Angie, Elvis and I traveled down to Galveston from Houston last Sunday. We are in Houston for the week glamping in the RV. The locals had said this was the second cold snap this year and apologised for the bad weather. As long as it was cool we were happy.
Some people like the mountains and others like the ocean. I think we were split. Angie and I like the mountains and Elvis liked the soft deep sand under his feet. Had he felt a 100 degree day of heat with his long hair he may have wanted to stay in the comfort of the air conditioned truck.
It was very cloudy in Galveston this day. We had planned to see the strand, a couple of old hotels and of course.....the 61st street Fishing Pier.
The strand had just been through Mardi Gras the weekend before. Little did we know the strand would take 4 hour to traverse when we got there.
Our first stop was a sidewalk cafe called the Gumbo Bar. It was good. We got seafood Gumbo and char broiled oysters. Gumbo is like good chili as its takes a long time to prepare and cook so all the ingredients can all marry together. Food was good and now we off to the strand.
We had to park 4 or 5 blocks away from the strand as this is the general location where all the cruise ships dock, clean and get the next captured victims aboard. Angie and I were talking about how many times we were stopped with Elvis before we got to the strand. (Now, this is my observation from the strand walk.) Our world is in a mess as everyone is very protective of their personal space, their identity and their conversations. Elvis our standard poodle is a visual conversation. He is trained and invites conversations as he calmly stands or sits and allows strangers around him to talk to him and have their photo taken with him. He brings strangers together for a quick happy conversation about him and their dog. I can't begin to tell you how many times we were stopped and asked about him. Those that don't stop us, whipped out their camera phone for a quick photo of Elvis as we walked by. I even caught people slowing down in their cars and taking photos. My point of this rambling about a dog is we would have never even known all those people could/would talk or share feelings. A dog enabled all these people to let down there public shield to share their feelings. A dog changed their disposition for a short time and I bet they talked to their family and friends about Elvis and proudly showed the photos they took of him. We humans need more genuine moments like this everyday to get back into building public trust in each other. This showed us that the public is starving for good honest and wholesome conversations.
The fishing pier was our final stop as the strand was exhausting but the reward was great. It was incredibly cloudy at the beach, so much so that you couldn't see past the fishing pier. You could hear things in the distance beyond the fog wall but that was it. The waves would just appear from the fog and roll into the shore. My off-the-wall thinking could imagine a big wave machine tucked into the fog wall producing the steady waves as a part of the carnival atmosphere. We played with Elvis (his first beach) in the sand for awhile and Angie and Elvis went back to the truck while I got the camera backpack and tripod out to take a few photos.
When I get serious about taking photos of what I have envisioned, time stands still. We all want something in our lives that we are so engrossed with that we spend hours when it seems like minutes. Once I got my tripod out to a safe distance into the water, I started just looking at the best angles. Since there was no sun, it was hard to find the right combination of photo techniques to use. Ever been out working and feel like you are being watched? After what felt like minutes which must have been longer, I turned around and probably startled the 4 people standing 25 feet behind me whispering. All kidding aside I am the worst at watching people. We all want to learn and I stare the same way.
The image is an HDR combination. HDR takes muliple images. They have to be registered meaning you cannot move your tripod while shooting. I took several 3 shot combinations of varying shutter speeds. It's a good thing I did because the pier moved with the ocean waves. There was a sway motion which showed up once I sat down and started editing.
I use Photomatix 6.0 to sandwich the photo sets together and do the photo editing in Abobe Lightroom. Hope you enjoyed the story.