Grace and Beauty

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I’m on an Alaska theme currently – but that’s because I’m editing my huge collection of images from all my past photo tours I’ve led on the M/V Delphinus with Dolphin Charters. It’s been an incredible journey – the whole of it – in all parts of southeast Alaska, aka the Inside Passage, since 2007!

One year, on our last day, we were heading towards Juneau, and Captain Ronn heard about a pod of Orcas that were ‘nearby’. And, as he always has done nd always will do, he set a course for where they were, hoping to give us one last photographic opportunity – but more than that, one last experience to remember. And that’s what it was – a truly rewarding, special experience. In the back waters behind Douglas Island, the water had become very still, and in that quiet water we had amazing reflections. It was getting dark, our ISO’s had to be pushed to 1000 and 1250, but we were not going to miss trying to capture a moment or two that we could cherish forever! We spent almost an hour with them, observing them, motoring to keep up with them, and photographing. I’ll never forget it!

I watched as the Orcas swam effortlessly through glassine waters, and tried to time it to make meaningful compositions rather than just snapping away whenever a fin or fluke showed. I wanted the images to be calm, peaceful, and yet still show the action.  This main blog image is of my favorites from that session – it shows the grace and beauty of these wonderful mammals and tells a simple story of family with the small fluke of a baby trying to keep up with the others. They may be considered ‘wolves of the sea’ but they are graceful and beautiful nonetheless!

Enjoy, and please feel free share this post with others!

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Brenda Tharp
Brenda is an award-winning photographer, author, keynote speaker, workshop instructor and tour leader. Her acclaimed books include Creative Nature and Outdoor Photography, and Extraordinary Everyday Photography.
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