“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. We value simple things because they do all the things we need easily and none of the things we don’t. Simplicity is harmonious.”
– Leonardo Da Vinci –
Da Vinci’s quote is one of my favourites, as it plays on the idea that being simple is not commonplace, yet it is elegance in its highest form. This image, Solitude, reminds me to appreciate the art of simplicity. Obtaining simplicity is not a simple process; it is a lifelong journey.
Photography has always been a mixture of countless hours of preparation and lucky timing. I love challenging myself to look for beauty in ordinary scenes or moments. I contemplate the endless hours of hard work that Da Vinci himself invested in his art. He taught me that producing a masterpiece, or anything of value, is often the reward of focus, determination, and discipline.
When it comes to shooting photographs, I scout out areas well in advance. I sit with the idea for a while, then consider the most optimal weather system to complement the image. And, finally, I wait for the ideal conditions to present themselves. On this day I was on my way up to the top of Cypress Mountain, a popular recreation area just outside Vancouver, BC. Wanting to photograph a lone tree enveloped by fog, these very conditions unfolded for me as I was halfway up the mountain – proving to be an exciting opportunity for me.
Known to roll in and out quickly, I rushed to get ahead of the fog. Prepping my gear as I went, the tree’s silhouette began to emerge from what felt like nowhere. I positioned myself, so the tree was filling the frame and fired the shutter. For a split second, all that existed in my world was this lone tree and a feelings of ‘Solitude’. Shortly, after that brief moment, the fog lifted and rolled out.