83 years ago, today, my home park, Everglades National Park was established. The Everglades are different from the idea that most people carry of a national park. First- the Everglades were originally set aside not for their scenery, but the the diverse species of birds found within them. But in addition to that, the scenery of the Everglades is not the normal scenery most expect out of a National Park experience. There are no mountains. There are no massive trees or sparkling coastline. There is no impressive physical natural structure in the Everglades. But there is vastness. There is an infinite feeling of space stretching on beyond the horizon, a feeling of wilderness unspoiled, untouched, and unfettered by human concern and problems. And for that reason, the Everglades are my local salvation. No, I can’t go escape to the mountains when I find myself “nerve-shaken” and so in need of the “irrigating fountains of life” that John Muir so rightfully called our National Parks, but I can find myself delightfully surrounded by the overwhelming space of my wonderful River of Grass. Happy anniversary.
If you follow me on Twitter and Instagram, you most certainly know that Disney isn’t my only interest. Ever since my childhood, National Parks played a formative role in pushing me into a career in history and education and also served as wonderful destinations on many family vacations. When visiting these often grand and sweeping places, my desire to capture them in my memory and on film has always been pretty strong.
To do so, I had been using the tools that I could come by easiest. When I was a kid, it was a instant camera or a cheap Point and Shoot. As of late, I’ve been using an iPhone to capture images of the places I’ve visited. But as of last week, it looks like I’ll have the chance to capture photos with a a bit more finesse: I bought a camera! My good friend AtDisneyAgain recommended a Canon SX60 HS (what do those numbers even mean??) and it arrived on my doorstep on Friday evening. Come Saturday morning, I was already in Everglades National Park, trying my hand at taking pictures.
My goal? Take visually pleasing pictures of the places and things that matter to me in the style that I’ve always wanted to. I’m not overtly concerned with the techy part of photography, but more about the introspection and ability to capture an image how my mind sees it. Perhaps that will change over time as I learn more and can use my camera in more advanced ways. Perhaps it won’t. We shall see… and I’m very eager to take my camera with me and see more.