Monday, August 18, 2008

An afternoon of realization...

I recently had an assignment to shoot the Self Realization Fellowship (SRF) center in Encinitas. Ive always wondered about this place as ive driven by it many times so i was excited to get the opportunity to photograph it. I was very surprised when i arrived as it was not at all what i expected. As you drive by it on coast highway you see this really big cool looking building surrounded by a wall covered in vegetation. I had expected to see some really big temple on the other side of the wall or something like that, but as it turns out its just a couple of buildings and a big open field.........i was a little confused and a little disappointed. Soon i found out though that the open field is used for big meetings and that part of the big draw to the place was the meditation gardens which was just a little ways up the road. The gardens are truly beautiful, and the monks work very hard to keep it a quiet and serene place where people can come and meditate. As a result of these efforts the gardens are not open to commercial photography, its a real shame for other people who want to shoot there........but lucky me i was shooting for an article and got to shoot a little. I was also taken to some private areas that had some AMAZING views of the coast. It was a real fun experience but the biggest highlight was talking with one of the monks as he showed me the gardens. We got into a nice conversation on the importance of family and started to talk about God and the importance of spirituality and faith........i wont get into details but will say that it was a nice talk. The sun set and the light began to dim so i ended my afternoon there with a short shooting session of the front building at dusk. Heres some photos. Enjoy!!

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