The Calgary Peace Bridge, this image was taken last winter during one of my walks to work, for a series called Morning Commute. Images were posted on my Instagram and Facebook accounts.
I have been reviewing my cache of photos, finally getting around to editing and even printing a few of them. David DuChemin, a wonderful Canadian photographer, has advocated for many years that the best way to learn and grow as a photographer is to print your work. He suggests, we “need to live with the lines and tones and moments. Feel the colors. Doing so reveals the flaws (dust spots on the sensor, anyone?), and the weaknesses.” I so often see the dust spots after the work is printed!
Prints of this photo are available on society6
It’s official, this is the last week for my morning commute series. I may comeback to this series some time in the future, as there are places that commuters walk or drive by everyday that we didn’t get to, there are different seasons that we didn’t photography fully, and different photographic styles and techniques that can be explored, but my days of walking to work in downtown Calgary have ended, at least for a while. Have you enjoyed the series, have you started to look out the window during your own morning commute and see things a little differently?
What’s next? Bill and I are planning to do a little travelling, I announced a couple of weeks ago, that we are going to walk camino to Santiago de Compostela once again. We are scheduled to be in St. Jean Pied de Port in south France April 19th, and begin our journey through the Pyrenees and across northern Spain on April 22, 2017. We have been busy planning our days, places we want to stay, things we want to see, and photograph. Have you walked the camino, what was your favourite memory? Do you have any recommendations for places to see, places to stay? Do you have questions about the camino that I or the readers might be able to answer?
We are starting an exciting new chapter.
It has been another extremely cold week here in Calgary, and I will admit to driving further than walking during my morning commute! My fitbit tells me I averaged about 8000 steps a day, and a lot of those steps were in the +15 walkway rather than out in the cold! Winter seems to be colder and longer this year. When the weather is decent my average step count is closer to 12,000 steps. But I hear the weather is going to improve.
This clip from Rick Mercer on the seven day forecast explains Canadian’s love hate relationship with the weatherman. Enjoy Spring is just around the corner…..
My morning commute series continues. I have read many times that intentionally photographing a series of the same subject or scene, by forcing yourself to photograph the same thing again and again, you can actually make yourself more creative.
A photo theme simply means creating a set of photographs that are related in some way, whether it be through subject, color or re-occurring pattern. By defining a series, morning commute I was not required to constantly come up with a new subject or idea for each morning; once a theme’s subject had been established, I only needed to find a new creative view. This allowed me to concentrate on what’s really important…taking an interesting photo.
While I am not always photography the same scene, I have been using my morning walk to work to see, to be awake and aware of my beautiful city. The thirty minutes a day, has defined my series, and to be honest it has provided the motivation to walk despite what seems like a very long very cold winter.
I appreciate hearing from you, as a photographer, artist or writer are you working on a series? Why not introduce yourself and provide a link to your series.
Images from my morning commute. We have been finding new streets to stroll along on our way to the office, and I am enjoying seeing different parts of the city that we don’t get to see on a regular basis.
Downtown Calgary changes very little from day to day, but the weather does change just how it looks, one day soon I hope to see a sunrise again, not just the frost on the windows and snow on the street. The traffic does inspire me, maybe one day next week I will carry a tripod and do some long exposures.
Calgary has some wonderful sculptures, and public art and too often we race to the office or run from place to place to get our chores done and miss the beauty of where we live. I am enjoying working on this morning commute series, it has re-energized my photography, and it has helped me to see my city again.
Full disclosure; I live approximately 12 kilometres from the office. My morning commute includes a 20 minute drive and a 30 minute walk. When I started working at my current position we set up this up as part of our schedule. I say we because Bill walks to work with me, then carries on about his day. He returns at the end of the day for another commute home. We do this for several reasons, we love to walking, it keeps us out of the gym, and it gives me that creative time first thing in the morning, before the day’s work has begun.
The fresh morning air, watching the light change as the sun rises, at this time in my life, there isn’t a better start the day. I have even enjoyed the extreme cold we have had this winter, and have only missed a few days of walking.
I hope you are enjoying my morning commute series. My goal has been to post one photo a day, on instagram. This week I thought I would share a couple of extra photos that didn’t make it to instagram.
Do you post your photos on instagram, are you working on a series? Leave a message and your instagram link in the comments below so we can check out what you are working on.
I have continued walking to work, photograph Calgary and the sights as I see them. It really does make the walk to work much more enjoyable to walk with a camera. When I walk with a camera I am much more aware of the view and the beauty around me. I would love to hear from you, are you enjoying the morning commute series, do you have a favourite spots to view Calgary from?
I have started to include some views of Calgary from the +15 walkways it has been so cold I have utilized the interior walkways to get to work! If you are not familiar with Calgary, a lot of the downtown buildings are connected to each other through a system of walkways 15 feet above ground, which means I can walk around downtown without going outside! Every new building built in the area must connect to the other around it. I read recently there are currently 59 bridges totalling 16 kilometres, each new building downtown will add to that! I love the mix of lights from the interior and exterior, with the reflections in the windows, and I am enjoying the street view from above, so don’t bee too surprised to see more of Calgary from inside looking out!
I hope you have had a good week, what do you do to keep the morning commute, if you have one, from being a repetitive journey that is easily forgotten?
Despite the cold, -18C one day, I continue to walk to work, but I have changed my walking route. During the week a different bridge each day.
Bill dropped me of close to downtown, and I have been meeting him at the end of the day, at the same place he dropped me off. The change of my daily walk caused confusion on one occasion, when I, so use to following the same route headed out with my mind full of work, and walked the wrong way! Thanking my lucky stars for the cellphone, I called Bill, and luckily he had his phone with him, so I was left standing on the street corner in the freezing cold for too long.
The walk to work has inspired the morning commute series. Sunrise this week will be just after 8 am, and if the skies are clear we will start to get light in the eastern sky as early as 7:30am. I am looking forward to watching and photographing the changing light over the next few weeks.
Does your daily routine inspire you? How do you inspire your creativity?
I returned to work; a busy week at the office means less time for photography I am afraid! The days are getting longer, there is a little more light visible in the sky during my walk into work and on the way home. This week the light through the windows was the most fascinating.
My goal this week is daily posts on Instagram, and a different route to and from the office to see what new views I can find.