesn't take long to capture a great shot.