It’s getting too hot to enjoy camping comfortably down in these parts of Florida. So our last camping trip before summer sets in was a really a wonderful one. We took a week off and headed up to the Oscar Scherer State Part, in Sarasota, Florida, ready to explore our world!

What a lovely park! And we had a great camping spot, too. Nice big backyard of dense coverage with a trail that lead in, perfect for setting up chairs and lounging around a campfire, away from civilization. The park is really quite lovely, just like the other parks around Southern Florida. Lots of Oak trees, covered in Spanish Moss. The bathrooms and showers were sparkling clean, and the campground hosts were very friendly and made sure everyone felt at home.

We saw an abundance of Cardinals here. Their brilliant red colors stood out vibrantly from the greens and golds of their surroundings. They have a great song, too. I love those birds and it was great to be surrounded by them at any hour of the day.

Since we had a lot of time to kill during the hot hours of the day, we headed into the town, Sarasota. I’m no stranger to this town. We lived here for 4 years while I went to Ringling School of Art and Design for my degree in photography. It’s a neat town, home to St. Armands, the Ringling Museum, the Medieval fair and lots of other art-related activities and centers.

It was great to see my alma mater, too. It was especially wonderful to see how much the school has grown both in size and in offerings. If you are serious about art, whether it be photography or interior design or computer arts, I recommend Ringling highly!

So what camping trip wouldn’t be complete without pictures? I did a flare picture of course (for those of you new to our blog, I love to shoot flare pictures)! But for the most part, my photographic challenge during this camping trip was reflections. I wanted to focus on a different part of the scene this time. And while reflections are hardly anything new as a photographic subject, I haven’t played around with them too much. And I like shooting things I don’t usually do on my off time.

So on with the goods! My first shot here is probably one of my favorites of the park. You have to drive over a lovely one-lane wooden bride to get to the campground. So on one of our exploratory missions, I jumped down and below the bridge for this shot. I love the angles and texture here. And I didn’t find any trolls under this bridge!

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This is one of the first reflections studies I made. I like that you can’t really see the ground here, and if you do find it, it’s all the way at the top!

Astrid and Rene Photography


And what would a trip to the great outdoors be without some lovely flare? Here I was practicing some post-production in Photoshop, too. I wanted to create some rainbow-ish flare color.



The contrast of color in the woods is fantastic. Most striking are the contrasts of deep reds and greens.

In the woods


Another study on reflections. I love the mystery I see in this image.

Reflections on life


This reflection study does include land. I just love woods that look like this. I’d love to have a house with this view as my front or backyard!



Another example of bright color in the woods. The Cardinal, we love this birdy!

Bright red Cardinal


Playing with line and shape.
Line and Shape


And of course, next to flares, I also love to shoot Palm trees. Good thing I live in Florida, huh! I love how the colors came out here. And the texture adds a nice dimension to the image. This image was shoot at dusk in Sarasota Bay.



This is another reflection study, taken at Sarasota Bay, with the lights of the Ritz Carlton reflected in the water.

Reflections on the Ritz


There are a good amount of bottlenose Dolphins in Sarasota Bay. These dolphins are immortalized as statues. I love how this shot came out. A low shutter speed at dusk and a bit of flash, and the dolphins look almost superimposed. The shadows were caught in camera and the only post-production done here was color!

Bottlenose Dolpins statue


Hope you have enjoyed this visual trip. Camping at Oscar Scherer and a visit to Sarasota is definitely worth it!

~ Astrid and Rene ~