How many times have I been to little Fern Spring ("Yosemite's smallest waterfall") over the past few decades? More times than I could ever recall. Enough times the one could imagine photographing the same location would become, not necessarily boring, but at least repetitive.
Each visit, though, offers a rebirth of my creative self. Somehow, on some level - from experience, from self-awareness, from looking at what others have done in the same place - I photograph, not a small spring, but the elements of the spring: water, air, light, color, as well as the way those elements react with each other, dependent on the time of day, the weather, where I'm standing, and my choice of lens. It's not the thing I photograph, it's the sense of a thing, via its constituent parts.
There is, for the time I am at Fern Spring, a submersion into the calming depths of the natural world. It's calming even as cars hurtle by on the road a just yards behind me, their occupants aware of their surrounding on a far different level than I am.