|Mt. Rushmore- S. Banos|
As a photographer, whenever you arrive somewhere of special significance, somewhere you've always dreamed of seeing- you, of course, want to get a picture to remember it by. Not just a picture- hell, you can get any number of perfectly good picture postcards anywhere, but one you can actually stick in the ol' portfolio. Something halfway unique, something that puts your particular stamp on it. Sometimes you win, and sometimes, well... ya just don't. Of course, having enough time (a luxury most of us don't get) increases your chances. That said, I've been to Paris a few times and have yet to get a decent shot that includes Le Tour Eiffel- sometimes it's just a matter of turning around for something else, or trying your luck elsewhere.
Mt. Rushmore is one of those places one dreams of seeing ever since you're a kid- something wonderfully surreal about it even before you're old enough to know the meaning of the word. Hitchcock shot a movie there as if just to prove it. So naturally, when I finally got to see it in person in '07, I was hot to take the picture to remember it by. First instinct was to go right into the viewing area along with the rest of my fellow tourists and take some Winogrand/Parr mutation with them in the foreground in some weird juxtaposition with the overbearingly large Presidential stares looming in the background. And again, given enough time, I probably could have done just that, but the fish just weren't biting, and alas, I didn't have all day. Next, I discovered there were trails leading closer to the giant busts where guides were leading tours which definitely offered some possibilities- but again, to no avail. It was time to go, and once again I was a beaten man. Time to hit the road again, but first the lieu... and a photo!