Photographing creeks is a wonderful adventure that enhances my life more than I can say.
For me, it started a few years ago when I was asked by a member of the Gallinas Watershed Council to go down to a local creek and see if I could get some photos of the fish that lived there. Having loved being in water as early as I could remember, I readily agreed and set out to see what I could come up with. The project held the promise of fun, and it was a good opportunity to check out the capabilities of my new digital camera.
I have come to know and respect the creek system as a place of wonder, a world unto itself, as varied and intricate as a spider’s web. It teams with life, most of which we can not immediately see. Once “inside” it, each creek is so very different from every other. Yet the approach to every healthy creek system is filled with the promise of a horizon hemmed with greenery. Closer to the creek, the atmosphere actually changes. On hot days the cooler air temperature becomes increasingly noticeable. There are more birds and more bird chatter. Every couple of yards the song of the creek changes, depending on the geology, flora and the alterations humans have made.
Life is uncomplicated and happy for me when I arrive at a creek. Just coming into its presence resets my energy. It forces me to slow down. Before entering the water, I stop to inhale the aroma of the forest and the water, so different from the hot oak savannah just yards away. I take deliberate steps into the creek. If I am in a shallow area, the water seeps into my shoes. As the water deepens, the temperature becomes colder and colder, and often the current picks up. I choose to wear cotton fabrics and sneakers, not waterproof clothing and boots. I love it when the water rushes in, saturates my socks and works its way up the fabric of my pants, thigh-deep. Many times it is so cold I have to catch my breath. I inch around the rocky bottom of the creek, enjoying the changes that nature creates.
There is so much to appreciate. The initial “assignment” to capture photographic images of fish has become an incredible and repeated act of wonder, woven of light and motion and reflection. Many people look at water and say that they don’t “see” the same reflections and colors that my camera captures. But I didn’t make up those reflections and colors - they are really there, just as the photographs attest. I believe these wonderful patterns flow into our subconscious even without our awareness and are among the primary reasons that we love being near the water.
It is my pleasure to share my work with you. My hope is that these photographs will help connect others to nature and to their inner selves in a way that will not only enrich their own lives, but also inspire their personal and collective commitment to protect and restore our natural springs, streams, creeks, and rivers.
I am gladly donating all proceeds from the sale of my photographs to the Gallinas Watershed Council - a group of dedicated volunteers who work selflessly for the betterment of our local watershed.
Why I Walk the Creeks....
C r e e k w a l k e r
© 2012 Creekwalker PHOTOGRAPHS, San Rafael, CA 94903
NOTE: For a powerful reading of the Creekwalker's statement and more of her photos, be sure to click here