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Planned Spontaneity

In my last blog post I shared my discovery that I like to approach photography from an aspect of control. The trouble for me arises when I want to capture our daily lives in a way that is authentic. On the one hand, I want to control some of the details of the image (usually things like the light, location, subject, color, composition, and camera)  but I don’t want to over-orchestrate the moment to the point where it no longer resembles reality. I am not a raw, photojournalistic style photographer; nor do I capture my personal images with a high-concept approach. I recently invented for myself the phrase “non-session session” to describe when I want to capture a series of personal images with a certain aspect of control, and yet I still allow the moments that transpire to be spontaneous. Planned spontaneity, if you will.

During a recent non-session session, I attempted to get a photograph of the Patton children for the front of this year’s hallowed Christmas card. I planned it all very suddenly, inspired by a slice of amazing fall weather, and managed to get a lot of images that make me very happy. I have already shared an image of my daughter being very serious with the leaf bouquet she gathered. Here is another that I love from the same series.I took all the images from this moment with my coveted Canon 135L – a gorgeous, flattering lens that I especially love to use when the sun is low in the sky. I don’t use it nearly as much as I would like, as it is not a terribly flexible lens (unlike my dreamy workhorse 35L which is on my DSLR 90% of the time) but the bokeh it creates is amazing and I am always thrilled with the results.

Little Girl with a Leaf Bouquet

And how is your heart, soul and spirit today?


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