Secret (Banjo) Lives of Landscape Photographers. Sierra Nevada, California. September 5, 2014. © Copyright 2014 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.
Landscape photographers relaxing with a little midday banjo music. (Scot Miller, Charles Cramer, Annette Bottaro-Walklet, Mike Osborne, Karl Kroeber, G Dan Mitchell)
I know the romantic notions about the daily lives of landscape photographers: days full of stunning golden hour light, incalculable beauties everywhere at every moment, the sublime life, rainbows, unicorns, etc. But the truth is more complex. Up before dawn and out into the cold without breakfast, shooting for hours until the light turns “blah,” then a long, boring midday period before the beautiful light returns hours later, then photographing into the frigid darkness.
It is often a struggle to find something useful to do in the backcountry during those midday hours. There are meals to eat, tents to tidy, and naps to take, but the hours are still long. We think we’ve found a solution. There’s nothing like a few hours of backcountry banjo ensemble music to make the time pass more quickly. Here the group nears the conclusion of the Adagietto movement of Mahler’s Symphony #5.
So, the next time you are in the Sierra Nevada backcountry and you pass a group of heavily laden photographers with tripods, folding chairs, and banjo cases on their backs, stop and say “hi.” ;-)
G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (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 G Dan Mitchell.