One would think with all the pictures of the crowds of people at parks and beaches on the news that many folks have decided that the Covid-19 pandemic isn’t a big deal, but take a drive on any country side-road and it is very evident that something has changed.
This week I had to make a short trip to pick up supplies for my shop. I have made the two-hour drive south on that double lane road for years and there is always lots of traffic any day of the week at any time of day, but for the first time it was almost devoid of the usual large trucks, passenger cars and motorcycles.
As readers know I like wandering the back roads with my camera. I will place my cameras and lenses ready to use on the backseat of my car and go for short drives to photograph anything and everything that seems interesting.
When I return home I load the images into my computer and spend hours having fun seeing what I can do with them. With jazz music blaring and a glass of wine I sit at my computer and get creative. I always will have one image opened with several different versions. Some manipulations stray pretty far from reality, but heck its fun doing anything with photography.
I remember when I would return home with several rolls of exposed film. I would process the film then wait for an overnight dry and print photographs all the next day. I guess I haven’t changed very much, its fun doing anything with photography.
My friend Jo and her family have been isolating themselves from other people for just over two weeks and I haven’t been near anyone since I closed my shop a month ago. So we figured it was safe when I asked Jo if she wanted to join me for the drive. We each have been driving our own cars and it is good to be able to go together again.
The drive along the mostly deserted road was filled with good photo opportunities, and we could pull off the road almost anywhere without worrying about other vehicles. I wonder how long that will last.
When we got to our destination I knocked at the door and stepped back off the porch. A fellow opened the door and placed my package on the steps and moved back so I could get it. We said hello from the government recommended, “social distancing” and I commented that I hope we can get together at the next Vancouver Camera Swap Meet. (If there is one in October and it is safe to attend)
These are strange times.
On our drive home we made several stops to make photos and even took a quick turn through a fast food drive through. We returned home with some good photos and had a nice easy and very safe drive on the almost deserted roads. These are strange times.
As I sit to write this I am thinking about how addictive this wonderful medium so many of us are dedicated to actually is – in spite of the crisis we are enduring. With that thought here is a quote by the famous American photographer Richard Avedon, “If a day goes by without my doing something related to photography, it’s as though I’ve neglected something essential to my existence.”