This month Shad and I celebrated our 10-year wedding anniversary in Bayfield. During our visit I had the opportunity to do a solo photo walk. I spent 2-lovely-hours on a cold, cloudy, fall afternoon searching for details in this beautiful town. Where exactly is Bayfield? This little tucked away city is the gateway to the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore in northern Wisconsin.
"How far away is Bayfield? Just far enough. Far enough to let you escape from strip malls. And drive-thru meals. And 3pm budget meetings. And all the other hassles, hype and “have-to’s” of everyday life.
Here, stress and schedules just sort of drift away on the sun-kissed waves of Lake Superior. And you can relax and re-charge in one of the most beautiful natural settings on Earth." [Source: Bayfield Chamber of Commerce]
I couldn't have said it better myself.
I started playing with DSLR photography a little over a year ago. I immediately dove into shooting in manual. Frustrated with the lack of control my old point-and-shoot offered, I was excited to play. The thing is, it is a lot harder to shoot in manual than you may think. Especially when you're trying to capture moving targets, aka constantly on-the-go children. Over time I've managed to master the exposure triangle and I can "talk shop" enough to hold my own weight, but . . . my photos are not intentional. Often I am rushing to capture a moment, or a project for the blog; I am taking the photo so fast that adjusting the settings has become almost an unconscious process.
When I had the opportunity to s-l-o-w down, I realized
how little artistic control I currently have over my camera.
I could imagine Bayfield photos in my head, but as I walked the city I couldn't capture the essence. I continued to shoot. I wandered around aimlessly taking well over two-hundred photos. I sat and photographed a boat for twenty minutes: adjusting settings, experimenting, using the camera as the artistic tool it can be... This is the first time since I received my camera (it was a generous hand-me-down) that I really played with it.
Would you like to walk with me? Below are some of my favorite shots.
Numb fingers sent me back to the coffee shop; Shad was there writing while I gallivanted around town. It was a lovely way to spend a Saturday afternoon. I might just have to try it again in my hometown in the not so distant future.
[Little Tangent Here] When I was in college I worked at a bank. One of my co-workers and her husband took separate vacations; she liked NYC and the theater, he liked nature and hunting. The idea intrigued me and has always stuck with me. I am not sure I am ready to head-off on trips without Shad, but I love that we can support each others creative interests and have enough confidence in our relationship to fly solo for the afternoon during our anniversary trip.
What do you think of their separate vacations approach? Leave a comment on Facebook below.
Thanks for the chat and walk,
PS: If you head to the Bayfield area, here are a few of our favorite restaurants:
- Maggie's: Don't let the pink house and flamingos scare you away. Amazing food ... better-than-amazing desserts.
- Ethel's at 250: Wonder pizza, unbelievably fresh and unique salads, and a great beer selection.
- The Bayfield Inn Lakeside Restaurant: Beautiful view and a nice menu!
- The Egg Toss Bakery Cafe: A must-try for breakfast! Get up early or expect a line in peak season. Yeah, it's that good.
- Wild Rice Restaurant: Has been labeled the ''Best cuisine you can find on Lake Superior.'' We can't wait to try this on our next visit!
All the photos above were shot on a Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 Camera Lens.
Below are a few items on my personal Amazon wishlist.
- Understanding Exposure, 3rd Edition: How to Shoot Great Photographs with Any Camera
- Creative Photography Lab (Lab Series)
- Your Child in Pictures: The Parents' Guide to Photographing Your Toddler and Child from Age One to Ten
- A Beautiful Mess Photo Idea Book: 95 Inspiring Ideas for Photographing Your Friends, Your World, and Yourself
- Expressive Photography: The Shutter Sisters' Guide to Shooting from the Heart
- Elevate the Everyday: A Photographic Guide to Picturing Motherhood
Do you have additional recommendations? Have you read any of these?
I'd love to hear your opinion in the comments below.
Find additional DSLR photography inspiration on my Pinterest board:
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” Click here for our full disclosure.