Today’s WordPress Daily Post prompt provide the rather interesting theme of Savage, which made me think of one image right away, although I could savage another one or two rather easily 🙂
The savage in this image is none other than a dear friend from the past, who has gone to the eternal hunting fields, where she runs free and happy, as she is in my heart.
This wonderful friend is Denahee, a truly impressive wolf, who allowed me to walk with her through the woods on a rather fine, though warm, day. It was my first experience of walking with a wolf, and it touched me deeply, as Denahee showed her acceptance of me about halfway through the walk: she came over, stood next to me, and then gently leaned into my leg to make contact and tell me that we were connected.
Wolves are amazing creatures and I feel enriched from the experience of meeting Denahee.
A Fresh Perspective
Photography is more than just a vehicle for capturing the world around me; it provides me with a palette and a set of brushes, with which I paint not only what I see, but also look to express the emotions that are evoked by the scene in front of me in that moment.
Growing up in the Netherlands exposed me to a wide cross-section of visual arts that laid the foundation of my photographic view of all that surrounds me. Early influences were the Dutch Masters of the 17th century, to whom I was introduced by my grandfather during museum explorations; favorites among them are the scenes of quotidian life depicted by Jan Steen and Frans Hals and the vivid landscapes of Jacob van Ruisdael.
My classical high school education was supplemented by the Boijmans Van Beuningen museum, where I spent many a lunch hour exploring its great collection. Here I was introduced to surrealism with a particular love for the approach taken by Salvador Dali; Dali also rekindled my appreciation for the work of Hieronymus Bosch, who often showed the folly of us mortals.
My approach to any photographic subject is to look for understanding first; in this I look to establish either a connection between the viewer and the subject or capture the connection of the subject with its surroundings. The captured image then aims to portray this connection from a perspective that is part of my personal interpretation.
This interpretation is often a form of externalized introspection, which may alternately display the connection of isolated beings and items with their environment or highlight the whimsy of the profound world, in which we find ourselves. The universe is full of connections, many of which are waiting to be discovered; part of my journey as a photographer is to document these connections.
Any assignment, be it an event, a product shoot or a portrait session is always approached through communication with the client; this is where the first connection is established. Ideas are exchanged and a collaborative plan of action forms, ultimately resulting in a set of images that aim to exceed the expectations of each client.
And, lest we forget, it is important to have fun while practicing the serious business of photography!
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12 thoughts on “Savage in the Woods”
What a beautiful soul Denahee has and how wonderful you connected with her in this way 💜
It was a very special moment!
She is/was beautiful, and I am totally jealous. I think wolves are amazing (yes, I did see the four hour version of Costner’s Dances With Wolves and cried).
The latest nature show we watched was Wolves and Me. It demonstrates just that – wolves can be attached to people. Your Denahee is beautiful!
Miriam, I was not surprised to find that wolves interact in very similar ways to dogs with some nuances. With Denahee I felt comfortable enough to get down low, so that I could photograph her from a much more dramatic angle; in one of my shots we really were looking eye to eye, which was wonderful.
That wa amazing, Frank! It’s not a common experience to most of people!
I think you are very lucky. I had a Native American friend who has since moved away, but would have loved this story. He always looked for “signs”. He would say there is a message here. A powerful message. Thank you for sharing. We all have a spirit totem according to my friend and I think maybe yours has spoken.
Thank you! Yes, I think that our connections with Nature and the Universe often look for us, and when we do meet them it is a special moment.
She is quite beautiful. You were very blessed to have such an experience.
What a wonderful experience for you Frank, and what a stunningly beautiful wolf – and shot 🙂 .
Thank you, Judith!