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Weathered Blue Building, Fences, and Plants

Weathered Blue Building, Fences, and Plants. Mendocino, California. August 28, 2012. © Copyright 2012 G Dan Mitchell - all rights reserved.


A weathered blue building with fences and plants in evening light, Mendocino, California.


I had been thinking that I really should photograph some of the old, weathered buildings in Mendocino while we were there, but it just seemed like I was never quite in the right spot in the right light with the right amount of time - so, for the most part, while we were there recently I mostly just talked about how "sometime I should really photograph some of these old buildings." Sound familiar? The village is full of various kinds of interesting places: severe-looking old churches, badly weathered older buildings, neatly restored and updated homes and businesses, old shops, and vignettes of old windows, fences, gates, and more.


In the evening we decided to walk out toward the coastal bluffs southwest of the village, with the plan of photographing the bluffs, coastal rocks, surf, and ocean in golden hour light. As we walked along a boardwalk toward the water I looked to my right and saw this very weathered old building, with its surrealistic garden of very strange shaped, well, what exactly? Trees? Bushes? Whatever they are, with their conical shapes, their twisting trunks, and odd angles they seem like they could be the model for some of the plants in a Dr. Seuss book. I was a block away when I spotted the scene, and the low angle side light was about to be cut off, so I simply set up where I was and made a few photographs - using a very unusual architecture lens, a 100-400mm zoom! This actually turned out to be a good choice - and not just because I would have lost the light if I had switched to a shorter lens and run toward the building. The long focal length flattens the depth of the elements of the image and draws them together. It also eliminated the perspective convergence that often causes walls and other vertical elements to slant inward. Do I worked quickly, and managed to get this shot while the side light was still illuminating one of the odd plants and highlighting parts of the worn fences in the foreground.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.

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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.

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Taken on August 28, 2012