A little Thanksgiving Trip

Billie and I drove down to SoCal to visit our oldest son’s family and enjoy Thanksgiving with them, my brother and his wife also down from NorCal, and our middle son’s family up from further south in California. Of course, the other feature of this trip was to spend time with the newest member of oldest son’s family – our seven week-old grandson.

Most of our time was spent visiting and catching up with family and preparing for the big holiday meal. However, I did hope to get out one day to do some shooting. As it happens, of all the six grandkids on the west coast only one has shown any interest in photography (I mean a more directed interest beyond just casual image capture using one’s phone), and that is the eldest daughter of our eldest son. However, though she and I did go out early one morning at Lake Tahoe a year or so ago, she is not so much interested in landscape photography but rather enjoys people-oriented imagery — events and street photography.

So, late one afternoon, we headed down to the beach in Santa Monica and once there we began to gravitate toward the Santa Monica Pier. I could see, just from where she tended to point her camera that she was gathering shots of people. My orientation is more toward landscape (or cityscape in this case) as you can see in the image of the pier at the top of this post. Even though I was trying to join in her interest and focus a bit on people, initially I was also still thinking in terms of landscape. I couldn’t take my eyes off the wonderful sunset colors in the sky and reflected on the wet sand. There were some people in the shots but that wasn’t my focus (click on the photos to see them larger).

It didn’t take long for that sunset to disappear so I moved my photo orientation to those “things” around me, still not really focussing on people as much as things that helped to define where we were (again, click on an image to see it larger).

Finally, realizing I wasn’t really doing much people photography, I took a few shots to try to join in my granddaughter’s fun.

Eventually, although it was getting very dark and I didn’t have my tripod with me, I tried hand-holding one last seascape photo.

Looking north west from the pier along the Malibu coastline

While I was trying to figure out what I was shooting, my granddaughter was filling her camera with people. I didn’t realize that I was one of her subjects until a few weeks later when I received this photo in my email. As you can see, she is talented and was able to take advantage of the available light to create an excellent candid portrait of me.


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