Photos for Me, Lost Lake / by Justin Fritts

So I've realized since I started taking more photos for money and for other people I've been taking less photos for me.  There is something about it deep in my brain that stops me from taking photos except when I'm working.  I've even gone out with friends or hiking or whatever, taken my camera and then not taken any photos.  Carrying heavy gear for no reason really.  I think this summer has done well to give me a little space and time. I've thought about it more and realized that I think in reality photos taken of people and things in a forced situation (aka work) are more challenging.  The challenge drives you to be better, to make it interesting, to find that angle or get that lighting even in the most challenging of situations.  Suddenly stumbling upon shots seems easy, so many shots that I used to really enjoy just feel cliché (they always were, I just didn't care) and without a goal to the day when I go out it just gets so hard to make the photos feel like an accomplishment.  I don't know if any of this makes sense, feel free to respond in the comments if you'd like, but to me it all makes sense, I just can't quite express it, need to think on it more.

So all of this means that the last time I went out hiking and camping I knew I wanted to take some photos, I needed to force myself to take some photos.  When I finally did the juices started to flow again, it started to feel good.  I explored angles, exposures, time of day all over again.  Since then I've had the camera out a lot and am taking photos for me again and it feels good.  I'm doing this in conjunction with a lot of work and photos for other people but right now I have no conflict about it.

Lots of words, but its a photo blog, so on with the photos.  A few friends of mine, TJ and Kathy wanted to go get in one last camping trip for the year and invited Christina and me along.  They brought their two dogs and their little girl and we brought our two dogs, it was a bit of a madhouse, luckily the wild was large enough to handle it.  It ended up that TJ got a job offer in L.A. a few days after our little hiking trip so it will likely be their last Colorado hiking adventure for more than just the year.  We drove up west of Boulder, past Eldora to a little area of trails, one leading to Lost Lake.  We really got to test out the Outback, drove it along a fairly shallow length of river for about 1/4 mile and up some crazy dirt roads, felt like a Subaru commercial.  I have an awful photo of the river drive but I gotta share it just cause:

Driving down the river

We then hiked with our packs about 1.5 miles up to the lake.  I brought a good amount of gear with me, wish I would have brought a little less cause damn it made my pack heavy.  Although had I brought less I probably would have brought a tripod and offset any savings, stupid having no tripod.

We set up camp and started to get some food prepared.  About this time the dogs were let off leash, Ruby and Lucy had quite a good time without their leashes on.  We went down to the lake and they even decided to go hopping log to log.

Dogs on a log

The lake was beautiful and very still, practically mirror-like.  As the sun started to set I got some very nice photos it.

Lost Lake Sunset

We went to bed and had a terrible night's sleep.  The dogs didn't like the tent and the moon was too bright.  I don't think any of us got much sleep all night.  In the morning we broke down camp, spent some time hanging out and then hiked our way out.  The hike on the way out had some nice early morning beauty.

Glass Lake

Continued...

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