Wildlife photography, for me at least, isn’t really about the images I come home with. More and more, my favorite parts are the quiet in-between moments in nature while out on these trips.
Over the course of a few days earlier this year, I explored around a small part of downtown Denver to see what I could find and what kinds of photographs I might be able to make. Heavily inspired by a handful of street photographers like Craig Whitehead and Joshua Jackson, I was drawn to the lights and shadows of the city after dark.
This is a pretty new style of photography for me and I found it quite challenging, but also refreshingly fun to be able to approach it with a beginner's mind again. In addition to pushing my comfort zone by branching into other genres of photography a bit, I'm also working to focus on larger bodies of work––series of images that work together––rather than just single images. Those might take the form of a book or zine or short photo essay or something else in between.
With that in mind, here's a series of 12 images from those wanderings titled "Denver After Dark." Hope you enjoy.
So a couple years back I got a little over-confident in the off-roading capabilities of my aging Honda minivan.
See, I’d just moved to Colorado from New York and, needing a car again, borrowed the old family Odyssey for a bit. Excited to be back out west, I’d ventured off into the mountains by myself for a roughly-planned road trip and photo excursion. Seeing what looked like an interesting detour on my map, and not being in any hurry, I decided to give it a shot. Now, I knew from the turnoff that this was an unpaved road, but even a minivan should be able to handle a little gravel...
I dove deep into landscape photography in 2017, ending the year with almost 20,000 images. Narrowing it down is always difficult, but here are my favorite 30 from the year. Of course there are more on Instagram (@brianwlackey) too if you're interested and lots more coming in 2018.
My car's thermometer read 2°F when I got to Lake Dillon just before sunrise.
Over my thermal top, I put on a thin fleece, a fleece vest, the warmest down jacket I own, a neck gaiter, a ski mask, a beanie, snow boots, microspikes for traction, and drained the last of my hot coffee. It'd be overkill for skiing or snowshoeing, but hopefully warm enough for some landscape photography.
Driving in from Denver, I'd seen glimpses of fog over the lake, but in the dark it was hard to get a good feel for what the conditions might really be like. A few yards from the car, however, I saw the fog swirling above the lake below, just thick enough to be interesting without obscuring my view of the peaks in the distance.
Perfect! These are the conditions I always hope for on a shoot like this.