Starting My Bucket List

I have been keeping this photography blog for over two years now. The experience has been more rewarding than I’ve ever anticipated. In addition to my greatly improved photographic skills and style, the other valuable experience are the people who I have the pleasure to come in contact with from all over the world. The support and comments are priceless… it’s like having someone to give you a pat on the back — to wish you a job well done. Or when life gets too much and you needed a gentle push. And then there are those people whom I’ve connected and their words help change my life for the better. Yesterday, was my birthday and I received an unexpected birthday wish email from a blogger friend. I was thinking about going to Grand Canyon for my birthday but wasn’t completely sure about it until my friend told me that everyone should see the Grand Canyon at least once before they die. He was right and I decided to add Grand Canyon to my dusty Bucket List. So… that’s what I did for my 47th birthday. I went to see one of the most amazing natural wonders of the world.

Even though the weather was very nice, the harsh lighting from the sun and not to mention the hundreds of people all over the place didn’t make it very ideal for the shots I was looking for. While I couldn’t change the lighting much, I drove around the park seeking areas where there were fewer people. I found a few places and were able to take some snap shots. I discovered the Grand Canyon is one of those places that is very difficult to capture its true grandeur and beauty with the camera — unless you have time and patience to learn about the environment around there. I read that some photographers would study the weather so they know the ideal time to go — to hopefully capture that amazing shot. After taking some photos of the Grand Canyon, I can understand the need to study the weather and light. The harsh lighting created drastic contrasting shapes and shadows of the canyon and over all; the landscape looked flat. Some creative exposure from the camera was needed to make the images more saturated. For me, I try to capture the image as close as I can within the camera instead of relying on using the software to do all the fixing. Also, I knew I would want to turn some of these images into black & white for the more creative look. With that in mind, using manual setting: I set the correct exposure for the landscape in the light so that the shadow part would be even more underexposed and vice versa. It was a very fun learning experience. I got some interesting photos though nothing that I would be overjoyed about. I kept the photos in color for this post. Later when I have more time to play in the darkroom (Adobe Lightroom), I’ll post them in B&W.

I hope someday to return again but given the fact I will be moving out of Arizona, I’m not sure when I will see it again in my life time. But… at least I can cross Grand Canyon off my Bucket List — the list which I want to continue to add to it even if the items might be out of reach right now. Seeing the Grand Canyon has helped clear my blurry vision so that I can see what my life can be around the corner… πŸ™‚


22 Comments on “Starting My Bucket List

  1. I went to the Grand Canyon in October and I also wished it wasn’t so crowded…
    Great photos.
    I hope you find your home soon.

  2. A belated Happy Birthday wish. I think you picked a wonderful place to spend your special day. Your photos are wonderful as always.

  3. Just looking at that bird of prey in one of the above photos reminds me that the closest I ever feel to being able to fly is snorkelling – have you ever tried this?

    • I know what you mean about the feeling of flying when diving. I felt the same way the first time I went underwater. I was a certified scuba diver many years ago… it was an amazing feeling to feel so light and free underwater regardless of the 70lb gear I was wearing. On the first dive I ever did, I came face to face with a huge octopus. That was very a exciting experience. πŸ™‚

    • Thanks, Adrian. It was good to get out and see one of the world’s greatest natural wonders. Things are starting to look up for me again. I know there is a good reason for my recent misfortunes besides for testing my mental state. πŸ˜‰

    • Thanks for compliment, Sheila. It is a magnificent place for seeking different perspectives on life, photography or otherwise. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you Roberta for sharing with me the beautiful words. They are exactly what I need to help guide me through this challenging adventure. Hugs to you. πŸ™‚

  4. These shots are beautiful, Em! I especially like the fourth one, the light and the colors are stunning. I’m glad to read you’ll be returning to the ocean, I know how much you’ve missed it. I wish you all the best in your next adventure :).

    • Thank you Belen for your constant positive comments and support. Your kind words give me hope and inspiration as I continue to seek my purpose in this life… πŸ™‚

  5. It’s just grand to have another post from you, Emily. And you have done very well indeed, in light of the difficult shooting conditions. Your portrait-format shot with the bird (hawk?) is my favorite, and you’ve discovered vantage points that I don’t think I’ve seen anywhere else before. Love your work, and proud to know you!

    • One of my favorite photo opportunities is having an unexpected object incorporate into the shot — such as this black raven. It’s one of those being at the right place at the right time kind of moment. It has been a pleasure getting to know you too, Gary. I appreciate your friendship and your gentle push to help me on my journey of life… πŸ™‚

  6. Crashing waves…Is that a hint??? Loll! Happy Belated Birthday… Safe travels to you my dear and may open doors of opportunity come your way…You have blessed us with these gorgeous photos..Thank you!

  7. The canyon is such an awe inspiring place, and it is as you say, crowded. Like most of our grand places in this country, we are loving it too death. I am glad to see that you chose to go there, you look well in the photo, and I have every confidence in you that wherever it is that you travel or wander, you will do just fine.

    I don’t have much of a bucket list left being the fortunate pilgrim that I am, I have accomplished quite a bit. I do have this however, that I want to share with you this morning, hope you like it?

    Keep posting girl, keep sharing your gift.


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