Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hollywood Cemetery Still Lifes

The recent cemetery shoots have inspired me to check into some of the cemeteries closer to home. I have about four or five that are in the vicinity of downtown Houston that would possibly make good photographic projects. There were several of the members of the learning blog that did not get to make the trip to Hempstead so we are talking about doing another shoot here in Houston.

We have one cemetery that everyone shoots, Glenwood. It is truly beautiful with very opulent memorials. The difficulty with Glenwood is the number of trees. The light is very dapple making the contrasts pretty extreme on a day with clear skies. Doing Glenwood on an overcast day, or as I want to do it in the near future, in the rain, is ideal. Not knowing that ahead of time, I was trying to find something that would be interesting but less difficult. We can always change to Glenwood if the weather cooperates.

Another cemetery I like is Hollywood. It is very close to home, is old with old stones, has less trees, but there are two things about Hollywood that I really enjoy. Many of the stones have been shifted into unusual angles by the roots of the old trees. This reminds me of Bryant's poem Thanatopsis, "…The oak will send his roots abroad and pierce they mold." And they are not too quick to remove grave decorations. I love finding grave decorations that have been there past their prime. I do not do still life photography but in the cemetery I can do still lifes using the grave d├ęcor.

Janet and I made a fast trip through Hollywood a couple of days ago and even though I was only interested in doing overall shots to share with the blog team, I did shoot a dozen or so shots and came away with these three which I like very much. I may have to do a portfolio on grave decoration still lifes because I got a couple of good ones from the Hempstead country cemetery shoot on Halloween.

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