Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Time of Her Life

This past Sunday my husband and I walked at a nearby beach. The day was pristine, abundant with sunshine and fresh air. Both the sky and water were the most gorgeous, sparkling hues of blue and the wind was calm. Everything felt right: a truly mellow and harmonious afternoon.

A child's joy is precious. This little girl romping through the water along the edge of Long Island Sound is feeling not only the coolness and refreshment of the water splashing her feet, but also the caress of the wind and the warmth of a giving sun. She is truly discovering life, opening her senses to the wonders of the world around her. Since I wasn't carrying a model release, I photographed her from the side and back.

As adults, we can open ourselves to our "inner child." Taking time out to visit a beautiful place with a spouse or friend is half the battle. Remember the saying "You gotta be there!"? Isn't it amazing how just "being there" can rid us of our preoccupations and open new doors of perception and experience?

Here are a few more photos. I wanted to share the beauty and drama of this setting with you. I shot 245 photos that afternoon, in less than two hours. Yes, I admit to being a camera nut! But who would trade away such joy? And with digital, I don't worry about wasting film or buying prints which I'll later have to toss.

What I like about the shot above is the sense of scale the viewer gets from the tiny figures in the background, while the mass of the boulders anchors the panorama and gives a sure sense of foreground.

Here are gulls seeming to fly in tandem. We enjoyed seeing a lot of waterfowl activity on this sand spit, and shooting in "sports mode" allowed me to capture many shots of them in flight, including a huge gull swooping around with a clam in his mouth. In spite of this wonderful feature built into my SONY Alpha D-SLR, my telephoto could do only so much to bring the scene closer. This image and the others I took of the gulls, are a little far away for my taste. I wish I had been able to get closer to the feeding frenzy and gossip session taking place on that narrow peninsula!

Here's a view looking from the wetlands out to the open water of the Sound. I was taken by the weathered look and textural features of what was apparently once a dock, and I'll upload some of my recent beach close-ups in my next post. In this saltwater marsh, the holes where crabs had dug into the sand were everywhere. In here, sheltered from the breeze over the open water, we heard bountiful birdsong and saw a great variety of scrubby trees and some varieties of pine I can't name, as well as flowering bushes. Seagulls called raucously over our heads as they made their way down the channel, following the last surge of receding tidal flow.

Here are pebbles in a tidal pool, smoothed by years of surging and receding water. Their brilliant colors are enhanced by their wetness. I'm always fascinated by rocks and pebbles for their surface qualities, mass, and the feeling of enduring presence they convey.

Here are two more images, shot at close range. Notice the gorgeous texture of these mineral encrusted boulders. The North Shore of Long Island is full of huge rocks, left by receding ice at the end of the Ice Age.

I hope you enjoyed these views from our walk on the beach. I'll post more of them next time!

All images on this site are c Lynda Lehmann. If you would like to view more of my art or make a purchase, please visit
Lynda Lehmann Painting and Photography or my Imagekind gallery!

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  1. Lynda these are stunning photos. I love the first shot of the child - her body movement shows her delight running through the water - awesome.
    Love the texture and colors of the pebbles too. Beautiful work!

  2. Great shots Lynda, love the sense of scale, like you said makes all the difference in the world being there. :)

  3. excellent captures, it must be a very beautiful place, great textures. And yes this is the child life. this maybe is the truth meaning of life. as we are getting older, we "have" to forget it...

  4. JANICE - I wish we all could experience that spontaneity and joy we left behind in childhood. Being in beautiful places or looking at photos of joyous children helps me to connect with all that! :)

  5. BOB - Thanks for stopping by. I guess it's the same whether we're gazing at the sea or the heavens. The wonder is there for us if we're open to it.

    It makes me feel like "a kid" just to come home with my memory card loaded with images of things I found beauty in.

    Hope you are finally having some spring, up where you live!

  6. EVLAHOS - I think you are right. I think it IS the meaning of life, to revel in the beauty of it and be happy and joyous and creative, and to balance that with responsibilities.

    Good to see you, and thanks for stopping by!

  7. I really enjoyed your photos and the commentary along with them.

    That child is beautiful, in her innocence and freedom.

    great post!


  8. SANDY - You've hit it on the head:
    "That child is beautiful, in her innocence and freedom."

    I'm happy that you enjoyed the photos and post! Thanks for stopping by. :)

  9. On such a place who wouldn´t have the time of it's life?

    Maybe some of us whom tend to forget that even in adults we should have some space in our life and heart to let the child hidden inside to come out ... I sometimes do and must say it feels great!

    Fantastic and detailed photos.

  10. magnificent photos Lynda...
    the child on the beach is beautiful...this would make a wonderful poster !!!
    I love the way your self critiques enhance the meaning behind each photo...
    what did we do before digital
    and telephoto lens are wonderful....
    I remember taking portrait shots with my telephoto lens years ago...because I found the perspective more interesting..
    you're very lucky to have such a wide variety of scenes nearby...
    it must be such a pleasure to go on your walks :)

  11. QUINTARANTINO - I'm glad you do that sometimes, let yourself go and find the happy child within. Too many people don't make the effort to fulfill their own needs, and then go around blaming everyone but themselves for their self-created deprivation. Of course, not everyone lives in freedom or free from oppression. People who are starving for food and medicine do not have the luxury of seeking the joy(s) of childhood.

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  12. KIM - Thank you for your kind words. As far as I'm concerned, every alternate perspective adds interest and it's good to broaden beyond our everyday scope on things. I love both macro and panoramic shots, though I have only what's built into my SONY, so not all that much leeway with either. Yet I am lucky to have what I consider to be a great camera.

    I've been walking in my neighborhood for 30 years, Kim, enjoying the sights and smells. Long Island has some beautiful OLD estates, arboretums, and many gorgeous beaches. It's just too bad it's so CROWDED!!!

    Have a wonderful weekend, my friend! xxx

  13. "Dont be childish but be childlike" is no understatement. Innocense, the essence of the being is well captured by you Lynda!
    Wow!! wonderful sea shots seen with inner eye...loved them all.

  14. Lynda:

    I love the shots. Your beach is so beautiful - such a mixture of texture - the smooth and the rough - the calm and the violent. The little girl running along the shoreline reminds me of the days when I watched my own little daughter running along the beach. And, yes, it's hard to watch her without thinking back to my own childhood years. I loved the beach, sand fleas and all.

    Have a great day.

  15. Thanks for sharing your experience and photos. Yes, we need to be present and just allow and amazing things will come to light.

  16. merging point, for the past few years I've been dealing so much with images, I think my inner eye is working overtime! I think I may be at the point where I need to find some new forms of mental stimulation!

    Thanks for your comment, and have a wonderful weekend!

  17. SWUBIRD - Ditto. Our daughter is 25 but I can still see her floating in a lake or in the saltwater in her big, black gorilla float! How time flies!

    As a kid I loved the beach too. Also, the woods, fields and streams of rural PA. I was a bonafide tomboy. My favorite things in the world are still swimming, canoeing and hiking (after doing art and blogging, of course....) :)

  18. Thanks for stopping by and sharing them with me, Mark! Enjoy your weekend!

  19. Beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

  20. beautiful images .. amazing clarity ... brilliant work


    PS: Was intending to drop by early .... am glad I am here now :)

  21. I love the pictures of the girl & the pebbles the most!
    Sorry I've been AWOL. I'm playing tour guide to a Canadian friend these days. Things should ret'n to normal soon!

  22. luckyzmom and alok - thanks so much for stopping by and commenting! :)

  23. LANA - THAT explains why you have been running around New Orleans with your camera! I'd go AWOL too for that, if I had the opp!

    Good to see you!

  24. Lynda these photographs are absolutely gorgeous!

  25. I love the photo of the child. i love children but also your way of expressing yourself.
    I also love pebbles and stones. It is our favourite pastime in the holidays to collect stones and shelves on the beach

  26. Lynda - you captured the little girl's joy so perfectly - I can feel it! Can't wait to go the ocean and experience it too!


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