Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Challenger’s Choice (Travel from Coast to Coast)

22 August 2016


Taken in Camera+ and edited in Snapseed and Pixlr

The World on my Shoulders Photomontage; Copyright © 2016 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved

Dreamscape Photomontage; Copyright © 2016 Sally W. Donatello All Rights Reserved


I close my eyes and its tomorrow. Where is that moment that I was just experiencing? Where is yesterday’s dream today? It’s partly there and here, which makes for a truly esoteric and ethereal thinking point. Part of this philosophical small rant leads me to contemplate a mystical image that has been floating in my thoughts for years.

Most of my adult years I’ve longed to view the earth from above and through cloud covering, where I could fawn over colors and designs of the (variegated) terrain and waters below. There have been times that a vantage point gave me a prominent place to recreate the visual state in my mind. Still, that vision has not been realized in its fullest.

To cite a few threads of my experiences, I’ve been on mountain tops, peered from airplane windows, been entranced by views from atop skyscrapers, floated in a hot air balloon, basked in the wake of flight in a small two-seater plane, zip lined through giant redwoods… I am not an adventurer of the daredevil sort. Simple grasping opportunities that sometimes test my mind’s definition of “I can do” or grasping the experience.

Most of our lives are lived in the shroud of search—search for place and self. Who we are, where we are, what we do, what we want to do, how to do it, who to share our lives. That search never dissipates, or at least if it does the passion often reduces or subsides.

I believe my passion for nature in high and low places is much about my own journey for self-discovery, self-direction, self-exploration, and self-management. I’ve always believed that if we love and nurture ourselves, then we can extend that ourselves to others.

The dream of camera in hand and edging my way on cloud formations has not materialized. And so I imagine that this attention to photomontage is part of my search for life’s meaning, meaning for me that emanates from the connection between nature and human nature.

I believe that experience is one of the best lessons of life. Maybe those past vantage points were preparation for my current attention to photomontage. Still part of me was stunned when I created a close replica of one of my dream-like visions of the real and surreal world seen below from on high.

Photography is noticing. Photomontage takes multiple ways of seeing and joins them as one.

In the Lens section is that composite image that reaches to the place of my dreams. One photograph was taken on the East Coast and the other on the West Coast of the United States. Together they are more complete.

Awakening drifts of thought.                                                                                                     Climbing toward beneficent clouds of glorious unfolding.                                                          Ledges to rest, to sit and contemplate the horizon below.                                                          Filled with instructions to live life, maybe even the good life.                                                     Human invention escapes patterns to create celestial platforms.                                              Allowing the mind to peek through eons of time and space. ~~ Sally W. Donatello

Tip of the Week:

Photographer Tom Ryabol is known for his rooftopping in urban areas, camera in hand and shooting the world from city buildings. In my dreams I want to be him. A few words from Ryabol to explain his view as a voyeur of urban places through his lens:

“For me, photography will always be closely tied to travelling. I like to travel, see the world, where I hope to learn something, grow, and maybe leave something behind. Naturally, somewhere along the line, I wanted to capture some of these moments. The camera allowed me to capture beautiful places, interesting people, and sometimes even myself. Over time, taking pictures has become closely associated to that blissful place in my mind reserved for traveling. So now, when I’m not traveling, the camera has become my tool for escape, to places I’ve been, and places I want to go.”

Click above onto rooftopping to see some of his prints and here to see a time-lapse video about the city of Toronto called “City Rising (2012).” Hope that you were inspired by his work.

P.S.:*************************** Today I am adding photomontage as a category for Challenger’s Choice. To read more about this photographic technique, please return to my last four posts, beginning 18 July through 15 August. If you have any question, please contact me.

Rooftopping, 2012, Tom Ryabol

Rooftopping, 2012, Tom Ryabol

View other entries for this week’s challenge:


As always I welcome comments about this post or any part of my blog. My photographs for the mobile photography challenge are taken with an iPhone 6.

****If you would like to buy a print of any of my photographs or have any questions, please view the Contact Information found on the masthead. Thank you.

If you’d like to join this Mobile Photography Challenge, please click here for details and history of the challenge. If you have any questions, please contact me. Below is a reminder of the monthly schedule with themes for upcoming challenges:

1st Monday: Nature.

2nd Monday: Macro.

3rd Monday: Black and White.

4th Monday Challenger’s Choice (Pick One: Abstraction, Animals, Architecture, Food Photography, Night Photography, Objects, Panorama, Portraiture, Photomontage, Still Life, Street Photography, and Travel).

5th Monday: Editing and Processing with Various Apps Using Themes from the Fourth Week.

This entry was posted in Design, Human Nature, Mobile Photography, Nature Photography, Photography, Writing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

38 Responses to Sally D’s Mobile Photography Challenge: Challenger’s Choice (Travel from Coast to Coast)

  1. Your photomontage is gorgeous, Sally. It’s definitely dreamy. Love your story behind it and your prose!

  2. Tina Schell says:

    Eminently framable Sally. I see you’re really enjoying the montage work. Great result this week

  3. Maria F. says:

    Very nice! I love its title and what you wrote. I tell you, I’m so tempted to do this type of work but I don’t get around it.

  4. restlessjo says:

    The rooftopping views are incredible, Sally. I’m not a vertigo sufferer but I think I could be, looking down that ‘canyon’. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  5. Tiny says:

    Love the photomontage Sally! I think I will need to reconsider the iPhone’s abilities as a camera 🙂

  6. I have never used Pixlr app. Looks like it is a great addition to put on the iPhone! Your work is always very creative my friend.

  7. thirdeyemom says:

    So beautiful Sally. I feel like my life right now is an eternal blur and I haven’t had much time for reflection of anything at all let alone reading and writing blogs. I needed to read this today!

  8. Funnily enough, I have been thinking for some time about dabbling in some photo montage. It’s the magic of it that I love. Your photos show that.

  9. Angeline M says:

    Ethereal is a word that pops into my mind looking at your wonderful photo. And that it is a montage of both coasts that you love so much is just all the better.

  10. Beautiful Sally. You just seem to know which images work well together.

  11. Nato says:

    Love the photomontage. It looks magical and was perfect for your post. Can you make montages in Pixler?

  12. Allan G. Smorra says:

    Thanks for adding photomontage to your list of Challenger Choices. I like what you are doing with yours and look forward to doing more of it myself. The link to “rooftopping” is a good one. I haven’t heard that term before, but it turns out that I have done a lot of it over the years on the buildings that I worked on prior to my bridge work. Ahhhh, memories…

  13. Dina says:

    You photomontages are absolutely amazing, Sally. The last one looks magnificent!

  14. This photomontage works beautifully for showing what you explain in your post, Sally, and I love that it joins the two coasts, something that makes it even more apt. I’m glad you added photomontage as a category. That means I’ll have to work on some more, as I’ve only done the one so far. 🙂 But I have another month to work at it. Have a marvelous day. I’ll have to come back after my walk and check out the roof topping. The one photo you shared it stunning.


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