Ian Plant has been a huge inspiration and influence on how I see and do photography. Due to this I have a very amazing story to share.
Back in April, Ian Plant posted "Vernal Impulse" on his blog. The image from this blog post really caught my attention. It was taken from angle behind a cascade and looking downstream. It was the first time that it occurred to me that I had never tried photographing waterfalls and cascades from this type of angle. All spring and summer I forced myself to turn and look the other way when approaching waterfalls and see what looking downstream gave me as far as composition.
Even though I took this alternate approach, I had not had any image from this type of vantage point that suited my fancy.
In September, Tim Owens and I were the Tremont area of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and stumbled upon a wonderful location with numerous possibilities of compositions. We scoped out the area without cameras in hand and I found a scene that absolutely gave me the layout I wanted inspired by "Vernal Impulse". By the time I retrieved my gear and started to set up my shot, Tim was already further downstream and shooting and would have been in my shot. This was alright, I would go upstream and photograph until he was done and then return for my shot.
When Tim joined me upstream I started back to set up my shot. When I got there, there were 2 fishermen right in the middle of the river interrupting my shot. Ugghh! I thought I would never get to take my shot. Well, the ever patient photog that I am, I got in place, set up my shot, and waited for the fishermen to get done.
About 10 minutes later, one of the fishermen slipped and fell on the rocks. Thank goodness he wasn't injured at all, but it was scary enough for him to want to pull up shop and move upstream. With the fishermen finally out of the way, I pulled the trigger several times and was extremely excited about finally getting my shot.
After processing my image, I was even more excited. Even though I had 6 or 7 keepers from that location, that shot was my favorite. I finally captured an image that filled the inspiration of Ian Plant's Vernal Impulse. Awesome.
The story does not end there. In October, I was looking through Ian Plant's archived Great Smoky Mountain blog posts and saw "Vernal Impulse". I clicked on it and opened it up and when the image came up, I was absolutely floored by what I saw. Ian's shot and my shot were from not only the same area in Tremont, but they were on the very same rock about 4-5 feet from each other. In his post he stated he would have set up exactly like I did except the water flow was too heavy to get that composition. Unbelievable! My shot, that was inspired by his, was taken in the exact same spot.
My shot is posted above. Here is a link to "Vernal Impulse". What an amazing coincidence of inspiration.