Before we all head to a new destination to take photographs, many of us have researched a location in advance, or have certain iconic images etched in our minds that we want to capture ourselves. We want to capture that beautiful photograph of the Mobius Arch at sunrise, the Golden Gate Bridge with San Francisco at twilight, Horsetail "Fire" Falls at Yosemite where hundreds of photographers line up their tripods, or the classic view of the Mittens at Monument Valley that Ansel Adams made so famous in 1958.
However, sometimes when we get to the location all is not always what is was before. The weather might be an obstacle, there might not be room to set your camera up between everyone else's tripods, or a little Navajo girl with school books and a Coke jumps into the frame just as the sun is setting.
That is exactly what happened on my photo workshop to Monument Valley in 2008.
Besides my group, there was quite a line up of photographers waiting for the perfect "Ansel Adams" moment, when the setting sun illuminates the curving stone that creates a dynamic foreground leading our eye out to the Valley.
This is Ansel Adams' famous 1958 photograph of Monument Valley. The image that inspires many photographers.
After the Navajo girl climbed on the rock many of the people shooting the scene moaned that there picture opportunity was ruined. No one had the heart to tell the Navajo girl she couldn't sit on the rock.
I thought it was great that she showed up! I proceeded to photograph what was a unique situation, taking advantage of a moment in time.
Many didn't shoot because they were set on capturing a pre visualized image.
I understand that people might be disappointed after traveling a long distance that the iconic picture they envisioned wasn't to be.
Regardless, one should take advantage of any given picture situation. Some of the best and original pictures are captured in this way.
Finally, someone gave the girl $20 and she left to get into a waiting car with her mother. By then the light had faded, but the memory remains.
There will only be one Ansel Adams. Use your inspiration to create your own masterpiece!
Openings for Los Angeles Street Photography April 6, 2013. Learn how to photograph the moment while exploring the streets and culture of Los Angeles.
OPENINGS FOR THE NIGHT SKIES - THE ALABAMA HILLS CALIFORNIA. APRIL 27-28
SUMMER SOLSTICE AND THE FULL MOON!
THE EASTERN SIERRA - MONO LAKE, BODIE, JUNE 20-23, 2013