I’ve Looked At The Park From Both Sides Now
By Vivi Rathbone.
Dedicated to my neighbor across the park, Marina.
I love my view of Parque Las Heras. I can’t tell you how magical it is to live above that park, but I’ve tried to capture it’s beauty and wilderness with my camera, so that I can share it.
When I started blogging, I didn’t take any photos. I concentrated on writing (my true passion) and would occasionally use photos I stole from Google Images. (Don’t do that #copyright #trouble) When I wised up, I realized that the most successful blogs were not just featuring great writing. They had great photos.
I returned home for Christmas in December, 2011 and invested in a camera, and dedicated myself to becoming a proficient photographer. I started with a mid-sized Olympus DSLR, determined not to be one of those amateur photographers with an expensive Nikon and no knowledge of how to use any of the settings. I wanted to start small and get good.
I returned to Buenos Aires in January and started playing with my camera. As a student of Art History, I could easily decipher a strong image from a poor one, but I struggled to transfer this skill over to my camera. I discovered that good photography was not easy. Determined, I practiced taking photos from my balcony and bedroom window of Parque Las Heras.
One stormy Sunday morning in February, I awoke in particularly melodramatic spirits. Normally I would channel that energy into my writing, and write some sort of emo blog post. When I looked out the window to see my mood reflected in the stormy scene of the moving park and the grey sky, I decided to take a photo instead.
I took three shots and nailed them. I felt the photo had perfectly captured my stormy mood, and the way I felt in that moment. It was the first “good” photo that I’d taken with my camera. I was hooked, and from that point forward I made a conscious decision that I would exclusively befriend photographers.
That photo became my signature image.
Last month I entered it in a photography contest with the Argentine Independent, and was beyond thrilled to make it to the top ten finalists. I felt like my camera investment had been completely validated.
Anyway, this post isn’t actually about me. This has been a long pre-amble to share the coolest thing that happened to me yesterday.
I received a message from Marina, who saw my photo and sent me a message to tell me that she lived on the other side of the park. My view was of her house, and she has a view of mine:
Isn’t that amazing? This definitely calls for some Joni Mitchell.
And I might be ready for a bigger camera ….