Thursday, February 12, 2015

What I'm Working On: Still Processing Kyoto

One of my (many) weirdnesses is that, returning from a trip, I take a quick overview of my photos and I think they're all crap. And so I let them marinate for awhile. And then I revisit them. Slower this time.

And gradually I realize that they're not all crap. There are a few good ones hidden in there.

Yet, I still don't do much with the images. I may process a few, put them online, but then I retreat. And then come back just a little. Then retreat.

This has been the case since what? 1980? I admire those who get all excited about their results, can choose the best and finest, make a photo book right away, and voila! Great trip! Great photos! Here, take a look! And the work is terrific, I must say. The resulting photo books are just lovely. And I feel like such a slacker.

I'm coming to grips with my "slacker-ness," however, and have resigned myself to my strange way of working. I'm more comfortable with the slowness, with the quiet calm. In addition, since I am easily overwhelmed, this is my way of picking away at the sheer volume of photos without going insane(er).

These four photos are from our first day in Kyoto last November. The interior of a temple (which is my favorite of these four), then a couple of abstract images of temple shadows and forms. And then a lone bicycle in the rain at the park across the street from the hotel.

Bicycles are a big part of Kyoto, and this solitary bike in the rain spoke to me. I purposely chose an aperture of f/1.8 for very shallow depth of field, converted the image to black and white to emphasize the silvery glow of the fenders and handlebars and to remove the distraction of color. I did, however, let the red glow of the reflector come through. I'm reminded of Nathan Lane's line in the film "Birdcage," "Well, one does want a hint of color!"

©Carol Leigh
 All text, photographs, and other media are ©Copyright Carol Leigh (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from Carol Leigh. Thank you!


  1. Knowing that you love your art, you still have one of the best eyes for interesting photography demonstrating design.

  2. Lovely images - my favorite is #3, I love the lines and texture in this one. And thanks for that quote from the Birdcage!


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