Slow Down – Capturing A Great Photograph is Good For The Soul

Mar 3, 2018

JP Danko

JP Danko is a commercial photographer based in Toronto, Canada. JP can change a lens mid-rappel, swap a memory card while treading water, or use a camel as a light stand.

Slow Down – Capturing A Great Photograph is Good For The Soul

Mar 3, 2018

JP Danko

JP Danko is a commercial photographer based in Toronto, Canada. JP can change a lens mid-rappel, swap a memory card while treading water, or use a camel as a light stand.

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Rustic wire fence at boundary of snowy stream and winter forest

Life is busy. We’re all so caught up running around from one task to the next with no time in between that it’s easy to forget that amazing moments can’t be scheduled.

In this article I wanted to share a few photos that recently taught me to remember to slow down and how great it feels to photograph something special.

The story goes like this:

My family and I were up at our family cottage for the weekend and a couple days of skiing nearby. We were driving between the cottage and the ski hill – behind schedule and late to check into our hotel room (the kids were really anxious to go for a swim in the outdoor pool).

Boy Jumping Into Outdoor Pool at Ski Lodge in Winter

The cottage only has snowmobile access in the winter – so it takes a bit of effort to get in and out. It was also extremely cold and snowy, making everyone a little cranky with bad conditions for driving.

By the time we were in the car and on the road, warmed up and on our way – the last thing any of us wanted to do was stop.

Which was when we passed a farm field with a woodlot in the background with a little stream, perfect late afternoon winter light and an ideal dusting of snow.

I’m not a big landscape guy, but I know an perfect photo opportunity when I see one.

The problem was, the weather was sketchy, we were in a hurry to get where we were going and I knew I was going to suffer the wrath of the pre-teens if I stopped.

So I kept driving…for another few kilometers at least…

My camera was in the back – just sitting there, ready to go…

I couldn’t take it – the scene was just too perfect to pass by – so “sorry kids, I’ve got to turn around to take a picture!”

Which was greeted by “Uuuuggggggggggg do we haaaaaveeee tooooooo?”

Well, yes actually – I do have to!

I turned the car around, drove back, pulled off to the side of the road and snapped a half dozen frames. In total it took maybe five minutes.

They’re not the best landscape photos I’ve ever captured. It’s not the most amazing winter scene I’ve ever photographed.

But it made me so happy to slow down and create a few great photographs that I would have otherwise missed.

Wide angle view wire fence at edge of winter forest under stormy cloudy sky

Rustic wire fence at boundary of snowy stream and winter forest

Closeup view of red sumac flower fruit topped with icy snow in winter forest

Snow and ice cover winter landscape at edge of tall trees forest

What Do You Think?

Have you ever had a situation where you had to slow down to photograph something special?

Have you ever skipped an amazing photograph and regretted it?

Leave a comment below and share your story!

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JP Danko

JP Danko

JP Danko is a commercial photographer based in Toronto, Canada. JP can change a lens mid-rappel, swap a memory card while treading water, or use a camel as a light stand.

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