Friday, April 27, 2007

It always takes longer than you think...

My view from the San Gabriel River Trail

My adventure yesterday took a little longer than planned. The mileage came out closer to 50 miles for the day after a few wrong turns and a stop for lunch. For the most part it was nice and straight with a little urban freestyle once I left the river trail.

Some highlights included hearing gunfire, which I thought was coming from the Walmart, but was really coming from the police academy shooting range next to it.

I also almost ran into a horse. About mile 15 you pass by a lot of homes with horse stables and people apparently ride their horses down the trail.

I saw a falcon-type bird eat a smallish-type bird (I'm not an ornithologoist), plucking it right out of the sky and tackling it into some high grass. It was very Animal Kingdom.

The assignment itself was a little wacky. It was given to me by District writer, Theo Douglas. The last time I photographed something for a Theo Douglas story it involved an automatic assault rifle. So I was a little weary, especially since he closed the email with an ominous "good luck."

My subject was a house in suburbia that was embroiled in a lawsuit of somesort with a certain television makeover show. When I arrived I circled the house on my bike, half-expecting a police perimeter and snipers on the roof. I decided to eat my muffin and picked a shaded tree that wasn't too far from the house so I could see if there was much activity on the street.

Some gardners packing up their truck. A woman watering the lawn. The ocassional mini-van pulling in and out of a driveway. Things looked reasonably still.

I steeled my nerves and rode up to the house, whipped out my camera that was in my handlebar bag (it was already turned on and dialed into the right settings) and began snapping away.

Wide establishing shot. Horizontal. Vertical.

A little closer. Wide shot using the driveway as a visual lead in. Horizontal. Vertical.

Step back and get the street. Horizontal. Vertical.

All this while I'm thinking about my legal defense as a photographer, should someone come out of the house frying pan or assault rifle in hand. "I'm on public property. Your house is in plain view from the street. Your house has no reasonable expectations of privacy being out in the open like this."

Of course, nothing happened. No cars with sirens came whipping around the nice wide sidealks. No sniper (atleast that I saw) was locking down on me from one of the 2nd story bedroom windows. Just another day in suburbia. Although, I still packed up pretty quickly and zig zagged down some streets incase someone was following.

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