The Barefoot Photographer®

a photography blog

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Serendipitous Snake

The 365 Project presents challenges and rewards.  Before taking it on I did take photos often -- but not daily.  I did not carry my camera with me often -- now I do.  I have always jumped at the serendipitous opportunity as presented below.  This has become one of my favorite 'out of the blue' photos that I have had the chance to take.  


A few days ago, July 7 to be exact, my husband was walking out of the back door to run an errand.  I was in the kitchen on the phone with Kathryn Kolb with the Serenbe Photography Center.  He came back in the kitchen door and said, "Come here, and get your camera."  I asked Kathryn if I could call her back in a moment and she said yes.

Before I grabbed the camera, I poked my head out of the back door to see what was there.  The beautiful little (ok, not so little) garter snake was just as it is above.  So I did hurry to grab my camera.  The snake was about five feet from the doorway.  I did my normal approach of shoot and step closer, shoot and step closer, etc. until I thought if I got any closer the snake would move and get away.  So I stopped about halfway to the snake and continued to shoot.  Then I zoomed in closer to the head and got down low to catch different levels.  When I was sure I had enough -- I did move closer and lower.


I like the full shot best.  To be able to see the whole snake -- the little curves of the tail -- I think it makes a better photo.  But this whole set up looks like a set up -- and it is not.  The snake shows well with the color of the concrete.  The white splotches are from my daughter's bike lube (good ol' White Lightning!).  I have been telling her to not get it all over the garage -- but now I am glad she did.  The full shot shows a nice arc of the splotches in the lower right corner.   That double Rose of Sharon bush is a mess and needs pruning -- plus the dead blossoms always need raking up.  I am glad they were there for the shot also.  That subtle bit of purple is a nice compliment to the subtle green of the snake.  The colors in the photo work well; muted and subdued.  I did process this photo with Color Efex using the cross processing filter to tint it ever so slightly.  But it is pretty darn close to as shot and as seen.

The shooting took just a few minutes.  After I was finished I took the broom by the back door and shooed the snake away.  It left in a hurry, scooting off under the Rose of Sharon and has not been seen since.  I have weeding to do in the backyard and around the pond and now I am hesitant to do that thinking this snake is hanging around there lunching on toads and skinks -- hopefully not fish.  I quickly called Kathryn back and emailed her a photo of the snake later that day.

Sometimes you have to stop what you are doing and take advantage of the opportunity presented.  If nothing else it will become the "photo of the day."

4 comments:

This Photographers Life (Architecture+Interiors) said...

Donna, that photograph is breathtaking! I agree that the top photo is the best. I love the dead roses :) Its quite poetic!

Donna Rosser said...

Thanks Blayne! -- I am printing it today and hopefully doing something with it soon.

Kent said...

Whoa, nice shot. I love the wiggly pose and the soft colors. Did you add light and/or do anything in the computer? Nice.

Donna Rosser said...

Hi Kent -- nothing done on the computer other than a bit of cross processing in Color Efex -- but that was very toned down and a subtle effect. Thank goodness it was early morning -- later in the day that spot is in the bright sun.

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