Tomorrow my kids go back to school, and my week day routine will begin at 5:45 am. For Wilson County, TN, the summer break is only 8 weeks long, and it flies by every year. The fact that I now have a middle schooler makes the start of this school year even more bittersweet. How did I arrive at this place in my life so fast? How much more quickly will the next few years go by? Why does time move faster as we age? I think this is one summer I wanted to last forever or maybe even just a little longer. For friends of mine who have a child beginning college this month, I know they feel the same. Time moves fast. Take all the pictures you can! I tried to capture this summer as best as I was able without having the camera permanently glued to my face. We went to the beach and to the mountains. These are two totally different landscapes with different requirements on the camera and the photographer. For beach portraits, you will want to shoot close to sunrise or sunset because the midday sun is brutal on the subjects as well as the camera. Investing in a polarized filter for midday beach candid photos is a great idea. It’s like sunglasses for your camera, and it will help the colors pop. Sunset is always better for portraits as it allows for your subject to actually look at the camera without squinting. Keep the sun behind them and focus on their eyes. Large landscape photos are completely opposite. Use a wide angle lens and keep the F stop high to allow the most clarity at different depths. This means you need to shoot in the bright of day to allow the most light into the camera possible. Am I beginning to speak French? I will stop now and show you some examples from my summer vacations. I can’t live in the past, and I can’t make summer last forever. I do, however, have the pictures to prove I was there. Goodbye, my summer.