Tag: “Cruising”

Travel Mode

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Pacific Ocean, Mexico

Pacific Ocean, Mexico

Travel is infrequent or rare for most of us. How we go about it is a highly individual choice, and an important one.

Of course we can choose different modes for different occasions.

Do you prefer to travel with a group with the itinerary planned and arranged by a knowledgeable guide, or do you consider planning and routing to be part of the adventure? Do you like to be independent and travel with just one or a few companions, or do you like to meet new people as part of a group? Is local knowledge of places and languages a service that you want as part of a package, or do you want to research out places and strive to learn new languages? Do you prefer to travel by plane, boat, train, car, bike, horse, bus, or by foot?

Do you want to relax and get away from figuring things out,  just rest? Or do you want to learn and think about culture and history? Are you striving for recovery or knowledge?  Perhaps you travel in order to be with distant family or friends.

Most travel is a blend of these and other goals. Whoever determines what the blend is, determines the travel mode. Some people feel very strongly about these issues, others just want to get away and go along for the ride.

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This photo was taken on a cruise ship to Mexico. I have only been on a cruise ship once. I enjoyed the early mornings before dawn and right after. There was a running track on the top deck. It was short but it was good to get some air. My favorite time for photographing was also before there were people out on the decks.

This particular cruise ship had nine levels and held MANY people. There was onboard gambling and constant food service. These comforts and diversions are very important parts of what you pay for and are prized by most customers.

This photograph shows an early morning deck with a cloudy ocean view. On the left side of the photo you can see through the windows into one of the restaurants. It was ready for upcoming breakfast rush thanks to the crew who worked hard while we slept.

Since most of our travel is for photographic work my wife and I prefer to arrange our own itineraries and we don’t travel with a group. I need to have control of the locations, hotels, method of travel, and timing etc. My work would really not be possible if I was part of a tour group traveling by bus or cruise ship. I saw lots of happy people on this cruise ship, however, and I know that it is a favored mode of travel for some.

I found the library on this ship. It was a great place to read and look out at the seemingly endless ocean. It was deserted most of the time. Good thing there were options for many different interests. Most of the time you could find quiet, out-of-way spots. Of course, that would be boring to some people. What is your favorite travel mode?

Both Sides of Leisure

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Early Cleaning, Arriving at Ensenada, Mexico

Early Cleaning, Arriving at Ensenada, Mexico

This photograph depicts both sides of leisure.

While almost all of the passengers slept, this woman (lower right) and many other crew members, were busy cleaning, cooking, and preparing for another day of leisure – for other people. To me, this image is a metaphor.

On one side of the glass, the deck is clean and ‘ship-shape’, ready for very early morning strolling. On the other side of the glass, behind the scenes in a way, a woman works hard to clean the glass. When passengers arrive for breakfast the view will be clear without anyone knowing how much work it takes every day to accomplish.

I had been taking photographs for an hour or so as the morning brightened. I had walked all over the ship and explored the vantage points on all the decks. With this photograph I was trying for a wide angle view of the deck with its life saving stations and the open sea with Ensenada on the horizon. I hoped to show the wood grain in the foreground decking and still see details at the far end of the deck and  the open sea.

As I was composing the photograph, looking through the viewfinder, I noticed movement with my other eye. Looking down this row of windows I could only see reflections of the outside deck, except for the windows right next to me. I could see through these closer windows into a dining room. As this woman worked her way toward me on the other side of the glass, she became partially visible. So I waited for her to get to the window next to me so she was clearly visible. Even then, only her face, arms, and the white cleaning cloth can be seen. Her dark uniform fades into the background. She appears to be floating.

Her presence was a surprise. Sometimes luck helps bring additional features into a photograph.

The reflections of the life saving stations and the ship structure are interesting. And on a large print of this photograph you can see through the doorway behind her out onto the pool deck on the interior of the ship.  Photo: 1/15 s at f/2.8

You can visit my online galleries to view more of my portfolio. Click the Photography link above.

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