The last couple of days I have been in New Mexico on assignment. My shoot was actually a portrait job that only took one morning, but I decided to take an extra day to just explore, since I have been non stop the past month with shoots and travel. For once, I just pointed my 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee rental vehicle south from my hotel in Santa Fe, NM and drove (wish I could magically transport my beloved personal car out here). I had absolutely no destination in mind. If I saw a side road that looked interesting, I took it. I cannot describe to you the incredible feeling of liberation that a full tank, a good playlist, and great stretches of wide open “wild west” American roads can give you. I just allowed my mind to wander and think about life and shoots and creative inspiration.
Isn’t it funny that the minute you hit the road with a destination in mind, you become immediately drained? I feel it every time I have to drive between DC and NYC, which is often. Although, yesterday, I felt invigorated. Stopped regularly to take photos, primarily with my iPhone, and to explore small towns and cultural landmarks in the middle of the emptiness of the desert. It took me back to my teens when I would take just my camera, a few mix CD’s, and my 66 Mustang out on the road and would just head west for a day.
I find it strange how I feel so driven to explore the west by myself for a vacation, rather than sit in a luxury hotel by the beach (I mean that would be nice too). I’m not saying I am a loner, but I suppose this is my way of finding my inner peace. I would highly suggest that if you haven’t done one wild west road trip in your life, you need to.
I have been really impressed by how my iPhone and Nik Software’s Snapseed app are performing to create these dynamic road trip images. Feels liberating not lugging around one of my “big” cameras. Sometimes its nice to step away from your camera settings and just shoot.
Remember folks: ADVENTURE – If anything, doing it for the story you will always remember.