The Watery Orbs of Mars

Three weeks ago I left Maryland on a family vacation which would take us to West Virginia, Tennessee, and North Carolina. I spent half an hour before we left Maryland wandering the street, taking photos of spider webs and trees weighed down by a heavy mist that verged on rain.

That photo expedition is probably the reason why I forgot to get my laptop from the office before we left, which meant that I spent the next three weeks doing all my work on my iPhone (which has a bad battery), Alli’s laptop (which is quite old), and the iPad my dad gave me for Christmas… at least five years ago.

It was quite the experiment in using tools that aren’t quite right to do the job. I got work done, but it was a struggle. Now that I have my MacBook back I’m trying to catch up on the backlog of photography, video editing, and writing that accumulated in those weeks.

Last night I downloaded the contents of my Nikon’s SD card and was honestly taken aback by the brilliance of my own work. And yes, that’s the first time I have ever said those words.

As usual I threw away almost half of the photos, but the survivors of this batch are among my favorite phots that I have ever taken. The spider webs hang in the air, seemingly unsupported. In many of the photos, the tight aperture I used resulted in photos which seem to depict spheres of water hanging unsupported in the gray sky.

I had a lot of fun rotating and cropping these photos. It quickly became apparent that the best option was to either remove the wood post which the web hung from or… turn it into a landscape.

A simple crop and rotate takes this from a photo of a spider web on a mailbox in Maryland and turns it into a fleet of alien vessels overing over the Martian landscape.

I’m absolutely thrilled with these photos and, as much as I enjoy iPhone photography, am definitely committing to set aside a bit of money each month with the goal of buying myself a modern SLR and a few different lenses within the next year.

If you have any suggestions on the best cameras or want to share your own transformational photographs, send me a message or post a non-spammy link in the comments below.

Your kids can take classes with me at OutSchool, and I will have courses for adults up and running soon. Interact and see more of my art on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, or sit back and watch some of my Maker and travel videos over on YouTube. I also write novels and an ongoing family drama series called In Such Times. If you really like my work you can support me on Patreon.

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