Until a few months ago Darby Donahue lived in Houston so many of you will know her since she belonged to several of the Houston photographic groups. She is a school teacher and has taken a job on an Indian Reservation in New Mexico. There is something that I find very remarkable about Darby and today I think I got some insight into Darby that I had not realized.
To begin with Darby has only been photographing for a few years. She does not have the most expensive camera nor does she have an abundance of equipment. But what she does with what she uses continues to blow me away. I recently posted a note to her on Facebook asking her to slow down and let the rest of us catch up.
Alcy and I did some flower photography several months ago where we photographed the flowers frozen in water. Well yesterday I came across an article on shooting flowers in ice that had a slightly different twist. I thought the article was pretty good so I posted a link to the article on Facebook. To my surprise I got several replies from people that wanted to give it a try. I knew a few would like the post but was not expecting such popularity. Darby was one of the people that wanted to give it a try.
This morning I got a phone call from Darby. She has already started shooting. In the course of the conversation she went through the steps that she had gone through and thus the epiphany. I am not going to give Darby’s technique away. If she would like to share it she can post it to Facebook. But I was amazed at her preparation. Sure, you can throw some flowers into a container of water, stick them in the freezer until they are incased in ice and start shooting. That is not what Darby did. She went to considerable trouble to prepare for her first frozen flower shoot. She thought the process through and took the steps necessary to assure getting photographs that would be well above the average.
I haven’t yet seen Darby’s new work but I feel certain it is going to be up to the excellent work she is doing in macro and landscape photography. And now I know why her work is so good—she really puts effort into it. She prepares and she thinks through the process. I wanted to know what made Darby’s photography above average when she had been doing to for so short a time. Today, I learned why.