Atlantic November

So, turns out, up here on the northern hemisphere, snow is starting to fall as winter settles quickly into place. About a month ago I found myself working along the chilly coast of South Carolina in the late fall and while I did not have much of any free time to wander and take photos I did take the long path around the hotel grounds as an excuse to snap a photo here and there. I was lucky to find this charming old fence among the dunes to use as a subject and while the beach is not particularly a holiday greeting card kind of December image to share, I thought why not share a little sand with everyone anyway because we all have different versions of what makes this time of year special to us or not so who am I to say all I should be posting this month are photos of Christmas lights and other such paraphernalia.

You can find download links below, if you are on an iPhone X, rumor has it that iPad size wallpapers work wonders on these new devices but I have not had a chance to do any official testing myself I may sneak over to an Apple Store at some point to try some test files out. I’m one of the odd geeks out that chose the iPhone 8 this year rather than the talk of the town face ID phone. At any rate, I will see you again soon, I have some more planned to post this month if all goes well! In the meantime, Enjoy!

Download:

Things 2017

It’s that time of year again. To celebrate family, friends, common bonds, and I suppose to many of us, new stuff. It’s my personal belief to look for gifts that could be useful, unique, or at least not set aside and forgotten a month later because in that case, whats the point? I you have to ask someone what they want for Christmas then you’re doing it wrong.

If you have no ideas maybe just give something tasty rather than guess and buy someone a cheap something that won’t matter a week from now. Disappointment this time of year is a selfish feeling, wasted energy and its important to remind each other that the joy of this time of year is not in the biggest box, its in the quiet time we get to have with one another, right? Right.

This won’t be the last time I post this month but let me just say, I hope you all enjoy the season and if your not able to then I hope you find joy in some small way. It’s so important for us all to remember what we have in common rather than how we are different from one another and the holiday season is a great time to exercise that.

At any rate, for several years off and on I have written up a little gift suggestion post. Things I think are unique, fun, or overlooked but to be honest, it’s getting harder to make these lists. I don’t lead the most minimal life out there but I like to find products that will last and add something true to my life, so when I think about gift giving I try to consider things that could be more than fleeting. That said, the list this year isn’t as long, I kept coming up with ideas that I had included in previous years lists already. Maybe worth noting that none of the links below are affiliate links. Well except for the first one ;)

50ft Print Club Print Club Gift Subscription
After discovering a few subscribers to the 50ft Print Club had given the membership as a gift I decided it may be nice to offer up a single year subscription as an option. You can visit the original post on the Print Club for the back story but the basic idea is that each month I pack up a 4×6 print of my choosing, a letter that talks about the print, and often a little hand written note. I put it into an envelope, add a stamp, and send them off to subscribers. It’s a nice little collectable, a surprise piece of snail mail each month, and a great way to support what I do here on the site!

I am nearly to the end of the first year of prints in the series so I will start any purchase of this officially in January but will also send along one for December as well so you have a little something to show for the gift. Because of the one time purchase nature of this the digital bonus stuff from the Standard memberships won’t be included, just the prints. Think of it as a scaled back, simpler version at a discounted rate. Speaking of the rate, this single year cost may or may not see a little rate increase after the holidays, depending on how this goes, it’s a bit of an experiment. Also, please, feel free to spread the word if you know of any 50ft fans out there that may be interested. Thanks so much! Here is a link to the Regular 50ft Print Club/subscriptions as well as the new gift subscription and Tip Jar or directly to the 50ft Print Club Gift Subscription here.

Now, onto the rest.

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Past Is Present

Boards Of Canada was on when I was cropping this image so fans will know how the title drifted into my head today. I remember seeing this mossy fence on the edge of a pathway at a mountainside temple near Kyoto. The air was cool and damp and the temple was quiet after we arrived late in the day as most everyone else was on their way out. Somewhere in the distance a drum was echoing out through the grounds. I remember the small town outside the temple as well and how slow it felt as we waited on a train to arrive. Thinking about it makes the stressful day I am taking a break from by sharing a new photo feel a little more calm. How to hold onto this feeling is the real trick.

This is one of those images that was tricky to crop for a vertical smartphone because there was not quite enough empty space to fit the center column in there but I did my best. The full desktop size is lovely though. Hopefully it will bring you a little peacefulness as well should your day contain more stress than relaxation. Downloads below, enjoy!

Outlook

One afternoon YoungDoo’s sister and her family took us on a drive outside of Seoul for some time away from the city. One of the spots we visited was a cool little art gallery/cafe/shop/theater complex next to a huge lake, sorry I don’t remember the name. Before we left I knew I wanted to sneak over and take a few photos of the lake and mountains in the distance but upon walking up to the edge of an outlook the overgrowth of plantlike at the edge of the trail caught my eye.

This one wispy vine took off above everything else and I knew I had found a take on this landscape other than the landscape itself. I often find myself in this same position, gazing at the grass instead of the view. There is so much hidden in the foreground of our lives that is easy to miss or ignore. That is to say, don’t forget to check out the forest through the trees while you are out exploring.

Links to a wallpaper cut can be found below, HD version is in the usual members downloads spot. Enjoy!

Cafe Yaang

After visiting Korea again I realized it was the 6th time I have had the opportunity to spend time there. Unlike previous trips this time around felt like a “Greatest Hits” sort of visit where I did not have as much time to wander around lost so I found myself gravitating to my favorite old spots, hoping they were still there because so many shops and cafes have short life spans in the crowded marketplace.

Among shops I was surprised managed to hang on was this gem of a coffee shop called Cafe Yaang. Tucked away in a small 4-5 block area full of small independent shops, restaurants, bars and cafes. It was a pleasant surprise to see it held on while many others in the area vanished since my last visit.

Cafe Yaang is my favorite kind of little Cafe, full of modest charm and understated ambience making it a cozy place to relax in for a while. I did my best to capture the simple charm and calmness of the space with these couple of photos and thought they would make for equally cozy wallpapers. Links below, more to come but for now, enjoy!

Download:

Summer

Summer is full of traditions passed down through generations of youth culture. When I think of this season what comes to mind as an adult is the heat and long days working outdoors but I remember back when the summer meant time in the woods, cold rivers and streams, camping, road trips, time to explore and enjoy the wistful landscape of time free from obligation.

In that spirit, YoungDoo and I found ourselves with a day off and decided to take advantage by taking Milla out swimming in a lake for the first time and, as I mentioned a post or two ago, I am doing all I can to keep an eye out for those delicate moments hiding in plain sight, ready to capture as a photograph. The image here are from just such a moment, the afternoon light sneaking into the lower level of a boathouse where you pay your dues to get into the lake area. It smelled of moisture, moss, and showers. A familiar cool, damp smell that’s hard to forget. A scene that captured a little forgotten corner of my youth that I thought some of you may appreciate as well. Enjoy!

Download:

As Green

I can’t remember the last time I crammed my camera into an odd place to capture a photograph and yesterday on a short trip to the mountains I stumbled into a perfect opportunity to do just that. We took Milla to see a small waterfall so she could mess about in the cool mountain water and I noticed this little overhang hiding a tiny cave of plant life and drippy beauty. Small water flow is a fast moving mess of splashing water but there was just enough space to shove a 5D back there and capture some secret cave goodness. It just took a little bit of manual focusing and a wet head to get close to lining up the shot how I was imagining. I think I ended up taking around 20 or so shots and found three that I thought were worth sharing with you guys.

I must say, it felt good to play around with a somewhat abstract subject again for the first time in a long time, if only for a few minutes. Some days I wonder what more I can offer the world with another photograph of light shining through a window but moments like these where I discover some unconsidered little corner of the world I quickly remember how much there is still to discover and share. Infinity proper.

I have a couple more to share from our little trip but I will save those for next time. Until then, enjoy!

Step One

Time is an idea I can’t stop considering lately. It’s a delicate pattern carved in stone and as heavy and permanent as it feels to lift I just can’t seem to shake the feeling that I have grown weaker to it’s weight. Ive come to realize that there is no such thing as free time, or a day off anymore. “My” time is no longer mine. My life no longer feels quite as unique and philosophical, only steadfast in its attempt to teach me a lesson, that somehow my narrow and flighty addiction to capturing light and living in the moment is but the smallest nearly forgotten footnote in the broader perspective that life seems to want me to consider now.

All this is to say that fatherhood has certainly cast a new light onto my back, more constant than the sun and infinitely brighter. I am learning that time is attention, time is focus, time is fully understanding the importance of every available second spent alive. More valuable and precious than I ever thought possible.

This has made it harder to appreciate light, art, music, emotion. A deeper connection with the world around me has been frayed and heavily damaged as of late. In regards to my deeper understanding of life through artistic expression, many things seemed to work against me over the course of this past year. One camera died, another stolen, work and life at home so heavy that a practical life was the only side of reality I could see. Trails of light in the dust, intricate shadows, lonely corners of the world needing my attention, they all hid out of sight for long periods at a time but I refused to turn a blind eye to this hole that opened up in my creative self. The blackness was far too alarming and dense, I realized that if I didn’t start seeking out light again I may loose it for good.

So I turned to music first; sound, melody, rhythm, it gives me pace, subtle yet steady, I let it fill the spaces between work and home. Through creating music and pushing time around to get out behind a couple of turntables and help people dance with that therapeutic thump, clap, thump, clap, music became my creative pulse this past year when light hid so far away.

Now, recently I was blessed with the opportunity to have a new camera in my life. YoungDoo and I bought a used 5D Mk III from a photographer friend locally and while we are sharing it between her freelance photography work and my hope to use it as a tool to awaken artistically again behind a lens, it has certainly, without a doubt, been a blessing for both of us to have around.

It may not be the latest, smallest, most clever camera available today but it sure has sparked my imagination again and made me want to continue to seek out lonely or beautiful moments hidden around me and I can feel it start to come back. These inspiring, quiet milliseconds are doing their damnedest to get my attention and remind me that even among a life that has been feeling particularly heavy and opaque, that light, even when faint, can inspire hope and remind me that time can in fact still slow down enough to let me appreciate it and at times try and capture it and share these nearly overlooked moments with others.

And in that spirit, I’m sharing a new desktop and a toast to to the light, may it shine just a little bit brighter when I have a camera by my side.

One Inch

“…and when they carry me, they carry me one inch above ground.”

This was a lyric used as one of the themes for a project called Our Window which was something YoungDoo and I did together back around 2010 or so. I was feeling a bit nostalgic this morning and found myself looking through these photos we took together while apart. For those of you who don’t know, part of how we got to know each other while living on opposite sides of the world was through a diptych project where we used themes to inspire us to take photos then combined them and presented them together as a means to see how each other would interpret each theme. It was a fulfilling project that we both miss some days.

The photo above was taken as part of it, and has been sitting in my “may make a good desktop one day” folder for a long time now. I remember having time to get creative with photos back then. I came up with this odd idea of floating a pinecone above the ground to match our chosen theme and considered using fishing line but realized the songs protagonist was being carried by birds, not floating so I used a red thread instead, a detail I ended up really liking.

The song is a sweet one by a musician that releases music under the name Ben and Bruno and writing this today reminded me that its been a while since checking out what he’s been up to lately. The album the song was from is called 100 Grim Reapers and its actually available as a free download now on his bandcamp page here. I was lucky enough to pick up a vinyl copy back when it was released, its an old favorite for sure.

As always, links for desktops below, HD version will be up in the members space. Enjoy!

To whom it may concern,

IMAGES FOUND WITHIN FIFTYFOOTSHADOWS.NET ARE ©JOHN CAREY AND MAY NOT BE USED FOR ANY COMMERCIAL USE WITHOUT PERMISSION. 

DO:

• Enjoy the images! It’s a labor of love, thanks for your support!
• Share fiftyfootshadows.net with friends.
• Send me a quick mail if you are interested in using an image for commercial or personal use other than wallpaper.

DON’T:

• Post desktops elsewhere online.
• Share links directly to images.
• Pass them around in mass.
• Make prints.
• Use images for web banners or graphics. (send a quick email to ask, I’m pretty easy going about this with permission.)
• Use them in commercial work.

If you help me out with these I will be able to keep doing what I love to do. Thanks again, really, for your support and understanding. -J

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All of the images contained within this website, fiftyfootshadows.net, are property of, John Carey unless otherwise posted. The images are distributed as freeware but they are available for personal use only on your personal computer, tablet, or smartphone as your wallpaper image. Any use of these images for any purpose other than this is a violation of these terms and anyone found using said images will be asked to either compensate the creator for doing so or be asked to stop using them immediately.

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Use your best judgement and we will get along just fine.

Thank you for your understanding and support!

John Carey (curator, owner)

fiftyfootshadows.net

fiftyfootshadows@gmail.com