Old Mission Dam
A Walk In Nature
de Patricia Grabski
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My images are a study of the Old Mission Dam in Mission Trails Regional Park in San Diego, Califirnia. This study combined my love of landscape photography and my interest in places with historical significance. The dam is a nationally registered Historical Landmark.
I photograph landscapes because when I am outdoors, Nature I am calmed and renewed. To capture these feelings in my images I had to become a careful observer of Nature. I had to slow down. My 4x5 camera helped me to do this. The camera slowed me down literally because it’s heavy and cumbersome to use. Lugging the tripod and everything else needed to take the images isn’t easy; then there is the camera setup, focusing and metering. The camera also forced me to slow down mentally. There is no quick click, click of the shutter with a large format camera.
I began my study by looking around the dam; paying attention to what caught my eye. I went back several times, at different times of the day, to find my inspiration. I found it in the shape of the rocks; the curve of the dam and from the water, especially its reflective qualities.
John Burroughs’s, the 19th century, American naturalist and essayist said, “I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order”. I hope the images in this book have a similar impact on you.