Janet stayed in the car and even though it was cooler today than normal it was still hot. I cut the shooting to about fifteen minutes so it would not be too uncomfortable for her.
As it turned out the fast moving clouds made for some interesting backgrounds. Even thought it was a brief session I think I got a few fairly good photographs.
I have been photographing the Memorial for almost forty years but I have never examined it as closely as I have during these last three sessions. Basically what I have done in the past was pretty bland long shots. A few years ago I did make a photograph from the location of the Pioneer's Monument (the obelisk at the other end of the reflection pond) which I liked quite a bit, and a few months ago I did a couple of night shots that turned out fair.
I always enjoy it when I really get into a competition or challenge because it does make me look at the subjects that I would not normally choose more intently. I usually come away with a lot of photographs of varying quality and interest but I always come away with a renewed interest in the subject because I have looked more intently. I believe that carries over to all of my photography and I am very pleased that it does.
My personal assessment is that in the past couple of years I have become a better photographer than I was and this is partly due to competitions and challenges that I have participated in.
I have always had a tendency to be lackadaisical about subjects that I found of minimal interest. I may have occasionally photographed them but without much thought or real concern about making anything more than a snapshot attempt. Now I look much closer at the subjects, even ones that I probably would not have chosen in the past. I think that is having a positive effect on all of my photography.