While shooting with my friends Charles, Mike and Ted in South Carolina, I had just such an experience when they suggested we go and photograph the fishing boats at Shem Creek.
They were very excited at this thought, while I was seriously contemplating breaking ranks and heading off to do my own thing. But, for once, I set aside my selfish streak and tagged along.
It was long afternoon, five hours or more dragging into evening, waiting for the light to change or for some clouds to appear in the bald sky.
The light got a little better as evening approached and a pinkish tint appeared on the horizon. But the sky did not improve, no matter how patiently our group waiting.
This was not my type of photography. But my friends’ enthusiasm, even excitement, at shooting the fishing boats was palpable.
They got very excited when I spotted a tanker passing out at sea and managed to capture a composition of two fishing boats AND an oil tanker (second image).
As the sun set, the pinkish light turned to gold and we all turned to face the land. One of my friends had noticed how the low angle of the setting sun was reflecting in one of the windows of the boat house, creating a glinting, golden highlight.
More hubbub, as my excited friends rattled off multiple frames of the boathouse. I didn’t get that shot….
One welcome diversion I found during our long sojourn on Shem Creek was that a group of pelicans was ferrying between the land and the sea, swooping low over the creek and flying its entire length at a height of just a foot or so above the water.
I consoled myself by using the time to practise my almost non-existent skills at photographing moving subjects, something which I normally go out of my way to avoid doing. Out of about twenty frames that I shot, I got maybe two or three where the fast-flying pelican was sharp. This is the best of them.
So, what I learned from my visit to Shem Creek was the benefit to participating in my friends’ passion, even though I don’t share it. I also discovered that fishing boats don’t get my photographic juices flowing (I suspected as much) and that, no matter how bored you are at a given location, you can usually find something worth shooting, wherever you are.
(click on an image to enlarge it)