Picture: Danish flag flying over shops in downtown Solvang, Santa Barbara County, California
I’m not the type to usually play tourist in the typical trendy tourist spots like Fisherman’s Wharf, Carmel, or even here in Solvang. Yet while working on my current book project, I often have to get coverage of these places. It is in these times when my heart and head might be trained on someplace else that I have shift into a ‘work’ mode. I find that the best way to take on a shoot like this is to treat it like an active editorial assignment, rather than just take a more passive “tourist” approach. In these cases, I might make a mental short list of essential features or attractions that a particular place is best known for, and then I’ll look for opportunities to combine as many of those features as I can find in a single photo.
Here in Solvang, this little hamlet as taken on a Danish flare. When I saw this flag flying in front of one shop, I tried to make a good shot, but I couldn’t make it work the way I wanted. I then thought,”…rather than try to shoot it against the store it was hanging from, what if I used the stores across the street?” Then it was just a matter of re-framing the image, and waiting for the breeze to lift the flag into a good compositional position.
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